Just a few months ago, Sun Microsystems revealed the availability of its new Unified Storage System – the Sun Storage 7000 family.

Described as the world’s first Open Storage Appliance, Sun claims the Storage 7000 family is the "biggest thing to happen to storage in decades", writes Samantha Sai for storage-biz-news.

Quite a brag – though the product’s creativity and innovation speaks volumes for Sun’s group of engineers.

The Storage 7000 family has three different versions – the 7110, 7210, and 7410 – which have an overall capacity ranging from 2 Tbytes to 288 Tbytes.

However, the 7410 offers a collected configuration (for advanced accessibility) and is typically aimed for enterprise class configurations, whereas the 7110 and 7210 are better designed for less significant fittings.

The Sun Storage Unified system can run both NAS and SAN solutions, and Sun pulls seriously on its well-respected ZFS (Zettabyte File System) in the Storage 7000 family.

Unified storage space rivals EMC Corp, NetApp Inc and IBM Corp have so far focused their attention on IT environments that have a strong NAS presence – but they would very much like to manage SAN as well.

Sun, meanwhile, has put a major emphasis on facilitating the Storage 7000 family to provide universal function storage requirements.
The major thrust of Sun’s message for the Storage 7000 is that it makes life a lot easier for storage administrators.

Sun caims the installations process only takes a few minutes, but persists with key courses of action such as thin provisioning, a function which is embedded in ZFS (as logical storage pools can be enlarged or diminished transparently as long as there is sufficient physical storage to carry them).

Another feature of the Storage 7000 technology that is of benefit to administration is the concept of DTrace, a collection of analysis that permits real-time system diagnostics.

Engineers at Sun feel that DTrace can significantly advance storage system troubleshooting to a level never seen before in the industry.

Another aspect of the Sun Storage 7000 is its performance.

The company appropriately calls it Hybrid Storage Pools, which shares DRAM, read, and write optimized flash devices that work in working in combination with hard disc drives.

Sun maintains that the innovative use of SSD technology can help flash memory combine with disc technology resulting in a mega performance that is very cost effective.

While all that is great, Sun Microsystems continues to show a financial downturn having lost more than USD $1.7 billion in the first quarter of 2009 that ended in Sept 2008.

With the ongoing financial crises and global recession, the question remains – how well does the Storage 7000 system fit in with other Sun storage products and how does the company plan to market and sell them in a cost efficient method?

Only time will tell.

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