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EMC Corp. rolled out a 4 TB home NAS box for the Iomega StorCenter line today, and an EMC official told Storage Soup about other software and hardware updates to come for EMC’s SMB, SOHO and consumer products later this year.
The Iomega StorCenter Pro ix4-100 is an upmarket successor to the two-drive ix2 consumer product. It also has a predecessor within Iomega’s product lines, the Iomega 150d NAS, launched prior to EMC’s acquisition of Iomega last year. The ix4 adds more enterprise-level software features such as security and built-in data backup with the addition of EMC’s LifeLine consumer storage software to the 150d’s hardware. EMC’s Mozy online backup service and Retrospect local backup software are also included, along with automatically updated backup folders within the device.
Marc Tanguay, GM of the StorCenter product line, said the four-bay ix4 is aimed at small businesses of around 25 employees rather than the home NAS market. It will come in 2 TB and 4 TB capacities, the latter double the capacity for the ix2. As with the ix2, the LifeLine software will offer features like Windows Active Directory support, email and SNMP system status notifications, print server capabilities and Bluetooth compatibility. The ix4 will support four printers (the ix2 supports two), and the ability to plug in an Axis security camera and stream directly to the box without a PC as an operator.
Tanguay said customers who purchase the ix4 now will get a free upgrade at the end of the first quarter to the next version of LifeLine. That version will include remote administrative access, which will be free for the first year and then cost around $9.95 per year, according to Tanguay. Remote access will let customers upload and download files to the box from a remote location, and an admin can manage it from a Web browser. Also coming in the next version of Lifeline is native Apple File Protocol support. StorCenter currently supports Mac and Apple computers, but “it’s easier to share files and networks with native AFP support,” Tanguay said.
The next version will also offer folder quotas and automated torrent support. Consumers are the most frequent users of torrents to share media files, but Tanguay said small businesses are increasingly using them to exchange data as well. The new version of LifeLine will offer the ability to run the torrent downloader on the shared storage box without requiring a separate computer or process. “Today if a worker is moving from office to home, they lose the continuity of the download, and they have to use their PC’s CPU power for large files,” Tanguay said. Finally, the next version of LifeLine will also make the StorCenter a full media server, including native support for iTunes.
The StorCenter hardware will also be upgraded in the second quarter when EMC will support 2 TB SATA drives from Seagate and Western Digital, and release a new 8 TB StorCenter model.
The 2TB StorCenter Pro ix4-100 NAS Server is now available for $799.95. The 4TB StorCenter Pro ix4-100 NAS Server will be available later this month for $1,299.95.