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IBM Adds Agility, Efficiency To Storage Systems

New products include compression appliance for active data, enhancements to Tivoli Storage Productivity Suite, new tape and storage systems for SMBs.

IBM announced Monday a wide range of new storage arrays and software aimed at improving the performance, agility, and efficiency of storage systems. The new products were unveiled at the IBM Edge 2012 storage conference in Orlando, Fla.

The company is adding the ability to compress active primary data to its IBM Storwize V7000 appliance and its IBM System Storage SAN Volume Controller (SVC). This enhancement is intended to address the big data storage problem and increase usable storage capacity by as much as five times. Previously the Storwize appliance and the SVC compressed only inactive primary data. IBM has also added the ability to cluster as many as four V7000 systems to double the capacity to 960 drives or 1.4 PB. In addition, IBM announced that V7000 and SVC support the Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) protocol.

IBM also introduced enhancements to the IBM System Storage DS3500, aimed at small and midsize businesses (SMBs), and the DCS32700 for high-performance computing. These systems now support FlashCopy, IBM's snapshot technology, which results in 50% more snapshots.

The company used the IBM Edge 2012 conference to give a nod to the 60th anniversary of tape technology by introducing the IBM Tape System Library Manager (TSLM), new software that provides customers a single management view of multiple IBM TS3500 tape libraries. TSLM supports multiple enterprise and linear tape open (LTO) drives and cartridge media, and it can be managed from IBM Tivoli Storage Manager. IBM also announced the IBM Linear Tape File System (LTFS) Storage Manager, which allows customers to manage the lifecycle of files contained on IBM LTO-5 tape libraries.

[ Learn more about How To Protect The Big Data Archive. ]

Further, the company rolled out the IBM Tivoli Storage Productivity Center (TPC), software that allows customers to manage their big data requirements. The software includes a new Web-based user interface and integration with IBM Cognos for reporting and modeling.

IBM also extended its Easy Tier automatic tiering capability to direct-attached, server-based, solid-state drives to move data between disk systems and servers.

Finally, IBM announced a new scale-out NAS feature that supports a global namespace over multiple disk and tape systems, and also grouped the IBM XIV and Storwize V7000 arrays under the SONAS platform.

Deni Connor is founding analyst for Storage Strategies NOW, an industry analyst firm that focuses on storage, virtualization, and servers.

Big data places heavy demands on storage infrastructure. In the new, all-digital Big Storage issue of InformationWeek Government, find out how federal agencies must adapt their architectures and policies to optimize it all. Also, we explain why tape storage continues to survive and thrive.

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