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The HUS VM is available in multiple configurations, including a version with no hard drives that instead relies completely on other arrays for capacity and a version with its own internal storage. They are available for shipping now. Another version, which uses flash storage instead of hard drives, is slated to ship early next year, HDS' Nalls said.
They come with a 100-percent data availability guarantee. "This is a legal contract, which guarantees customers won't lose data, based on parity groups," he said. "It requires us to monitor the system and customers to sign a service contract."
Customers love Hitachi's virtualized storage solutions, said Mark Teter, CTO at Advanced Systems Group, a Denver-based solution provider and longtime HDS channel partner that was the first VAR to get a test unit.
Being able to virtualize both Hitachi and non-Hitachi arrays while protecting investments in existing storage capacity is a powerful message for customers, Teter said. However, for many SMEs, the price has been too high, he said.
"The HUS VM is priced like a modular array," he said. "We are looking forward to taking it to the virtualized and cloud markets where customers can use them to build private clouds."
The HUS VM, which scales to over 80 TB of capacity, is slated to be sold mainly through indirect sales channels, said Greg Bucyk, HDS' manager of global infrastructure channels, global partners and alliances.
"It lets partners address the customer set in the gap between midrange and enterprise customers," Bucyk said. "It also lets partners work with enterprise customers who are looking for smaller implementations. It also provides an opportunity to work with applications such as VMware, so it really fits into customers' virtualized data center environments."
Because the HUS VM uses the same HDS Command Suite operating system as existing HDS systems, partners experienced with the company's Virtual Storage Platform (VSP) are ready to put these new resources into their customer sites, whereas those trained in the HUS 100 product will require little training for the HUS VM, Bucyk said.