EqualLogic, Archivas Partner Up

The duo has created a SAN that has the potential to put them in the ring with the likes of EMC and Hewlett-Packard.

EqualLogic and Archivas have joined forces to offer a combined approach to long-term storage archiving, something experts said may allow them to compete better with the likes of heavyweights EMC, NetApp and Hewlett-Packard.

The partnership will combine EqualLogics iSCSI-based SAN technology with Archivas Archivas Cluster archiving software from Archivas of Waltham, Mass., effectively creating a SAN (storage area network) that combines both high-performing and lower cost-per-megabyte drives in one device.

The result, according to Rob Higby, director of product marketing at EqualLogic of Nashua, NH, is the ability for organizations to more effectively and less expensively archive data on disk while managing and migrating that data through a single interface.

"Its about bringing high-performing drives in one part of our SAN and lower performing but more dense, cheaper price per megabyte drives in another part of our SAN," he said.

"Traditionally, customers have done this through SANs and tape. Now we can use different drive technologies as well as different RAID sets, which enable people to store their data not near-line, but online in the same SAN on much cheaper media."

Although EqualLogic has much of the technology necessary to accomplish this task, it was missing a key piece—something Archivas can fill, Higby said.

"To take advantage of the tiering functionality, particularly with an application like e-mail, you need to bring another vendor to actually extract that data from production and put it in some policy-driven fashion, onto the cheaper media. We dont do that," he said.

Because EqualLogic does not have the capital infrastructure or finances to provide the total solution on its own, executives decided to partner with Archivas, he said.

Partnering with Archivas is a good step for EqualLogic, especially if it wants to compete with larger players in the market, said David Hill, a principal with Mesabi Group of Westwood, Mass.

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"Ive always been a strong believer in the active archive, where fixed data goes and its important to be able to do that. Also its the place to put compliance data, because by definition, compliance data has to be fixed content data," he said.

"But you have to manage it there after you move it there. Thats what Archivas does. And with this partnership, you get a cost-effective SAN type of approach, but Archivas isnt providing the proprietary solution in and of itself, so youre not tied to anything."

Along with the partnership with Archivas, EqualLogic has announced three other partnerships in recent months, including one with Mimosa Systems.

The overall goal, Higby said, is to continue bringing enterprise functionality to the midmarket.

"This is the next chapter in an ongoing story were telling about bringing enterprise functionality to midrange customers at a midrange price," he said.

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