Dell, EMC Target SMBs with New Clariion Models

The companies unveil the Clariion AX150 and AX150i systems at Storage Networking World in San Diego.

SAN DIEGO—Pouncing on the growing demand for iSCSI and Fibre Channel system diversity to enhance storage management for SMBs and remote branch office architectures, Dell and EMC on April 3 launched the EMC Clariion AX150 and AX150i systems at Storage Networking World here.

The next generation of Dell and EMCs popular AX100 model, the down-sized storage systems are slotted as part of EMCs Insignia portfolio, which is geared toward small and midsize businesses. The Clariion AX150 is designed for traditional Fibre Channel connectivity, while the Clariion AX150i is built for less costly iSCSI connectivity.

"These SMB customers dont necessarily have the [storage or Fibre Channel] expertise that an enterprise customer has. But many of them do have IP expertise that allows them to deploy an iSCSI storage solution," said Barry Ader, senior director of Clariion marketing. "iSCSI has really become a very key driver in the entry-level market."

The new storage boxes are available in single- and dual-controller configurations and offer redundant power supplies. Each AX150 model can be self-installed and can support up to 10 host servers and scale from 750GB to 6TB of capacity.

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For enhanced data protection and disaster recovery capabilities, the AX150 products can support up to eight concurrent array-based snapshots.

The AX150 and AX150i systems allow customers to utilize high-capacity SATA (serial ATA) II disk drive support for faster data transfers and added scalability through NCQ (Native Command Queuing). NCQ enables better performance of I/O-intensive applications down to the disk drive to speed up file serving, messaging and database actions, noted Ader.

To compensate for a perennial lack of storage expertise among SMBs, the AX150 and AX150i, which are based on the Clariion RAID architecture, contain a Web-based wizard for simplified iSCSI installation. Online support features are also available.

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Both Clariion AX150 systems support Microsoft Windows, Linux and NetWare operating systems. The products have been qualified by EMC to operate with Brocade Communication Systems Silkworm 3250 VL2E and QLogics 3050 8-port FC switches, as well as Emulexs LP101-E, LP982-E, and QLogics QLA200-E and QLA2340-E host bus adapters.

Pricing for the AX150 systems is expected to start at $5,600.

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