HDS Leaps into ILM, Storage Management Fray

Hitachi Data Systems entered the battle for information lifecycle management
(ILM) against rivals EMC and HP and filled out gaps in its storage software
portfolio by adding provisioning, automation and management capabilities
with the help of startup AppIQ.


HDS, a division of Tokyo’s Hitachi , said its new solutions
to provide “data lifecycle management” are aimed at helping businesses meet
the challenges of managing unstructured content, such as e-mail and Web
audio and video. ILM, as the majority of the industry has come to refer to
it, is the concept of managing corporate information from its inception
until it is ready to be disposed.


ILM has come into the limelight in the past year, as storage vendors are
hearing pleas from customers to provide them with solutions that will help
them meet regulatory requirements reinforced by such rules as HIPAA and
Sarbanes-Oxley, which dictate that documents must be retained by law for a
certain period of time.


Because the amount of documents can pile up for the duration of a
regulation — IDC claims the total number of e-mails sent daily worldwide is
growing from 9.7 billion in 2000 to 35 billion in 2005 — an ILM strategy
employing both storage and content management is a necessary provision for
customers, according to many storage vendors.


Under the auspices of its Global Solution Services (GSS) division, HDS
announced two e-mail archiving solutions, said Ken Beaudry, Senior Vice
President and General Manager, Global Solution Services, Hitachi Data
Systems, during a press conference in the midst of the opening day of
Storage Networking World 2003.


Beaudry said the Message Archive for Compliance helps companies retain an
archive of e-mail and instant messages for the fixed period of time mandated
by SEC 17a4, Sarbanes-Oxley, Basel II and other regulatory requirements
while the Message Archive for E-Mail removes size-limits from user e-mail
boxes. HDS also announced the Archival Policy Design Service to help
customers institute policies to help them satisfy document regulations.


While rival EMC has recently acquired Legato Systems and moved to
acquire Documentum to gain assets to help customers corral unstructured
content, Beaudry said HDS has opted to partner with enterprise content
management (ECM) software maker Ixos Software, whom Open Text recently moved to
acquire
.


Beaudry, who noted that HDS has been planning its lifecycle management
offering for the last six months, said HDS chose to partner with Ixos on the
software it needs rather than going through the inevitable hassle of
integrating software from a different company.


“HDS isn’t asking customers to learn and manage a second, non-standard
storage infrastructure. What we’ve come up with is unlike anything being
described by others in the market…” Beaudry said.

HDS also entered into a deep partnership with Boston-based storage
management software concern AppIQ to bolster its HiCommand suite, paving the
way for greater application availability, performance and business
continuity improvements for its customers.


HDS will make full use of AppIQ’s StorageAuthority suite to add SAN
management, storage resource management, and provisioning software to catch
up to rivals EMC, IBM and Veritas in the storage resource management (SRM)
space. HDS has also licensed AppIQ’s CIMIQ-X management platform to develop
new software modules and has the option to take a stake in AppIQ. By
partnering with AppIQ, HDS gains capabilities associated with utility
computing concepts, such as provisioning, automation and cost-to-use ratios.


Akin to its new data lifecycle management push, HDS said these new offering
will help customers map data from the application to the disk drive, while
managing several hosts, including SANs, applications, and storage systems —
all from a single window-pane like graphical user interface (GUI). The
refreshed HiCommand Suite is also now CIM/SMI-S enabled, meaning it is
designed to manage storage products from rival vendors.


New HiCommand features based on AppIq’s StorageAuthority suite include:

  • HiCommand Storage Services Manager, a platform for multi-vendor storage
    infrastructure management, which is built SMI-S (nee Bluefin), the steadily
    advancing protocol for heterogeneous storage management. The HDS product
    gives organizations a single repository for discovering and tracking storage
    resources in a network
  • HiCommand Path Provisioning, which provisions heterogeneous
    environments for the HiCommand Storage Services Manager

  • HiCommand Chargeback, a software module that utilizes the HiCommand
    Storage Services Manager database to help businesses measure cost with usage
  • HiCommand Application Modules, which serve as a communications channel
    to provide application intelligence for storage functions on Oracle,
    Microsoft Exchange and file servers

  • HiCommand Policy Manager: Based on Hitachi’s system management
    software, JP1, this software automates policy and workflow processes and
    helps manage distributed platforms and applications to lower
    total-cost-of-ownership.

The new platform based on AppIQ’s technology supports products from Hitachi
partners HP, McDATA, Sun Microsystems, NetApp, Brocade and EMC.

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