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IBM goes crazy with storage system updates

DS8000, DS4000, DS3000, TS2240, TS7520 please come to the red courtesy phone

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IBM is releasing details on a lot of storage stuff today. We mean a lot.

Like, three more than quite a bit. Plethora would not be conspicuous noun usage here.

The announcement breaks down thusly: The DS8000 series is getting new functionality, so are the DS3000 and DS4000. IBM is adding a new Tape storage system to its SMB lineup. They're also adding enhancements for their virtualized disk and tape series.

Let's start with the big gear and work our way down 'till we're fat and full on news. Together.

System Storage DS8000 Turbo stuff

Big Blue is releasing new goodies for its flagship high-tier disk storage system, the System Storage DS8000 Turbo series.

Enhancements include a new licensed snapshot function called IBM FlashCopy SE. IBM claims data copies are more space efficient with the program because it uses only the capacity that's needed to save data updates. The DS8000 is also getting Dynamic Volume Expansion, a somewhat self-descriptive function that provides online volume expansion for application data growth.

Also new to the update is Adaptive Multi-stream Pre-fetching, a caching technique that IBM says can enable up to double the throughput and dramatically reduce process time for data backup, batch processing, business intelligence and streaming media.

IBM apromises boosted performance for storage pool striping as well as optimization for IBM System z customers to improve throughput for remote mirroring.

DS8000 systems can also get a new piece of stand-alone software. IBM describes the new System Storage Productivity Center as a universal remote control for storage administrators. SSPC acts as a point to control device specific configurations with storage mapping, monitoring, and reports.

The enhancements for System Storage DS8000 Turbo series will hit on November 7. While IBM FlashCopy SE will start at $6,500, the other features can be applied to new and existing DS80000 clients for free.

IBM System Storage Productivity Center will hit November 16, with a starting price of $7,500.

SMB disk and tape storage stuff

IBM's System Storage DS3000 and DS4000 disk series are receiving some love, and attending the baby shower for a new mid-range tape storage system.

The DS3000 series will get SATA support as well as support for IBM System p servers and BladeCenter Power blades. Customers can mix and mingle SAS and SATA drives to their heart's content.

A step up to the DS4000 series of midrange storage, and there's still announcements to be had. Specifically, the DS4800, DS4700 Express and the DS4200 express are getting enhancements which break down nicely in bullets.

  • Support for RAID 6 on DS4700 and DS4200 Express models.
  • Support for greater than 2TB volumes on some operating systems.
  • Up to 64 enhanced remote mirror pairs on the DS4700 and DS4200. Up to 128 on the DS4800.
  • Up to 128 storage partitions on the DS4700 Express and DS4200 Express. Up to 512 partitions on the DS4800.

Additionally, IBM has announced the lavishly-named System Storage TS2240 Tape Drive Express Model LTO 4 Half-High. For simplicity's sake, we'll just call it the System Storage TS2240 Tape Drive Express Model LTO 4 Half-High.

The (System Storage TS2240 Tape Drive Express model LTO 4 Half-High) system has a 120MB/s data transfer rate, 800GB of capacity, application-managed encryption, continued media support of prior LTO generations and 3Gb/s SAS attachment availability.

November 16 is once again the time of arrivial, with the IBM System Storage TS2240 Tape Drive Express Model LTO 4 Half-High starting at $4495.

Storage virtualization stuff

IBM's virtualization announcements include a new file manager and enhancements to the IBM Virtualization Engine TS7520 tape system.

System Storage N series Virtual File Manager will come in two flavors: Enterprise and Migration Editions. The software supports the virtualization of file systems residing on UNIX, Linux, Windows file servers, and on IBM N series network attached storage.

VMF uses automated policy-based data management to present a single, consolidated view of all files residing on multiple file servers within a network.

IBM says VFM Migration Edition will be a subset of the Enterprise Edition and focused solely on migration functions.

The software is generally available on October 26, at a starting price of $2,000 for the Enterprise Edition and $1,200 for the Migration Edition.

Lastly, IBM is trumpeting additions to its Virtualization Engine TS7520. The system will soon offer 750GB disk drives to lower long-run storage costs, as well as a new max capacity of 1.3PB. The TS7520 will also support IBM's encryption capable LTO Gen 4 tape drives.

The TS7520 updates will be available December 7, starting at $104,769. ®

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