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EMC adds flash to another array

EMC is introducing three storage arrays with options for solid-state disks, and is offering de-duplication and compression of primary storage for the first time.

The Celerra NS-120, NS-480 and NS-960, named for the maximum number of terabytes each array can hold, come with integrated network-attached storage, iSCSI and Fibre Channel connectivity, and are targeted at a range of customers from mid-sized businesses to large enterprises, says Brad Bunce, director of IP storage product marketing.

Low-power SATA drives make up the bulk of storage in the three systems, but customers will have the option to buy 73GB flash drives, and eventually will be able to buy 400GB flash drives, Bunce says.

EMC started putting flash drives into its Symmetrix storage arrays in January 2008, and to the Clariion line in August. With Monday’s release, EMC is also adding de-duplication and compression to primary storage, the most frequently accessed data, for the first time in an EMC product, according to Bunce. Traditionally, de-duplication has been used to reduce the space needed for backup storage, rather than primary data. EMC provides de-duplication for backup data in products such as Disk Library and Avamar.

NetApp has been de-duplicating primary storage since 2007, and even provides de-duplication of primary storage from EMC and other competing vendors such as Hitachi and HP.

EMC, which owns virtualization company VMware, is also offering two plug-ins that provide integration with storage to enable rapid provisioning of thousands of VMware virtual desktops, and enhance disaster recovery with VMware Site Recovery Manager by automatically “failing back” to previous virtual states.

The cheapest of the new Celerra products will start at $37,725, and come with 1.8TB of total storage, but no flash.

In addition to the three arrays, EMC is introducing a gateway system dubbed NS-G8 that will add network-attached storage and ISCSI capability to Fibre Channel SANs. The product gives customers access to unused capacity inside existing SAN arrays and enhances processing power and connectivity, Bunce says.

The new products will be available at the beginning of March.

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