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Flash in the spotlight as new Dell storage offerings target data centre economics

Infrastructure

AUSTIN, TX. – On the eve of its Dell World user conference, Dell refreshed its EqualLogic storage lineup with a number of new offerings, highlighting several arrays that incorporate flash and a combination of flash and spinning disk. According to Dell, the offerings will improve performance for power-hungry applications by a factor of three, and help customers architect data-centres able to provision data to users wherever they may be. Dell, cookin' it right “Customers are looking for agility, for scale, and to be able to have a dynamic data centre,” said Robert Fine, storage product manager for Dell. “We’re giving our customers a much faster environment to roll out their applications.”

There are six new Dell EqualLogic PS6210 Series array models, including all-flash, hybrid and all HDD options offering three times higher performance and four times the memory of the prior generation storage arrays. According to Dell, the new flash-enabled arrays can support 2.4 times the virtual desktops and double the OLTP database workload performance with half the latency of prior-generation arrays. “Flash can be used in many ways. It’s probably the single fastest and least-expensive way for a customer to accelerate their applications, but the cost of flash had been a barrier,” said Fine. “We’re bringing down the price of flash dramatically and can now offer customers flash drives at the cost of spinning media.” Also new is Dell EqualLogic Array Software 7.0, which offers simplified storage management and improved support for customer virtualization with streamlined administration, new policy-based access controls and an improved user interface. Dell introduced SAN Headquarters 3.0, a new version of Dell’s SAN monitoring solution, with added support for Array Software 7.0 and Dell SupportAssist for case creation and tracking, as well as reporting, analysis, performance and event monitoring across multiple EqualLogic product groups. Finally, Dell’s Fluid File System v3 is now available on Dell EqualLogic FS7610/7600. The new file system software decreases the capacity needed to store common enterprise file data by up to 48 per cent through the deduplication and compression of redundant data. There were also several announcements by Dell on the networking front, including a number of new W-Series Gigabit Wireless Access Points. Dell said its W-AP224/225 are the first purpose-built 802.11ac enterprise access points in the market and use unique ClientMatch technology to help ensure predictable WiFi performance. Dell is also launching its N-Series of 1GbE and 10GbE switches, its C-series of modular, fully-redundant 1/10/40 GbE switches, and is making enhancements to its OpenManage embedded server management technology. The offerings will be rolling out through early 2014.