Gen3 Of IBM XIV Storage System Ready To Go

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IBM XIV Storage System Gen3 uses a grid architecture to process high-transaction workloads faster

On July 20, IBM will announce the first new version of its XIV storage system to be released since 2008, the year Big Blue bought the Israel-based company.

IBM XIV Storage System Gen3, which uses a patented grid architecture to process high-transaction-type workloads, features several hardware improvements, a revamped user interface, multi-system monitoring, and improved replication, among others.

Automated Data Placement On The Grid

XIV has always offered high-end features such as unlimited snapshots, I/O load-balancing and automatic configuration that can be deployed on relatively inexpensive commodity hardware.

“XIV also includes automated data placement that allows it to self-tune and self-heal, along with advanced thin provisioning that increases system utilisation without affecting performance,” IBM marketing executive Bob Cancilla told eWEEK.

Other IBM XIV Gen3 features, according to Cancilla, include:

  • new components that include InfiniBand interconnects and 8Gbps Fibre Channel ports in addition to more memory;
  • enhanced, centralised administration of multiple XIV systems;
  • an XIV Plugin v2.5 for VMware vCenter Server, a free download that makes it easier to manage XIV using VMware software; and
  • an optional feature that IBM plans to make available in Q1 2012 that will allow clients to add a solid-state drive caching layer to XIV Gen3, which provides an additional 7.5TB of high speed for higher levels of performance.

IBM has shipped more than 4,500 XIV systems to clients around the globe, and about 1,100 new storage customers have bought XIV, Cancilla said.

XIV founder and former chairman Moshe Yanai, who helped send EMC on its way to world leadership in disk storage back in the 1990s, retired last year after two years of involvement with IBM but occasionally still serves as an adviser to XIV.

Yanai, a former tank division commander in the Israeli army, joined EMC in 1987, where he designed and built the first Symmetrix system – still a bread-and-butter product of EMC and now called the DMX series.

Yanai owns 18 storage systems patents, all of which now are key ingredients in EMC’s closely guarded intellectual property.

Previously, Yanai had built IBM-compatible mainframe storage based on minicomputer disks.

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