Dell Launches Removable Storage Drive for SMBs

New portable storage disk drive weighs about the same as a mobile phone but can carry 40GB to 120GB of data.

Dell, trying to demonstrate some innovation in a sector where it seeks to pick up market share, introduced Nov. 8 a new removable disk-based storage device for data backup and restore that the company says combines the speed of a hard disk with the portability of tape.

Aimed squarely small and midsize businesses, branch offices and individual power users, the PowerVault RD1000 is a removable disk drive designed for savvy business users, not IT professionals. They work specifically with Dell PowerEdge servers and Dell Precision workstations.

The units range in capacity from a 40GB internal SATA version to a 120GB external USB version.

All units include the disk cartridge and backup and recover management software, a company spokesperson said.

IDC in a recent report estimated that about 20 percent of small businesses own at least one PC-related data protection device.

Medium-sized firms also use a wide array of products, from external hard drives connected via USB or 1394/FireWire to CD-RWs or to tape drives, all intended to address the companys data protection and backup needs.

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The new Dell external drive is designed to simplify this assortment of data protection and backup solutions into one product, the spokesperson said.

Weighing about the same as a mobile phone, the PowerVault RD1000 features a tough exterior design and an internal shock absorber to protect against impacts and handling, the spokesperson said.

Using the backup and restore software designed specifically for the unit, customers can schedule monthly, weekly or daily backups using the intuitive interface, the spokesperson said.

Key features of the Dell PowerVault RD1000, as listed by the Round Rock, Texas-based company, include:

  • cartridges are available in 40GB, 80GB and 120GB capacities
  • file transfers at about the same rate it takes to save to a regular PC drive, up to 34MB per second; much faster than backing up to standard tape, with no swapping out of media needed
  • drag-and-drop file transfer
  • customized software that helps users easily schedule and manage backups
  • access time of less than 1 second versus 1 minute for tape (averages)

Typical uses, as suggested by the company, include:

  • local computer backups—critical data can be protected and archived quickly and easily
  • data transfer from computer to computer or to remote branch offices
  • off-site data protection and archiving for small and medium-sized organizations, relationship workgroups and branch offices
  • disaster recovery for customers wanting the familiarity of directly connected, "plug-and-play" USB hard drive backup

Price and availability

The PowerVault RD1000 will be available in late November. Pricing will range from $300 to $500 for the 40GB internal SATA version to the 120GB external USB version (all of which include the disk cartridge and backup and recover management software).

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Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...