IBM Makes 4 (Count Em) Storage Announcements

    August 25, 2006
    WebProNews Staff

IBM says it is “turbocharging” its storage system, announcing that the company has made one of the single largest expansions of its storage portfolio. The expansion includes IBM’s high-end disk systems, its N series portfolio, data retention solutions, and offerings for SMBs.

“We’re turbocharging our storage systems and accelerating our NetApp relationship to help customers manage their information on demand needs,” said Andy Monshaw, general manager, IBM System Storage.

At the high-end, IBM is introducing the new IBM System Storage DS8000 Turbo models, updating its flagship DS8000 series. The new models — the IBM System Storage DS8100 Turbo and DS8300 Turbo systems — are based on POWER5+ processors.

IBM says the processors demonstrate a performance improvement of up to 15 percent for transaction processing workload environments, as compared to the previous IBM System Storage DS8000 storage system. The company is first in line to offer 4Gbps Fibre Channel and FICON technology aimed at reducing the number of network resources.

Additional features of the IBM System Storage DS8000 Turbo models include improved tiered storage options, functions to enable greater performance and efficiency for DB2 applications on IBM System p servers, and support for three-site business continuity solutions that reaches greater distances and requires less network bandwidth than competing systems.

“The IBM System Storage DS8000 Turbo’s disaster recovery is a major improvement over the solution from Hitachi we were using previously,” said Gilmar Teixeira, Storage Management, Tivit. “We replaced the HDS storage infrastructure with IBM System Storage DS8100 systems, which enables us to mirror 100 percent of the data between our primary and backup centers, allowing Tivit to comply with its strict service level agreements.”

IBM has added:

Tiered Storage Options – The first tier, using Fibre Channel drives, can be used to store critical, frequently used data, whereas the second tier incorporates Fibre Channel ATA drives (FATA) and is used to store less frequently used data. The second tier disk storage can support faster restores and provides the opportunity for lower costs by temporarily staging snapshots or backups.

Three-Site Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery Solution – Three-site Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery solutions are designed to provide constant access to data and to support failover/failback modes for efficient resynchronization with quick updates in the event that any site experiences downtime. The DS8000 three-site solution from IBM utilizes IBM Metro Mirror to maintain synchronous copies of data up to 300 kilometers away. IBM’s Global Mirror function for asynchronous copy provides three- to five-second replication at virtually unlimited distances.

IBM Server Synergy Features – I/O priorities and Cooperative Caching enable the IBM System Storage DS8000 Turbo to work in conjunction with IBM AIX solutions and DB2 in order to improve efficiency and performance for high priority applications.

IBM TotalStorage Productivity Center (TPC) for Replication – Is designed to provide a single point of control for Metro Mirror, Global Mirror and FlashCopy functions, as well as providing the ability to track and confirm the completion of replication operations. It also can help maintain data consistency with cross-device consistency groups. The software also works with IBM Enterprise Storage Server and IBM SAN Volume Controller (SVC) as a way of automating the replication functions of SVC.

IBM says the enhancements are designed to help control the costs associated with their storage infrastructure. The DS8000 Turbo line has a 25% lower base system list price (USD) than the previous comparable systems.
Second, IBM announced enhancements to its System Storage DS6000, which will also support Fibre Channel ATA drives (FATA), tiered storage options and TPC for Replication. The DS6000 Series will also come with one-standard warranty and the option for a flexible Enterprise Choice warranty extensions, in response to customer demand.

These new offerings will be available in early September, with upgrades and more options available in November.

Third, IBM introduced its Storage N7000 family, a high-end and gateway solutions love child developed through its partnership with Network Appliance Inc. The release is part of a line of unified storage products based on NetApp technology designed to provide end-to-end solutions for environments needing enterprise class NAS, FC SAN, and iSCSI offerings.

The N series models, IBM System Storage N7600 and N7800, offer Fibre Channel and SATA disk drive support and provide simultaneous NAS, iSCSI and 4Gbps FC SAN (FCP) attachment. Additionally, they offer over 35 advanced software features and are scalable up to 504 terabytes of physical capacity. The enterprise gateway models, IBM System Storage N7600 and N7800 Gateways, utilize the same technology as the enterprise appliance models and include an option of attachment to IBM, Hitachi and HP storage subsystems. These high-end enterprise solutions are designed to enable customers to consolidate large amounts of IP attached storage under one point of management.

Fourth, IBM announced an enhancement of its compliance and archiving solutions, designed for long-term data retention, including retention driven by regulation or corporate governance requirements. The System Storage DR550 V3.0 and DR550 Express include also the IBM System Storage DS4700 storage controller and the EXP810 storage expansion as its disk storage subsystem. The DS4700 system uses 500 GB SATA drives and offers 4Gbps Fibre Channel technology.

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