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Data Domain gets new boss array

Nehalem booster rocket

Security for virtualized datacentres

Data Domain has a new high-end array, the DD 890, which is paired up to give a speed boost to Data Domain's Global Deduplication Array. It has also introduced a DD 860 system, IBM i server support and an archive version of its technology.

Data Domain is EMC's business unit providing deduplicating storage arrays for backup data, which detect and remove redundant block-level data as backup data streams arrive on the array, so-called inline deduplication. Its throughput is dependent on its processor performance and Data Domain has integrated Intel's Nehalem chips to give it a speed boost.

The previous top-end system, the DD 880, dedupes incoming data at 8.8TB/hour and has a logical capacity of 14.2PB. The DD 890 dedupes at 14.7TB/hour, 67 per cent faster, but has the same logical capacity of 14.2TB (384TB raw). The throughput is 8.1TB/hour with a VTL interface and 8Gbit/s Fibre Channel. It jumps to 14.7TB/hour using Boost.

The DD 860, which uses Intel Westmere technology, slots in beneath the 880 with a logical capacity of 7.1PB (192TB raw), exactly half that of the 880, but works a little harder with a throughput of 9.8TB/hour.

Data Domain already has a Nehalem-based system, the DD 670, with a throughput of 5.4TB/hour. This replaced a previous DD 690 with a 2.7TB/hour throughput.

Data Domain pairs up two of its top-end systems to create the Deduplication Array (GDA) system and, with the 890, it dedupes at 26.3TB/hour and holds up to 28.5PB. When 880-based, the GDA ran at 12.8TB/hour. EMC claims that the 890-based GDA is the fastest deduplication product available. The product supports Data Domain's optional Virtual Tape Library (VTL) software, which enables it to work with extra backup applications such as IBM's Tivoli Storage Manager. This VTL software works with Fibre Channel host connectivity.

Although the GDA is the fastest deduping system, it is limited to two nodes whereas competitors – such as Exagrid – support up to 10 nodes with an aggregate ingest rate of 18TB/hour and a delayed or post-process deduplication. That beat the 880-based GDA but its performance has now been trounced. We expect it will leapfrog Data Domain when it uses the latest Intel chips.

Data Domain systems can now also support IBM's i servers and act as backup targets for them.

The Data Domain Archiver, based on the DD 860 controller, performs at up to 9.8TB/hour and, EMC says, stores both backup and longer-term archival data in the same namespace but on two separate storage tiers in a single system. It has up to 768TB of raw capacity which can be apportioned between the backup and archive tiers. EMC says it is integrated with its SourceOne and File Management Appliance and works with other data movers. Retention time is claimed to be up to seven years.

EMC says it uses logical partitioning of older data for fault isolation, and it has an upgrade and migration architecture, plus a granular disaster recovery configuration. The intent here is to stick another nail in tape's supposed coffin.

With today's updates, EMC is saying you can backup more data, faster and for longer, because Data Domain rides the Intel processor development curve better than its competitors. With faster Intel processors and more capacious disk drives coming out this year, expect more from this dedupe speed king. All the new systems and software are available immediately. ®

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