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Xiotech Launches New NAS

Count Xiotech Corp. as the latest entrant into the increasingly competitive market for Windows-based NAS.

Xiotech's new Magnitude 3D Networked Attached Storage (NAS) gateway uses Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) Windows Storage Server for NAS file services, with the company's Magnitude 3D array for storage. Along with eight Fibre Channel or Gigabit Ethernet ports, the device is positioned as a NAS/SAN hybrid for SMBs.

A first for Xiotech, the Magnitude Windows-based NAS product will face stiff competition from the likes of Dell Inc. (Nasdaq: DELL), EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC), and Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ), which have released a slew of low-end NAS appliances for the SMB market. For its part, Xiotech hopes that it can differentiate itself on both manageability and scaleability.

"Our underlying storage is a distinct advantage," says Rob Peglar, VP of technical solutions at Xiotech. That storage based on the company's Magnitude 3D product – provides distributed clustering technology that maintains performance with added capacity, he says.

However, one analyst believes that scaleability and performance might not carry much weight in the SMB market. "The primary drivers for smaller companies are simplicity and cost-effectiveness," says Stephanie Balaouras, senior analyst at The Yankee Group. "They don't have a huge amount of storage, so scaleability is not a top priority."

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