28 Cutting-Edge Storage Products Solution Providers Should Check Out

Amid Dell's Acquisition Of EMC, VMworld Stands Out As A Storage Destination

The acquisition of VMware's parent company EMC by Dell did little to dampen the enthusiasm at the VMworld 2016 conference. Indeed, the acquisition, which closed during the conference, went far to show how VMware will continue to thrive in the storage world despite its ownership passing from one vendor to another.

A who's who of storage vendors -- including partners and rivals of VMware and its new parent company, Dell -- came to VMworld 2016 to demonstrate their latest hardware and software technologies.

CRN was also busy during VMworld, and found at least 28 new storage hardware and software offerings that were either showed for the first time during the event or were introduced within the last six months.

Here's a roundup of the new storage offerings from VMworld 2016.

Actifio OnVault

Actifio, Waltham, Mass., used VMworld to introduce OnVault, a low-cost data retention offering targeted at enterprises of all sizes that are looking to move to the cloud by virtualizing their data, and managed service providers that are enabling this transition. OnVault combines a low-cost infrastructure for long-term data retention and the ability to deliver instant data access with business intelligence, analytics, compliance and data warehousing tools, providing businesses with a single data management offering to handle the entire life cycle of data.

Axcien t Fusion 1.5

Axcient Fusion 1.5 from Mountain View, Calif.-based Axcient provides complete IT resilience and agility from the cloud. Axcient Fusion is a cloud converged platform for IT resilience that lets customers converge and consolidate their non-production workloads in the cloud to help cut the cost and infrastructure burden of IT. Axcient Fusion lets solution providers give midsize enterprise and SMB communities a way to rapidly respond to outages, incidents and security breaches while proactively providing data resilience. New cloud orchestration and automation features help simplify recovery from disasters and outages with pre-written workflows to automate all aspects of the recovery process.

Barracuda Backup 6.3

Campbell, Calif.-based Barracuda Networks said its new Barracuda Backup version 6.3 features a 1.5X to 2X boost in initial backup speed and full server restore performance for large files and up to a 3X boost on file servers with millions of small files compared to previous versions. Barracuda Backup 6.3 also includes image-based backups and instant recovery for virtual servers using LiveBoot, as well as the Barracuda Backup Agent for multistreaming and granular recovery for physical-to-physical, physical-to-virtual or virtual-to-virtual scenarios. Also included is the Barracuda Backup Export Tool to allow data to be exported to virtual tapes stored in AWS Simple Storage Service (S3) or Glacier for archiving.

Catalogic ECX

Catalogic Software, Woodcliff Lake, N.J., used VMworld to unveil Catalogic ECX's support for IBM FlashSystem A9000 and FlashSystem A9000R. Catalogic ECX is a copy data management platform that can help modernize an existing IT environment without disruption, and delivers ’in-place’ copy data management to enterprise storage arrays from EMC, IBM and NetApp. Catalogic ECX takes advantage of existing IT infrastructures and data to modernize IT processes without the need for additional hardware.

Cohesity DataPlatform And DataProtect With VMware Virtual SAN And vRealize Automation

The Cohesity DataPlatform and DataProtect with VMware Virtual SAN and vRealize Automation from Santa Clara, Calif.-based Cohesity offers end-to-end policy-based automation from server and storage provisioning through data protection and archiving. The new version takes advantage of VMware Virtual SAN and vRealize Automation to provide policy-based automation on scale-out and hyper-converged infrastructure deployments for both primary and secondary data. Cohesity said this lets enterprises converge and simplify their data protection infrastructure with automation, instant recovery, more efficient provisioning, and lower total cost of ownership.

Commvault Application Aware Backups For VMware

Application Aware Backups for VMware from Tinton Falls, N.J.-based Commvault capture the state of application data inside the virtual machine at the time of the backup, including data in memory and pending transactions, to make it easier to restore the application for continued use. These backups can be streaming backups or snapshots. Commvault currently supports this feature for Windows-based virtual machines that are running Microsoft SQL Server, Microsoft Exchange or Oracle for Windows. List pricing starts at $1,270 per socket or $1,815 per license for 10 virtual machines.

Universal vSphere Virtual Volumes Support For DataCore Hyper-Converged Virtual SAN

At VMworld, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based DataCore demonstrated its hyper-converged and storage offerings featuring parallel I/O technology to help increase tier-one business application performance and consolidate infrastructure, and unveiled the second generation of its universal vSphere Virtual Volumes software technology. DataCore’s Hyper-Converged Virtual SAN scales up to 64 nodes and incorporates universal vSphere Virtual Volumes support. This results in unified data storage resources across a SAN, converged or hyper-converged infrastructures, or the cloud, letting customers have one set of universal storage services across all storage devices. This allows diverse storage platforms to communicate seamlessly to help reduce complexity and improve operational efficiency.

Dell Validated System For Virtualization

The new Dell Validated System for Virtualization from Round Rock, Texas-based Dell is a converged infrastructure system for delivering a service-defined infrastructure. The Dell Validated System for Virtualization provides a full range of customization options targeting a wide range of on-premise and cloud applications. It is built around Dell's PowerEdge servers or FX2 server chassis, SC-series storage appliances or raw hard drives and SSDs, VMware VSAN, and Dell or Brocade networking. Dell said a fully validated system can be configured, quoted and ordered in minutes, while automated life-cycle management tools allow the system to be easily and seamlessly deployed, scaled and updated.

Exablox OneBlox 5210

The all-flash OneBlox 5210 from Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Exablox is a full-featured scale-out storage offering designed and optimized to combine the benefits of a distributed object store with the performance required for virtual environments and unstructured data. It achieves 50,000 IOPS per node and scales to more than 700 TB per cluster, with a price of less than 50 cents per effective gigabyte. Businesses can seamlessly and granularly scale capacity and availability based on current needs without the need to overprovision storage, the company said. The OneBlox 5210 is managed from the company’s cloud-based management service, OneSystem.

Hedvig vSphere Web Client Plugin

The Hedvig vSphere Web Client plugin from Santa Clara, Calif.-based Hedvig works with enhancements to the Hedvig Distributed Storage Platform to allow VMware administrators to deliver agile infrastructure. The plugin enables simplified storage management for virtual server deployments at scale; improves high availability, disaster avoidance and disaster recovery for VMware infrastructure customers; and simplifies the management of multiple, disparate storage solutions by virtualizing existing storage assets within a Hedvig cluster.

In addition to VMware integration, Hedvig capabilities include a full-featured REST API and ecosystem integration like OpenStack Cinder and the Docker Volume API to help customers prepare for future applications.

Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC V240

The Hitachi UPC HC V240 from Santa Clara, Calif.-based Hitachi Data Systems combines compute, storage and network resources into a hyper-converged infrastructure appliance. It is an easy-to-deploy, all-in-one offering powered by VMware Virtual SAN and HDS software to extend the Hitachi UCP product family from the core to the edge. The UCP HC V240 also supports Docker container technology to provide a robust platform for both traditional and cloud-native applications.

IBM FlashSystem A9000

The IBM FlashSystem A9000 is an all-flash enterprise storage platform featuring predictable microsecond latency; comprehensive deduplication, compression and thin provisioning; and VMware integration. It enables consistent quality-of-service and linear scaling with IBM Hyper-Scale technology, which lets arrays scale with single-pane-of-glass simplicity and orchestration of private and hybrid multitenant cloud environments. The FlashSystem A9000 features a modular design with three controllers integrated with direct-cabled InfiniBand.

The A9000 includes IBM's Spectrum Accelerate technology for predictable, consistent storage performance while scaling to more than 45 petabytes of usable storage capacity. Spectrum Accelerate integrates with a wide spectrum of hypervisor and virtualization software, including VMware, OpenStack and Microsoft.

Kaminario K-Assured Program

Needham, Mass.-based Kaminario used VMworld to show Kaminario K-Assured, a program aimed at bringing predictability and consistency to the customer’s storage buying decision process. K-Assured addresses common purchasing concerns around cost, performance, availability and scalability with six guarantees that help provide customers with certainty and predictability as their business scales.

Micron Accelerated VMware Virtual SAN Ready Node With Hardware-Based TCG-E

Boise, Idaho-based Micron and San Jose, Calif.-based Supermicro collaborated with VMware to develop what Micron called the first hardware-encrypted, all-flash VSAN Ready Nodes based on VMware's Virtual SAN software-defined software. The new VSAN nodes include Micron's Trusted Computing Group Enterprise (TCG-E) AES256 encryption SSDs for data-at-rest security.

NetApp Ontap 9

Ontap 9, NetApp's flagship storage operating system, was optimized for flash with improved performance and capacity utilization. It provides a single view of data management across a range of environments, allowing customers to add flash and/or cloud to their storage ecosystem without additional management overhead. Its enhanced system monitoring centrally manages performance, capacity and data protection across IT environments.

The company last month introduced Ontap 9.1, a major enhancement with encryption at the volume level instead of at the disk level.

NexentaStor 5.0

NexentaStor 5.0 is the latest version of Santa Clara, Calif.-based Nexenta Systems' software-defined unified file and block storage software that runs on top of industry-standard hardware. NexentaStor provides advanced all-flash reference architectures and a new kernel-based high-performance replication solution that delivers continuous asynchronous replication. It also features integration with VMware's new multitenant vCenter Plug-in and VMware Virtual Volume (VVOL).

NexentaStor 5.0 is sold as a perpetual software license, and includes the right to use the company's NexentaFusion 1.0 simplified storage management and analytics. NexentaFusion builds on NexentaStor 5.0's self-documenting RESTful API.

Nexsan Unity

Nexsan, Campbell, Calif., used VMworld to show Nexsan Unity, a new offering combining its NST unified storage platform with its Transporter enterprise file sync and share technology to create an offering that allows business sharing and collaboration from primary storage without sending data over the cloud. Transporter lets users connect to a broker in the cloud so their devices can locate and access the data without the data being in a cloud.

With Unity, Nexsan is also introducing n-way sync, which creates a local volume on the Unity platform that acts as a sync volume. Nexsan also plans to add iOS and Android mobile device access to the data on Unity, as well as the ability to access data via a browser using MacOS and Windows devices.

Nimble Storage AF1000

The AF1000 is San Jose, Calif.-based Nimble Storage's all-flash entry point to the Nimble Predictive Flash platform. The AF1000 scales from 20 TB to 165 TB of effective capacity in a 4U enclosure. It can be upgraded in a nondisruptive fashion to any other Nimble All Flash array model, and can scale-out to more than 8 PB of all-flash capacity in a single cluster. It fully integrates with VMware vSphere, adding value to core features including VMware's Virtual Volumes, VAAI, SRM and more.

Nimble said the AF1000 offers 99.9997 percent availability. The AF1000 includes InfoSight Predictive Analytics to predict and prevent issues across the infrastructure stack and make troubleshooting easier.

Panzura Inside

Panzura Inside is a new program from Campbell, Calif.-based Panzura that lets enterprises combine Panzura’s hybrid cloud NAS software with flash arrays and hyper-converged systems into a high-performance block and file storage solutions. The Panzura Inside virtual controller is currently being tested with Nimble, Nutanix, Tegile and SimpliVity.

With Panzura Inside, a Panzura virtual controller is deployed beside a flash array or on a hyper-converged system using SSD capacity to cache active unstructured data. Unstructured data is moved to public or private cloud storage while the active data is cached on the Panzura virtual controller. This gives clients backup, disaster recovery, replication and archiving capabilities while eliminating a NAS or file server.

Pivot3 vSTAC SLX

The vSTAC SLX from Austin, Texas-based Pivot3 combines hyper-converged appliances with a multitier flash array. The vSTAC SLX line of appliances include a converged management console to manage virtual machines, compute and storage from vCenter Server to simplify provisioning and management of resources. Dynamic quality of service helps provide predictable, guaranteed performance of applications based on targets, priorities and data placement. The appliances also include Pivot3's patented scalar erasure coding to provide 99.9999 percent uptime and high performance and utilization.

Primary Data DataSphere

At VMworld, Los Altos, Calif.-based Primary Data introduced its new DataSphere data orchestration platform for automating IT storage services by uniting enterprises' different storage resources across flash, object/cloud, SAN and NAS systems.

The Primary Data DataSphere appliance uses industry-standard protocols to virtualize the data by transparently connecting storage infrastructure from any vendor, media or protocol under a single, global dataspace to allow data to move between server, shared, and cloud storage without application interruption. The scalable, storage-agnostic DataSphere architecture allows additional performance and capacity to be purchased as needed from any vendor.

Scality, OVH Partner On Large-Scale Storage Requirements

Scality, the San Francisco-based developer of cloud and object storage, introduced at VMworld a partnership with OVH, the Robaix, France-based hosting and internet infrastructure provider to provide a joint enterprise offering for large-scale storage needs. With this new partnership, Scality software now runs on OVH servers for hosted private cloud environments. OVH customers can build petabyte-scale storage pools by running Scality RING on their OVH servers.

SimpliVity All-Flash And RapidDR Solutions For Cisco, Lenovo And OmniCube

Westborough, Mass.-based SimpliVity used VMware to show an enhanced all-flash storage version of its hyper-converged infrastructure offering targeting enterprise and midmarket demands. It features a one-click disaster recovery solution, an application-aware backup capability, and increased scalability for virtual desktop infrastructure environments. The offering can be used for data-intensive applications including online transaction processing or big data analytics.

It is available from SimpliVity as part of its integrated OmniCube appliance series, or as a part of offerings based on Cisco or Lenovo servers.

Tegile IntelliFlash Cloud Platform

At VMworld, Newark, Calif.-based Tegile Systems unveiled its IntelliFlash Cloud platform. Targeting Fortune 1000 enterprise companies looking to get the cost benefits of cloud architectures and the reliability and control of on-premise storage offerings, the IntelliFlash Cloud Platform stitches together multiple controllers to scale out horizontally and vertically across protocols. Controllers are shared across a global namespace, and have shared access to multiple grades of media that data is intelligently placed upon. As a result, enterprises can build massively scalable infrastructure with up to tens of petabytes of flash storage.

Tintri T5000 All-Flash VM-aware Storage

Mountain View, Calif.-based Tintri claimed its Tintri VMstore T5000 all-flash storage solution is the first all-flash virtual machine-aware storage solution to offer up to 308 TB for 5,000 virtual machines in a 2U enclosure. Tintri's scale-out platform lets capacity grow from a single 2U enclosure with 17 TB of all-flash storage system to 10PB of all-flash in 1.5 racks supporting up to 160,000 virtual machines. It delivers performance isolation and per-virtual machine quality of service while guaranteeing high performance and low latency across the entire flash capacity. The T5000 series enables all storage action at the virtual machine level, including managing, replicating, automating and analyzing any or every virtual machine.

Veeam Availability Suite 9.5

Baar, Switzerland-based Veeam's new Veeam Availability Suite 9.5, which was introduced just before VMworld, can scale efficiently and effectively regardless of the size of the environment and number of virtual machines. The offering is slated to be available during the fourth quarter.

New with version 9.5 is backup acceleration technology that can double the I/O performance and shorten backup windows by up to five times while reducing load on primary storage, backup storage and vCenter Servers. It also features virtual machine restore acceleration technologies. as well as processing engine enhancements that allow scaling to meet large customer environments with thousands of virtual machines or millions of files.

Zadara Storage Cloud With Elastic Flash Cache

The Zadara Storage Cloud from Irvine, Calif.-based Zadara Storage is an enterprise-grade storage cloud system that allows multiple tenants to run the company's Virtual Private Storage Array (VPSA) file and block storage solution or the Zadara Intelligent Object Storage (ZIOS) offering on the same physical machines without interfering with each other.

Built on industry-standard x86 servers, the Zadara Storage Cloud leverages patented software technology that creates a virtualizing data storage resource abstraction layer. This provides each user with predictable performance, data privacy and security. Included is Zadara's Elastic Flash Cache, which provides up to 3.2 TB of SSD-based cache to increase performance. It also supports VMware's Site Recovery Manager.

Zerto Virtual Replication 5.0

Boston-based Zerto, a provider of continuous availability and disaster recovery software, used VMworld to introduce Zerto Virtual Replication 5.0. Zerto Virtual Replication is a simple offering for protecting applications. The launch of Zerto Virtual Replication 5.0 expands the existing capabilities of Zerto’s Cloud Continuity Platform, which supports application protection and workload migration for private, public and hybrid clouds. Zerto Virtual Replication 5.0 brings enterprise-class disaster recovery to Microsoft Azure, delivers hypervisor-based ’one-to-many’ replication, includes a new mobile application for remote monitoring, and offers 30-day journaling to remove the impact of data loss from using infrequent backups.