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DataCore Channels its Inner VMware with SANsymphony-V 9.0

DataCore cofounder, president and CEO George S. Teixeira has been knocking around the storage world for a while, and has been running the show at DataCore since 1998. Four years ago, when he saw what VMware was doing for virtualization, he decided he wanted to do the same thing for storage, so he decided to rewrite his company's software to take advantage of highly available, fault-tolerant computing environments.

Along the way, he started referring to his flagship SANsymphony-V software package as a "storage hypervisor," and latched onto auto-tiering, which combined with SANsymphony-V enables enterprises to make sure their most critical data is stored in high-performing resources such as SSDs, while less important data is kept on less expensive disks.

Now, with the debut of SANsymphony-V 9.0, a.k.a. "the storage hypervisor for the cloud," he has come full circle back to the VMware model that originally made such a major impression on him by taking the wraps off a product designed to manage enterprise-wide storage while playing to the scalable, infrastructure-as-a-service trend that VMware has been successfully flogging to enterprise users and cloud service providers. In effect, he is giving life to storage hardware, which has been flat-lining since day one. As Teixeira puts it, "The key word with cloud is unpredictability."

With SANsymphony-V 9.0, provisioning becomes much easier via self-service requests that streamline what had been a complicated, unwieldy process. As the DataCore press release puts it, "Self-service requests for cloud storage come fast and furious in unpredictable patterns. Resources across multiple purpose-built devices with tiered levels of protection must be quickly reserved and subsequently released to make room for the next subscriber."

Version 9.0 lends some certainty to the still chaotic cloud mix by using storage tiering to support virtual environments from such virtualization kingpins as VMware and Microsoft. "The storage hypervisor creates a super highway," Teixeira states. He also notes that storage is not only data, but virtual machines that are manipulated by users.

The new product caters to the CSPs driving IaaS adoption by enabling them to programmatically call the IaaS functions that go with SANsymphony-V 9.0 to satisfy each client's individual storage needs. In this environment, storage devices can be profiled and organized into different tiers and optimized dynamically to maximize the use of high performance assets.

DataCore underscores the scaling capabilities of the software by describing how it enables device-independent storage virtualization to scale up and out, emphasizes how it scales to federate diverse resources, and underscores the role of scale in realizing resiliency and meeting looming performance expansion. In a canned quote from Mark Peters, senior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group, he lauds the Datacore storage hypervisor for its IaaS functionality, saying it makes it simple to drop cloud storage into place -- not only for advanced users, but the vast majority of IT users who have yet to develop "cloud on the brain."

Even Virsto, which claimed to embrace the storage hypervisor concept before DataCore, seems happy that its fellow vendor is doing well. After all, storage hypervisors improve the utilization of hardware capacity and drive down the costs of application deployment while providing greater business agility, so why not move over and create a little space on the bandwagon?

SANsymphony-V 9.0 is available in five different virtualization models, ranging from very large deployments to small pilot programs and branch applications. Customers can upgrade across levels without software "throw-away," disrupting or retraining, ensuring "maximum ROI." A special licensing program has also been created for hosters and CSPs. GA for DatraCore-authorized partners around the world begins July 2.

Posted by Bruce Hoard on 06/29/2012 at 12:48 PM


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