Storage UPDATE, March 10, 2003

Storage UPDATE, March 10, 2003


Storage UPDATE--brought to you by the Windows & .NET Magazine Network



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March 10, 2003--In this issue:

1. COMMENTARY - Tape Capacity Wars Heat Up

2. NEWS AND VIEWS - EMC Settles Disputes with Hitachi and VERITAS Software - IDC Details Overall Storage Market for Fourth Quarter 2002

3. ANNOUNCEMENT - Pharma-IT Summit: Real-World Solutions for Today's Pharma-IT Challenges, March 31, 2003

4. RESOURCES - Hot-Swap SCSI Drives 5. NEW AND IMPROVED - Expand Your Storage Capacity - Protect Against Data Loss - Submit Top Product Ideas

6. CONTACT US - See this section for a list of ways to contact us.




(contributed by Elliot King, [email protected])

* TAPE CAPACITY WARS HEAT UP The need for increased capacity continues to be the name of the game in the tape storage arena. In May 2002, IBM demonstrated a tape solution with 1TB of storage capacity in its enterprise-class 3590 form factor and presented a time line of when the technology would become available to the commercial market. Recently, Sony stepped into the picture. Last month, Sony released the first generation of its Super Advanced Intelligent Tape (SAIT) technology to its OEM partners. SAIT-1 can store 500GB of data in native format and 1.3TB of compressed data, uses half-inch media, and has an industry-standard 5.25" form factor. According to John Woelbern, director of Sony OEM sales, products that use SAIT-1 technology should be available late spring 2003. Sony believes SAIT is a new class of tape storage and has published an ambitious development road map for SAIT. By the time the Sony rolls out SAIT-4 (in about 6 years), one tape cartridge will have 4TB of native capacity and 10.4TB of compressed capacity. By 2010, Sony says that SAIT native capacity will scale as much as 10TB on one half-inch cartridge. And, Woelbern tells me, "We aren't pushing the envelope yet."

SAIT achieves such capacity by using Advanced Metal Evaporated tape technology, which helps SAIT to avoid the limitations imposed by metal particle-based coatings. SAIT also is a helical scan drive and uses tapes that have higher densities than linear drives. Although linear tape drives let you more easily add read/write heads to increase the throughput and data transfer rates, Woelbern argued that SAIT has competitive data transfer rates. He added that at any point in the development process over the next several years, SAIT technology should provide 2.5 times the capacity of linear technology drives.

SAIT's debut is only the latest step in the ongoing vendor competition to increase tape storage capacity and to reduce the cost of storage per gigabyte. The most high-profile battle has been waged in the mid-market arena, in which Linear Tape-Open (LTO), a format championed by Hewlett Packard (HP), IBM, and Seagate Removable Storage Solutions (RSS), has faced off against Quantum's SuperDLtape (SDLT) technology. According to Bob Abraham, market researcher and president of Freeman Reports, twice as many LTO drives as SDLT drives shipped in 2001--a year in which LTO was the only tape category to show revenue growth.

Part of LTO's strength came from its well-publicized technology road map. Second-generation LTO drives debuted in April 2002. Two more generations are on the drawing board.

In recent weeks, SDLT has struck back and published its own four-generation product road map. Quantum plans to introduce a new generation of technology every 15 to 18 months. Quantum believes that the SDLT 320 is the highest performance, highest capacity midrange tape drive currently available. The company plans to introduce the SDLT 600 by fourth quarter 2003, before the third generation of LTO technology is unveiled. The SDLT will have 300GB of native capacity and 600GB of compressed capacity. By 2006, Quantum plans to introduce the SDLT 2400, with 1.2TB of native capacity and 2.4TB of compressed capacity.

The low end of the tape market is also seeing capacity improvements. Quantum has laid out a product road map for DLT tape, and Sony is aggressively developing its AIT tape technology, which targets low-end to midrange applications.

The competition to create solutions capable of huge capacities isn't just for bragging rights. To remain competitive, tape technology must increase its capacity and reduce its cost per gigabyte at a rate that equals or exceeds the rates achieved by disk drive manufacturers. Hard Disk Drive (HDD) technology is already elbowing its way into certain applications that were once seen as serving to preserve tape technology. For example, HDDs are establishing a foothold as a backup medium in less data-intense settings. In contrast, more data-rich environments are using tape technology. According to Gartner, Dataquest will ship more than 450,000 tape drives with storage capacities of more than 100GB by 2006.

Several factors are driving the need for more storage capacity. Companies are generating more data, and more types of data, including rich multimedia data, need to be stored. Also, organizations face ever-increasing requirements to store large amounts of data for longer periods of time. Given all the factors, tape storage manufacturers clearly understand the challenges they face. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



(contributed by Keith Furman, [email protected])

* EMC SETTLES DISPUTES WITH HITACHI AND VERITAS SOFTWARE EMC settled two long-running disputes this week. EMC and Hitachi have settled all patent-infringement lawsuits, with both companies agreeing to cross-license patents and disclose APIs to the other company. Under a 5-year agreement, the companies will cross-license intellectual property for mutual releases between EMC and Hitachi subsidiaries Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) and Hitachi Computer Products. The API sharing will let each company develop storage management software that will be able to manage both companies' storage systems. Terms of the agreement were confidential except that Hitachi has agreed to make "balancing" payments to EMC.

EMC also announced that has it has agreed to exchange APIs for storage systems and storage software technology with VERITAS Software. The exchange will let each company develop software products that support the other's products. EMC's increased focus on development of storage software management tools has made the company one of VERITAS's biggest competitors. Many storage companies have announced API licensing in the past year, making the lack of agreement between EMC and VERITAS, two of the largest companies in the industry, noticeable.

*IDC DETAILS OVERALL STORAGE MARKET FOR FOURTH QUARTER 2002 Market research firm IDC released sales information for fourth quarter 2002 that shows that the overall storage industry is doing better than expected. For that quarter, overall sales for the storage market totaled $5.4 billion, a 12 percent increase over third quarter 2002. For all of 2002, the market experienced a 15 percent decline in revenue, which was better than the 21 percent drop that IDC forecast.

IBM and Hewlett-Packard (HP) were tied with 25 percent each of the overall market in the fourth quarter. They were followed by EMC, with 11 percent of the market, then Dell, Hitachi, and Sun Microsystems, with roughly 5 percent each. John McArthur, IDC group vice president, said, "The fourth quarter's results were similar to what we have seen in the server market. We expect to see a return to more normal seasonal changes, as companies have already made their major adjustments to storage spending."



(brought to you by Windows & .NET Magazine and its partners)

* PHARMA-IT SUMMIT: REAL-WORLD SOLUTIONS FOR TODAY'S PHARMA-IT CHALLENGES, March 31, 2003 Annual executive conference highlights the increased focus on network storage, warehousing and security in global pharmaceutical enterprises. Networking, case studies, intensive workshops forums help CIOs, CTOs, CFOs, VPs and other top-decision-makers leverage pharmaceutical IT solutions successfully. Keynote presentations by executives from Aventis, Novartis, Astrazeneca, Hoffman-Laroche and Pfizer, plus US Dept. of Health & Human Services.



* HOT-SWAP SCSI DRIVES Forum member Geoff's boss would like him to back up data on his company's Dell 6400 to some SCSI drives, then unplug the drives and take them off site. When Geoff plugs the drives back in and reinitializes them, the data is lost. To lend Geoff a helping hand, go to the following URL:



(contributed by Carolyn Mader, [email protected])

* EXPAND YOUR STORAGE CAPACITY MTI Technology announced that its Vivant 400 series enterprise storage solution is available with 146.8GB of disk drive capacity. The solution's fault-tolerant, scalable technology lets users expand storage to 25.8TB. The Vivant 400 can accommodate 16 hard disks per enclosure and 11 enclosures per cabinet or rack for a total of 176 drives. Available in Storage Area Network (SAN) and direct-attached models, the 400 series provides end-to-end Fibre Channel technology. For pricing, contact MTI at 714-970-0300.

* PROTECT AGAINST DATA LOSS Atypie Software released #1Backup, backup software that also performs routine file synchronization between computers. #1Backup comes with a collection of predefined jobs that automatically back up your address book, email messages, My Documents folder, and the Windows registry. #1Backup runs on Windows XP/2000/NT/Me/9x systems and costs $35. Contact Atypie Software at [email protected]

* SUBMIT TOP PRODUCT IDEAS Have you used a product that changed your IT experience by saving you time or easing your daily burden? Do you know of a terrific product that others should know about? Tell us! We want to write about the product in a future What's Hot column. Send your product suggestions to [email protected] 6.


Here's how to reach us with your comments and questions:

* ABOUT THE COMMENTARY -- [email protected]

* ABOUT THE NEWSLETTER IN GENERAL -- [email protected] (please mention the newsletter name in the subject line)


* PRODUCT NEWS -- [email protected]



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