Wednesday, 01 May 2019 09:11

Dell advances storage on a broad front

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Dell EMC PowerProtect X400 Dell EMC PowerProtect X400

Dell Technologies has announced a raft of new and enhanced storage products at its Dell Technologies World 2019 conference.

New Dell EMC Cloud Storage Services (available May 2019) extend customers' data centres to the cloud, providing Dell EMC storage — directly connected to the public cloud compute — as a service.

A managed service provider delivers a high-speed, low-latency connection from a public cloud directly to Dell EMC Unity, PowerMax and Isilon in their data centres.

VMware customers can take advantage of automated disaster-recovery-as-a-service (DRaaS) in VMware Cloud on AWS for seamless, enterprise-grade, pay-as-you-go DR in the cloud.

The next-generation Dell EMC Unity XT midrange storage system (available July 2019) is up to twice as fast as its predecessor, and 67% faster than its closest competitor, according to the company.

It is available as a service via the new Dell EMC Cloud Storage Services, and can be used as part of a Dell Technologies Cloud.

The design includes sufficient CPU power to simultaneously run applications, process file and block inline data reduction, and deliver operational data services.

Unity XT provides "unmatched simplicity," said Dell Technologies president and Dell EMC CTO John Roese, while Dell EMC senior vice president of midrange and entry storage Craig Bernero said there were "absolutely no compromises" with the new model.

Asked why the Unity XT was merely NVMe-ready rather than being offered with NVMe storage, Roese said there is not an abundance of NVMe drives, so the company is building systems that will take such drives as they become more readily availble.

Dell Technologies vice-chairman of products and operations Jeff Clarke pointed to Dell EMC's decision to use an industry-standard NVMe implementation rather than a proprietary approach, saying "we think that's the right architecture".

He also noted that Unity XT will co-exist with another product that Dell EMC will announce later this year.

The latest Dell EMC Isilon software release (Isilon OneFS 8.2, available immediately) allows scaling to 252 nodes, with up to 58PB and 945 GBps aggregate throughput per cluster.

The new Isilon H5600 hybrid scale-out NAS storage platform (available June 2019) is said to balance capacity with performance.

The Dell EMC PowerProtect data management system is available as software or as the Dell EMC PowerProtect X400 hybrid or all-flash appliance.

Services include data protection, replication and reuse, with SaaS-based management and self-service capabilities so individual data owners can control their own backup and recovery operations.

VMware customers can use PowerProtect with vRealize Automation for automated policy-based backup and recovery of vSphere environments.

Support for other workloads is forthcoming, said Dell EMC president of data protection Beth Phalen.

Despite the announcement of PowerProtect, there is "absolutely" still a place for the Data Domain family, she said in answer to a question.

The PowerProtect X400 is the first Dell EMC data management solution to use machine learning for intelligent load balancing, placing protected data is placed in the most efficient and cost-effective location.

It can be scaled up or out.

Both the software and the appliance will be available in July 2019.

The Dell EMC Integrated Data Protection Appliance (IDPA) DP4400 (available May 2019) is aimed at smaller organisations and remote offices. It ships with 8 to 24TB of storage, but is expandable up to 96TB with the purchase of license keys and an upgrade kit.

According to Clarke, "an organisation's ability to harness the power of its data capital will determine the winners and losers in the digital economy. To deepen the value of traditional IT assets – while also creating new opportunities and efficiencies – many organisations today are looking to modernize their IT infrastructure as a critical step to become more digital. And they are turning to Dell Technologies and our world-class portfolio of products, solutions and services to help them do that."

Disclosure: The writer attended Dell Technologies World 2019 as a guest of the company.

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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