As storage systems, servers and enterprise applications become more tightly interconnected, storage virtualization technology efforts are under way to improve application monitoring and ease management complexity.
New offerings from vendors such as IBM, Hitachi Data Systems Corp. and Veritas Software Corp. could help enterprises consolidate storage infrastructures and lower costs by providing greater insight into resource allocation and availability.
"Ten years ago, we predominantly were responsible for legacy infrastructure. Today, we find ourselves managing 600 to 700 boxes of infrastructure," said David Nicholson, lead storage engineer for Whirlpool Corp., of Benton Harbor, Mich. "With the growth were seeing, if we dont continue to introduce things like [IBMs] SVC [SAN Volume Controller] and continue to simplify the environment, theres just no way well keep up."
Last week, IBM, of Armonk, N.Y., took a step toward bridging the gap between high-end and midrange storage classes by unveiling its server-based TotalStorage DS6000 and DS8000 series. The compatible systems are due in December.
Built with IBMs Power5 microprocessor and featuring IBMs Virtualization Engine, the DS8000 is six times faster than the existing IBM Enterprise Storage Server 800 and offers the ability to consolidate workloads that run on smaller systems. The new product will be offered in either dual- or four-processor configurations—with eight-way processor configurations on tap for next year, said IBM officials.
About the size of a videocassette recorder, the DS6000 starts at 580GB and can scale up to 67.2TB. The new box offers cooling algorithms from IBMs BladeCenter and supports IBMs zSeries and iSeries environments.
Meanwhile, HDS has received criticism that its TagmaStore technology, unveiled last month, lacks crucial heterogeneous storage device plug-ins. However, sources said that the company, based in Santa Clara, Calif., will announce the general availability of HiCommand Device Manager Software in December.
The new software will provide an asynchronous replication capability; disk-based journaling; and external connectivity with several leading storage vendor offerings, most notably from IBM and EMC Corp.
For its part, Veritas, of Mountain View, Calif., this week will announce Version 7.0 of its i3 Application Management Software.
Due next month with a new CPU-based pricing model, the upgrade adds application availability management to Veritas arsenal. As a result, IT administrators can gather data from both real user and synthetic transactions to analyze and proactively fix issues that could deter an applications performance or availability.