Windows IT Pro Storage UPDATE-- Storage Management Meets Data Management--May 08, 2006

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1. Commentary
- Storage Management Meets Data Management

2. From the Community
- Storage Error in Exchange Server 2003

3. New and Improved
- NSI Software Announces VMWare-Based Data Protection
- Exabyte Debuts Capacity-on-Demand Tape Drives
- Tell Us About a Hot Product and Get a T-Shirt!

4. Windows IT Pro Resources

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==== 1. Commentary: Storage Management Meets Data Management ====
by Elliot King, [email protected]

The emergence of low-cost disk-drive technology is making disk-to-disk-to-tape storage infrastructures more commonplace. In fact, the cost-effectiveness of disk-to-disk-to-tape infrastructures is a central pillar among many Information Lifecycle Management (ILM) strategies because it supports ILM's idea that companies can move data onto less costly storage as it ages, eventually archiving it on tape.

One of the primary challenges for companies that try to implement ILM is the data-migration management process. And with these challenges comes the question of how and when data should be moved. Typically, with ILM and its antecedent, Hierarchical Storage Management (HSM), data migration has been part of storage management. But in an intriguing announcement at COLLABORATE 06, Oracle staked a strong claim that the database itself is the answer to manage data migration for Oracle databases. The release of Oracle Secure Backup--a high-performance network tape-backup solution for Oracle databases and file systems--coupled with announcements over the last two weeks from IBM and Sun Microsystems, suggest that the line between data management and storage management is blurring. Data-management technology providers are increasingly including storage-management functionality in their products, while there are signs that storage-management vendors are moving more aggressively into what was once the domain of database and application vendors.

You could read the Oracle Secure Backup announcement in two ways. On the one hand, Oracle points out that Oracle Secure Backup is just a continuation of an effort that it started with Oracle Database 10g Release 1, which included disk-to-disk backup technology, and Oracle Database 10g Release 2, which included encryption. Oracle Secure Backup completes Oracle's database solution by enabling DBAs to manage the entire backup process from the database-management console.

On the other hand, Oracle Secure Backup isn't just evolutionary because for the first time, according to Oracle, backup logic is embedded in a relational database engine. Oracle says this provides faster, more efficient backups. Moreover, as Mark Townsend, senior director of Oracle's database product marketing, told me, to effectively implement ILM and to meet compliance requirements, enterprises have to better understand the data itself. The database, he says, sees the data as more than just bits and bytes.

Oracle isn't the only database vendor improving the storage aspects of its technology. IBM recently announced that its next release of IBM DB2, Viper, will include data-compression technology, code-named Venom. Venom will allow IBM to deliver mainframe storage compression in non-mainframe platforms. Venom features "row compression," which the company claims yields significant disk, I/O, and memory savings, particularly for large tables with repetitive data patterns. It's more efficient, IBM argued, than Oracle's table-compression technology. According to IBM, by using Venom, data that once required 1TB of storage might require only half a terabyte.

In addition, IBM is enhancing Viper's automated storage-management features, which currently require administrators to make numerous manual and incremental changes. The company is also quite clear that it hopes the Venom enhancements will position IBM to compete not only with its traditional rivals Oracle and Microsoft but also with storage heavyweight EMC.

If database vendors are moving into what was once the storage domain, storage vendors might be moving into areas once reserved for application and database technology. In a major announcement of new NAS products, Sun Microsystems laid out its broad vision for future storage-technology developments with integrated data management as a key element. Sun's other new technology under development, Project Honeycomb, will feature a new type of platform that blurs the distinction between application server and storage, thereby giving application developers new flexibility in the way their applications are deployed by offloading low-level data services from the application server to storage.

Efficiently managing large-scale storage infrastructures has always been complex. Although simplicity is a common mantra among vendors, these new releases bring more concerns for IT. Not only must administrators worry about how to execute storage functions, they must now determine where in the application stack these functions take place. The boundaries between storage management and data management have definitely shifted.

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==== 2. From the Community ====

Storage Error in Exchange Server 2003

When your mailbox store in Exchange Server 2003 reaches its maximum size limits, you may receive an "attempting to unmount the database" error. In Exchange Server 2003, the message database (MDB) shuts down automatically when the mailbox store has reached its capacity. One resolution is to upgrade to Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 2 (SP2). To learn more about this problem and how to resolve it, go to .

==== 3. New and Improved ====
by Anne Grubb, [email protected]

NSI Software Announces VMWare-Based Data Protection

NSI Software released Double-Take for Virtual Systems, a complementary solution for joint Double-Take Software and VMware users that lets a customer consolidate disaster recovery servers onto a system running VMware ESX Server. Double-Take for Virtual Systems enables the use of real-time data replication, monitoring, and failover within virtual machines (VMs). A customer who buys one license of Double-Take for Virtual Systems can run up to five instances of Double-Take on the same VMware ESX Server. For more information, contact NSI Software on the Web:

Exabyte Debuts Capacity-on-Demand Tape Drives

Exabyte announced what it claims are the first tape backup drives to offer an expandable capacity-on-demand capability. The new drives, the VXA-172 Packet Drive and VXA-172 Packet Loader 1x10, provide backup and recovery via large-capacity, high-speed tape cartridges. Customers can buy a 172GB system for as little as $699 for the VXA-172 Packet Drive ($1699 for the VXA-172 Packet Loader) and later obtain an electronic upgrade from Exabyte that nearly doubles the capacity--to 320GB--if needed. Tape cartridges for the VXA-172 products are available in two sizes: the X6 at 80GB and the X10 at 172GB, priced at about $15 and $29, respectively. The capacity-on-demand electronic upgrades will be available for around $349 for a drive upgrade and $599 for the Packet Loader upgrade. For more information, contact Exabyte on the Web:

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==== 4. Windows IT Pro Resources ====

Check out these links to a wealth of Windows IT Pro resources: white papers, eBooks, Web seminars, conferences, and other events.

==== Resources and Events ====
(brought to you by Windows IT Pro)

Make sure that your DR systems are up to the challenge of a real natural disaster by learning from messaging survivors of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. On-Demand Web Seminar.

Take an up-to-date look at secure, remote access to corporate applications and stay ahead of the curve when making decisions about near- and long-term IT infrastructure. Live Event: Tuesday, May 16.

Learn about the advantages for each alternative to traditional file servers and tape storage solutions, and make the best choice for your enterprise needs. On-Demand Web Seminar.

How will compliance regulations affect your IT infrastructure? Help design your retention and retrieval, privacy, and security policies to make sure that your organization is compliant.

Ensure that you're being effective with your internal network security. Are your DIY options protecting you against worms, BotNets, Trojans, and hackers? Make sure! Live Event: Tuesday, May 23.

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Many things can affect your messaging system's availability, including component failure, power outages, operator errors, and natural disasters. This FREE white paper will help you plan and implement reliable strategies to maintain highly available Exchange Server 2003 messaging systems. Download it today!

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