Storage vendors line up behind Windows Server 2008

Storage vendors have already pledged to support Microsoft's Windows Server 2008, which just launched this week

During Wednesday's launch of Windows Server 2008, storage vendors turned out in full force, including CA, FalconStor Software, Emulex, EMC, Network Appliance and QLogic.

Like others, Symantec wants to take advantage of the sales opportunity presented by Microsoft's Windows Server 2008, of which IDC forecasts 3.5 million copies will be sold this year.

"We have to have a solution from day one," said Roger Blomqvist, senior principal technical product manager at Symantec. "That's an opportunity we can't afford to miss."

Symantec Backup Exec, CA ARCserve and FalconStor Message Recovery for Exchange have all been certified for the new operating system.

"If you want to backup Windows Server 2008 you have to use Volume Shadow Copy Service, VSS. It's something Microsoft has changed to improve stability, but I don't think it will lead to big improvements. The technology we used before was very mature," said Blomqvist.

But one change he really likes is drivers running in user instead of kernel mode. "If the driver crashes, the file system won't go down with it," said Blomqvist.

A Microsoft representative confirmed Blomqvist's technical explanations.

To get access to the SAN (storage area network) from servers, companies can use HBA's from Emulex or QLogic. Emulex touts support for Message-Signaled Interrupts and Message-Signaled Interrupts Extended, two standards that improve performance by giving each card its own set of interrupts.

CA has also certified its Storage Resource Manager product. "It's a product that you use to keep your storage in check, you can for example monitor growth and search for duplicate files," said Peter Merkert, technology specialist at CA.

EMC has chosen a different approach, instead of bragging about products, it says 600 consultants are ready to help deploy and leverage new capabilities in Windows Server 2008.

Storage vendors are also starting to tout support for Microsoft's upcoming hypervisor Hyper-V, although the product won't reach market until up to 180 days from now. Emulex, QLogic and Network Appliance say they will support the virtualization technology.

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