Acer has launched a Storage Area Networking (SAN) offering it claims is cheap enough and scaleable enough for Australian SMB needs.
Bert Noah, enterprise group systems manager at Acer, told delegates at a Terrapinn StorageWorld conference in Sydney today, Monday 13 October, that the vendor was launching 1 Terabyte, modular SAN that would enable SMBs to build a scaleable enterprise-style storage system.
'SMBs can't spend $250,000 on a 1TB SAN and wait for the return. SMBs want to spend $30,000 and add to it as they go along,' he said. 'They need a SAN but whenever anyone talks about SAN, they talk about enterprise SAN.'
Most vendors' SAN portfolios, Noah claimed, required large, up-front investments and had to be ripped out and replaced as customer needs grew - putting SAN technology out of most SMBs' reach. Acer's 'SAN for the masses' offered a starter Acer Storage Centre module for about $25,990, he said.
Noah said SAN had great functionality but products on the market tended to be geared towards companies needing around 20 Terabytes of storage. Meanwhile, SMBs were suffering from large redundancies in their data and backup needs, he added.
'You're not going to see SMBs running 20 Terabytes but they want to grow their [storage] infrastructure as they go on,' he said.
Noah admitted that Acer had kept the price down by only offering support for Windows, NetWare and Linux operating systems, instead of Unix, AIX, mainframe or other enterprise-grade technologies.
'Because they're too expensive, you have to have millions of dollars sitting there to support them,' he said.
Noah claimed Acer's new SAN hardware was compatible with SCSI, iSCSI, fibre channel and serial ATA technologies. NAS and SAN could be integrated on one platform, using a centralised management interface across all connections, on an Acer Storage Centre, he said.
'Tape devices grow and have a huge cost. But you can add fibre channel-type drives to this and build on that, build on RAID, add more disks, SCSI, serial ATA - any interconnect type,' he said. 'Anything you want.'