HDS to Crank Up Thunder

Hopes to buttress midrange line with faster Thunder 9580V. But where's the software?

September 26, 2003

2 Min Read
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Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) next month will try to shore up its midrange line of storage with the launch of the faster Thunder 9580V, Byte and Switch has learned.

The Thunder 9580V will double the cache available -- to 8 Gbytes -- and will also double the front-end connectivity of the system to a maximum of 8 Fibre Channel ports compared with the 9570V, which is currently the highest-end member of the Thunder line, according to sources familiar with the product.

The new model will be the latest refresh of the Thunder 9500V line, which HDS launched in December 2002 (see HDS Tries to Steal EMC's Thunder). These systems compete with the EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC) Clariion CX, Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) Enterprise Virtual Array (EVA), and IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM) FastT arrays, among others.

HDS representatives did not respond to repeated requests for information. [Ed. note: Obviously, they were too busy stuffing additional cache into the new Thunder boxes.]

However, HDS will apparently still lag the field in terms of software functionality. For example, the Thunder still lacks snapshotting -- the systems require users to make full copies of replicated data.IBM, by contrast, delivered a number of new data management features for its own midrange FastT family, including IBM's FlashCopy point-in-time replication software and VolumeCopy full-copy software that provides access to a duplicate data set in the event of an outage (see IBM Kicks Up Midrange Storage).

Such software and management features are becoming increasingly important in the midrange market, whereas vendors traditionally have defined the segment in hardware-oriented terms like capacity, according to the September Byte and Switch Insider report, "Midrange Storage Systems" (see EMC, IBM Lead in Midrange Storage).

Todd Spangler, US Editor, Byte and Switch

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