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Telcos to deliver storage as a utility with SSP offering

SSP Storability debuts a services delivery platform that lets customers deploy storage as a utility.

Storage service provider Storability Inc., has announced a package of software, training and services that lets telcos and other companies deliver storage services to their customers.

The Southborough, Mass.-based SSP said the AssuredStorage Management System (ASMS), a commercially available storage services delivery platform, lets customers deploy storage as a utility service.

The basic perk of ASMS is a single, centralized view of the entire heterogeneous storage infrastructure, across multiple platforms and locations, via Storability's AssuredStorage Navigator Web-based portal. According to the company, Navigator provides both dashboard and drill-down views, regardless of the underlying hardware environment.

ASMS is designed for service providers who want to add storage services to their portfolio of other service offerings, and for enterprise IT organizations making the move to an internal service provider model.

ASMS can be deployed within the enterprise firewall and operated by the customer's own IT staff. According to Storability, customers can also choose to have Storability manage the infrastructure remotely on a short or long-term basis.

Information is collected on day-to-day operations and provides reporting and knowledge bases using rules-based artificial intelligence. The company claims that its systems provide proactive monitoring of disparate hardware and software components, immediate identification of failures, and problem tracking and recording.

International Data Corp., analyst Doug Chandler said Storability's approach is very similar to StorageNetworks' recently announced STORfusion platform.

Chandler said standalone SSPs are in a difficult position today and companies like Santa Clara, Calif.-based Exodus Communications filing for bankruptcy only makes things worse.

"Providing storage management services, or providing the software and services to let a customer offer storage utility services is one way for the SSPs to stay viable," said Chandler. The current climate puts these providers in more of a managed services provider (MSP) mode, than the SSP model.

Chandler said the original SSP model is being sold more by the IBM Global Services and EDS's of the world, along with their Web hosting services, as well as by companies like Qwest and AT&T who can also provide Web hosting services.

"I don't think the standalone rent-a-disk business is going to survive the year, as a separate entity," he said.

Let us know what you think about the story, e-mail Kevin Komiega, assistant news editor


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