Monday, January 28, 2008

SAN Buzz January III

The latest hot news comes from the (storage) networking folks at 170 West Tasman Drive: CISCO did announce their Nexus platform this week (included on the CISCO webiste is a nice overview clip).
A good analyisis can be found here and here.
They refer to this as data center 3.0 platform, a unified network platform for the datacenter. Important to note however that this is all future promises for the time being: no Fibre Channel cards or support have been announced at this time.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

SAN Buzz January II

This weeks news come from our friends at 1745 Technology Drive in San Jose:
Brocade did announce their first new director platform after the completion of the McDATA acquisition.
Although I didn't have a chance to see the product myself so far, the specs and pictures all indicate that it is basically an evolution of the Brocade 48000 director which has been around for some time.
Interestingly enough, they re-implemented an idea originally used in an Inrange Director (2001 timeframe) called XCA (extensible core architecture) which now goes by the name of ICLs (inter-chassis links) in 2008: Build high-port count SAN units by connecting multiple (two in Brocades' case) directors' backplanes. On second thought, this shouldn't be a big surprise: Inrange was acquired by CNT which was acquired by McDATA which was acquired by Brocade last year...
And due to fibre channel addressing limitations, Brocade in its 2008 implementation has to maintain the individual "domains" in the connected directors, so technically, there is a "hop" between the upper and lower unit.
The DCX highlights:
  • native interoperability with McDATA and Brocade platforms
  • Vitual fabrics (management zones)
  • integrated routing capability for each port
  • first 8 Gbps product on the market (8 Gbps blades will also be made available for the Brocade 48000)

More to follow as details become available...

Thursday, January 3, 2008

SAN Buzz January I (2008)

The new year takes off with some great news from our storage division here at IBM: On January 2nd, IBM has acquired XIV Information Systems, a privately-held storage solutions development company based in Tel Aviv, Israel.
XIV Information Systems, including its development activities, engineers, employees and technologies, will become part of STG’s System Storage business unit and will remain in Israel.
Regarding the name of the company, the Jerusalem Post has a hint as to where it originally came from.
This is a great move for IBM STG in a couple different ways:
a) The architecture used in XIVs products ("Nextra") is nothing less than revolutionary and clearly shows the way how "information management" solutions will be built in the 21st century: "Nextra is a SAN storage system built around next generation cluster technology to provide dynamic scale, auto-tuning and self-healing to the data layer. The architecture is based upon commodity components to provide lower cost." (Quote from the brand new ESG white paper)
b) The chairman of the board of XIV, Moshe Yanai, is a very well known person in the industry: While at EMC in the 1990s, Yanai served as the vice president of engineering and is widely credited as being the inventor of that company’s flagship Symmetrix storage array.
An excellent piece of analysis and summary can be found here and here!