Behind the firewall 19

EMC acquires Rainfinity in fire sale ... VoIP and SATA arrays inflate storage archives ... Who won the bid for HP's new midrange tape library?

Anyone smell something burning? EMC's recent acquisition of file-migration specialist Rainfinity was no surprise, but the secrecy over the price deserves some explanation. EMC says it paid less than $100 million for the company. Rainfinity raised approximately $60 million in funding over three rounds. Sources close to the deal say the price (in cash) was between $50 million and $100 million. That's a fire sale if ever we smelled one.

McData, brace yourself. QLogic is expected to launch a low-cost 4Gb/10Gb director switch in the next 90 days. This will put even more pressure on McData's director business, which is already under attack from Brocade and Cisco.

You think e-mail archiving consumes a lot of storage?

Just wait until you have to start recording and archiving employee phone conversations. Leading Wall Street firms are starting to do just that, thanks to the availability of Voice over IP, voice recognition software and, of course, cheap SATA-based arrays. One low-cost storage vendor recently landed the business of a name-brand online trader that jumpstarted its voice recording efforts with an initial 300TB system.


Symantec had better hurry up and make good on its promise to users to revamp licensing for Veritas products. "I'm always shocked and appalled at the price vendors can command for the product," says one unhappy user. "It irritates me to no end that Veritas can command $5,000 for a mere license to activate a drive." License management is another backup software bugaboo. One user says he may need to hire someone full-time to handle vendor licensing. So, Symantec, just how do you feel about capacity-based pricing?

Has CDP already lost its cachet? Mendocino Software has a new continuous data protection (CDP) product about to debut, but the firm's execs are staying away from the CDP moniker, insisting that they're selling a "recovery management" application. The three-letter acronym the Mendocino crowd really likes is OEM. The company says no serious enterprise will buy a CDP--er, recovery management--product from a startup which, coincidentally is where all the CDP apps are coming from. Could it be that Mendocino is just trying to get some attention in a crowded field?

Let's face it, a box of rocks is smarter than your average e-mail archiving system. Expect that to change in the next couple of months. Electronic discovery vendor MetaLincs, which launched its first intelligent e-discovery tool last month, is in discussions with e-mail archiving vendors, CEO Ramon Nunez reports, which could lead to an IQ race among them. Typical discovery programs rely mostly on keyword searches to turn up e-mail messages related to a legal or compliance issue. MetaLincs uses keywords too, but tosses some associative intelligence into the discovery process. The app's visual analysis tool graphically shows the e-mail correspondents involved in the electronic paper trail--click on one of them, or the lines that connect them, to get the lowdown on their communications. It can even create its own keyword list by tracking words and phrases that pop up frequently in e-mails.

The rumors continue to swirl around who has won the bid for a new Hewlett-Packard (HP) midrange tape library expected out later this year. According to Bob Wilson, VP of nearline storage for HP StorageWorks, the new LTO library will feature one or two drives and approximately 24 cartridges. Overland Storage, which supplies HP with its existing midrange library (the MSL), didn't win the business, executives disclosed on their earnings call this summer. Furthermore, they expect the new library to seriously eat into MSL sales, which make up 56% of Overland's business. So who did win the bid? StorageTek is one possibility, as it was HP's supplier until 2002 when Overland stepped in, and currently supplies its high-end ESL line, but competition with Sun Microsystems may have dampened HP's enthusiasm for the deal. Quantum is another possibility. ADIC, meanwhile, is rumored to be in partnership discussions with Dell.

This was last published in September 2005

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