SNW: Product news highlights

Dell, EMC, Cisco, Microsoft, HDS and scores of startups launch new products at SNW in San Diego this week. Stay tuned for full coverage of the show.

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CreekPath reinvents itself
Following AppIQ's acquisition by HP, anybody left in the storage resource management (SRM) and provisioning game had to reinvent themselves fast or be left behind. CreekPath has opted for reinvention and now pegs itself as a storage asset and service management company. Its new software, dubbed Acuity, sits on top of the old CreekPath SRM software and aligns storage usage together with business analytics. The benefit to users, according to CreekPath, is better utilization, forecasting and chargeback capabilities, and an increasing return on assets.

Acuity includes over 200 prebuilt, configurable analytic templates to show storage costs, consumption and demand planning. The templates show total storage spending by region, business unit or other factors. CreekPath has about 20 customers using its existing SRM suite and hopes to translate these into Acuity users.

FalconStor throws hat into CDP ring
FalconStor Software Inc. has joined the continuous data protection (CDP) train with products for the branch office, and small and midsized business (SMB) markets. Built on its IPStor software, FalconStor CDP IPStor Enterprise Edition offers any-point-in-time recovery of e-mail, files and database applications. A remote office version of the product provides continuous or periodic disk or file protection for servers, workstations and laptops, and replicates only delta data changes across the WAN. A third version, targeted at SMBs includes all the features of the enterprise and remote office products but comes in an appliance, making it simpler for smaller companies to use, FalconStor said.

CDP upstarts dig deeper
CDP startup Mendocino Software is trying to ride the new "application aware" fad in CDP with the announcement that database maker Sybase will be opening its code to them -- the better for Mendocino's software to speed database restores.

Bocada Inc., too, has gotten some of the big guys to open their doors, including NetApp and HP. Bocada is going to be delving into the vendors' code to beef up its data protection management and reporting software. Among the benefits to being in the good graces of the major players is access to beta code, so Bocada can be ready for new versions of their products. Like Mendocino, Bocada is also hinting at further partnership announcements to follow "basically the other large storage vendors that you'd think of," according to vice president of marketing Drake Pruitt.

"In the past we've worked like safecrackers, reverse engineering other vendor's products based on what was publicly available," Pruitt said. "Companies are starting to recognize us and support us now."

(P.S. Revivio Inc. has also announced its own version of "application aware" CDP. See Revivio users eye automation module, March 24).

Sun ties up loose ends
The new storage group at Sun Microsystems Inc., dubbed the Data Management Group (DMG), is expected to tie up any remaining loose ends from the StorageTek acquisition with the announcement of StorageTek Business Analytics 5.0, based on intellectual property StorageTek brought on board with its acquisition of Storability before it was acquired by Sun.

In addition to bringing the StorageTek product into the Sun fold, the new version of the software includes new reports on NAS file system quotas, which notify administrators when quotas or volumes are reaching capacity, as well as new support for NetApp's Data OnTap 7.0 OS. The software has always identified "orphan" storage volumes, but the new version will give guidelines for bringing "orphaned" storage back onto a SAN. Finally, the new software will support new partner products, including Red Hat Enterprise Linux, QLogic switches, and IBM and ADIC tape libraries, as well as Sun's own Solaris 10 OS.

Sun will also launch the Sun StorageTek Operations Manager 4.1, also known as AppIQ's SRM tools, which Sun has OEMed since before AppIQ's acquisition by HP. The new version of the software isn't much of an update (it's added support for IBM DS arrays and Sun NAS devices, and that's about it), but according to Dan Norton, product marketing manager for Sun DMG, the announcement is meant to put to rest speculation that Sun might drop its OEM of AppIQ, now that it belongs to a competitor (See also HP acquisition may be warning sign for SMI-S, Sept. 20, 2005).

"We wanted to address some of the questions about AppIQ and whether we'd continue the relationship," Norton said. "We want people to understand we intend to keep the product."

Backup appliance has IBM pedigree
SMB storage specialist StorServer rolled out a new line of StorServer EZ backup appliances that come with IBM's stamp of approval. The fully self-contained appliances can be ordered in a variety of backup configurations including disk-to-tape and disk-to-disk-to-tape setups. The four new models -- the Model 1, 1000, 2000 and 3000 -- feature IBM servers, IBM tape drives and IBM/Tivoli Storage Manager or TSM Express backup and restore software. The price for the entry-level Model 1 starts at about $6,500; at the high end, maximum installed capacity is 9.5 terabytes. While StorServer has been in backup appliances for some time, "what's new for us is that it's a total IBM solution," according to Ellen Rome, StorServer's vice president of sales and marketing.

WysDM lands second OEM deal
Backup reporting tool maker, WysDM Software, has signed a second OEM partner, Avamar Technologies. EMC already resells the product under the name EMC Backup Advisor. Avamar will call the product Data Protection Manager. In addition, the company announced WysDM for Backups 3.5 that provides support for Avamar Axion and EMC's virtual tape library, dubbed Clariion Disk Library. Other new features in 3.5 include details of backup operations, such as tape cloning and disk-to-tape destaging to give visibility into more complex backup environments.

StoredIQ set to scale
With five customers under its belt, data classification startup StoredIQ is working on improving the scalability of its platform. Formerly available as a single-node 2U appliance, you can now buy the StoredIQ in a 4-node and 8-node configuration. By creating a federated cluster, the number of files StoredIQ can index has increased to 50 million, and its ingest rates stands at about 100 documents per second, said Keith Zoellner, CTO.

Xyratex integrates nStor intellectual property
Xyratex, usually known for its power, packaging and JBOD enclosure prowess, has a new array that incorporates RAID technology the company picked up through the nStor Technologies Inc. acquisition last summer. The 4 GB 5402 has a 4 Gbps FC front end and supports SAS or SATA-II disk drives internally. The 2U, 12-bay system can be expanded to 60 drives with another four enclosures, and supports RAID-0, 1, 5, 10 and 50. Future plans include RAID-6 support and snapshot capabilities. In the past, Xyratex has integrated third-party RAID controllers into its controllers.

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