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Nimbus Goes After NetApp StoreVault Partners With New Array

Nimbus hopes the lower price and included software capabilities will sway StoreVault partners and customers from NetApp's FAS2020 and to its new RH100 when upgrading.

Nimbus this week unveiled its new RH100 storage array for small and midsize businesses, which includes a trade-up program and software to help customers migrate to the appliance from NetApp's StoreVault product line.

NetApp earlier this month said it is dropping its StoreVault line of small and midsize business storage appliances.

NetApp is suggesting its customers and solution providers move to its FAS2020 appliances over the next few years.

The RH100 supports up to 60 SATA, SAS, and solid state hard drives in any combination for tiered storage, and includes quad load-balanced Gigabit Ethernet ports, dual SAS links and a 4-Gbyte cache, said Thomas Isakovich, president of the San Francisco-based storage vendor.

Isakovich said the RH100 has more port and bandwidth capacity than the FAS2020. And, unlike the FAS2020, the RH100 allows the mixing of SAS, SATA, and solid state disk drives, and can be upgraded to 10-Gbit Ethernet.

In addition, the RH100 includes many of the software features that are priced separately for the FAS2020, Isakovich said. These include NFS and CIFS support, cloning, synchronous mirroring, asynchronous replication, shared storage access controls and snapshot rollback.

For a 12-TB configuration with three years of support, list price for an RH100 is $43,000, with street price lower depending on the solution provider, Isakovich said. A quote from CDW for a similarly configured FAS2020 with all the software options and three years of support is over $156,000, he said.

Along with the RH100, Nimbus this week also unveiled the Elevate program under which a customer who trades in a StoreVault appliance for a new RH100 with the same capacity will actually get double the capacity at no extra cost, Isakovich said.

"We also provide the software to migrate customers from StoreVault to Nimbus," he said. "Nimbus wants to make it as painless as possible."

In an e-mailed response to Channelweb.com, Julie Parrish, vice president of worldwide channel sales at NetApp, explained the company's StoreVault product strategy.

"NetApp continues to offer customers award-winning products and support that are proven to provide enterprise and MSE customers with operational efficiencies," she wrote. "We believe that our S550 partners will benefit most by now offering the FAS2020 bundle as a replacement, providing their customers with the most comprehensive enterprise feature set at a competitive price point. For current users of the S550, no replacement appliance is needed since NetApp S550 customers will continue to receive support for their solution through 2012."

Doug Cole, a partner at LH Computer Services, a Coral Springs, Fla.-based solution provider, said his company recently signed up with Nimbus because of its product line and its channel partner program.

"I also like the fact that Nimbus has 10-Gbit capability," Cole said. "Not a lot of vendors are there yet. We have a dozen or so customers who have already transferred their backbone to 10 Gbit. Some of them are using 10 Gbit only for storage."

Cole said the Nimbus Elevate program is also a good opportunity to get started with the company's storage line. "It's a strike-while-the-iron's-hot opportunity for Nimbus," he said. "We'll get some leads from Nimbus and we will go after them."

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