The newest iSCSI storage player has been a server company since 1999.
While EqualLogic Inc., Intransa Inc., LeftHand Networks Inc., Sanrad Inc., and StoneFly Networks Inc. jumped into the nascent market as IP SAN pure plays, Rackable Systems Inc.
just started shipping iSCSI systems this week, though it's over five years old (see Rackable Systems Adds iSCSI ).
Rackable isn't a stranger to storage. The Milpitas, Calif.-based vendor launched a NAS device in October, but its primary focus has been x86/Advanced Micro Devices (NYSE: AMD) Opteron servers. CEO Tom Barton says the company had a $100 million run rate in 2003, selling mostly to large Web companies such as Yahoo Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO), PayPal, and online gaming sites, as well as high-performance computing customers.
Rackable got into iSCSI after those customers began requesting low-cost storage to free up their Fibre Channel SANs, consolidate direct attached storage, or mirror data from separate data centers for disaster recovery.
We got pulled into storage, quite happily, by some of our Web customers who needed low-cost, high-capacity storage, Barton says. Now storage is an explicit part of our strategy instead of an afterthought.