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Startup Offers New Form of Virtualization

Startup RNA Networks is offering a new form of virtualization -- creating a shared memory pool from multiple servers' random access memories and using the pool as a single, logical device.

It's not the first time server memories have been consolidated into a single unit. Clustering systems spread data across multiple server memories and keep it coherent with the database operations going on beneath the cluster. The cluster, in a sense, has a unified memory for data synchronization.

Oracle Corp. (Nasdaq: ORCL)'s Coherence product, part of its Fusion middleware, partitions frequently accessed data in database operations across multiple server memories, for high-speed use by Java applications.

RNA Networks performs a similar function by imposing data coherence across the memory pool.

But a memory pool for a cluster or an Oracle Real Application Cluster has a single function: to satisfy the data needs of individual nodes in the cluster. RNA Networks seeks to convert the memory pool across servers into its own virtual device, capable of executing functions that weren't possible before.

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