Security Smorgasbord on Show

Encryption, iSCSI security, and hardened tape cartridges on SNW agenda

October 30, 2006

5 Min Read
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Security will feature prominently at the Storage Networking World tradeshow in Florida this week, with both big-name vendors and startups unveiling products and plans to lock down corporate data.

Cue hard-drive specialist Seagate, which will unveil its DriveTrust strategy today, eventually adding drive-level encryption to its entire product line. "Theft and loss is happening with servers and storage," Scott Shimomura, senior product marketing manager at Seagate, tells Byte and Switch. "We're trying to get people to look at security built into the drive itself as a security foundation."

First up is Seagate's Momentus drive, which the vendor will "harden" with an encryption chip and security firmware. As part of this effort, Seagate execs have opened up API-style "software hooks" into their drive technology in an attempt to lure specialist security ISVs onto the platform.

Two firms, Secude and WaveSystems, have already teamed up with Seagate to develop key management software, and the vendor expects to have its souped-up Momentus drive, the Momentus 5400 FDE.2, available sometime in the first quarter of 2007. After that, the vendor plans to extend drive-level encryption across its enterprise and desktop hard drives, including its Cheetah, Barracuda, and Savio product lines.

At this point, however, the vendor has not revealed pricing for its Momentus 5400 FDE.2 drive, nor has it described a detailed roadmap for extending drive-level encryption to other parts of its portfolio.Startup Siafu will take the wraps off its Sypher tape encryption appliance this week. Unlike rival NeoScale, which touts Fibre Channel and SCSI-based security appliances, Siafu is putting its faith in iSCSI. (See NeoScale Faces Up to 4-Gig Encryption.)

"The iSCSI allows the product to be positioned at a lower price point," explains John Matze, the Siafu CEO. "Not everyone needs the speed of Fibre, especially in the SMB space, where a lot of people can't afford it."

Siafu will unveil two encryption appliances this week, a standard version, which can handle data at 30 Mbyte/s, and a 100-Mbyte/s "enhanced option." The two-rack-unit-high standard offering will be available in mid-November, priced at $6,995. The vendor is yet to reveal pricing for its higher-speed box, which will be on the market in the first quarter of next year.

Another tape encryption specialist, Decru, will also be busy in Florida over the next few days. (See Decru, Sepaton Team, Quantum, Decru Hook Up, and Decru Picks Key Partners.) The vendor will be announcing an expansion of its professional services program this week, which will include additional end-user support, training, and other services.

Other suppliers will also be bolstering their storage security stories. IBM, which recently added encryption to its TS1120 tape drive, is unveiling enhancements to the drive's 3599 cartridges. (See IBM Security Answer: Tape It Up and IBM Intros Solutions.) With users looking to both store and lock down more information, IBM will take the wraps off a 700-Gbyte version of the cartridges. "As you get more and more data on a single cartridge, security is more important," notes Charlie Andrews, director of storage product marketing at IBM.The previous version of the 3599, like Sun's rival T10000 offering, had a maximum capacity of 500 Gbytes. (See Sun Fills in Storage Crypto Details and Sun Gets Secretive on Storage.) The new IBM cartridges, which will be available in January 2007, will be priced at $270 each.

Also at SNW, IBM will unveil new expansion and warranty options for its DS8000 storage system, as well as software enhancements that aim to improve the platform's ability to connect to mainframes. (See IBM Addresses High End, IBM's Mixed Bag of Storage, and IBM Wins at Wyoming U.)

Security for many firms also involves business continuity, a trend that hardware vendor StorServer hopes to build on with its K6000 appliance, an all-in-one device combining disk-to-disk backup, archiving, and disaster recovery.

The appliance, which uses IBM's Tivoli Storage Manager software, and Qualstar's XLS tape library, offers up to 10 Tbytes of disk-based storage and up to 4 Pbytes of tape-based capacity, according to the vendor. Movie channel Starz and University of Colorado Health Sciences are already considering the appliance, according to the vendor, which is touting the K6000 as an alternative to traditional archiving products and backup software such as Veritas NetBackup. (See Symantec Dips Into De-Dupe and EVault Intros Products.)

"In this day and age, there's no reason to go with [different technology] pieces and parts, because it's such a big headache," says Ellen Rome, StorServer's vice president of marketing. Pricing for the appliance, which is available now, will start at over $200,000.As well as security, blades are also on the agenda for this week. Verari Systems, for example, will today take the wraps off what it describes as a high-density storage blade for its BladeRack 2 NAS platform and will also announce an OEM deal with PolyServe.

Up until now, most of the activity in the blade market has focused on server and compute blades, although more and more vendors are looking to the storage benefits of blades. (See Brocade Busts Out Upgrades, Sun Intros Blade Server, Gaming Companies Eye Storage, and HP Brandishes Blades.)

Verari's VB5150 Storage Subsystem is a 30-Tbyte blade that will use PolyServe's File Serving Utility software for clustering and virtualization.

"This is our first product that offers any significant capacity in the blade form factor," says Eric Seidman, Verari's manager of storage systems, who is touting the product as a small footprint alternative to traditional rack-mounted storage systems for high-capacity applications, such as those of ISPs, the oil and gas industry, and the financial services market.Verari's OEM partner, PolyServe, has also got its eye on these markets. Version 3.5 of the software, which will be available this week, now offers a file system capacity of 128 Tbytes, compared to 16 Tbytes on the earlier version.Pricing for Verari's VB5150, which is available now, starts at around $1 per Gbyte, although this figure depends on the amount of memory the system uses. PolyServe tells Byte and Switch that pricing for version 3.5 of its software remains the same as its earlier version, which is around $7,000 per CPU.

James Rogers, Senior Editor, Byte and Switch

  • Decru Inc.

  • EVault Inc.

  • IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM)

  • NeoScale Systems Inc.

  • PolyServe Inc.

  • Qualstar Corp. (Nasdaq: QBAK)

  • Seagate Technology Inc. (NYSE: STX)

  • StorServer Inc.

  • Secude IT GmbH

  • Siafu Software LLC

  • Sun Microsystems Inc. (Nasdaq: SUNW)

  • IBM Tivoli

  • Verari Systems Inc.

  • Veritas Software Corp.

  • Wave Systems Corp.

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