Storage Management Software

GOLD:   Fujitsu Softek Storage Manager
Users have had it with vendor promises of heterogeneous management. While software makers have been racing to bring the best management tools to market this year, one product has emerged from the pack to answer the call for automated storage provisioning, archiving, security and overall SAN management.

Fujitsu Softek's Storage Manager not only centralizes and automates storage management in multivendor environments, but it goes the extra mile by allowing users to pool management of disparate data and storage hardware types, including both open and mainframe systems, through the use of virtualization, replication, migration and storage resource management technology.

Our judges took special notice of Storage Manager's wide platform support. Softek Storage Manager software works with Windows NT/2000, Sun Solaris, HP/UX, AIX and mainframe platforms OS/390 and Z/OS.

Fujitsu - which was one of the first software vendors to integrate features through a policy engine - doesn't overlook the fundamental functions of storage management. The software links storage directly to application requirements and warns when storage servers are near or reach maximum capacity,

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runs reports, delete files and automatically provisions storage in virtualized SAN environments.

Storage Manager is reverent of the past. Legacy storage also falls under the software's reign, letting users view not only networked NAS and SAN systems, but DAS as well. The software monitors and automates actions such as archiving, deleting files and provisioning storage resources using set storage policies across servers or groups of servers.

Fujitsu's victory over the runners-up for Storage Management Product of the Year was indeed slim, but the experts believe Storage Manager gives users the most management for their IT buck.

SILVER:   FalconStor IPStor
IPStor nearly captured the gold, but our panel of judges frowned on the fact that the software only runs on the Unix and Linux operating platforms.

FalconStor's IPStor software centers around storage virtualization, and according to our panel, its modular architecture better serves storage environments that need to scale.

FalconStor's IPStor facilitates consolidation of heterogeneous storage environments along with provisioning of both SAN and NAS resources for file sharing from the same storage pool all while laboring from the middle of the data path. The software supports any SCSI or FC-attached disk and tape storage devices.

By offloading tasks such as backup, restore, volume management, mirroring, snapshot and replication from the application servers and the storage devices and putting them right into the SAN, IPStor chops administrative overhead. Everything is managed from a single point including diagnostics and reporting.

Another feather in IPStor's management cap is its protocol support. The software connects anything that moves data including FC, IP, iSCSI, SCSI, CIFS, NFS and more.

BRONZE:   Veritas SANPoint Control 3.5
What would a software category be without the V word? No, we don't mean virtualization, we mean software juggernaut Veritas. Like our Gold and Silver winners, Veritas SANPoint offers a centralized storage management interface to deploy, monitor and manage multivendor networked storage environments.

SANPoint Control manages everything from the application to the storage array and tackles tasks such as performance and policy management, storage provisioning and zoning while actively managing storage resources and service level agreements.

Judges pointed out that SANPoint Control 3.5 currently supports HP-UX, Solaris and Windows 2000, features such as Install Wizard and automatic discovery of storage resources, which help ease the need for highly skilled IT staff. The one drawback to Veritas' software, according to the judges, is a lack of options for some operations. One judge thinks that the SANPoint Control 3.5 "should support discovery of other backup packages."

This was first published in January 2003

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