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New BridgeSTOR Appliance Aids Microsoft Data Protection Manager

Data management appliance vendor BridgeSTOR has released a new application-optimized storage (AOS) appliance that shrinks data in Microsoft's System Center Data Protection Manager (DPM) backup and recovery system. The new appliance provides data deduplication and compression capabilities that DPM doesn't offer on its own, and BridgeSTOR says it can shrink data stores to as small as 10 percent of their original size.

While other data deduplication products are expensive high-end systems, the BridgeSTOR appliance is targeted at small to midsize businesses, or branch offices of larger companies, with pricing that starts at $20,000, says John Matze, CEO and founder of BridgeSTOR. He says he has visited customers that have reduced their server count down to one rack through virtualization but still have four or five racks of storage hardware.

The DPM-based appliance brings to four the number of AOS product lines from the company. It already offers appliances that support data management from VMware, Symantec Backup Exec and Microsoft Windows Unified Data Storage Server.

In addition to data compression and deduplication, which is the deletion of multiple copies of the same file, the AOS appliance offers thin provisioning, which adds storage capacity in small increments only as needed, and optional data encryption for security purposes. "We can optimize customers' storage requirements so they can use half the storage or a third of it. That is a substantial dollar savings, not only in purchasing the storage but having to pay the cost of heat, electricity and maintenance," Matze says.

The appliance is based on an HP Proliant DL 160 server and ships with Microsoft System Center DPM pre-installed, along with the appropriate Windows Server 2008 operating system. DPM also supports Microsoft Exchange for e-mail and SQL for databases.

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