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IBM Improves Its Big Storage System

Technology vendor upgrades its Enterprise Storage Server to better compete with EMC and HDS in the high-end storage market.
While IBM gives a lot of attention to its growing services business, the technology vendor is still working to enhance its hardware products. IBM on Friday introduced an upgraded version of its Enterprise Storage Server to better compete with EMC and Hitachi Data Systems in the high-end storage market.

IBM enhanced its ESS Model 800 to help customers improve their business-continuity processes. IBM loaded up the ESS 800 with features to help companies recover from outages. IBM's Peer-to-Peer Remote Copy mirroring software can now be used over long distances for asynchronous copying; it already supports synchronous copying. At the same time, IBM has upgraded its FlashCopy software to let customers make multiple copies, establish tiers, and confirm the final, complete copy once it's made.

On the hardware side, IBM will bring a little bit of capacity on demand to mainframe customers. For a 10% premium over normal mainframe prices, customers can have 6.9 terabytes of extra drive capacity on board for which they'll pay full price only when they actually use it.

The enhancements mean customers will be able to generate complete copies in less time and have the ability to copy only the data they need, instead of sifting thorough entire volumes of data, says David Reine, an analyst at the Clipper Group. Reine adds that new laws requiring that data be backed up and be available for auditing "is helped by these features that offer more consistency, security, and flexibility."