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Hitachi Introduces Services Oriented Storage Solutions

  • 15 May, 2007 09:00

<p>Hitachi Data Systems Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. (NYSE: HIT), today announced the industry’s first Services Oriented Storage Solutions, long-awaited industry breakthroughs that enable storage to be provisioned and charged back according to business needs, not technology constraints. Based on the all-new Hitachi Universal Storage Platform™ V and a multitude of new Hitachi Storage Software innovations (see separate press releases), this announcement marks a new era in storage where the historical norm of locking in data, function, personnel and operations to rigid structures, and forcing users to pay for services that go unused, is replaced by the emergence of storage services that directly tie resources and functionality to business demands.</p>
<p>In today’s storage climate, administrators and business professionals must choose between a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach—where the most demanding service level agreements define core functionality; or a ‘mix-match-and-manage’ solution—where complex combinations of incompatible hardware, software and processes are the norm. Neither of these solutions adequately meets the needs of the business or IT. Business units do not want to pay for services that they don’t need; however, IT has had little choice but to overprovision the infrastructure in order to not fail on critical service level agreements (SLAs).</p>
<p>Hitachi Services Oriented Storage Solutions will dramatically alter the current stranglehold that storage architectures have on business flexibility by unleashing a services-oriented approach and specific functionality that enables business units and IT to tailor storage services to business needs and ensure that business units only pay for what is actually used.</p>
<p>Introducing Services Oriented Storage: Choice in the Hands of Business and IT
The information technology industry is full of examples where monolithic legacy applications are being modernised by constructing loosely coupled sets of services that can be invoked by applications as needed. Hitachi, with the introduction of its new services architecture, brings this vision to storage. Services Oriented Storage Solutions applies service-oriented architecture (SOA) concepts to storage to deliver a platform that offers sets of automated functions delivered as services to the business which can be invoked as needed. Companies now have the means to replace inefficient capacity-based chargeback models with models that apply more relevant metrics and better “monetise” all of the storage-based services they provide across the enterprise, delivering substantial breakthroughs in efficiency and business agility.</p>
<p>“Beyond providing data migration, replication and storage aggregation, storage virtualisation must enable common storage services so that dynamic business process requirements and their instantiated applications can use a common, managed heterogeneous storage infrastructure,” said Carl Greiner, senior vice president, Infrastructure and Software, OVUM. “The elimination of unique storage solutions and management to address each storage requirement will maximise leverage and lead to a truly optimised storage infrastructure. The realised benefit of storage virtualisation will be the enablement of a common, consolidated, leveraged, dynamic, and managed portfolio of heterogeneous storage services.”</p>
<p>The newly announced Hitachi Universal Storage Platform V packages and delivers key storage services such as:
• Business continuity services
• Content management services (search, indexing via the Hitachi Content Archive Platform)
• Non-disruptive data migration
• Volume management across heterogeneous storage arrays
• Dynamic “Thin” Provisioning
• Storage security services (immutability, logging, auditing, data shredding)
• Data de-duplication (via the Hitachi Virtual Tape Library solution)
• I/O load balancing
• Data classification
• File management services</p>
<p>Hitachi Services Oriented Storage Solutions offer companies the ability to present business clients with a menu of storage attributes such as performance, availability, cost and security, and charge for those services based on the client’s selection.</p>
<p>“The most interesting and compelling feature of Hitachi’s strategy is that management metrics—quality of service (QoS), service level objective/agreement (SLO/SLA), and recovery point objective (RPO) are applied across all services layers,” said John Webster, principal IT advisor, Illuminata. “Seeing enterprise storage in the context of deliverable services is key to unlocking both the realisable and chargeable value of virtualised storage.”</p>
<p>“IT managers can use capabilities like those included in Hitachi’s Services Oriented Storage Solutions to change the interaction between IT departments and their business customers,” said Richard Villars, vice president, Storage Systems, IDC. “IT managers can shift the emphasis of their discussions from infrastructure impediments to the business services required to support rapid application deployment, greater resiliency and ongoing cost-of-use.”</p>
<p>“IT must provide more transparency to the granularity of services being provided to the business and allow clients to see exactly what they’re being charged for,” said Dave Vellante, president and CEO, of leading CIO consultancy ITCentrix. “Leading organisations are beginning to construct pay-as-you-go models that reflect the consumption of storage-related services versus some vague concept of chargeback. Hitachi’s services-oriented approach supports the idea that IT delivery and business lines can forge true partnerships based on value.”</p>
<p>Today’s announcement includes the all-new Hitachi Universal Storage Platform V, the industry’s most powerful storage services platform, which provides the horsepower for Hitachi Services Oriented Storage Solutions. By virtue of its powerful controller-based virtualisation engine, Hitachi is in a unique position to package and deliver storage services across heterogeneous storage assets, whether file, object or block-based. Together with the company’s robust software portfolio, these capabilities mark the beginning of a new era in storage service delivery.</p>
<p>Today’s announcement also includes Hitachi Dynamic Provisioning™ software, available as an optional service for the Hitachi Universal Storage Platform V. This powerful “thin” provisioning software eliminates guesswork and waste by taking advantage of the Universal Storage Platform V’s 247 petabyte address space. Dynamic Provisioning is an innovative example of how Hitachi is delivering Services Oriented Storage Solutions and reshaping storage delivery. Historically, organisations have been required to estimate how much storage needs to be allocated for an application and pay for that storage in advance of actually needing it. If the forecast is too high, storage goes unused as a depreciating asset. If too low, applications run out of space and crash, causing lost revenue and productivity. Dynamic Provisioning and the power of the Universal Storage Platform V completely eliminate these unproductive choices.</p>
<p>“Storage services delivered to the business today are not only costly, but inflexible, giving buyers little choice and limited visibility about use and value,” said Tony Asaro, senior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group. “The Universal Storage Platform V provides a highly scalable platform with a suite of functionality that is actually designed to enable better storage services delivery. In order for IT to provide a true service back to the business we need to create utility. In order to create utility we need to better leverage physical IT infrastructure. The Universal Storage Platform V does this, providing unique and compelling value to enable Services Oriented Storage Solutions.”</p>
<p>Hitachi’s Architectural Superiority
With today’s introduction of the Universal Storage Platform V, new Hitachi Storage Software and Services Oriented Storage Solutions, Hitachi is redefining storage architecture by emphasising responsiveness to business needs, as well as IT configuration and deployment requirements. A prerequisite of delivering a storage services architecture is to allow organizations to take multiple views of their storage infrastructure. An application view allows the storage consumer to see what storage is being used, which services are enabled to meet business requirements and how much storage costs. The storage management view provides IT with an aggregate picture of storage and services demands, allowing administrators to utilise available resources in the optimal way and minimise the cost of providing storage to the business.
Hitachi has developed the most advanced and sensible storage services architecture on the market by understanding that different constituents need to view storage in different ways. Specifically, Hitachi virtualisation technology, powerful software that enables the separation of logical views from physical assets, is a key underpinning of the Services Oriented Storage Solutions architecture. Hitachi superior controller technology provides virtualisation, a 247 petabyte address space, logical partitioning, virtual connections, support for heterogeneous storage and the sheer performance needed to truly deliver storage services on-demand—while at the same time eliminating vendor lock-in.
What this means for customers is:
• Management simplicity achieved through the use of common storage services throughout an entire heterogeneous storage infrastructure
•A superior business model allowing organisations to develop chargebacks for services based on consumption of required function rather than a vague allocation scheme
•A radically more efficient IT environment that goes beyond consolidation into dynamically allocated tiered storage
•Improved utilisation of physical assets with business-enabling capabilities such as Hitachi Universal Volume Manager, Dynamic Provisioning, Virtual Partition Manager and Virtual Ports
•Previously unheard of asset value protection by supporting the virtualisation of heterogeneous storage arrays from leading vendors</p>
<p>Moreover, Hitachi Services Oriented Storage Solutions provide unmatched scalability by encompassing very small to very large storage based on an application’s business needs. Utilising the external virtualisation services of the Universal Storage Platform V, customers can incorporate midrange Hitachi Adaptable Modular Storage (AMS) and Workgroup Modular Storage (WMS) systems, integrated under the same storage management umbrella, benefiting from the same common storage services. The AMS and WMS systems complement the Universal Storage Platform V as tiered or archive storage, especially when configured with SATA disk for lower costs. This is yet another example of Hitachi delivering unmatched cost-effectiveness and scalability to customers.
“We intend to aggressively invest in automated storage services and further exploit our architectural advantages in the marketplace,” said Hu Yoshida, vice president and CTO, Hitachi Data Systems. “Customers are not interested in wrestling with complex APIs or looking at storage as monolithic islands—what they are looking for is storage delivered as flexible, architected services.”
By leveraging its industry-leading storage architecture, world-class software and track record of outstanding execution, Hitachi will aggressively deliver Services Oriented Storage Solutions and support a storage capability that puts business needs first.
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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