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DataCore orchestra tunes up for the Ninth SANsymphony

Thats SANsymphony, not sans symphony

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

DataCore has pushed out its ninth SANsymphony release, which is orchestrated for the cloud, large data centre deployments, and storage-as-a-service.

SANsymphony software runs in a PC or server and virtualises storage behind it into a thinly provisioned virtual pool. It competes with FalconStor software, IBM's SAN Volume Controller (SVC); and, to a lesser extent, arrays from EMC, HDS and NetApp which can virtualise third-party storage behind their arrays. Virsto is another storage virtualiser, but it has a VMware focus.

DataCore and FalconStor storage virtualisation software is partly for customers who don't want to be tied to a single storage vendor and want a storage abstraction layer or hypervisor between their accessing servers and the actual networked storage hardware.

V9.0 of SANsymphony-V adds in auto-tiering with a cloud gateway and is built for both public and private cloud service providers with much easier provisioning/de-provisioning of storage resources. According to DataStore, SANsymphony v9 includes:

  • improved system management;
  • VMware integration (VAAI, SRM, vCenter plug-in);
  • N+1 grid for even higher availability and scale-out capability;
  • heat mapping to show disk activity at LUN level;
  • chargeback reporting;
  • sync and async replication; and
  • storage federation.

DataCore claims that customers of a storage service mediated by SANsymphony can simply provision and de-provision virtual disks to their clients, with release 9.0 software translating from the service-oriented management interface to SANsymphony's storage admin-style capabilities automatically.

There are up to 15 potential storage tiers, including solid state storage and back-end cloud storage, with data chunks moved up or down a tiering level if their I/O activity is above or below average. DataCore says: "Storage devices can be profiled and organised into different tiers and optimised dynamically to maximise the efficient use of more expensive and higher performance assets."

There is also automated load-balancing along with the automated tiering. The product also features adaptive DRAM caching, with cache size varying by workload.

It integrates both with VMware and Microsoft system management products. The product supports scaling up capacity, I/O performance, throughput bandwidth, and caches, and its nodes can scale up or have new ones added in a scale-out exercise. For example, a 2-node high-availability SANsymphony configuration can have a third node added which mirrors the data. If either of the other nodes fail then the third node steps in and performance continues at the same level.

The replication features enable disaster recovery to a remote site, with testing of the DR facilities, and the bringing in of remote and branch offices to a SANsymphony set-up.

CEO George Teixeira says there was a 50 per cent increase in licence sales last year, there being some 4,000 deals, with a focus on mid-range customers. Release 9 is built to appeal to enterprise customers. He said DataCore's channel partners run into NetApp, HP/3PAR and IBM, with its SVC, all the time, but claimed they rarely came across FalconStor.

DataCore has started up a new rental-based licensing model for cloud service providers and hosters who can get SANsymphony joy by it by the terabyte. V9.0 will be on general availability from Monday, 2 July. ®

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