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FalconStor Software Updates Product Line To Provide Larger Volumes And Increased Scalability

FalconStor Software has announced version 7.0 of its data protection product family, offering new features across the company’s product line. New features in this version of the software include an increase in the logical unit number (LUN) size, from 16 Tbytes to 64 Tbytes, which allows the software to support larger physical disks of up to 3 Tbytes and in general helps provide support for larger volumes and increased scalability for users. Other improvements include tweaks to the encryption algorithm to take up less processing power and an improvement in the time it takes for failover (seconds rather than minutes).

Sunrise Communications AG, which provides mobile telephony, fixed network and Internet services for households and business clients in Switzerland, has a staff of about a half-dozen IT professionals who have been using the FalconStor line of products since 2002, says Sandor Orban, senior IT specialist for the company. "It is an integral part of our virtualizations and disaster recovery solution," he says.

The organization has been testing version 7 since the second quarter of this year, and plans to roll it out to all of its production servers this quarter, he says. In particular, he is interested in the Network Storage Server integration with the VMWare vStorage APIs for Array Integration (VAAI) and the back end I/O intelligence in the virtual tape libraries (VTLs), but wishes that FalconStor offered VTL and its File Deduplication System (FDS) in one appliance, he says.

The purpose of the announcement is to prepare its underlying technology for where it is going in the future, which is service-oriented data protection--in other words, protecting data as a job, and protecting entire services and not just files and blocks, says Mike DiMeglio, director of product marketing for the Melville, N.Y., company. The company also implemented other enhancements to make the software more compatible with VMware vSphere 5 and extend functionality to SAN environments that might not support VAAI, he says. For example, increasing the LUN size was important because VMware is also increasing its LUN size to 64 Tbytes in order to pack more virtual machines onto the host, he says.

The features that Dave Russell, Gartner Research VP for storage technologies and strategies, finds most interesting are enhanced support for VMware’s Site Recovery Manager, which extends support from virtual to physical servers; the ability to keep more snapshots; and improvement in deduplication ingestion speed, he says. In addition, FalconStor seems more focused than in the past and better able to articulate its vision, and is placing more emphasis on quality and testing and being better able to scale up for larger environments, he says.

The new version of the software is generally available now except for the FDS portion of the deduplication product, which is scheduled to be available by the end of August. The software is priced on a capacity basis depending on the amount of storage, starting at $3,000 and going up to $1 million for a petabyte of storage.

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