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Bureau Of Meteorology Chooses StorageTek's BladeStore For Extensive ATA-Based Disk Pilot

  • 16 October, 2003 11:19

<p>~ BladeStore Selected Because of Superior Architecture, Failover Support, Cost-Effectiveness and StorageTek's Reputation for Reliability ~</p>
<p>SYDNEY Australia, October 16, 2003 -- Australia's Commonwealth Bureau of Meteorology has chosen BladeStore ATA-based disk subsystems from StorageTek® (Storage Technology Corp., NYSE:STK), the storage services and solutions expert, for an extensive pilot of ATA-based disk storage.</p>
<p>The Bureau will evaluate which applications can be migrated to StorageTek's ATA-based disk subsystems -- offering higher storage capacity and density at a lower cost and performance than conventional enterprise disk arrays. StorageTek's BladeStore was selected from competitive bids tendered by four ATA-based disk vendors.</p>
<p>On completion of a successful ATA-based disk pilot, the Bureau plans to dramatically expand the volume of data immediately accessible on disk -- improving the quantity and quality of climate research -- without increasing storage budgets.</p>
<p>"StorageTek's BladeStore offers multiples of online data compared with what was the norm," said Phil Tannenbaum, Manager, High Performance Computing and Communications Centre, at the Bureau of Meteorology. "Four or five terabytes of capacity for the same cost is more valuable to us than one terabyte, even with slower performance.</p>
<p>"By finding a more cost-effective solution we could keep data online longer and derive more value from it," said Mr. Tannenbaum. "The more data our researchers can use, the better the results of their models, and the faster they can get their projects finished."</p>
<p>The Bureau has purchased an 8-terabyte, 10-blade BladeStore disk subsystem from StorageTek. This complements 10 terabytes of existing high-performance disk on its storage area network (SAN) and 2.5 terabytes of disk on an existing supercomputer.</p>
<p>StorageTek's BladeStore was chosen over competitors because of StorageTek's reputation for reliability and the cost-effectiveness of the proposed solution. Other benefits were BladeStore's superior architecture, giving higher storage densities, and full support for traditional enterprise-class disk functionality, including failover support.</p>
<p>"We were looking at the reliability of the technology so we chose a vendor known for good reliable products and who has good onsite support," said Mr Tannenbaum. "Failover support was key. You need to be able to replace a failed disk without losing any data. With BladeStore there is RAID protection and a hot spare blade so you can restore data while you keep working."</p>
<p>Researchers at the Bureau are currently using BladeStore storage with applications running on midrange HP servers, and shortly plan to do the same with the NEC supercomputer. At this stage the only application that the Bureau has ruled ATA disk unsuitable for is high speed scratch disk for the supercomputer. Other applications to be evaluated include online repositories, data caches between disk and tape, scratch space for server-based applications, and mass storage for publicly accessible Web servers.</p>
<p>"What we have done with BladeStore is buy it as a test bed to see what it is good for," said Mr Tannenbaum. "This includes things it was not specifically designed for. We expect there will be things it does well and things it doesn't do so well."</p>
<p>The Bureau also maintains an extensive tape library, with 120 terabytes of Nearline(r) storage available via StorageTek automated tape libraries, and 120 terabytes kept as off-site copies. With the data-intensive nature of meteorological forecasting and research, data volumes are currently growing at around 50% per year.</p>
<p>"It would be valuable to have more data online that is currently on tape," said Mr Tannenbaum. "If they were the same price we would use the BladeStore, although you will never replace tape for off-site storage."</p>
StorageTek (NYSE:STK), a $US2 billion worldwide company with headquarters in Louisville, Colo., delivers a broad range of storage solutions that are easy to manage, integrate well with existing infrastructures and allow universal access to data across servers, media types and networks. StorageTek provides practical and safe storage solutions in disk, networking, services, tape and tape automation. For more information, see</p>
<p>TRADEMARKS: StorageTek and Nearline are registered trademarks of Storage Technology Corp. All other products or company names mentioned are used for identification purposes only, and may be trademarks of their respective owners.</p>
Chris Bowes
Bowes Communications
+61 (0)2 9387 2332</p>

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