Veritas Software Corp. has gone back to its roots by revamping its very first storage management and virtualization product. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company announced today it is beefing up its Storage Foundation 4.0 product by adding a laundry list of new features and functions to the software.
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Storage Foundation 4.0, formerly known as Veritas Foundation Suite, is a combination of Veritas' File System and Volume Manager virtualization software.
Veritas says that Storage Foundation 4.0 can improve storage utilization rates through online file migration, dynamic multi-pathing and a feature called portable data containers, which allows data to be shared among servers running different operating systems. Veritas is also offering versions of Storage Foundation for Oracle, Sybase and DB2, as well as Veritas Cluster File System for Oracle 9i RAC.
Clipper Group analyst Mike Fisch said that Veritas' File System and Volume Manager have always been joined at the hip but that the new features found in 4.0, like online file migration and tiered storage capabilities, make the software greater than the sum of its parts. "It's a best-of-breed combo that does a lot of things," Fisch said.
Said Marty Ward, vice president of product marketing for Veritas: "This is our most significant release of storage management technology since the company introduced version 1.0 of its virtualization and file system software more than 10 years ago."
Notably new to the software is the Portable Data Containers technology. The "containers" let users share data between multiple operating environments. "To do that today is a labor-intensive process," Ward said. "With the data containers, multiple operating systems in an environment can access data that resides on the same array. We're that layer between the operating environment and storage."
Nancy Marrone-Hurley, senior analyst for the Enterprise Storage Group, said that Storage Foundation 4.0 features enhanced multi-pathing, a simpler auto-provisioning process and the Portable Storage Containers feature, which allows different operating systems to share data.
"Veritas is the only company that can provision storage and then automatically protect that volume," Marrone-Hurley said. "If NetBackup is on top of Storage Foundation, it will automatically recognize there is a new volume and enter it into the backup process."
Storage Foundation's pricing is based on server CPU power. Ward said that version 4.0 starts at $2,495 for a low-end processor box and runs all the way up to more than $100,000 for a high-end server.
Marrone-Hurley believes that Storage Foundation is a cost-effective software package. "You can start with one version and upgrade to the next without any platform changes," she said. "If you were to purchase everything separately from other vendors -- file migration from one, multi-pathing from another -- the end costs would probably be higher, and you wouldn't have an integrated solution."
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