Overland Storage releases its first iSCSI SAN

The S2000 array's management software can now remotely manage SAN and NAS systems

Overland Storage Inc., which has been struggling to regain financial stability and to execute on its product plans, today announced its first iSCSI disk array, the SnapServer SAN S2000.

The 2U (3.5-in high) rack mountable system comes in 12TB and 24TB capacities using serial ATA or serial-attached SCSI hard disk drives. The array can be expanded up to 120TB by using SnapServer E2000 disk expansion units.

The S2000 has a Windows-based interface for ease of use, and supports VMware, Microsoft Windows HyperV and Xen's hypervisor, according to Overland CEO Eric Kelly.

According to Kelly, Overland has completed a corporate management overhaul in the past two years. Earlier this month, the company reported it had lost more than $2.6 million last quarter. Though that's an improvement over a $3.7 million loss in the previous quarter, the company gained ground mostly through spending cuts and layoffs.

Kelly said the company has made a lot of progress over the past year, with revenue in the latest quarter up $1.1 million over the previous quarter to $20.4 million. That's still down $8.5 million year over year.

Overland has traditionally sold tape libraries, and more recently, a virtual tape library, the future of which is uncertain. The company expects to announce it is supporting the soon-to-be-released LTO-5 tape format, which will double tape drive capacity to 3.2 TB and offer data transfer rates of up to 360MB/sec.

Kelly was CEO of Snap Appliance when Adaptec Inc. bought it in 2004. Then, in 2008, Overland acquired the SnapServer network-attached storage (NAS) business from Adaptec, and Kelly moved it. In the two years following that acquisition, he said, the company wasn't sure what to do with the NAS products. Still searching for a vice president of engineering, Kelly said the company's focus will now be on deploying new disk subsystems. Kelly said the SnapServer SAN S2000 is part of that vision.

The new array supports data mirroring, point-in-time backup snapshots of storage volumes and asynchronous volume replication of data backups for onsite or offsite disaster recovery and business continuity. The S2000 is also certified for use with Symantec's Backup Exec 2010 software, which includes data deduplication.

The S2000's management application, SnapServer Manager, has been upgraded from previous offerings and now can manage all of Overland's currently-selling network-attached storage (NAS) arrays. SnapServer Manager provides remote management of systems through a single Web-based interface that ties systems together through event logs and e-mail alerts.

The system also comes with a type of thin provisioning that Overland dubbed Automatic Capacity Expansion. The tool automatically expands any given volume without IT intervention to fit application needs based on pre-determined policies. For example, a policy could be set to grow a volume by 30% when it reaches 80% capacity.

The array also comes with a tool called Simple Disk Volume Creation, which allows volumes to be created with a single step.

The S2000 is powered by Intel quad-core processor and has a peak data throughput rate of 550MB/sec. The system supports Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, or Novell NetWare.

The S2000 has a starting price of $14,995; the E2000 expansion units sell for $2,995 each.

Lucas Mearian covers storage, disaster recovery and business continuity, financial services infrastructure and health care IT for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed . His e-mail address is lmearian@computerworld.com.

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