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» VIEW ALL POSTS Aug 31 2012   8:36AM GMT

VMworld 2012 storage notes



Posted by: Dave Raffo
Tags:
Storage

New VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger found himself attending at least one VMworld event that he would have needed a disguise to get into a year ago.

Gelsinger was a special guest at a NetApp party for customers, press and analysts Tuesday night at AT&T Park, home of the San Francisco Giants. Gelsinger, who moved from EMC COO into the VMware job this week, looked around at NetApp CEO Tom Georgens and said, “this is the last place I thought I’d be a couple of months ago.”

It’s no secret that EMC and NetApp are heated rivals. But Gelsinger and Georgens are now so close that they apparently have the same speech writer. During the NetApp even, both repeatedly referred to the other as “my new best friend” and each remarked several times that now they could take each other’s pictures down from their dartboards.

At VMware, Gelsinger is trying to be a lot of people’s best friend. He and other VMware execs repeatedly pointed out at VMworld 2012 how they love all their partners. But Gelsinger also found out it’s hard to be everybody’s friend all the time.

During a CEO roundtable on stage with EMC’s Joe Tucci, Georgens, Michael Dell and former VMware CEO Paul Maritz, Gelsinger tried to describe how his customers need multiple vendors. “One might call Dell to buy servers, and go see Joe for storage – or my new best friend here [Georgens],” Gelsinger said.

But that comment slighted another of Gelsinger’s new friends. “Hey, we can sell them storage too,” Dell reminded Gelsinger. …

Overhead on Solutions Floor:

The CEO of a storage startup approached a friend of his who recently founded a company. “What is your new company doing?” the storage CEO asked.

“I can’t tell you yet,” said the friend, “but it will be software-defined something.”

Everything in IT will be software-defined something by then, if the current buzzword continues unchecked. VMware’s $1.26 billion acquisition of Nicira in July made software-defined networking (SDN) big, and the concept is spreading throughout the data center, including storage. VMware hosted a technical session on software-defined storage at the show and at least a dozen storage vendors have referred to the term in describing their products.

Don’t expect any definitive definition yet, though. VMware lumps future storage technologies such as Virtual SANs, virtual flash and virtual volumes – all designed to make it easier to run storage with virtual machines – under the software-defined storage banner. But others are already expanding the term to fit their own technologies. So if you thought cloud storage was tough to pin down, wait until you see software-defined storage. …

Product news: Cloud storage service provider Nirvanix and gateway vendor TwinStrata released a cloud storage starter kit that combines 50 TB of Nirvanix cloud storage with a TwinStrata CloudArray for a $48,000 annual subscription. The kit is designed to help enterprises quickly set up a cloud for backup/disaster recovery. …

Symantec Corp. said faster recovery of virtual machines in VMware will be a big focus of NetBackup 7.6, due out in November. Planned features include the ability to instantly power on any protected virtual machine from a disk backup target and NetBackup Accelerator for VMware, an extension of its Accelerator for physical machines added in version 7.5. Symantec is also planning to add application failover for VMware to Veritas Cluster Server later this year. Symantec said the failover feature will enable physical to virtual failover and work with Vmware’s vMotion, Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS) and vCenter Site Recovery Manager. …

FalconStor upgraded its RecoverTrac disaster recovery automation technology that runs in its Continuous Data Protector (CDP) and Network Storage Server (NSS) products. The major addition in RecoverTrac 2.5 is the ability to failover and failback between any combination of physical and virtual servers as well as between dissimilar hardware. … Emulex Corp. made its OnCommand Vision 3.0 performance management software available, with support for direct-attached storage (DAS), iSCSI SANs, and logical volumes. … Continuity Software added CloudGuard to its DR software suite. CloudGuard automatically detects problems that could cause downtime to private clouds by collecting data from vCenter, storage, virtual machines and applications. It generates a trouble ticket for areas of risk and recommends solutions to prevent failures.

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