Compaq Describes New Network Storage Architecture
- By Scott Bekker
Compaq Computer Corp. today unveiled the Compaq Enterprise Network Storage Architecture (ENSA), a key element of the company's overall strategy to make enterprise computing less complex, more agile, and easier to deploy and operate globally.
ENSA will attack the challenges associated with rapid and widespread storage growth found in most corporations today. Comprised of open, standards-based solutions from Compaq and industry leading partners, ENSA provides distributed pools of highly available storage that can be widely deployed and centrally managed, independent of computing systems and applications. It transforms storage into a flexible, shared resource throughout an enterprise, analogous to other common utilities such as electric and telephone service.
"We see storage as a major business opportunity for Compaq and as an increasingly important capability for customers," says John Rose, senior vice president and general manager of Compaq's Enterprise Computing Group.
During the last decade, customers have moved from centralized computing to distributed client/server computing to accomplish business goals, resulting in widely dispersed heterogeneous computing environments. Because of this, many customers find providing, protecting, and managing business-critical information a challenge. Recent efforts to consolidate or re-centralize resources have failed to eliminate management complexity.
ENSA will address these problems by virtualizing storage, allowing vast amounts of storage to be pooled across an enterprise for use by heterogeneous application servers deployed anywhere.
Storage resources can be allocated online from a single, common pool, scaling from gigabytes to petabytes as needed. Data can be replicated instantly for backup, testing, additional application access, or for user-initiated backups and restores. Customers will manage distributed primary and backup storage resources centrally with new policy-based management practices, including dynamic allocation, automatic re-deployment, intelligent data replication and protection, and performance tuning.
Compaq is delivering ENSA in a phased approach that incorporates current and future storage products such as Ultra SCSI- and Fibre Channel-based solutions that allow the distribution of storage resources over distance. The next phase is the creation of a storage network in which multiple hosts have access to common storage. --Brian Ploskina, Assistant Editor
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.