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October 13, 2009

Symantec adds to managed cloud storage infrastructure

New option beats NetApp rival in benchmarks

By CBR Staff Writer

Symantec Corp has added another piece to its ongoing strategy for cloud, with a storage-as-a-service addition that is built around cheap hard disk array technology wrapped up with its FileStore software as a ‘soft appliance’.

Described as being ‘several years in the making’, Symantec’s Darren Thomson said the system had been specifically designed to handle large volumes of structured and unstructured data such as rich media content like video files, that in the past have proven difficult to manage.

“It’s enterprise class, highly scalable and in benchmark tests the system blows everything else out of the water in terms of scale, performance and cost,” he said. 

The company said that SPEC tests have shown the new FileStore, using currently available software, demonstrated 47% greater throughput and 14% faster overall response time than the NetApp FAS6080 results posted in August 2009.

“Compared with NetApps the system offers 15% to 20% more performance and better scalability for about two-thirds of the price,” Thomson claimed.

Symantec currently deploys FileStore as the file-based storage architecture in its own cloud Norton 350 anti-virus services, with more than 40 petabytes of online storage for more than nine million active users – the largest SaaS storage environment in the world. Thomson said just three administrators are needed to caretake the system.

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Under the covers the deployment uses the Veritas cluster file system and a single FileStore system will scale up to 16 nodes, and 2 PB of total storage.

Managed service providers are the logical target, but the system will also suit enterprises looking at revising their storage architecture, Thomson suggested.

Because it has been produced as an appliance, Symantec is expected to later add other services on top such as security, backup and vaulting features. 

Symantec FileStore is available immediately and pricing begins at $6,995 for two nodes and two CPU sockets, the company confirmed today.

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