EMC unveils disk library with deduplication for mainframes

VTL offers 2GB/sec or 7.2TB/hr. total throughput

EMC today announced its next generation mainframe virtual tape library (VTL), a disk drive-based system that emulates tape storage and can include both EMC's VNX storage array and Data Domain deduplication appliance offerings.

Designed for use in the IBM enterprise mainframe z/OS market, the new EMC DLm6000 VTL encompasses both backup and archive storage.

EMC acquired the tape emulation technology for the new VTL when it purchased Bus-Tech last year.

EMC had been reselling Bus-Tech's Mainframe Data Library VTL since 2008 as the EMC Disk Library for mainframe (DLm). The company also collaborated with EMC earlier this year to deliver data deduplication for the Disk Library archive product for mainframes.

Like EMC's previous models, the DLm6000 supports FICON (Fiber Connectivity) channels and ESCON (Enterprise Systems Connection).

Unlike previous iterations, the new VTL can be used for hierarchal storage management, backup and archive, all under one management console.

"From a manageability perspective, it allows you to integrate seamlessly with IBM zSeries File System console," said Rob Emsley, a senior director of product marketing for EMC. "And, the benefit of dedupe is that it will really pay for itself based on the backup deduplication ratio.

"We're seeing the move from tape to disk accelerating within the mainframe environment in the same way it did in the open systems world over the past few years," Emsley added.

DLm6000 can use the EMC VNX7500 storage array and EMC's Data Domain DD890 for its backend storage, matching different workloads to the most appropriate storage. The storage system can also be configured with either two VNX backend arrays or two Data Domain appliances.

The VTL also has more granular management of data replication to offsite disaster recovery sites since it offers the ability to select single files for replication and recovery, Emsley said.

The system, which will be generally available next month, scales to 5.7 petabytes of capacity and has a maximum data throughput rate of 2GB/sec or 7.2TB/hr.

"We're two times faster than any other VTLs in the market," Emsley said. "Performance really matters, not only for backup and recovery, but more importantly for HSM migrations and for data archiving."

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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