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Suppliers Hype 4-Gbit/s FC

A flurry of product introductions has upped the profile of midrange 4-Gbit/s Fibre Channel SANs. But it's getting tough to tell hype from help.

EMC this week released the Clariion CX3 UltraScale series claiming to be the first-ever SAN system to provide "end-to-end" Fibre Channel connectivity. (See EMC Uncages 4-Gig Clariions.)

However, Engenio is also claiming an end-to-end 4-Gbit/s Fibre Channel SAN for midrange deployments, as are its OEMs IBM and SGI. (See LSI Expands 4-Gig Family.) iQstor also claims an end-to-end system. (See IQstor Unveils Array.)

Table 1:

  
Vendor System Controllers Capacity/Cache Configuration Disk Drive Types Pricing/Availability 4-Gbit/s Disk Drives Available iSCSI
EMC Clariion CX3-20 UltraScale EMC 59 Tbytes; 4 Gbytes cache memory Four 4-Gbit/s FC ports; up to 120 drives FC or proprietary lower-cost disk intermix Starting at $27,000/now Yes 2H06
Clariion CX3-40 UltraScale EMC 119 Tbytes; 8 Gbytes cache memory Four 4-Gbit/s FC ports; up to 240 drives FC or proprietary lower-cost disk intermix Starting at $52,000/now
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