RealTime IT News

Veritas in Storage Software Overhaul

VERITAS Software has reupholstered its flagship storage management software to conform to the company's utility computing strategy for providing computing services on the fly.

Announced Monday, Storage Foundation, formerly called Foundation Suite, provides the basis for boosting the availability, manageability and performance of systems and storage through shared infrastructure.

These are all aspects of utility computing, a growing technology movement that seeks to automate infrastructure in data centers and allow customers to use computing resources only as they require them.

VERITAS is competing with several vendors in this space, including IBM, HP, Sun Microsystems and Computer Associates.

The Mountain View, Calif., company's Storage Foundation 4.0, its first major upgrade since the product was launched in 1992, is a blend of storage management and virtualization software that allows companies to run their businesses more efficiently by making products from disparate vendors work together in data centers.

Formerly called Foundation Suite, the product integrates Volume Manager, the company's storage virtualization software and File System, and runs all major flavors of Unix, including Solaris, AIX, HP-UX, as well as versions of Linux from Red Hat and SuSe Linux. It works with storage devices from EMC, IBM, HP and Hitachi Data Systems.

Noting that VERITAS' portfolio had consisted of disparate solutions with no consistency between GUIs or platforms, Enterprise Storage Group Senior Analyst Nancy Marrone-Hurley said the company has done a great job of tweaking its software and delivering new features.

"In reality, we haven't seen many of the vendors make too much progress when it comes to integrating their solutions together, so in that sense Veritas is pulling ahead of the pack," Marrone-Hurley told internetnews.com.

As for Storage Foundation 4.0, Jose Iglesias, vice president of product management at VERITAS, called it "the plumbing that makes utility computing real -- without it would be like having dashboard with no engine behind it."

To wit, several new features set 4.0 apart from previous versions of Storage Foundation, officials said.

In a hallmark attribute of utility computing environments, Iglesias said a quality of storage service feature automatically transfers low priority or rarely accessed files from expensive storage arrays to inexpensive storage devices with no downtime.

Portable data containers have been added to share data between servers with different operating systems, allowing point-in-time application migration, Iglesias said. "In today's world, this has been a cumbersome activity."

Provisioning Templates are also now a key feature of Storage Foundation 4.0, allowing administrators to provision new storage using standardized templates in order to eliminate configuration errors and increase productivity. Also, "FlashSnap" enhancements have been added to create snapshots of volumes and file systems.

Lastly, Iglesias said VERITAS has added advanced dynamic multi-pathing to shuttle data across multiple network paths for improved performance and availability.

Moreover, VERITAS has created several versions of Storage Foundation to cater to users of different databases including VERITAS Storage Foundation for Oracle, Sybase and DB2, which include database accelerators and a large file system.

The company said Storage Foundation 4.0 is priced starting at $2,495.