Startup hybrid hard drive and flash storage array vendor NexGen Storage this week made a play for mindshare in the SAN market with a guarantee that its array would significantly increase performance over a customer's existing infrastructure.
"It's the industry's first solid-state storage performance guarantee," said Chris McCall, vice president of marketing for the Salt Lake City-based company.
NexGen also unveiled a joint offering with Baar, Switzerland-based Veeam Software under which it will package Veeam's backup and recovery software for virtualized environments with NexGen arrays at no cost.
NexGen's arrays are built using PCIe flash storage technology OEM'd from Salt Lake City-based Fusion-io.
NexGen guaranteed that it would improve the performance per rack unit or capacity density of existing storage systems in one of three ways, McCall said.
These include guaranteeing 10-times more I/Os per second per rack unit of conventional disk-based storage, three-times more IOPS per rack unit versus conventional hybrid storage arrays, or three-times more gigabytes per rack unit of raw capacity with equivalent IOPS per rack unit versus all-flash storage arrays, he said.
Frank Leonard, managing partner at Leonard-McDowell, a Zionsville, Ind.-based solution provider and NexGen partner, said the guarantee would help the vendor cut through all the noise coming from the flash storage industry.
"There's a lot of customer confusion out there, so backing up the offering with a guarantee speaks volumes about your confidence in the product," Leonard said.
McCall said the idea for the guarantee came from the difficulty customers face when trying to understand exactly how they will benefit from new technology.
"They can invest in SSD, but do they know how much performance will increase?" he said. "And, that performance will change over time. Meanwhile, all-SSD arrays are faster, but by how much?"
The increase in performance from adopting the NexGen storage is measured after the customer makes the purchase, and if the performance guarantee is not reached, NexGen will provide free upgrades to reach it, McCall said.
NEXT: NexGen's Partnership With VeeamCustomers choose their vendor partners for a variety of reasons including support or the preference of a new CIO, said Leonard, of Leonard-McDowell.
"It's good to have a baseline against which to measure performance because you never know when something will change," Leonard said. "Maybe a new CIO comes in and wants to shake things up."
Rick Vanover, product strategy specialist at Veeam, said his company is doing joint marketing with NexGen over the new bundled software solution.
Veeam was designed to provide data protection for virtual machines, which Vanover called the fastest-growing part of the data protection market. "Virtual machines are where customers are seeing the biggest growth," he said. "Veeam has been very successful in the virtual machine space."
Veeam has also been doing a good job of aligning itself strategically with a number of storage vendors, Leonard said. "With NexGen, Veeam can help loosen up slots for low-capacity disk drives to be used for backups, if needed," he said. "And, it lets customers redeploy existing storage in creative ways."
PUBLISHED AUG. 24, 2012