ADIC has released a new version of StorNext, policy-based data management software for Information Lifecycle Management (ILM). StorNext version 2.4 features interoperability with an expanded range of storage systems from vendors including Apple, HP and EMC.

BeCrypt has announced availability of Connect Protect, a security product giving the protection against the threat of malicious use of USB-connected devices including USB memory drive keys, mass storage drives, printers, music players such as the iPod and smart mobile phones. (See data theft article.)

Breece Hill, the tape autoloader and disk-to-disk backup supplier, has announced the acquisition of Avail Solutions. Its main product, Integrity, has file level backup, migration, replication and archive capabilities that Breece Hill wants as it moves from its SMB base up into larger enterprises.

Breece Hill is also producing an 'archive appliance' with Front Porch Digital. The latter contributes DIVArchive archive management application to Breece Hill's iStoRA 4000 disk-to-disk-to tape platform. The market is small and medium broadcasters needing to have digital digital archives

Decru has expanded its data security products by introducing a Client Security Module (DCS) for PCs and servers networked together. The company said that it worked with Decru's DataFort storage security appliances to enforce policies and protect end-point machines from threats including insider breaches, viruses, worms, misconfiguration, and hacker tools. There are application whitelists, cryptographic authentication, granular access controls, and hardware-based integrity checks to ensure that only authorised users and applications can access sensitive data. Security administrators can define access policies based on user, application, machine, and time of day, and customise this for each 'Cryptainer storage vault.'

Exabyte knocks DDS
Exabyte has introduced three capacity levels for its VXA-2 tape cartridge, calling them Packet X Tapes: X6 with 20GB (all capacities native), X10 with 40GB and X23 with 80GB. The target is the fifth generation DDS format, DAT72, with its 36GB native capacity and 3MB/sec data rate. VXA offers up to nearly 6MB/s.

Isis Innovation, a University of Oxford organisation, has announced Oxford Researchers have developed transistors that are sensitive to the quantum mechanical spin of the electrons travelling through them, making them sensitive to the local magnetic field strength. Manufacturers of computer hard disc drives want to increase the density of data stored on their discs. As the size of a region encoding a single bit has shrunk so the difficulty of reading this effectively has increased. Giant Magnetoresistive stacks are currently used in the read heads of such disc drives, where the change in resistance of the stack with magnetic field, once highly amplified, allows data readout. So, the ability to produce a clean magnetically sensitive transistor to replace the complicated stack is very attractive, as it would replace the noisy amplification stages currently needed.

SanDisk is busy announcing things. It said that it had quadrupled the capacity of its SanDisk Ultra II lflash memory cards - the top end SanDisk Ultra II Memory Stick PRO and SD cards now boast 4GB and 2GB of capacity respectively. It has also speeded some cards up. The CompactFlash and SD cards have minimum write and read speeds of 20 MB/s and the Memory Stick PRO has minimum write and read speeds of 18 MB/s.

Seagate said that it has launched an application called SAM - Storage Application Model - that helps customers chose disk drives. Seagate says SAM is quick and easy to use and is vendor-independent, giving impartial, independent advice on drive types without reference to particular disc drive manufacturers. It can be downloaded free at www.storageanswers.com/en/pr and is available in English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Polish, Russian and Turkish. However it does repositioned all the shortcuts on a Windows screen and multisync monitor settings needed changing.

Seagate has also announced the SAS Knowledge Centre, a grandly-named online resource providing information about the transition to Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) technology. Seagate worked with Adaptec, Intel, and LSI Logic to develop the content.

Sony is set to introduce a cost-reduced AIT-E format at Storage Expo. Sony claims, "the AIT-E format is significantly more reliable than the similarly priced DDS-3 technology. Delivering 20GB of native capacity and a 6MB/s native transfer rate it doubles the capacity and performance in a model costing less than 500 Euros." There will be three AIT-E models available from October onwards: StorStation AITi50aS (internal, ATAPI interface), AITi50S (internal, SCSI) and AITe50S (external, SCSI).

Sony tells us it is gaining Hitachi Data Systems support - HDS UK is going to resell Sony's PetaSite high-end tape libraries.

RAID Developments
Xyratex said that it is developing a RAID-Offload Engine - ROE - which is a chip carrying out RAID functions. It is supposedly capable of halving the price of mid-range RAID systems. Co-incidentally Silicon Image introduced its SV2000 storage appliance, providing the first implementation of its 'SteelVine' architecture. It will be available in December for an MSRP of $3,295 with.

Presenting a standard SATA interface, the SV2000 system-on-a-chip implementation of the SteelVine architecture provides users with RAID functions that don't need special O/S drivers or RAID software to load or configure. The interface to a PC, PVR or SMB server looks like a SATA disk drive, even though a full RAID disk array sits behind the chip.

Western Digital has entered the notebook drive market with 5,400rpm Scorpio 2.5 inch drives offering 40, 60 and 80GB capacities with EIDE interfaces. The company said that it will be cooler and quieter than competing drives. The market for notebook drives is said to be growing at a 22.2 percent CAGR by TrendFOCUS so there should be room in there for Western Digital.