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IBM Transforms the Management of Business Data with Advanced Storage Software Technology

Revolutionary file system based on Storage Tank-TM- technology designed to speed information access, sharing and management

ARMONK, N.Y. - 13 Oct 2003: IBM today announced the availability of the industry's first storage software technology designed to allow customers to easily share millions of data files in a heterogeneous environment and transform the management of data through automation. Based on the "Storage Tank" technology developed by IBM Research, the IBM TotalStorage® SAN File System is designed to provide a single, centralized point of control to manage files and databases, which can help simplify administration and result in lower total costs.

The SAN File System marks a breakthrough in computing. The eagerly anticipated SAN File System is targeted at transforming the economics of SAN (Storage Area Network) storage by allowing customers to better use existing hardware investments through a software virtualization layer.

"IBM has demonstrated its continued leadership in innovation by delivering a product designed to help reduce storage and data management costs while enabling customers to respond more quickly to changing business needs," said Dan Colby, general manager of storage systems at IBM. "IBM's SAN File System has the potential to become to an organization's data what the Dewey Decimal System is to a library. It is a highly dynamic and autonomic product that reinvents the way information is filed, managed, shared and accessed within an organization."

Built with autonomic and Grid technologies from IBM Research, the SAN File System has an architecture that can eventually support thousands of computers, petabytes of data, and billions of files. SAN File System pioneers innovative technology such as policy-based file provisioning, distributed file locking, and file-based FlashCopy function. These unique features are designed to help increase performance when sharing information, and to improve productivity by automating routine data management tasks. For example, the policy-based file provisioning function is capable of automatically allocating space for files into storage pools using rules defined by a customer. This supports the customer's ability to target and address specific performance or availability requirements.

Industries dealing with complexities of data management, such as financial services, retail and life sciences will all see the benefits of SAN File System. The product is also intended to benefit customers with large data warehousing needs and customers deploying Grid computing environments. Organizations testing the early benefits of the SAN File System include John Hopkins University and CERN (the European Organization for Nuclear Research).

Beyond current integration with other IBM products including DB2 Data Management software and Tivoli Storage software products, IBM is planning to work with a variety of vendors including Oracle and VERITAS software for certification and support.

IBM has also created a new storage software sales force to help accelerate customers' understanding and use of IBM's storage software. The IBM TotalStorage SAN File System will be available worldwide on November 14, 2003 for $90,000 for a starter configuration through selected resellers and from IBM.

Virtualization Family Enhancements
The IBM TotalStorage SAN File System is a member of the IBM TotalStorage Virtualization Family of storage solutions. IBM today also announced other enhancements to its TotalStorage Virtualization Family including:

"As part of our TrueNorth vision of providing best-of-breed solutions to our customers, Hitachi has been working together with IBM to support interoperability between IBM's SAN Volume Controller and Hitachi Thunder Series storage systems," said Hidehiko Iwasaki, General Manager, Storage Systems Development, Disk Array Systems Division, Hitachi, Ltd. "Through our joint efforts and Hitachi's commitment to open SAN environments, we hope to extend even greater benefits to our mutual customers."

"Today's customers typically have very heterogeneous environments," said Brian Truskowski, General Manager of Storage Software at IBM. "We are pleased to work with Hitachi to enable their disk storage to work with our virtualization engine."

Contact(s) information

Lisa Lanspery
IBM Media Relations
(646) 598-6171
lisalans@us.ibm.com

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Research
Chemistry, computer science, electrical engineering, materials and mathematical sciences, physics and services science
Software
Information Management, Lotus, Tivoli, Rational, WebSphere, Open standards, open source
Storage
Storage software, tape and disk innovations

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