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Avere Systems announced Tuesday at Storage Networking World in Orlando a series of enhancements to its product line for network attached storage (NAS) optimization. Avere has been shipping its FXT series of NAS optimization appliances since 2009, and has just announced product improvements for higher capacity and performance, larger cluster sizes, and a new set of tools to help monitor and tune NAS system performance.
Avere Systems appliances have a reputation for accelerating the performance of any set of file servers they sit in front of. The use of a single appliance or an entire cluster can improve the performance of NAS systems to achieve millions of input-outputs per second. Costs can be reduced when compared to other methods of boosting NAS performance and can be realized with minimal effort.
As in prior models, the new FXT appliances consist of DRAM coupled with high speed Serial Attached SCSI rotating hard disk drives and versions that use DRAM coupled with even higher speed solid state drives. Both versions provide read and write caching for the NAS systems.
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The new FXT 3200 has 96 GB of DRAM and 4.8 TB of SAS HDD (8 drives of 600 GB each) for caching purposes. The FXT 3500 boosts DRAM to 144 GB and SAS capacity to 9 TB (15 600 GB drives). Both are connected to the network by two 10-Gbps Ethernet ports and six 1-Gbps Ethernet ports. They list at $72,000 and $89,500, respectively.
The new FXT 4200 has 96 GB of DRAM and 1.6 TB of SSD (8 SSDs of 200 GB each). The FXT 4500 has 144 GB of DRAM and 3.0 TB of SSD (16 SSDs of 200 GB each). Again, both are fed by two 10-Gbps Ethernet ports and six 1-Gbps Ethernet ports. They list at $99,500 and $159,500, respectively.
In addition to boosting speeds, the new models can be scaled to double the cluster size to 50 nodes each. This means a cluster can include up to 7 TB of DRAM and either 450 TB of SAS HDD or 150 TB of SSD. The Avere architecture allows customers to scale the number of nodes to meet compute and or storage requirements.
It can be argued that the analytic enhancements have as much value as the performance capabilities. Custom views can be developed showing system performance with drill down screens to include time and node statistics. Histograms are also available for historical summary analysis.
Deni Connor is founding analyst for Storage Strategies NOW, an industry analyst firm that focuses on storage, virtualization, and servers. James E. Bagley contributed to this story.
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