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NetApp, Nexsan Debut New NAS Options

NetApp releases two NAS systems for the midmarket, while Nexsan targets large enterprises.

NetApp and Nexsan Tuesday unveiled new storage systems, with NetApp targeting the midsize business and Nexsan reaching for ultra-high scalability.

NetApp announced the FAS 2240-2 and FAS2240-4, which are intended for businesses of 100-1,000 employees that are challenged by tight budgets and limited IT resources. Often IT in these businesses is run by IT generalists instead of storage administrators, who need a simplified interface to manage the arrays and an affordable storage solution.

The FAS 2240-2 and FAS2240-4, which scale to 374 TB and 432 TB, respectively, support both Fibre Channel and iSCSI and can connect to as many as 128 Windows or Linux servers. The 2240-2 is a 2U array with 144 drives, eight gigabit Ethernet (GbE), and four 6-Gb serial attached SCSI (SAS) connections. The FAS2240-4 is available in a 4U configuration and has the same number of connections to the network as the FAS2240-2.

Each array can be outfitted with SAS, SATA, or Fibre Channel drives and 12 GB of NVRAM. NetApp claims that it will add support for solid state drives (SSDs) by the end of 2011.

[Our survey identifies what IT pros want from their deduplication vendors. Learn more: In Data Deduplication, Dell Surprises, EMC Lags.]

Both the FAS2240-2 and FAS2240-4 use the Data ONTAP 8.1 operating system and further support 127,000 snapshot copies per controller. According to NetApps, the new FAS2240 delivered two to three times the performance of previous models.

The FAS2240s are managed with NetApp OnCommand System Manager 2.0 software, which has been designed for use by IT generalists. Included also with the FAS2240 is Data ONTAP Essentials, which includes snapshot copies, RAID-DP, NearStore, FlexVol, FlexShare, thin provisioning, deduplication, compression, SyncMirror, and FilerView, as well as multitenancy support.

Further, NetApp has reduced the price of the FAS2040 to under $7,500. The FAS2240 starts at under $16,000.

Nexsan's new E5510 scales from 8 TB to as much as 1080 TB capacity in 27U of rack space and is intended for applications such as backup, archiving, and primary file storage that require high capacity.

The E5510 attaches to the network via 1-GbE, 10-GbE, or Fibre Channel connections. It can be configured with 1-TB, 2-TB, or 3-TB SATA drives; 450-GB or 600-GB SAS drives; or 100-GB, 200-GB, or 400-GB SSDs.

In addition, included optionally, is asynchronous and synchronous data replication that allows IT to configure offsite disaster recovery. Asynchronous replication allows the manual transfer of data to an offline storage system. Synchronous replication allows real-time mirroring of data to another Nexsan storage system.

Each 5510 also comes with software for taking reservationless snapshots, monitoring and setting quotas, thin provisioning, and Active Directory and lightweight directory access protocol (LDAP) support. Each 5510 also supports common Internet file system (CIFS) and network file system (NFS). The Nexsan 5510 also deploys a feature called FASTier, which automatically migrates data between SSD, SATA, and SAS drives.

Finally, Nexsan added a new expansion chassis, the E18X, which holds 1-, 2-, or 3-TB SATA drives; 450-GB or 600-GB SAS drives; or 100-, 200-, or 400-GB SSDs.

The new E5510 starts at $15,000.

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

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