EMC Upgrades Symmetrix With Virtualization - InformationWeek
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4/14/2009
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EMC Upgrades Symmetrix With Virtualization

In addition to its support of virtual data centers, the new architecture supports thousands of VMware and other virtual machines in a single federated storage infrastructure.

EMC is dropping so many virtualization shoes that it's looking like a centipede.

On Tuesday the company unveiled a major virtualization upgrade to its Symmetrix storage line built on its new EMC Virtual Matrix Architecture.

In addition to its support of virtual data centers, the new architecture supports thousands of VMware and other virtual machines in a single federated storage infrastructure. Majority-owned by EMC, VMware is the glue that binds many of the virtualization pieces together in data centers. A month ago, Cisco unveiled its server-based Unified Commuting System for data centers, which leans heavily on VMware.

"The shift from physical to virtual computing is being driven by efficiency gains too compelling to ignore," Joe Tucci, EMC's chairman, president, and CEO, said in a statement. "Virtualization's ability to maximize resources and automate complex and repetitive manual tasks is overtaking the server world and is now happening in the storage world."

EMC said its EMC Symmetrix V-Max system, available immediately, is the first storage system based on the new Virtual Matrix Architecture. The system is built on redundant Quad-core Intel Xeon processors with up to 128 GB memory and as many as 16 host and 16 drive channel connections. Noting that the massive Symmetrix V-Max system utilizes enterprise-level Flash, Fibre Channel, and SATA drives, EMC said they greatly expand EMC's already high-end storage portfolio.

Two partners cooperating closely with EMC -- Cisco and Intel -- are investors in VMware. More than 30 new Symmetrix V-Max systems have already been shipped to customers, EMC said.

The storage company observed that the Symmetrix V-Max system features integration with numerous VMware features that enable server and storage resources to be provisioned on demand. The tiered storage environment of Symmetrix V-Max enables data to be nondisruptively relocated to different storage tiers and RAID protections, including enterprise flash drives, Fibre Channel disk drives, and SATA drives.

Noting EMC's partnership with Cisco, the latter company's CEO, John Chambers, said: "There is a market transition occurring within the data center, and EMC's new approach to high-end storage virtualization complements Cisco's Unified Computing architecture."

Pricing for the new Symmetrix system begins at $250,000. VMware CEO Paul Maritz indicated that VMware will soon offer a new vSphere generation of products that will operate with the Symmetrix V-Max system.


InformationWeek Analytics has published an independent analysis of the challenges around virtualization management. Download the report here (registration required).

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