Hitachi updates TagmaStore

Applying a "midlife kicker" to its TagmaStore Universal Storage Platform (USP), Hitachi Data Systems Corp. last week unveiled a new version of the storage system that boosts its performance by 25 percent.

The USP storage array includes updated virtualization capabilities that can link it to multivendor storage boxes. Once the arrays are linked, the virtualization capability allows all of them to be managed as a single pool, HDS said.

Al Todd, manager of information technology services at Pacific Capital Bancorp in Santa Barbara, Calif., said he is interested in the system's upgraded Universal Replicator software, which lets users mirror up to four storage arrays. The previous version supported only a single array.

However, Todd will likely wait a year or so before formally evaluating the updated system because he's happy with another of the company's mirroring tools, called TrueCopy, which he now uses.

Over the long term, though, Todd said he expects to replace TrueCopy with Universal Replicator.

The updated Universal Replicator's ability to distribute data to up to four TagmaStore USPs should be of interest to very large users -- users with multiple sites who are using a primary site where the data is located, a "hot site" for backup and a remote recovery site for disaster recovery, said John Webster, founder of research firm Data Mobility Group LLC in Nashua, N.H.

Santa Clara, Calif.-based HDS said the updated TagmaStore array also includes improved ShadowImage performance-mirroring software. The updated software can support 128 concurrent operations, compared with 32 in the current version.

HDS engineers tweaked the microcode in the array to improve the product's performance by 25 percent, said Claus Mikkelsen, chief scientist at HDS. In addition, a new audit volume-logging capability can help users track access to the data, he said.

Hitachi said it has shipped more than 3,000 of the TagmaStore arrays since the first version started shipping a year and a half ago.

The USP array's virtualization capabilities are used in about 40 percent to 50 percent of installed systems, "a pretty amazing take-up," according to David Floyer, chief technology officer at Framingham, Mass.-based Barometrix Software Corp.

The Universal Replicator will be available by the end of June, starting at US$20,000.

The ShadowImage In-System Replication software is priced from $10,000 and is available now.

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