Ministry widens storage tender

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade is to look beyond just EMC and its partners for its new storage area network.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade is to look beyond just EMC and its partners for its new storage area network.

MFAT’s tender initially called for approved EMC partners to bid for the work and tender documents noted “the ministry has already determined that the EMC brand is the most suitable to meet its needs for a SAN”.

However, an update to the tender issued last week revised the requirements to allow non-EMC partners to bid.

MFAT IT division director Elizabeth Beaufort says responses to the tender, released last month, prompted the ministry to change its mind.

“When we did our assessment of the market before the tender, EMC was the only [vendor] that met our criteria.”

However, “a couple of other firms” have offered non-EMC proposals and thus the tender has been widened.

Tender documents note that emerging NAS-SAN hybrid technology is a possibility for the final architecture, but ruled out iSCSI, the upcoming ethernet and IP-based SAN standard.

EMC Australia-New Zealand marketing director Clive Gold says EMC won’t comment on MFAT’s change of heart. “It’s something the ministry has decided, we’re aware of it and we’re working on the RFP.”

In October the New Zealand Defence Force selected EMC as hardware and software vendor for its storage and server consolidation project.

The EMC gear will run data centres in Auckland and Porirua where NZDF data will be centralised, following consolidation of the force’s previous 10 data centres nationwide.

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