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EMC Updates NAS Offering

The 800-pound gorilla of storage, EMC Corp., upgraded its Celerra NAS device for improved capacity and performance. The cabinet-sized unit connects to IP networks and uses Fibre Channel to connect its sundry components.

“It can address twice as much storage as before,” says Paul Ross, director of networked storage marketing at EMC.

With the introduction of new Data Movers -- hardware components that handle file-serving duties -- a Celerra NAS can hold twice as much data and move it twice as fast. Celerra now scales to up to 52TB.

Ross says existing Celerra customers can upgrade data movers to improve the performance or scale up their NAS.

EMC also addressed the interest of Windows users with the new system. Celerra’s software now supports advanced Windows 2000 features such as Active Directory and the Windows 2000 implementations of Kerberos and LDAP. EMC also wrote a Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-in, so administrators can maintain the device through the operating system, rather than use the Celerra client software.

Ross says Windows is a key market for EMC. The bulk of the company’s revenues come from open systems, and this is evenly split between Unix and Windows machines. Moreover, EMC claims 26 percent of the external RAID market for Windows servers, the largest slice of any vendor.

In addition to the Windows enhancements, EMC added more functionality to Celerra’s software. It now boasts a configuration wizard to bring storage online quickly, NDMP support for backup software from companies such as Veritas and Legato, and a feature called Concurrent Copy Backup, which prevents backups from affecting the online performance of the NAS.

Ross says customers were first interested in NAS as a means to add storage to the network easily. But now, he says, NAS has turned into a means for consolidation. “People want to get all their storage in as few boxes as possible,” he says, “We’ve been trying to meet that need.”

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