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Primex Technology Innostorage NAS Enhancements in Network Attached Storage (NAS) have brought this technology from disk storage directly attached to the network to highly flexible storage appliances that can serve a multitude of user needs with the simplicity of “plug on the network” installation. NAS devices can now be truly multi-purpose, offering significant reductions in the cost of providing the data storage requirements for many applications. Storage and Networks – The Dilemma In today's data rich environment, multiple users work on a variety of workstation operating systems – Windows, Mac, Novell and Unix – and require high speed, simultaneous access to shared data. This data knows no economic slowdown. The tremendous growth of business-critical data and the expectation that everything - data and applications - must be available and accessible around the clock is driving an extraordinary demand for storage. The Internet, huge digital, audio, and video files, email archives (that are never deleted), and massive databases are just a few of the applications that continue to drive this explosion. Peripheral Concepts, a market research firm, pegs storage growth at more than 60% compounded annually. AIISAN Research states that the amount of corporate data is doubling every six months. By the end of 2002, enterprises are expected to consume 1.4 million terabytes of storage annually – 12 times the amount consumed in 1998. It's not amassing data that has become the problem. Managing and controlling all this information, software and digital content is the major issue for network administrators. With network content expected to continue to expand at explosive rates over the next five years, analysts predict that storage will account for 75% of all computer hardware expenditures. This expansion makes it increasingly important for IT professionals to develop a comprehensive strategy designed to optimize network infrastructures and storage solutions that include scalability, reliability, performance, availability, affordability and manageability. The traditional way of storing data – adding more hard disks, RAIDs, or optical to existing servers or simply adding more general purpose servers – actually reduces performance, accessibility, reliability, productivity, and substantially increases the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). TCO encompasses more than just simply the money spent on the actual storage component, it includes hardware cost, cost to deploy, downtime and productivity loss, cost to manage and cost to maintain. IDC estimates 80% of the total cost of ownership for adding storage to a general purpose server is the time spent by skilled IT professionals to install, maintain, administer and keep server attached storage running smoothly. In today’s environment of corporate cost containment and streamlined IT staffs this 80% figure must be taken into account when determining the comprehensive strategy for the deployment of storage solutions. Storage and Networks – The Challenge Direct attached storage (DAS) was developed in the mainframe environment where networking was quite simple, distributed computing did not exist, heterogeneous client support was not an issue and host interconnects and operating systems were limited. With the advent of network infrastructures, distributed applications, multiple operating systems and numerous host attachments (numerous versions of SCSI, Fibre Channel), adding storage in this environment has become much more complex and expensive. Even with these complexities, today, 95% of storage devices are still directly attached to a server. However, with weak storage interconnect standards (SCSI, FC and others), and DAS vendors constantly having to re-qualify their storage subsystems with each revision of a server’s operating system software – requiring special host software, firmware and new installation, this is quickly changing. Dataquest has predicted a paradigm shift from DAS to NAS, indicating that 95% of the DAS storage market will be eclipsed by NAS over then next 5 years. IDC concurs indicating an explosive growth in NAS, growing from $781 million in 1999 to over $6.7 billion in 2003. All demonstrate the advent and wide spread deployment of Network Attached Storage supported workgroup clusters with priorities for heterogeneous file sharing, interoperability, reliability, high performance, scalability, and cost savings. Equally important, NAS provides reduced IT management, centralized administration and increased availability – supporting today’s corporate cost containment, streamlining IT staffing and lowering TCO requirements. DAS NAS Cost-to-Deploy High Low • Significant downtime penalty for • Plug & Play, easy to configure, does installation, server reconfiguration, not take server off-line, no productivity lost productivity, difficult to loss, supports all network protocols integrate into network Cost-to- High Low Manage • Requires dedicated IT staff, no • Easy web based tools, centralized centralized management, virtual management, no licenses, no specialized licensing, firmware, server operating system modifications operating system integration – must be updated with each OS change Performance Low High • Steals from application • Dedicated processor, architecture processing. Drops as more storage optimized for data I/O - off-loads is added, creating I/O bottlenecks, application server, freeing it to perform requiring CPU allocation for moving other tasks – providing overall data I/O improved client response time Reliability Low High • Server failure is inversely • Fewer parts – higher reliability and proportional to number of MTBF. Specialized architecture and components on the server. MTBF limited operating system functions reduces as more storage is added. reduce downtime Complexity of operating system causes more downtime Low High Accessibility • Single protocol OS dependent – • Heterogeneous support for Windows, difficult to support today’s MAC, Unix/Linux, FTP and HTTP (WEB) heterogeneous client environment. client access. Users still have access to When server fails – no access to data when application server fails data Scalability Difficult Easy • Requires server to be offline, new • Plug & Play, no downtime, no licenses, complex host adapters licenses, centralized administration Total Cost of Ownership High Low Today, businesses need fast, reliable access to data. They need to be able to install and maintain storage easily with minimum downtime and low administrative overhead. Users need access to shared data in a heterogeneous environment, with access to data from anywhere in the world, 24/7. NAS provides all of these requirements and because NAS moves storage to a specialized appliance, general-purpose servers are free to service other applications and tasks more efficiently. By removing storage access and management from the general-purpose application server, both applications and data can be served faster, since they will no longer be competing for the same processing resources, significantly increasing user productivity, throughput and greatly reducing TCO. Deploy Storage To Where You Need It Its easy to understand why NAS Appliances are gaining appeal with business of all sizes – simplicity of installation, operation and administration, low cost of ownership and the commitment to support corporate cost containment and streamlined IT staffing. However, the majority of NAS appliances on the market are low-end disk storage or mid to high-end RAID storage devices, meeting only a portion of corporate data storage requirements. While these devices are excellent for providing additional disk storage they are lacking in TOTAL functionality. Heterogeneous Network Corporations need access to data in a multitude of data and media formats. They have business-critical data, Internet data, digital, audio, and video files, email and multimedia content stored on hard disk, CD and DVD. The Solution is an easy-to-use and maintain, highly reliable, Network Attached Storage (NAS) Appliance. A Multi-Function NAS Appliance that provides data sharing in diverse heterogeneous network environments with fast performance and high reliability. A multifunction NAS Appliance that combines easy-to-access general-purpose RAID protected file storage, scheduled archiving, and backup – all integrated into one economical NAS Appliance. Introducing Primex Technology Innostorage a NAS Appliance. It’s a viable alternative for the growing storage requirements of any organization. It attaches directly to your network and within minutes gives your Windows, NetWare, Unix/Linux, Macintosh and Web clients immediate, fast, reliable access to RAID protected file storage. No matter what server or operating system the client is using, Innostorage will access CD & DVD multimedia, audio, and video data at hard disk speed – optimized for multimedia performance – and transfer data using standard file sharing protocols (CIFS/SMB, NCP, NFS, AFP, FTP and HTTP) over TCP/IP, IPX or AppleTalk networks, providing shared file access in a heterogeneous environment. The Innostorage NAS offers all these benefits: Reliability - Provide RAID 0,1,5 data redundancy designed to fit users data management strategy - Provide Global RAID hot-spare hard drives for RAID 1,5 - Deploy multiple RAID groups simultaneously - Support hot swappable hard drives the robust storage capacity over 3TBs - Backup(Restore) data to tape drive, USB drive; or remotely backup(Restore) to Unix/Linux tape or HDDs - Provide snapshot and allow online volume adjustment and low-volume alert - Support data encryption synchronizing between NAS Scalability - Disk on Module (DOM) with embedded Linux OS and rescue system can be minimize system downtime and swift data recovery - Dual Ethernet network interface cards support Multi-Subnet, Fail-Over and Bonding, provide continuing high speed transmission ability - Integrated UPS to ensure non-stop operation - Support hot-swappable systems to ensure error-free non-stop cooling fan and power supply without disruption during normal operation Security - Support user authentication by NIS, LDAP, MSAD and NT domain server - Support Access Control List - Integrated users and groups access permission control by existing Windows NT/2000 PDC - Support download/upload files through FTP protocol and FTP 168bit transfer encryption - Support folder share layer security - User disk usage control - User personal interface Usability - Networking Protocol: DHCP, TCP/IP, IPX, AppleTalk, FTP, HTTP - File Sharing Protocol: SMB/CIFS(Microsoft), NFS(Unix), AFP(Apple), NCP(Novell) - File Journaling File System - Client Support: Windows 95/98/ME/NT/2000/XP, Unix/Linux, Netware, Macintosh OS - Multilanguages: English, Simplified/Traditional Chinese Where does Innostorage fit? A single Multi-Function NAS Appliance – configured for multiple application needs and requirements – that can meet a multitude of requirements, from providing RAID protected file storage to off-loading the application server to remote locations, to data replication and disaster recovery. Innostorage NAS deploys storage where you need it – all administered in one central location. Centralized Corporate Storage – Off-load central servers - Consolidate application storage into centralized RAID protected File Storage - Off-Load Central Application Servers – Improved performance & reliability - Client access to data even when application servers are off-line - Local access to CD/DVD media – Heterogeneous shared file access - Administered from central location Departmental Storage – Keep critical data files local to the department - Local RAID protected file storage for high speed access to critical data or large data files, keeps data off the LAN/WAN - Replication of data from central server/NAS – Uses recommended replication software – data on Central Servers and NAS synchronized – all required data files replicated - Departmental access to data, even when central Application Servers are off-line - Administered from central location Remote Offices - Local file storage provides high speed access to critical data files – keeps data off the LAN/WAN - Replication of data from centralized corporate servers and NAS – Uses recommended replication software – Disaster recovery and synchronized data from central office - Local access to CD/DVD media – Heterogeneous shared file access - Local access to data even when central Application Servers are off-line - Administered from central location By delivering mature, industry-standard technologies in a low cost, scalable, redundant and easy to administer solution, Innstorage NAS Appliance frees-up general-purpose file and application servers to provide more efficient client response and productivity. Off-loading I/O functions and deploying high reliability storage where you need it, provides a more robust, productive, flexible and reliable network storage architecture that fits the needs of any business or technology workgroup. Applications for Innostorage NAS Many applications require on-line storage and the capability to archive or replicate data to removable media for distribution, disaster recovery or off-site storage of information. Multi-purpose NAS appliances answer this requirement with built-in functionality saving the cost and frustration of installing specialized devices and software. These easy-to-use solutions provide excellent Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and Return on Investment (ROI) for many industry applications such as: - Document Imaging and Computer Output Laser Disc (COLD) - Printing and Pre-Press Content Management - Education, Computer Based Training and Interactive Multimedia Training - Architectural and Engineering Drawing Management - Multimedia Content Creation and Distribution - Video Editing and Video On-Demand Libraries - Digital Catalog Search & Retrieval - Security and Surveillance Image Capture & Archive In addition to answering the storage requirements of specific applications, Innostorage NAS appliances can be the “LAN Administrator’s Best Friend” providing support for many regular tasks that consume MIS resources on a regular basis. Starting at a price that is less than five percent of the typical LAN Administrator’s annual cost, the Innstorage appliance can save countless hours of time with the capability to: - Cache software and documentation CD-ROMs for access and update across the network - Create central repository for deployment of software applications - Provide additional RAID protected general-purpose file storage - Host Internet or Intranet site - Maintain a secure FTP site - Schedule archive operations to various media - Manage appliances from a remote location Conclusion This paper discusses the flexibility associated with a new breed of NAS products – Innostoage NAS. The opportunities for deploying this cost-effective technology are as endless as the base of user application requirements. Using this new breed of NAS Appliances, that are easy to deploy and manage dramatically lowers Total Cost of Ownership, allowing organizations to contain skyrocketing IT cost. Network Storage, and more importantly, Innostorage NAS has reached a point where it must be considered a key part of any distributed computing environment. In today’s economic climate of streamlined budgets and IT staffs, the benefits of these multi-purpose storage appliances should be explored by every organization.
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