3Par is continuing its push to have its thin provisioning technology to be more widely accepted with the launch of four new products, all incorporating a new manifestation of thin technology, a virtualiation mapping engine for space reclamation called Thin Engine.

Geoff Hough ,senior director for business strategy at 3Par said that the thinking behind the technology was to reclaim storage space that hadn't been used. "We did some research earlier this year in conjunction with Glasshouse," he said, "and found that on average, storage capacity is 25 percent written, that's 75 percent underused, although we make the more conservative claim that we can save 60 percent of storage capacity."

There are four new products, Thin Conversion, Thin Reclamation, Thin Persistance and Thin Reclamation for Veritas Storage Foundation.

Thin conversion is basically the ability to take a legacy SAN storage product and to convert that from fat storage to thin storage, said Hough.

Hough described Thin Persistence as a sort of insurance policy. "Some IT professionals don't know or understand their own applications. Some applications, such Exchange and SQLServer, are thin -friendly but not all applications are. If you are using a product that causes storage to bloat then Thin Persistence gives you that space back. The product will see the zeroes, map that space and give it back to you. And it has no effect on the rest of the system - your applications are none the wiser.

It helps managers feel confident about going down the thin provisioning route," he said.

The Thin Reclamation product came about as a result of work that 3Par and Veritas did together on developing an API that enabled Veritas Storage Foundation to reclaim storage space so that they stay thin. Although the API was developed for Veritas, 3Par has taken the technology and released it as a product in its own right.

Hough said the company was benefiting from the growing interest in thin technology as enterprises look to reduce spend on servers and storage, as well as keeping power costs low. "We're the only storage who wants to sell fewer disks," he said.

The new products are all orderable now. The Thin Conversion product is no extra charge, Thin Persistance and Thin Reclamation both start at $700(£430) a system.