AppIQ Inc. and Veritas Software Corp. are tightening their support of Microsoft Windows environments and third-party storage products to help customers handle applications becoming more dependent on storage infrastructure management.
Next week at the Gartner PlanetStorage Summit in Orlando, Fla., AppIQ will introduce new modules for its enhanced StorageAuthority Suite R4.0 platform. Available next month, the modules include StorageAuthority for NetApp, which manages Network Appliance Inc. filers, and StorageAuthority for Microsoft SQL Server, which follows data through the database, host, fabric switch, software and storage system, said officials of Burlington, Mass.-based AppIQ.
StorageAuthority Protection Manager for Veritas NetBackup is the first in a set of "data protection" modules that AppIQ plans to roll out. The software ensures that data is being backed up and offers the ability to understand host servers and connectivity between storage systems to spot potential failures.
The backup reporting and resource management module will eventually be joined by modules for EMC Legato and IBM Tivoli Storage Manager, as well as third-party replication and snapshot functionality by early 2006.
Chris Pringle, assistant vice president of Infrastructure Engineering for the Boston Stock Exchange, said StorageAuthority Suite 4.0 fills NetBackup reporting gaps needed to properly view his SAN (storage area network) that he would have to pay extra for with Veritas.
"Veritas [NetBackup] has some limited [reporting] capabilities within the existing product—it doesnt give us a drill-down GUI," Pringle said. "This provides us a quick look at all the log information for NetBackup; its easy to go through and use for capacity planning as well as tape consumption."
AppIQ StorageAuthority Suite R4.0 also includes support for IBM TotalStorage Enterprise Storage Server or "shark" disk systems, managed host support for SuSE Linux Enterprise Server and management server support for Sun Solaris 10, officials said.
Despite being at odds with Microsoft over battling backup software, Veritas deepened its Microsoft commitment at Microsoft Tech Ed this week by unveiling its Storage Foundation HA (High Availability) for Windows 4.3, Veritas i3 for .Net, and Veritas i3 for SQL Server with support for SQL Server 2005 upon its release in the second half of 2005.
A dramatic shift in terms of storage and the Windows platform is occurring as critical applications become more complex and customers increasingly move from DAS (direct-attached storage) to NAS (network-attached storage), mainly due to iSCSI becoming more available, according to analysts.
Storage Foundation HA features improvements to GUI-driven snapshot, multi-pathing, and managing multiple disaster recovery sites, said officials of Mountain View, Calif.-based Veritas. Coinciding with the public SQL Server 2005 Community Technology Preview, Veritas i3 for SQL Server enables application performance analysis during testing.
Storage Foundation HA and i3 user Brad Wood, senior director of Enterprise Operations for Nashville, Tenn.-based Corrections Corp. of America, is using Windows to run a key clinical application for inmates. He said the role of standardization across operating systems is becoming critical.
"Were utilizing systems to their max, which is typical of most data centers. Windows is an enterprise platform that is not going away any time soon," said Wood. "I think its something [where] organizations have to say, Weve got it, so how do we make it perform like the rest of my enterprise class applications?"
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