EMC finally rolls out FAST

Allows administrators to migrate data between tiers of storage automatically based on policies

EMC rolled out this week its much anticipated FAST software, which automatically migrates data between tiers of storage based on policies the storage administrator sets.

FAST, an acronym for Fully Automated Storage Tiering, will by moving data to the proper tier of storage, give users faster application performance and lower storage costs. Most important is that FAST supports Tier 0 solid state drives, the newest mean for accelerating application performance. Policies can be set by storage type (SSD, Fibre Channel or SATA), by application (Oracle, Exchange) or by a number of parameters including date of last access.

The FAST software dynamically monitors and relocates LUNs based on performance needs. It monitors I/O activity and identifies LUNs for relocation to another tier of storage – moving hot LUNs to a higher storage type and cold LUNs to a lower storage type.

FAST is implemented in Symmetrix V-Max environments through a wizard in the Symmetrix Management Console, that lets administrators create storage types, define policies and apply them to applications. The Ionix Ionix ControlCenter automatically discovers storage types, provides reporting and analysis and allows for capacity planning and chargeback.The software works in VMware ESX environments.

In the Clariion CX4 environment, FAST is implemented as a host-based command line interface that uses Navispher Analyzer to facilitate LUN migration. In Celerra environments, a combination of the Rainfinity File Management Appliance and Celerra APIs automates the movement of files across storage tiers.

FAST will be available on Symmetrix V-Max, Clariion CX4 and Celerra NS platforms this month.

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