EMC doubles density of Clariion, Celerra storage systems

New 2TB SATA drives consume 60% less power than earlier models

EMC Corp. today announced a new higher-density configuration of its Clariion CX4 midrange storage array and its Celerra network-attached storage (NAS) gateway device, offering twice the capacity of previous systems in half the floor space.

Compared with their predecessors, the new midrange storage offerings can house twice the number of hard disk drives in half the frame space. They also support lower-power 2TB Serial ATA drives, whereas earlier systems supported 1TB drives.

The higher-density Clariion arrays can be configured with 2TB SATA drives as well as high-performance enterprise solid-state drives (SSD). The Clariion arrays use power efficiency technology, such as disk spin-down and EMC's fully automated storage tiering (FAST), to allow for automated data migration between internal disks. Disk spin-down puts drives into sleep mode when they're not in use, enabling the system to use 65% less power than ones with always-on SATA drives, according to Ruya Atac-Barrett, director of Clariion product marketing at EMC.

The Celerra NAS gateway uses the Clariion frame as its back end.

Atac-Barrett said the new 2TB 5,400-rpm SATA drives also consume 60% less power than the previous 1TB 7,200-rpm SATA drives.

A Clariion array can support up to 480 drives, or 960TB of raw capacity. A previous Clariion array would have taken up six data center floor tiles; the new model takes up only three.

The higher density was made possible because EMC redesigned the frame, making it five inches deeper, so two disk drive trays now fit front to back.

Clariion's new higher-density disk drive racks.
Clariion's new higher-density disk drive racks.

"It's a fourfold increase in what you can do in a single system's capacity, or a twofold capacity increase in half the footprint," Atac-Barrett said.

A complete Clariion array, ready to run with standard 1TB SATA drives, starts at around $85,000.

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

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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