The biggest addition to iWave Storage Automator 6 is the ability to allocate correct block or file storage and configure the fabric and the host via the iWave Storage Execution Engine.
Through a Web-based iWave Storage Service Portal, the iWave software automatically matches the application requirements with the best available storage according to disk type, and then provisions the storage while also notifying the end-user and updating the configuration management database (CMD) and chargeback information.
EMC is an OEM partner with iWave, and uses the iWave Storage Automator in its new VMAX Service Provider Platform, which is designed for service providers to deploy storage infrastructure for the cloud, according to a source that requested anonymity.
“We have an easy-to-use portal that does multi-tenancy for public and private storage services,” said iWave CEO Brent Rhymes. “We added a rules engine to express the storage needs of the application through a feature called the application storage profile, which designates the storage requirements for the particular application or host operation system. Then the rules engine gets the best possible storage based on the profile.”
The previous version of iWave automated the fabric and host configuration but could not analyze the storage requirements. The newest version automates the analysis of the application requirements such as performance, capacity, compatibility with other software, and data protection needs. Then it designates the right storage tier, storage array, device group, device type and path. Next it approves the change and maintenance schedule and resource reservation. Storage then is provisioned and fabric and host is configured. Finally, the user is notified of that the storage is provisioned.
“We kept encountering customers who were telling us users were frustrated with the response time that enterprise storage groups took to serve up the data,” Rhymes said. “One tier-one bank would take between 30 to 60 days to tier and provision storage.”
iWave Storage Automator 6 supports EMC VMAX, VMAXe and VNX as well as the old Clariion arrays. It also supports NetApp’s FAS storage systems and Dell Compellent. Rhymes said support for Dell EqualLogic is on the vendor’s roadmap.
Storage Automator also supports Brocade and Cisco switches, Windows and Linux multipathing and EMC PowerPath. The software will be available to qualified customers on July 28 with VMware support and it will be generally available on Sept. 6 with Microsoft Hyper-V support.
Analyst George Crump, president of Storage Switzerland, said the iWave Storage Automator can reduce the time it takes to provision storage but also helps select the best type of storage to improve application performance.
“iWave is more of a take-action tool,” he said. “You can have this stuff happen in minutes without human intervention. If it’s a file share, it would provision capacity-centric and low cost storage. If it’s an Oracle database, it has the intelligence to provide high-speed, high-performance storage, maybe solid state.”
iWave is taking a process that vendors often deliver in piecemeal tools and putting it under one roof, said Joseph Martin, managing director of Data Mobility Group. “You can get an application up and running with a bare minimum reference profile and you don’t have to do a lot of manual tweaking,” he said. “These profiles they have designed bridge the gap for those may not be very technical.”