EMC winds up new file-mover

Cloud Tiering Appliance: Rainfinity reinvented

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EMC World EMC has announced a Cloud Tiering Appliance to move files from select arrays to VNX and Isilon, and from VNX to Atmos and Data Domain. It is, in effect, Rainfinity reinvented and will develop into a generalised data mover.

The Cloud Tiering Appliance (CTA) aids migration and it can do policy-driven file movement from NetApp arrays and Celerra to EMC's VNX arrays or to Isilon arrays. The CTA can also send files from VNX, not Isilon – yet – to Data Domain boxes or to Atmos boxes, be they in private or public clouds. Thus the Data Domain and Atmos arrays would be used as repositories for old and cold data.

EMC does not believe that tape is a valid place to store such data as tape's restore speed is too slow, its reliability suspect compared to constantly checked disk, and its total cost of ownership is not indisputably less than disk once you ask questions like "What is the value of the time involved in restoration?"

When files are moved to Atmos or Data Domain, then stubs are left behind, as happened with Rainfinity, the old file virtualisation product EMC sold, Rainfinity and similar products provided single global namespaces, which CTA doesn't: its focus is data-moving and not file virtualisation.

Rainfinity couldn't scale beyond its small and medium enterprise focus and therefore it was not used as a development base for CTA, El Reg understands.

It has been hinted to El Reg that CTA will be developed to offer file data moving off Isilon and onto VNX and Atmos. The population of source arrays will also be expanded to virtually anything that has CIFS and NFS access protocols. NetApp arrays are the only non-EMC source arrays tested yet. We could imagine that BlueArc, HP Ibrix (X9500), Panasas and SONAS arrays might be used as sources from which to move data to the Isilon systems, as well as the generality of networked-attached storage systems. ®

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