Hitachi aims at midrange SAN market

Hitachi aims at midrange SAN market

Hitachi Data Systems is targeting its newest RAID technology at the midrange storage area network (SAN) market with a scaled-down version of the company's Freedom Storage Lightning 9900.

The Freedom Storage 9200, code-named Thunder, is a compact, Fibre Channel-based technology for the enterprise-class storage market with two to four times wider bandwidth than its predecessor, the Freedom 5800, according to Hitachi. The rack-mounted RAID device scales from 72GB to 7.2TB of capacity and offers features formerly only available on higher-end systems, such as remote and snapshot copying, said Hitachi.

California-based Hitachi is shooting for a spot in the marketplace between US-based EMC's new Clariion IP4700, a network-attached storage device that holds about 3.5TB of data, and EMC's high-end Symmetrix storage system.

Mike Kahn, an analyst at The Clipper Group, said that while the 9200 box is targeted at large corporations that would use it to complement larger storage systems, midsize companies could also consider it for a primary storage box.

According to Hitachi, the Thunder 9200 can offer up to 99.999 per cent availability, depending on the number of redundant devices added to it.

"The 9200 is a high-performance box that may be a little brother to the 9900, but it still has an awful lot of performance," said Kahn. "It's one-upping Clariion in many ways and has some characteristics of the Symmetrix, which almost makes it a new category."

Hitachi began shipping the 9200 last month at a cost of 4 to 6 cents per megabyte of storage. Prices range from $US15,000 to $300,000.

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