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Production of Dell-EMC Clariion systems under way

Dell has officially begun manufacturing co-branded Clariion storage systems with EMC. The company also has some new SAN packages intended to lure small-to-medium business users.

Dell Computer Corp. has flipped the switch on its assembly line and has begun manufacturing Dell-EMC CX200 storage systems worldwide. The company also introduced entry-level storage area network (SAN) "bundles" based on the CX200 for small and medium-sized businesses.

Dell said the new SAN bundles based on the Dell-EMC CX200 storage system are designed for small-scale database applications, including Oracle 9i. Customers can also use VisualSAN software to monitor and control the SAN from a central console, as well as troubleshoot issues through online support tools, according to Dell.

Dell, which co-brands a range of storage systems, including the Dell-EMC CX200, CX400 and CX600, is EMC's largest partner.

EMC announced the CX200 in October 2002, at which time EMC said Dell would manufacture the CX200 storage system at its facilities in Texas, Ireland and Malaysia. Many in the industry and media thought the manufacturing was already under way.

"I thought that Dell had started manufacturing earlier, but they were just sourcing their own drives," said Randy Kerns, a senior analyst with the Evaluator Group Inc., based in Greenwood Village, Colo.

Steve Duplessie, senior analyst and founder of the Enterprise Storage Group Inc., in Milford, Mass., said the news that Dell is now building Clariion is nothing major. "It's just a Dell-like package that's easy to order."

Duplessie said that Dell had previously announced its intent to manufacture but hadn't started until now.

The CX200 shares a common architecture, components, management software and FLARE operating environment with its larger siblings, the Clariion CX600 and Clariion CX400, which were also announced last year.

EMC tailored versions of its Navisphere and PowerPath software for CX200 requirements. Navisphere Base manages a single CX200 system and PowerPath Base offers path failover.

The CX200 delivers 25,000 I/Os per second of throughput and 200 Mbps of bandwidth in cached environments, the company said. The CX200 can scale to 2.2 terabytes (TB) capacity and supports Windows 2000, Windows NT, Linux and Novell NetWare environments.

Given that EMC's main competition in the CX200 arena is Hewlett-Packard Co.'s MSA1000 storage array, HP was quick to counter Dell's inaugural moment with a statement.

HP claimed the MSA1000 storage array has equal performance at half the price of EMC's CX200 and scales to 3 TB versus the CX200's 2.2 TB.

"HP continues to maintain the number [one] position in the midrange storage space with a 40% market share. This is, in part, based on the low cost manufacturing model that HP already employs for the MSA1000 Fibre Channel array, allowing low-cost SAN storage solutions for our customers," said Neal Clapper, vice president of the online storage division for HP Network Storage Solutions.

However, the MSA1000 does lag behind EMC's CX200 in performance. Both arrays run 25,000 I/Os per second of throughput, but the CX200 has 200 Mbps of bandwidth in cached environments compared with the MSA1000's 160 Mbps.

Customers can choose Dell-EMC CX200 SAN bundles for Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server databases, as well as for file and print management and backup applications in Red Hat Linux Advanced Server and Microsoft Windows environments.

A Dell-EMC CX200 storage system configured for two PowerEdge servers, with three years of service and support, is available for prices starting at --> ,500. The HP MSA1000 starts at $18,200 for a similar configuration.

Let us know what you think about the story. E-mail Kevin Komiega, News Writer


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