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Storage Management Software

GOLD:   AppIQ StorageAuthority Suite Version 3.0
You might not have heard of a company called AppIQ Inc., but if you intend to manage storage using standards-based software in the next few years, chances are that you will be using its technology. With features such as SAN management, automated provisioning and an application-level view of storage all built from scratch on standards-based technology, our panel of judges awarded this year's gold medal for best storage management product of the year to AppIQ's StorageAuthority Suite version 3.0.

The StorageAuthority builds a storage utility for the enterprise through integrated SAN management, storage resource management (SRM), storage provisioning and storage operations management capabilities. The software provides heterogeneous device support, application management, automation tools--all architected from the ground up on the Storage Management Initiative Specification (SMI-S) management standard.

When it comes to device support, the StorageAuthority Suite has a laundry list of platforms and systems that it can manage including Solaris, IBM AIX, HDS Dynamic Link Manager and several EMC product lines, including the Symmetrix DMX family of storage systems,

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the Connectrix family of switches and directors and Clariion disk arrays with PowerPath, raw volumes, Brocade and LSI Logic firmware revisions.

AppIQ's wide range of device support is a direct result of helping other vendors comply with the SMI-S management standard. It instantly supports management of SMI-S compliant devices without requiring converters and adapters to translate proprietary APIs to SMI-S. That's why Brocade, HDS, Hewlett-Packard, LSI Logic, McData, NetApp, SGI, and Sun Microsystems have all licensed AppIQ's CIMIQ device integration program to make their switches and subsystems SMI-S compliant.

According to our judges, AppIQ is far ahead of most other software solutions on the market when it comes to standards-based storage management.

StorageAuthority offers specialized management modules for applications including Oracle databases, Microsoft Exchange, Veritas NetBackup and file server and chargeback applications. AppIQ has also added file-level SRM capabilities, heterogeneous device support, provisioning and backup and recovery management features to its management software in recent months.

SILVER:   CreekPath Storage Operations Management Suite 3.0
Our panel of judges was impressed by CreekPath's ability to provide SAN management, SRM, security, database and backup operations management through a single console. One judge said that while the Storage Operations Management Suite has not yet been widely accepted in the industry, it does "address a significant problem with good technology."

The CreekPath Suite's workflow engine allows for automated provisioning through a graphical flow based on policies and explicit rules or manual wizards. The customizable workflow automates the entire change management process within IT operations all through a single management console.

Like our gold medalist AppIQ, CreekPath's Storage Operations Management Suite version 3.0 supports SMI-S compliant storage arrays and FC directors and switches that implement SMI array and fabric profiles, including EMC Symmetrix and Clariion systems, the Lightning and Thunder from HDS and IBM's Enterprise Storage Server and FastT. CreekPath also supports all arrays from HP as well as systems from Brocade, Cisco, LSI Logic, McData, NetApp and StorageTek.

The CreekPath Suite operates outside of the data path, allowing the software to be installed quickly without disrupting existing networks or application environments. Once installed, the Storage Operations Management Suite automatically detects, analyzes and acts to improve the efficiency of a given storage network.

According to one expert, CreekPath's architecture automates discovery, monitoring, reporting and provisioning of storage networks, while its module-based approach allows for the addition of new management tools without disrupting its centralized management capabilities.

BRONZE:   OuterBay Application Data Management 3.0
Outerbay Technologies' Application Data management (ADM) 3.0 Software Suite's ability to save the end user money by migrating data on high-end storage gear to less-expensive storage platforms resonated with our panel of judges.

ADM 3.0 is implemented as an operationally transparent extension of application, database and storage environments. OuterBay's software supports Oracle, PeopleSoft and custom applications as well as open standards and systems such as Linux and ATA. ADM 3.0 monitors and manages data growth to maintain application performance and speed upgrades. The suite is made up of the Application Resource Monitor (ARM), Instance Generator and LiveArchive.

The Instance Generator eliminates full-sized production database copies in favor of smaller subsets of the database. LiveArchive improves application performance and reduces the downtime needed for consolidations and upgrades by managing application data growth. It works by identifying inactive application data and moving it onto more cost-effective storage, where it remains online and accessible to users from their existing application user interfaces.

OuterBay's award was solidified by its advanced management features. One judge said it offers "data facility hierarchical storage management and data facility storage management subsystem capabilities for the little guys."

Next year's competition: Products of the Year for 2004 will accept submissions between September 7 and October 22, 2004. Details for qualification and instructions on submission will be posted at http://searchstorage.techtarget.com/POY. Anyone can submit a product for consideration.

This was first published in January 2004

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