IBM will soon begin shipping a new storage appliance using some of the industry's latest networking technology.
IBM will introduce the IP Storage 200i appliance that takes advantage of the emerging iSCSI (Internet Small Computer System Interface) standard for linking data storage systems over Internet Protocol (IP).
Most companies looking to create a SAN (storage area network) have relied on Fibre Channel and SCSI technology for sending information between storage devices and servers in a somewhat constrained fashion. The introduction of the iSCSI standard makes it possible for storage devices to connect to existing IP networks, making more information available to more parts of the network. In addition, the use of iSCSI makes it easier for administrators to manage their SAN systems remotely, according to an IBM statement.
Among the large storage vendors, IBM has taken the lead by delivering an iSCSI ready product early on in the technology's roll out. Medium and small business are expected to show the most interest in the 200i, according to analysts. An entry level version of the 200i will start at US$20,000. The product can be expanded form 108G-bytes to 1.74 T-bytes, IBM said in a statement.