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Hitachi Announces Virtualisation with Thin Provisioning

  • 15 May, 2007 09:00

<p>Hitachi Data Systems Corporation, the only provider of Services Oriented Storage Solutions, today announced a multitude of significant storage software innovations, including the world’s first implementation of a large-scale, enterprise-class virtualisation layer combined with thin provisioning software—representing the first time that customers can obtain the consolidation benefits of external storage virtualisation and the power and cooling advantages of thin provisioning, in one integrated solution. This announcement is core to the company’s newly announced Services Oriented Storage Solutions strategy (see separate press release), long-awaited industry breakthroughs that enable storage to be provisioned and charged back according to business needs, not technology constraints.</p>
<p>Hitachi today also announced advanced new virtualisation software capable of managing a nearly infinite pool of virtualised storage capacity—247 petabytes, effectively removing all capacity constraints for global companies centralizing storage and processing within a single geographic area. Hitachi also announced new software for the creation of Large Logical Storage Pools, enabling hundreds of disk drives to operate on a single input/output (I/O) request simultaneously, delivering substantial performance benefits to critical business applications. All of these new software breakthroughs are available with the new Hitachi Universal Storage Platform™ V, the company’s latest flagship that defies the status quo of storage by executing a services oriented approach to storage management.</p>
<p>"The Hitachi Universal Storage Platform V offers the market the first enterprise-class thin provisioning solution," said Gary Pilafas, managing director, Enterprise Architecture, United Airlines. "With the combination of Hitachi’s controller-based virtualisation and thin provisioning, organisations are positioned for improved storage economics by allowing for a lower total cost of storage ownership."</p>
<p>“There hasn’t been seamless integration of storage virtualisation and thin provisioning. Users have struggled with this,” said Tom Trainer, senior analyst, Evaluator Group. “The market is changing, and Hitachi has rearranged the competitive playing field by providing both heterogeneous virtualisation and thin provisioning at an enterprise level. With this announcement, Hitachi continues to demonstrate its commitment to the Universal Storage Platform and its ability to deliver value to the user via hardware and software integration.”</p>
<p>"Storage virtualisation is the key technology that enables a large scale consolidation of heterogeneous storage environments," said John Webster, principal IT advisor, Illuminata. "In terms of scalability to the petabyte range combined with operational consolidation and depth of storage-based services deliverable to a wide range of applications and operating environments, the USP V has no present equal."</p>
<p>“Hitachi exhibits the highest levels of hardware and software integration, as can be seen by its platform direction and its portfolio of common storage services,” said Claus Mikkelsen, chief scientist, Hitachi Data Systems. “While a storage system may be very effective, it cannot be complete if the end-user must stay within certain boundaries of physical storage. Imagine a storage services platform that essentially does away with all limits in engineering, performance, and thought—a platform that virtually has no limitation as its limitation. The all-new Hitachi USP V is a limitless expression of storage art, science and engineering in its most evolved state. The USP V is proficient in assimilating all heterogeneous storage systems and presenting them as a unified, harmonious whole that can be thinly provisioned and finely partitioned as opposed to existing as monolithic, isolated, power-hungry, limiting entities.”</p>
<p>Introducing Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning™ Software
Typical storage management practices and conventional host volume management necessitate that storage capacity planners must pre-allocate enough storage so that applications do not run out of space. To eliminate the risks of running out of storage and crashing applications, planners always generously over-allocate capacity. This long-practiced method can waste a significant amount of capacity due to fixed physical volume allocations, or lead to a flurry of manual intervention by administrators struggling against time and cost constraints to add performance or capacity to existing volumes. Shattering through these existing boundaries caused by the over-provisioning of storage capacity, the Hitachi Universal Storage Platform V offers a new type of volume creation tool using a services oriented approach. Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning software enables customers to allocate virtual disk storage based on their anticipated future needs without needing to dedicate physical disk storage up front. If the need for additional physical disk arises, capacity can be purchased at a later time—at a lower cost—and implementation occurs transparently, without any disruption to mission-critical applications.</p>
<p>Unlike striped logical devices on other storage systems, Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning software ensures that disk array groups may be of any RAID level (10, 5, 6), providing customers with maximum flexibility across their storage deployments. As such, Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning software is ideal for managing very large volumes for capacity and performance growth.</p>
<p>Additionally, customers can utilise Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning software in combination with Hitachi Virtual Partition Manager software—which provides a synergistic linkage of disk, cache, and ports for the creation of Hitachi Virtual Storage Machines™, each with its own Virtual Serial Number for asset tracking and chargeback purposes—enabling customers to apply thin provisioning software to internal storage and within Virtual Storage Machines. This is a revolutionary step that clearly puts control into the hands of business and IT managers who can work together to deliver the precise storage services that a business requires, within the right cost structure. The revolutionary Hitachi controller-based virtualisation engine will enable clients to leverage the powerful combination of external virtualisation, thin provisioning, logical partitioning and storage-agnostic replication to deliver intelligent storage services across the enterprise to all tiers of storage using a secure and proven platform.</p>
<p>Key Benefits of Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning Software:
-Reduced space, power and cooling costs due to fewer physical disks required, which results in lower “carbon footprints”
-Reduced total cost of ownership (TCO) placing real dollars back into IT budgets - by providing up to 20 percent improvements in capacity utilisation, according to leading CIO consultancy ITCentrix
-Dramatically simplifies management of storage capacity by eliminating unnecessary provisioning
-Improved performance via wide striping across hundreds of disk drives
-Provides clear usage metrics to the business to support transparency of chargebacks and an improved utility model
-Instantaneous provisioning of storage capacity, reducing administration costs by more than
20-percent through auto-allocation of capacity, according to ITCentrix
-Eliminates concerns about application service interruption by automating the provisioning of physical storage capacity
-Efficiently allocates storage as required by using a ‘buffer pool’ across multiple applications
-Enables just-in-time storage purchasing by allowing capacity planning across all applications—not just one</p>
<p>Hitachi Data Systems also announced the availability of a new design and implementation service for Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning software, available from the company’s Global Solution Services organisation, which enables clients to maximise a thinly provisioned storage infrastructure that is closely aligned with critical business applications. Hitachi Global Solution Services consultants help clients address IT challenges by applying targeted services to leverage tiered storage pools, multi-protocol aggregation, and single-point-of-management capabilities.</p>
<p>Introducing the New Hitachi Universal Virtualisation Layer
Building on the worldwide success of the first generation Hitachi large-scale heterogeneous storage virtualisation layer—Hitachi Universal Volume Manager software—with thousands of customer deployments around the globe, Hitachi today announced a new, expanded version that enables the creation of an infinite virtual storage system supporting 247 petabytes—670-percent more storage capacity than the original version and 24,600-percent more capacity than any other enterprise storage system on the planet.</p>
<p>As communication costs have come down, global companies are centralising all storage and processing within a single geographic area, making the ability to aggregate massive capacity levels into a large pool of storage that leverages a single replication engine and a single management interface increasingly critical to business productivity and operational simplicity. Additionally, unstructured data from industries such as healthcare, oil and gas exploration and digital entertainment are driving the exponential growth of content archives. The new Hitachi Universal Volume Manager enables clients to re-task existing storage assets, rationalise their structured and unstructured data environments, simplify data migration and consolidate stranded or under-utilised archive and operational storage devices.
The expanded Universal Volume Manager enables all the advanced storage functionality that resides in powerful Hitachi controller engines to be applied to externally attached storage devices, thereby increasing the performance of—and extending the life of—existing assets. Hitachi Universal Volume Manager remains the only virtualisation solution for mainframe storage environments, effectively enabling clients to store non-critical mainframe data on low-cost SATA systems. This strategy enables customers to centrally deliver and manage storage services such as data migration and replication, as opposed to utilising multiple isolated islands of storage to attempt to perform similar functions.</p>
<p>Introducing Hitachi Large Logical Storage Pools
The Hitachi Universal Storage Platform V has the ability to create Large Logical Storage Pools, each with dozens or hundreds of disk drives operating on I/O simultaneously. Having hundreds of drives all working in concert to handle I/O requests can create significant performance improvements for customers’ applications and eliminates the need for host-based volume managers to create volumes over a large number of disk drives. This minimises performance tuning since data is striped across a very large number of drives, providing optimisation at all times. Additionally, Large Logical Storage Pools further simplify management by creating a logical layer that manages virtual volumes, delivering ease-of-management and massively scalable performance.</p>
<p>Enhanced Data Protection
Today Hitachi is delivering the storage industry’s most comprehensive storage security services capabilities, responding to corporations’ escalating needs to demonstrate complete confidence to stakeholders that data is physically and logically secure, unaltered, auditable and ‘shredded’ when deleted.</p>
<p>Hitachi today is demonstrating its fundamental commitment to make data security the first priority in storage architecture. An example of this statement in action is seen today in the Universal Storage Platform V and its unique ability to isolate and “fence off” high-security applications at all points in the storage hierarchy from channel to cache to storage devices.</p>
<p>Hitachi today announced continued support for its established, industry-leading data protection and storage security services, many of which have been in the market since 2002. These include controller-based Data Shredding, LUN Security for LUN-level access control to world wide names (WWN), Write Once Read Many (WORM) software for tamperproof long-term data retention, Role-Based Access, an Audit Log file which stores a history of all user access operations performed on the system, and Fibre Channel Secure Protocol Authorisation A (FC-SP Auth A) for the authentication of Fibre Channel entities, as well as support for encryption appliances such as NeoScale and Decru. In the near future, Hitachi plans to attain Common Criteria (ISO 15408) certification for its secure logical partitioning software, Virtual Partition Manager, the only partitioning software that ensures data is secured from access to storage outside of a partition and that data is secured from access by other partition administrators. Furthermore, Universal Storage Platform V customers can rest assured that, unlike other manufacturers, Hitachi stands by the reliability and availability claims of its products with the industry’s only 100-percent data availability guarantee.</p>
<p>About Hitachi Data Systems
Hitachi Data Systems Corporation provides Services Oriented Storage Solutions that enable heterogeneous storage to be dynamically provisioned according to business needs and centrally managed via industry-leading Hitachi storage virtualisation software. As an integral part of the Hitachi Storage Solutions Group, Hitachi Data Systems delivers storage infrastructure platforms, storage management software, and storage consulting services through direct and indirect channels in over 170 countries and regions. Its customers include nearly 60-percent of Fortune 100 companies. For more information, visit the company's Web site at</p>
<p>About Hitachi, Ltd.
Hitachi, Ltd., (NYSE: HIT / TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, is a leading global electronics company with approximately 356,000 employees worldwide. Fiscal 2005 (ended March 31, 2006) consolidated sales totaled 9,464 billion yen ($80.9 billion). The company offers a wide range of systems, products and services in market sectors including information systems, electronic devices, power and industrial systems, consumer products, materials and financial services. For more information on Hitachi, please visit the company's website at</p>
<p>© 2007, Hitachi is a registered trademark of Hitachi, Ltd. and/or its affiliates in the United States and other countries. Hitachi Data Systems is a registered trademark and service mark of Hitachi, Ltd. in the United States and other countries. All other trademarks, services marks, company names are properties of their respective owners.</p>

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