HDS Targets Virtualization with TagmaStore

By Brian Fonseca  |  Posted 2004-09-07

NEW YORK—Hitachi Data Systems Inc. on Tuesday unveiled embedded virtualization layer technology that can aggregate up to 32 petabytes of internal and external storage into a single virtual storage pool and bolster performance by offering up to 68G bps of cached bandwidth.

Available now, the controller-based TagmaStore Universal Storage Platform, which HDS unveiled at an event here, offers a score of new storage enhancements designed to build a new model for managing and deploying storage infrastructures by augmenting HDS Application Optimized Storage technology announced in May, said officials of Santa Clara, Calif.-based HDS, a subsidiary of Hitachi Ltd.

At the heart of the new integrated software and hardware Universal Storage Platform is the Hitachi Universal Star Network. This is the companys third-generation crossbar switch that provides 2 million IOPs (input output operations per second) and 256 concurrent memory operations, and can support 332 terabytes of internal storage capacity.

"This announcement will significantly change the way customers execute their [storage] infrastructures," said Shinjiro Iwata, CEO of HDS. "Its time for us to take the next step."

Addressing customers disaster recovery and business continuity needs, Hitachi Universal Replicator software features replication across heterogeneous systems, disk-based journaling, safeguards against link failure, "pull" copying and multiple data center support measures. Hitachi Virtual Partition Manager software allocates internal and external physical storage resources, such as cache and disk, and ports into independently managed private virtual machines managed from a single console. The partitions can be customized to respond to specific service-level agreements and quality-of-service requirements.

TagmaStore can pool up to 32 petabytes of internal and external storage via its bolstered Virtual Storage Ports/Host Storage Domains technology within its new Hitachi Universal Volume Manager software to create the embedded storage virtualization layer. HDS officials said the storage management initiative-specification (SMI-S) is the glue being used by its new virtualization platform to provide a common interface model to pool storage and data from a range of heterogeneous storage devices.

HDS officials said features still not available within the new Universal Platform, such as Universal Replication Software to support storage devices from EMC Corp. and a few other major storage vendors, will be available by the end of 2004. Officials said pricing for the new platform is comparable to that of HDS Hitachi Lightning 9980V disk array offering.

Boris Sherman, director of operations at United Airline Loyalty Services, a subsidiary of United Air Lines Inc., of Chicago, is evaluating HDS TagmaStore. Sherman said virtualization should help his organization link its storage, applications and IT systems to storage devices and assets scattered across Uniteds enterprise.

"What were saddled with is an environment that has one or more of everything. Were stuck with this problem of What do you do with [existing heterogeneous storage investments]?" said Sherman. "If we can virtualize some of the older technology and make it seamless, you have the ability to make changes without disruptions."

Editors Note: This story was updated to comments from customers.

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