NexGen Storage Expands Hybrid Solid State-Hard Drive Array Line

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Storage start-up NexGen Storage this week expanded its line of hybrid storage arrays with two new models that combine PCIe solid state storage with spinning disks for customers with applications requiring high-performance hardware.

The expansion includes the addition of new low-capacity and high-capacity models, as well as the addition of 10-Gbit Ethernet connectivity on the existing model, giving the company a line of storage systems that provides the performance of SSDs at one-tenth the cost of an all-SSD array, said Chris McCall, vice president of marketing for the Louisville, Colo.-based vendor.

Developing high-performance storage like NexGen's n5 series is more than just adding SSDs to an array, McCall said.

[Related: Cisco, EMC Competing PCIe Flash Storage Strategies Raise Concerns ]

"At NexGen, we don't just add SSD to disk arrays," he said. "We put solid state technology on the PCIe bus using Fusion-io technology. That eliminates the bottleneck caused by adding SSDs, and removes the need to use disk slots to add more SSDs."

In addition to the OEM relationship with Salt Lake City-based Fusion-io, the best-known developer of PCIe-based solid state storage technology, the two companies also cooperate in joint field marketing of NexGen's products, McCall said.

NexGen was founded in 2009 by some of the original founders of storage vendor LeftHand Networks, which in 2008 was acquired by Hewlett-Packard. Its first array, the n5-100, featured a total of 32 TBs of raw capacity, including 1.28 TBs of solid state storage.

New this week from NexGen is the entry-level n5-50, which features 16 TBs of raw capacity, including 770 GBs of solid state storage. The company also unveiled the n5-150, which features 48 TBs of raw capacity, including 2.4 TBs of solid state storage.

All three models take up 3U of rack space, and include eight Gbit Ethernet and four 10-Gbit Ethernet ports. The n5-50 lists for $55,000, the n5-100 lists for $88,000 and the n5-150 lists for $108,000.

McCall compared the n5-150 at $108,000 list to an all-SSD array with 48 TBs of solid state storage from vendors such as Summit, N.J.-based WhipTail Technologies, which can cost up to $750,000 to provide the same approximate random-read and write-performance of 100,000 to 200,000 IOs per second.

NEXT: Where The NexGen Performance Comes From

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