Next generation storage apps get SASy

Next generation storage apps get SASy

Serial attached SCSI (SAS) technology is finally hitting the streets with SAS-ready hard drives, controllers and racks available to resellers and system integrators.

SAS is the next generation of the SCSI interface. The technology promised to improve storage system performance, scalability, and availability and extend the capabilities of today's parallel SCSI disk drives, Maxtor ANZ country manager, Edwin Tien, said.

Maxtor started shipping its SAS-ready hard drives in January, and is partnering with system integrators including Melbourne-based assembler, Xenon Systems, to ramp up activity. Xenon is finding success pitching the technology to the film industry.

In December, Maxtor combined forces with Adaptec in a bid to simplify SAS deployment for resellers and system builders. The initiative involves providing compatibility testing and evaluation kits to select business partners worldwide. The kits included Maxtor Atlas SAS drives with Adaptec SAS RAID controller and enclosure products for next generation storage applications.

Tien said SAS benefits included beefier performance, a reduced total cost of ownership, increased scalability and flexibility. The SAS interface, which features a data transfer rate of 3.0GB/s, also increases system availability by providing to data paths to a drive; and offers SCSI investment protection, among other features.

Resellers could help an organisation scale up and prepare for future storage demands given the SAS infrastructure supports both SAS and SATA devices, he said.

"An IT manager that selects systems with SAS infrastructure has the ability to change the mix of drive types depending on the application requirements and can change that mix as the applications change over time," he said.

Today, Adaptec is shipping SAS RAID controllers, namely the 4800 and 4805 series, out to the channel. Although it's early days in terms of units shipped, Adaptec country manager, Demetri Christodoulou, said the company had seen 100 per cent increase in sales since the January launch date.

Adaptec recently launched a future proofing campaign, which aims to educate partners about using existing SATA racks and controllers, and how to add a few SAS drives and controllers for high performance jobs within the SATA rack.

"We are at a stage where partners are testing the technology to get their systems qualified with their offerings," Christodoulou said.

Adaptec is also working with distributors in an effort to increase the adoption rate.

"We are running individual sessions with distributors, inviting resellers to come for SAS training," he said. "It's great for the channel because resellers have the ability to use both SAS and SATA in the same machine - so there's a double sale opportunity."

Christodoulou singled out the security and video surveillance market as one of the early spender on the technology.

"Those markets are looking at SAS for its higher capacity at lower cost points," he said.

The technology was ideal for applications requiring high storage capacities and intensive data environments, Christodoulou said.

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