Tegile Systems Emerges With Hybrid SSD Array – Joins Starboard In Enterprise Storage Fray

Tegile Systems, which came into existence on Tuesday, has announced the release of their Zebi hybrid SSD storage array.

According to Tegile, SSD Acceleration will allow Zebi to offer up to 5 times the performance of conventional storage arrays.

The array will also utilize in-line compression and de-duplication, allowing businesses to save on storage space, enabling them to make the most of their enterprise storage dollar.

The secret sauce that makes the whole thing work is what Tegile is calling its Metadata Accelerated Storage System (MASS). MASS works by managing metadata on SSDs, allowing the high capacity SAS drives to benefit from faster reads and writes.

The new product can be configured for either a SAN or NAS usage model, and will support NFS and CIFS if used as a NAS. Zebi will also provide fibre channel and iSCSI interfaces. The Array will be offered in 10TB, 20TB, 40TB and 90 TB configurations, and will be available in two models, SS1100 and SS2100, the main difference between the two being storage capacity and SMP support.

Zebi can be purchased immediately, with pricing starting at $16,000 for the SS1100.

One intriguing thing about this news is that Tegile Systems was launched only one day after Starboard Storage, and in a very similar fashion. With what were quite literally back to back introductions, I can’t help but wonder if these two firms have any kind of insider info when comes to enterprise storage. With companies like EMC and HP having recent product releases as well, it seems that the enterprise storage market really has caught fire, putting to rest any notions of saturation in this segment.

Indeed, this situation seems to mirror what’s going on in SSD industry, with a multitude of companies wanting to take advantage of a market that is developing at breakneck speeds. I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw at least a couple more enterprise storage related product announcements in the days and weeks to come.


Another aspect that stands out with this release is the development of what looks to be a very innovative method of using SSDs to accelerate conventional storage. To my knowledge, something like MASS has never been tried before on its own, (though a similar system can, in many cases, be emulated using tiering) and it appears to provide a performance boost comparable to the gains achieved through more established methods, such as caching. Certainly, it will be interesting to see how this method behaves in various scenarios relative to it’s more proven counterparts.

In any event, it seems that this approach, like tiering, would mostly be useful for large enterprise environments, and likely wouldn’t scale well, in most cases, for client use. That is, of course, fine, though it would be nice to see some of the enterprise firms enter the lower end parts the the market; even with the SanDisk/Diskeeper announcement, there’s plenty of room for competition in the consumer SSD acceleration field.

With any luck, consumer SSD caching is another segment set to ignite as companies look for innovative ways to manipulate your ‘hot’ data. With the outlook of ultrabooks being what it is, it seems that new entries need not worry about getting burned. In fact, the really ‘cool’ thing about this is the benefit to consumers, who would no doubt love to see a more eclectic SSD caching market. I, for one, can’t wait.

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