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April 23, 2008updated 19 Aug 2016 10:07am

De-dupe becoming part of storage fabric?

When I met Brian Biles, co-founder and VP product management of storage de-duplication vendor Data Domain a few weeks back, I asked how long it will be before de-duplication technologies simply become part of workaday storage arrays. “Long term,

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When I met Brian Biles, co-founder and VP product management of storage de-duplication vendor Data Domain a few weeks back, I asked how long it will be before de-duplication technologies simply become part of workaday storage arrays.

“Long term, de-dupe is likely to become a storage fundamental, for all areas of storage,” Biles told me. It may be sooner than that…

IBM announced last week that it is buying Diligent Technologies, a privately held storage de-duplication technology company headquartered in Massachusetts with research and development in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Diligent’s technologies and employees will become part of the IBM System Storage business unit of the IBM Systems and Technology Group.

“Diligent develops in-line data de-duplication software that is integrated with server and storage infrastructures to help organizations significantly reduce the amount and cost of physical storage required in data centres,” said Big Blue. “Enterprise and mid-sized organizations are faced with data centres that are reaching a breaking point of complexity and manageability, while at the same time experiencing explosive demands for storage for new data, transactions, email and back-up files.”

As companies continue to struggle with their exploding volumes of data, they are looking for ways of increasing storage density without buying additional capacity. De-duplication is one way of doing that, and the big storage vendors want a piece of the action.

“The Diligent acquisition will be an important part of IBM’s New Enterprise Data Center model, which helps clients improve IT efficiency and facilitates the rapid deployment of new IT services for future business growth,” said IBM. “The new model is based on best practices for virtualization, green IT, service management and cloud computing.”

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IBM is not yet saying that it will include de-duplication technologies free when it sells storage, but as competition in the storage space evolves, there’s bound to be pressure on standalone de-duplication vendors, Data Domain included. Further consolidation is on the cards, in my view.

I’d liken it to the ability to store objects in relational databases: at one time there were numerous firms making a living doing object-oriented databases before the relational database firms developed their own or acquired similar capabilities. And what became of the object-oriented firms like Objectivity, Versant, ODI and ObjectStore?

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