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CRN's 2018 Products Of The Year

CRN editors looked at the best new products and major updates of 2018 and then turned to solution providers to choose the winners based on technology, revenue and profit opportunities, and customer demand.

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VMware revamped its software-defined storage portfolio this year with the launch of vSAN 6.7, offering new features including an HTML 5 user interface and the ability to integrate its performance and capacity monitoring capabilities with VMware’s vCenter management platform. Version 6.7 was designed to bring more workloads to the platform with an emphasis on cloud-native applications. The integration of vSAN to vCenter is a welcome move, said Michael Strong, co-owner and partner at Lubbock, Texas-based Blue Layer IT. “VMware administrators spend the bulk of their time in vCenter,” he said. “That’s why so [much] third-party software is written to vCenter. This is eliminating silos. The Holy Grail for admins is everything within a single pane of glass.”

Subcategory Winner—Technology: Microsoft Storage Spaces Direct Updates

Microsoft recently enhanced its Storage Spaces Direct offering with upgrades including the ability to pool up to 4 PB of drives per cluster (up from 1 PB previously), as well as built-in detection of drives with abnormal latency and a larger number of validated hardware choices.

Subcategory Winner—Customer Demand: NetApp Cloud Volumes 

NetApp Cloud Volumes is a fully managed, cloud-native service that allows quick access to data in the cloud. Cloud Volumes allows customers to take advantage of enterprise file services natively on public clouds—like NetApp’s OnTap operating system does—but does not require customers to use OnTap.

Finalist: Dell EMC Elastic Cloud Storage Updates

Dell EMC’s Elastic Cloud Storage is a cloud-scale object storage platform that brings the availability and serviceability of traditional storage arrays to commodity server infrastructures in a private cloud offering. The platform provides comprehensive protocol support for unstructured object and file workloads on a single platform that lets customers manage globally distributed storage infrastructure under a single global namespace with access to content anywhere.

Finalist: IBM Spectrum Storage Updates

Recent updates to the IBM Spectrum suite of software-defined storage products include new data deduplication features for the Spectrum Virtualize data management offering and the expansion of Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud to support eight-node clusters.

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