Microsoft has rolled out new features aimed at making its Azure StorSimple cloud-connected storage appliances for data centers easier to manage and play better with other network resources.
Manu Aery, a senior program manager in Microsoft's Cloud + Enterprise division, announced a handful of new updates for the company's StorSimple hardware and cloud storage solution. Microsoft acquired StorSimple on Oct. 16, 2012. An early provider of hybrid cloud storage solutions, the company distinguished itself with local solid-state drive (SSD) storage and easy to manage, plug-and-play hardware that reflected the StorSimple name.
Post-acquisition, Microsoft seems intent in keeping up with the tradition.
StorSimple allows IT organizations to "manage data growth and lower storage costs up to 60 percent," boasts Microsoft's Website. Featuring capacity-saving in-line deduplication and compression, StorSimple appliances offer offsite storage, backup and disaster recovery services backed by Microsoft's massive public cloud infrastructure.
Azure StorSimple now supports Bandwidth Templates, wrote Aery in a blog post. Storage administrators can implement bandwidth-throttled data transfer schedules with better control and less conflict over network resources. "You can now configure multiple time-of-day schedules to tier the data from the StorSimple device to the cloud and avoid potential network contention issues," she wrote.
"Users can create, modify, delete, and save these schedules as templates," she continued. Templates are then applied on volume containers, enabling the systems "to control the bandwidth consumed by the StorSimple device when performing operations involving the cloud."
Also new are features that allow IT departments to "manage the dual controllers on your 8000 series StorSimple appliances from the Azure StorSimple Manager Service." During maintenance or in the event that the controllers require a restart, a shutdown "can now be initiated from the Maintenance page on the Device tab of the StorSimple Manager Service," she stated. "You can also power on a shutdown controller or restart a powered-on controller."
StorSimple also gains a new alerting capability. "If you want to send device health and other monitoring alerts to specific email addresses, you can enable them in Alert Settings on the Configure page on the Device tab of the StorSimple Manager Service," she wrote. The feature supports up to 20 email addresses per device, she added.
Finally, StorSimple is following Azure's lead into Australia. On Oct. 20, during a cloud-themed press event in San Francisco, Scott Guthrie, executive vice president of the company's Cloud and Enterprise group, announced an expansion of Microsoft's cloud footprint with the opening of two new Azure regions in Australia.
In their wake, the software giant's hybrid cloud storage solutions are arriving. "Microsoft Azure StorSimple is now available in Australia with the same service-level agreement coverage available in other regions worldwide," said Aery. "This solution optimizes total storage costs and data protection for enterprises, with consolidated management through Azure portal."