Feeds

Xiotech reloads Matrix

ISEbergs warning

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Comment Xiotech is aiming to build a Matrix eco-system of storage system app vendors linking its superdisk ISE enclosures with direct storage-controlling apps like VMware, Oracle and Exchange 2010.

Matrix is not an HP-like integrated IT stack product set, but a dynamic set of storage resources coordinated by a Matrix controller doing the bidding of the storage-controlling app and using Xiotech's Cortex API to talk to the ISE boxes at the bottom of the storage stack.

Xiotech's chief strategy officer Jim McDonald says the firm sees a new way of storage resource control and management, with server apps like VMware and Exchange 2010 wanting direct control of storage resource characteristics, like thin provisioning, and thus no need for storage controllers to do those functions. In Xiotech's brave new world, fat storage controllers become thin and dumb storage enclosures become Intelligent Storage Elements (ISEs), containing many disks that function as a single reliable and high-performance superdisk.

These ISE sealed canisters with their extended life can be aggregated together to extend capacity and performance in a linear fashion and out-perform traditional twin controller, modular arrays, even ones with an injection of flash drives in certain circumstances, such as provisioning many virtual desktop images.

It's as if Xiotech doesn't have the time, money or inclination to bulk up the capabilities of its own Emprise controller so that it can effectively compete with 3PAR, EMC's CLARiiON or HP's EVA. What it does have is a better storage enclosure mousetrap, the ISE, and that needs integrating with other storage system resource functions like deduplication, spin-down, content-addressable storage (CAS), replication and other protection functions before it can become a usable resource for customers.

The server world has become increasingly virtualised since Xiotech first launched ISE and Emprise, and there is a trend Xiotech discerns of server apps wanting more direct storage control. So it's inclined to let them take over the functions that are in the cleverest array controllers, while it builds an ecosystem that could provide a dynamically-integratable storage resource stack, and focuses its engineering on continuing to build a better ISE mousetrap.

McDonald says the Xiotech roadmap includes ISE developments and the establishment of Matrix. The company also wants to pursue OEM sales, the lack of which, according to sources, helped persuade Seagate to sell off its ISE-creating Advanced Storage group to Xiotech a couple of years ago. That enabled Xiotech to launch its ISE-using Emprise storage array product line as its next-generation product after the then-current Magnitude array.

Emprise was not as successful as hoped, and last year Xiotech got a $10m funding fillip and a new management team which believes that the product technology is great; it reckons a rearticulated and more energetic marketing message is what is needed to get Xiotech out of the doldrums and have its sails filled by a great big sustainable trade wind.

Security for virtualized datacentres

Next page: Matrix

More from The Register

next story
It's Big, it's Blue... it's simply FABLESS! IBM's chip-free future
Or why the reversal of globalisation ain't gonna 'appen
'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
Facebook slurps 'paste sites' for STOLEN passwords, sprinkles on hash and salt
Zuck's ad empire DOESN'T see details in plain text. Phew!
CAGE MATCH: Microsoft, Dell open co-located bit barns in Oz
Whole new species of XaaS spawning in the antipodes
Microsoft and Dell’s cloud in a box: Instant Azure for the data centre
A less painful way to run Microsoft’s private cloud
AWS pulls desktop-as-a-service from the PC
Support for PCoIP protocol means zero clients can run cloudy desktops
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
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.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.