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IBM Touts Simpler Storage

The vendor rolls out midrange and high-end systems that share the same architecture.
IBM on Tuesday bolstered its storage portfolio with several new systems, including a product the vendor says packs the power of a larger system but is about the size of a couple of pizza boxes.

The IBM TotalStorage DS6000 comes with high-end functionality in a lower-cost, simple-to-install architecture. The DS6000's Power chip architecture lets customers add and pay for capacity as needed. The system includes automated visual alerts for component fixes so customers can do the work without calling in IBM. The midrange system also comes with autonomic capabilities for preventing outages.

For customers that need more capacity, IBM rolled out the IBM TotalStorage DS8000, which shares the same architecture as the DS6000. The high-end storage system offers 96 terabytes of capacity and will ship with support for the vendor's IBM Virtualization Engine. That, and IBM's Tivoli SAN Volume Controller software, could make it easier for businesses to manage multiple vendors' storage systems from the same console. A dual four-way Power5 chip architecture generates six times the throughput of its predecessor, the Enterprise Storage Server 800.

For both the DS6000 and the DS8000, IBM Labs is offering the Adaptive Replacement Cache, which is designed to help customers increase system performance for different forms of data access while taking up less capacity with cache. The new systems will ship in early December; pricing starts at $97,000 for 500 Gbytes of capacity.

The new systems could give IBM greater longevity in the storage market. "IBM is really stepping up to the plate today," says Tony Asaro, an analyst at the Enterprise Strategy Group. "Their seamless integration between the midrange and the high-end products, based on the same code, is the first to market."