PC maker Gateway, not well-known for its storage portfolio, introduced three additions to its line of enterprise data storage products June 29—a storage area network and two automated tape backup systems.
The E-842R is an entry-level SAN in a rack-optimized storage enclosure. The E-824R DLT-V4 SuperLoader 3 and E-826R automated tape backup systems incorporate more advanced features and higher capacity than many competitors models, a company spokesperson said.
All three new products are designed for SMBs (small and midsize businesses), mid-enterprise companies, educational institutions and government agencies, the spokesperson said.
Gateway also announced a newly simplified, direct-to-consumer sales strategy June 29.
Irvine, Calif.-based Gateways previous storage lineup included only a total of six storage arrays (actually built by Hitachi but resold by Gateway) and two NAS (network-attached storage) servers.
The two new automated tape backup systems are the first of their kind in the companys storage line.
E-842R SAN key features, according to Gateway, include: 2U rack mount chassis with rack rail kit; support for up to 12 hot-plug hard drives; supports SAS (Serial Attached SCSI) or SATA (Serial ATA) II hard drives within the same enclosure; supports one or two, hot-swappable host interface modules with failover support; dual-port, 4GB Fibre Channel RAID host interface modules with support for RAID levels 0,1,5,62,10 and 50; SAS expansion modules that allows for up to four additional chassis to be attached to a primary RAID controller; 1MB cache and removable battery backup (per host interface module); SAS expansion module (one or two modules) with SAS expansion cable; hot-swappable dual 80CM fan module; and two hot-swappable 350W power supplies.
Pricing for the new SAN starts at $6,599.
The E-824R DLT-V4 SuperLoader 3 and the E-826R LTO-3 SuperLoader 3 automated tape backup systems offer advanced autoloader features, such as remote management and bar-code readers at no additional cost.
Both systems were designed for reliable automated backup across multiple tape cartridges, reducing the risks of human error, a Gateway spokesperson said.
Human intervention is only necessary when inserting or removing tapes outside of the autoloader, such as for off-site storage purposes, the spokesperson added.
The 2U rackmount form factor of the E-824R provides up to 2.56TB (native) capacity and 5.12TB of (compressed) data, allowing the system to accommodate backup needs as a business grows.
For added data protection, the E-824R includes Quantums DLTSage, a suite of intelligent data protection tools that delivers enhanced security features. DLTSage includes a set of proactive management features that improve the reliability of the backup process, the spokesperson said.
DLTSage also features WORM, which enables DLT-V4 drives to utilize standard media for both traditional backup and archiving, as well as for regulatory compliance.
The E-826R is a 2U rackmount system that integrates the LTO-3 tape drive for up to 6.4TB (native) capacity and 12.8TB of (compressed) data, meeting demanding backup requirements. Additionally, the E-826R offers fast data transfer speeds, archiving data at 245GB per hour or 80M bps (native) and 490GB per hour or 160M bps (compressed).
Both tape backup systems can be integrated into any environment, reducing IT overhead costs, the spokesperson said. Both systems have a starting price of $2,499.
"Gateway [normally] resells other peoples storage—just like Dell resells EMCs Clariion storage. So they do offer storage," said Dianne McAdam, an analyst with The Clipper Group, in Wellesley, Mass.
"The tape autoloaders are interesting—small and inexpensive for the SMB market. [It] looks like they are using Quantums DLT drives and LTO drives, which could be from Quantum also. I dont know if the big vendors such as EMC and HP would be concerned—they have their own channels to sell storage to the SMB market. I think that Gateway probably just sells storage to people who buy Gateway servers."
None of the big storage vendors is likely to worry about this new Gateway challenge, said Brian Babineau, an analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group, in Palo Alto, Calif.
"Yes, Gateway does storage. No one is shaking in their boots. In fact, I am not sure if anyone knows that Gateway is in the storage market except for their manufacturing partners," Babineau said.
"I would not have known about this announcement if you did not tell me. They better milk that cow [Microsoft, Gateways biggest partner] for some marketing dollars."