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Imation upgrades Nexsan Assureon object-based storage archive

Imation makes first product upgrade since acquiring Nexsan, delivering Assureon 7 for object-based storage archiving.

Imation Corp. this week upgraded the Nexsan Assureon disk-based archiving system, the first Nexsan product launch since Imation acquired the storage vendor in January.

With Assureon 7, Imation is continuing with the Nexsan brand and roadmap set before the $120 million acquisition. Assureon is object-based storage that runs on Nexsan E-Series high-density storage arrays.

New features in Nexsan Assureon 7 include virtual shortcuts to speed the recovery of files, the ability to span the file system over multiple arrays for better management, data ingestion throttling to improve server performance and the auditing of all configuration changes. Nexsan's E-Series storage now supports 4 TB drives -- up from 1 TB on the previous version.

The virtual shortcut feature places shortcuts to files in memory rather than on disk. If a server goes down, the customer can bring up another server and install the Assureon client, and the file will appear, according to Assureon Product Marketing Manager Ted Johnson.

Johnson said Assureon is used mostly by companies in the health care, financial services and government markets for the archiving of applications such as a picture archiving and communication system; check archiving; and government documents. Most Assureon customers are in heavily regulated industries. Johnson described the system as "an automatic archive for high-value data."

Assureon is available as the NAS-based Nexsan Assureon Edge, the Assureon High Speed Edge, and as client software for the cloud or remote sites. The Assureon Edge is a 2U server for Linux or Unix, with Ethernet support for CIFS and NFS. The High Speed Edge product uses InfiniBand network connectivity.

Jack Henry & Associates, a Monett, Mo.-based service provider for community banks, uses Assureon to build document and imaging archiving services for customers. One of those is a private cloud architecture. Customers run Assureon clients on-site and replicate encrypted files to a large Assureon system at one of the company's data centers.

Jack Henry also has a disaster recovery service that allows its customers to replicate between an Assureon Edge system on-site and another hosted by the provider.

Randy Faith, manager of technical sales for Jack Henry, said his company switched from optical media to Assureon object-based storage approximately six years ago.

"We needed a faster response time for archived images and a better way to back that up other than tape," he said. "Our financial institutions need to have all their data encrypted. We still use tape for daily backups of databases, but all the fixed content is on Assureon."

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