EMC Takes Storage Virtualization Up A Notch


EMC wants to do for data storage what its VMware subsidiary has done for servers: Use virtualization technology to significantly boost the storage capacity of its top-of-the-line Symmetrix data storage systems.

Tuesday EMC unveiled the Virtual Matrix Architecture (V-Max), which the company said enables storage systems to scale up to hundreds of thousands of Terabytes of storage and tens of millions of input/output operations per second. EMC also debuted the Symmetrix V-Max, the first storage system based on the V-Max technology.

EMC said the goal with the new offerings is to help businesses assemble flexible "federated" pools of data storage capacity, much as virtualization technology is used to create pools of server processing capacity.

"Virtualization's ability to maximize resources and automate complex and repetitive manual tasks is overtaking the server world and is now happening in the storage world," said Joe Tucci, EMC president and CEO, in a statement.

At the heart of the V-Max system is the V-Max Engine that uses multiple quad-core Intel Xeon processors (as many as 128 processor cores) with up to 128 GB of memory and up to 16 host and 16 drive channel connections. V-Max Engines can interconnect and share resources, allowing a Symmetrix V-Max system to grow to 1,024 GB of global memory and scale linearly as virtual machines and applications are added, according to the company.

EMC said the Symmetrix V-Max system, which is available Tuesday, provides more than three times the performance, twice the connectivity and three times the usable capacity of Symmetrix DMX-4 systems—currently the top of the Symmetrix line. The new system uses significantly less power per Terabyte and per input/output operation than the DMX-4, according to the company.

The Symmetrix V-Max system also incorporates the latest Enterprise Flash, Fibre Channel and SATA drives. The system can scale to 2,400 drives with a maximum usable, protected capacity of 2 Petabytes of data.