Storage, with a Twist

11 06 2007

A few basic, quality ingredients. A splash of color and flavor tuned to satisfy a particular consumer’s needs. Why do martinis make me think of storage? Until the last two decades, martinis consisted of a good gin with a whisper of vermouth. But the 90s brought the vodka craze and sometime in the early part of this millenium, creative people figured out they had good basic ingredients that could easily be adjusted from crisp, to sour, to sweet with the addition of some straightforward flavorings. And that brought an expanded consumer base.

We’ve discovered the same thing about storage systems. A few years ago you could get storage in just a couple flavors – the original block devices or file storage that came on the scene in the 1990s. Both had just a few data services floating around the bottom like olives for additional flavor. But now that the world is starting to build storage systems using standard server technology and general purpose operating systems, more and more flavors of storage are seeing the light of day. Flavors dictated by the problem facing the customer, not by the layout of data on some physical media. Flavors formed by the application dealing with the customer problem, not by speeds and feeds.

This week a team of specialists in the UK tackled a big problem faced by our European telco customers – the controversial EU Data Retention Directive with a new Secure Data Retrieval Server that leverages an X4500 server, Solaris 10 operating system, and some partner software build purposely to solve this type of problem. The UK team didn’t have to spend years negotiating a product spec with large engineering teams – our engineering teams and our partner community had already empowered them with the ingredients to build a compliance solution specific to the needs of those European businesses dealing with the new EU legislation.

Someone asked me today if the announcement of the Secure Data Retrieval Server means we’re no longer committed to Honeycomb. Nothing could be further from the truth. Fact is, our coffers are full of ingredients, and while our Honeycomb team is working hard with customers and ISVs in healthcare and digital libraries, our team closest to the problems facing European telcos found the combination of the X4500, Solaris, and CopperEye created a great solution.

Because when a vendor has the right ingredients, customers have choice.

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2 responses

13 06 2007
Taylor Allis

Excellent point, a list of ingredients Sun has to make one heck of a Martini: Storage (Enterprise, midrange, entry – Disk and Tape); Servers (Enterprise, midrange, entry); Software (Enterprise, midrange, device/desktop); and Services…
EMC offers newer, expensive Martini’s but not the classics (no Tape). HP has a good mix – but lacks Martinis for the older, sophisticated crowd (lacks mainframe/enterprise tape and services). I’ll give IBM credit with a well-stacked bar, but if you want your choice of Martinis, there are pretty much only two places in town that offer it all – and Sun is one of them (and Sun’s taste better…)

26 06 2007
John McArthur

Amy,
I’m glad to see you’re hooked into the Coppereye relationship. I met with them recently, and was very impressed with their rapid-search platform for memorialized transactions. Thumper, Solaris, and Coppereye make a great combination.
John

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