Feeds

Apple ships Xsan 64-bit cluster file system

Upgrades Xserve to dual 2.3GHz CPUs, too

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Apple today got some of its less consumer-friendly New Year announcements out of the way ahead of next week's Macworld Expo keynote and its more mainstream focus.

The Mac maker has not only upgraded its Xserve line of G5-class 1U servers, but finally said it has begun shipping Xsan, a 64-bit storage area network and cluster file-system add-on.

Xsan was formally announced in April 2004, and was recently the subject of speculation that Apple had further delayed the product's release. Indeed, the code was originally scheduled to ship last autumn.

Retailing for $999/£699 for each client and server on the network, Xsan is pitched at professional video and high-performance computing types who want to provide an easy way to connect Fibre Channel-based consolidated storage systems to a regular network.

Calling the price-point a "breakthrough", Apple has in the past claimed that Xsan works out at around half the price of rival offerings from the likes of Avid, SGI and IBM. The company made much of the fact that its pricing the product on the basis of how many computers are connected up, rather than the network capacity.

However, Apple is keen that buyers use its Xserve servers and Xserve RAID rigs as metadata controllers and storage pools on the other side of the Fibre Channel switch from the clients. Apple has qualified FC switches from Brocade, QLogic and Emulex.

Ready to tap into demand for such machines is the upgraded Xserve, now with a pair of 2.3GHz 64-bit G5 CPUs, not quite up to the Power Mac G5's 2.5GHz, but then the Xserve lacks the room for the desktop machine's liquid cooling system. Each CPU has 512KB of on-die L2 cache.

The 1U rackmount unit has room for up to three 7200rpm 400GB drives, Apple said. It comes with 1GB of 400MHz DDR SDRAM with ECC, and space for a total of 8GB of memory. There are a pair of full-length 64-bit, 133MHz PCI-X slots, ready for Fibre Channel interfaces and other add-ins, including Apple's own hardware RAID card. Integrated interfaces include a pair of Gigabit Ethernet ports, two Firewire 800 and one Firewire 400 connectors, two USB 2.0 ports, and a DB-9/RS-232 serial port.

Each machine ships with Mac OS X 10.3 Server. Available now, the Xserve is offered in three configurations: a single-CPU, 2GHz machine with 1GB of RAM for $2999/£2199; a cut-down (512MB RAM) dual 2.3GHz box 'cluster node' unit for the same price; and the 1GB RAM dual-2.3GHz top-of-the-range server for $3999/£2899. All three boxes ship with a single 80GB hard drive and a combo DVD-ROM/CD-RW optical drive. ®

Related stories

Apple touts low-cost SAN software
Apple preps sub-$500 iMac - report
Apple sues three over 'Tiger' Mac OS X leak
Apple talks up mid-range Motorola 'iPod phone'
Merrill Lynch looks to 'killer' Apple home media server
IBM 'readying dual-core G5'
Apple rebuked over G5 speed-lead claim - again

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Docker's app containers are coming to Windows Server, says Microsoft
MS chases app deployment speeds already enjoyed by Linux devs
'Hmm, why CAN'T I run a water pipe through that rack of media servers?'
Leaving Las Vegas for Armenia kludging and Dubai dune bashing
'Urika': Cray unveils new 1,500-core big data crunching monster
6TB of DRAM, 38TB of SSD flash and 120TB of disk storage
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
SDI wars: WTF is software defined infrastructure?
This time we play for ALL the marbles
Windows 10: Forget Cloudobile, put Security and Privacy First
But - dammit - It would be insane to say 'don't collect, because NSA'
Oracle hires former SAP exec for cloudy push
'We know Larry said cloud was gibberish, and insane, and idiotic, but...'
Symantec backs out of Backup Exec: Plans to can appliance in Jan
Will still provide support to existing customers
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.