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ADIC buys virtual tape technology, engineering team

Kevin Komiega

Continuing its quest to build a better storage portfolio, Advanced Digital Information Corp. (ADIC), announced Thursday that it has acquired the assets of a privately held company called V-Stor -- a developer of disk-based data protection products for the open systems market.

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The move represents a continuation of ADIC?s on-going initiative to combine multiple storage technologies. In April, ADIC introduced its StorNext Management Suite, a software product that merges disk and tape into an integrated, high capacity storage system that provides comprehensive access, management, and protection of data in storage area networks (SANs).

Nancy Marrone, senior analyst for the Enterprise Storage Group Inc., Milford, Mass., said both disk-to-disk backup and virtual tape solutions are addressing the need to treat certain types of data differently, giving preferential treatment based on the access requirements of the data.

"A customer could certainly use both [disk-to-disk] and tape virtualization solutions in the same enterprise environment, assuming of course the solutions worked together," Marrone said.

The financial details of the acquisition were not disclosed, but Redmond, Wash.-based ADIC stated that it will dish-out approximately $1.5 million related to acquired in-process research and development and compensation to V-Stor personnel.

V-Stor's strength lies in its software. The company develops virtual tape software that allows disk-based storage to look and act like tape systems to traditional backup applications in order to allow disk to be utilized in existing data protection systems. ADIC said the new products will give users the best of both worlds when it comes to backup by merging the benefits of combined disk-tape solutions while continuing to use the backup software products and procedures that they use today.

ADIC's senior vice president of technology, Jonathan Otis, said disk provides fast operational response characteristics for both file writing and file recovery. With the right kind of management policies, it can present hosts with a flexible virtual environment where resources can be dynamically reconfigured on demand, he said.

Otis added that the reliability and durability of tape provides safe and efficient off-site data protection, and it provides scalable capacity at a cost that is projected to remain several times lower than disk.

"Together, they can create a very effective data protection solution," stated Otis.

With the acquisition of V-Stor, ADIC now has the ability to make disk look like tape. The company plans to combine the V-Stor technology with its distributed file system and policy-based management offerings to allow tape and disk to work together as general-purpose storage.

ADIC said integration efforts are well under way, and it expects to deliver products that combine disk and tape for backup later this year.

V-Stor was founded in 2000 as an open systems spin-off from Sutmyn Storage Corp., a developer of technology for mainframe data protection applications.

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