Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/06/19/emulex_e3s/

Emulex cloud storage gateway revealed

Through an unlikely EMC conduit

By Chris Mellor

Posted in Storage, 19th June 2009 10:23 GMT

Updated An EMC technical consultant blogger - Dave Graham - has revealed details of an Emulex SAN fabric cloud gateway concept.

The ES3 conceptual device is a SAN fabric-resident entity that represents itself as virtual SAS or Fibre Channel disks to accessing host servers, and is just another volume I/O target in the SAN. However, unlike local targets, such as EMC Symmetrix or Clariion arrays, the E3S device reformats, compresses, and encrypts the SCSI data access commands it receives over the SAN interconnect, wraps them up inside a protocol and sends them to a cloud storage target, Atmos in this case.

There could be a number of different cloud storage targets, each with their own protocol. The acronym JBOC is used but not explained in the blog. It is so close to JBOD (Just a Bunch Of Disks) that it's tempting to conclude it means Just a Bunch Of Clouds.

The conceptual E3S device comes from Emulex's Embedded Storage Products division, suggesting it could fit inside a storage array and act as its transparent gateway to cloud storage. Maybe E3S is one of the things that makes Emulex attractive to hostile takeover bidder Broadcom.

Update

Emulex said: "Emulex's Enterprise Elastic Storage (E3S) products provide a transparent method for connecting block storage to cloud storage providers like EMC Atmos. The concept is an on-premise attach-point enabling the elasticity of cloud storage for archive data, but in this case there are fewer changes required to IT departments' processes and procedures since it integrates comfortably within existing storage environments."

"Emulex has developed E3S as a proof-of-concept design illustrating how block storage can be easily bridged to cloud storage environments. Market research has shown that the most likely application for this technology is within existing storage solutions and Emulex is discussing with its partners the viability of the product concepts and timing for market entry."

This seems a neat datacentre-to-cloud connectivity idea, in keeping with Emulex' traditional server-to-storage connectivity products. ®