Getting StorageTanked Leaves IBM Giddy
- By Scott Bekker
today announced StorageTank, an
upcoming software product for centralized storage management, integrating SAN
and NAS devices from a variety of vendors into a single pool.
all of our customers to use all of their devices in their network together in a
single pool,” says Mike Harris, director of storage business alliances.
Customers who have deployed SANs and NAS devices have often found that each
solution needs to be managed individually or on a by-vendor basis.
addition, SAN and NAS devices are often deployed for different needs, in
different parts of the network, making management a challenge. “The direction
here is clear: it is not limited to SAN, it is not limited to NAS,” Harris
says. Despite the differences in topology, Harris believes customers will want
to pool and centrally manage different devices together.
that a multi-vendor strategy is critical to the StorageTank initiative, taking
a shot at vendors such as EMC Corp, who provide monolithic storage solutions
with hardware and software sometime interoperable with other vendors. “The
intent is to go to market with partners on this one,” Harris says.
Computer Corp. is a key IBM partner in the storage arena, and Harris says that
StorageTank will leverage cooperation between IBM and Compaq. The VersaStor
storage virtualization technology Compaq is developing promises to expand the
ability of users to pool storage. “VersaStor and StorageTank are very
complementary products,” Harris says, “ VersaStor works at the block level,
while the StorageTank is very much at the file level.”
IBM’s announcement come the same day as a large EMC announcement, detailing a
new strategy for midrange NAS devices, Harris says the IBM announcement comes
for IT managers’ planning purposes, not the Fear Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD)
that IBM is famous for. “Will StorageTank work with EMC’s products?
Absolutely,” Harris says, “But this has more to do with customers’ planning in
that IBM expects to release products based on StorageTank technologies in the
second half of 2001. The company has not decided whether the products will
branded as IBM or with its Tivoli line of storage and network management
software. – Christopher McConnell
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.