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Network Appliance Unveils Content Delivery Products

Tuesday was a big day for Sunnyvale, CA-based Network Appliance, as the company introduced a host of new products that it hopes will come closer to fulfilling the promise of rich content delivery.

It starts with NetCache 5.0 software. NetCache 5.0, the company claims, can deliver live streaming content at five times the speed of current streaming formats.

"NetCache 5.0 software supports major streaming protocols and brings powerful new features and functionality to market, including video on demand for a richer user experience,” according to Mark Santora, senior vice-president of marketing.

This is achieved, Network Appliance says, by removing the main bottlenecks in a content-delivery system, namely the network and server. Audio and video are instead delivered from the edge of the network, much closer to the end users. The higher delivery speed also means a much better stream, resulting in cleaner images and sound.

Of course, the software needs machines on which to run. That’s where the NetCache C6100 and C1105 come in. The C6100 is the top-of-the-line appliance, for companies with serious content delivery needs. Network Appliance says it offers OC12 (622 Mbps)-level streaming, multi-terabyte capacity, and greater than 99.99 percent reliability. It is primarily a back-end machine.

The C1105, on the other hand, is smaller (1U), less powerful (and less costly), and designed for the edge of the network, near remote or branch offices and other POPs (Points of Presence). Reliability figures were not listed, but it does offer a storage capacity of 72 GB.

In order to tie all that together, Network Appliance also announced two soon-to-come management tools, ContentDirector and ContentReporter. The chief function of ContentDirector, available later this month, is to manage content across the spectrum of NetApp products, including the NetApp filer storage units, out to the network edge appliances. ContentReporter, with availability listed as mid-November, counts and analyzes site traffic, mainly for billing purposes. – Keith Ward

About the Author

Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.

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