IBM Storage to Play Key Role in Virtualization, Collaboration

IBM announces its intention to extend its relationship with NetApp in an effort to integrate IBM's SVC virtualization and blade products with NetApp's V-Series virtualization technology and FAS systems.

NEW YORK—IBMs emphasis on crafting a new systems strategy emphasizing new avenues of collaboration and creating a virtualization "building block" approach will lean heavily upon its IBM TotalStorage portfolio and storage partnerships to help cement that message in the minds of customers.

In conjunction with IBMs unveiling on Tuesday of its new Virtualization Engine 2.0, new IBM System z9 mainframe, and the formation of the nine-member development community designed to accelerate blade hardware and software technology, IBM executives underscored the important role of storage underpinning its troika of announcements.

As part of that innovation, IBM announced its intention to extend its relationship with Network Appliance Inc.

The companies will tackle issues such as scale as they work together to grow and integrate IBMs SVC (SAN Volume Controller) virtualization and blade products with NetApps V-Series virtualization technology and FAS (fabric attached storage) systems, according to Andy Monshaw, general manager, Systems & Technology Group for Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM.

"You dont have to be re-trained to do virtualization," said Monshaw. "I think [customers] are getting beyond the inquisition stage and getting to the implementation phase…virtualized storage resources will be de facto three years from now."

Focusing on an open-standards-based approach to help customers achieve the utilization, performance and consolidation benefits of storage virtualization, Monshaw said interoperability between SVC offerings and NetApp storage systems that support FCP block protocol to bolster migration between heterogeneous storage arrays and take advantage of RAID.

The expanded relationship comes on the heels of an announcement made last April whereby IBM would plug a significant NAS (network attached storage) hole in its product line by agreeing to OEM NetApps full product line of NAS and iSCSI/IP SAN solutions along with various NetApp software offerings.

In terms of the new IBM System z9 mainframe, computing system features integrated storage encryption capabilities to safeguard large volumes of personal information and data despite being positioned as a hub to help businesses and customers collaborate with each other, said IBM officials.

/zimages/3/28571.gifClick here to read more about IBMs database plans from columnist Charles Garry.

The mainframe includes a built-in cryptography component and supports the open Advanced Encryption Standard.

Available in September, the z9 mainframe is designed to encrypt tapes shared between two parties and shuttled across alternate locations.

Additionally, the z9 box provides a facility to centrally manage and control encryption keys, new Application Transparent Transport Layer Security, as well as the ability to enable faster secure online transactions via the ability to configure Crypto Express PCI-X adapters as accelerators.

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