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IT executives at financial services, health-care, and insurance companies have to figure out how to archive data but keep it within reach. Storing data on hard disks lets companies keep it within reach, but the cost can be prohibitive. That's why most companies store the majority of their data on archiving tape storage that costs around 2 cents per megabyte and will always cost less than hard-disk storage. But companies still have the problem of providing immediate access to the data.
Tape library vendor Advanced Digital Information Corp. on Monday will unveil StorNext 2.1, software that could help customers manage a storage network that has hard-disk and tape storage connected. ADIC will support Storage Technology Corp. tape libraries and multiple server operating systems, including IBM's AIX, Sun's Solaris and Microsoft's Windows. StorNext 2.1 primarily gives customers quality-of-service software based on preset policies so they can choose applications to receive the appropriate levels of bandwidth to access data from Fibre Channel hard disks on the storage network. Later on, StorNext helps customers move data between hard disk and tape storage depending on its relevance and the last time it was modified.
Meta Group analyst Carl Greiner says ADIC still has to figure out how to sell this software into major accounts, and should consider a partner like Hewlett-Packard for distribution. "But ADIC could help companies manage their data based on government regulations more cost-effectively," he says. "We can't just keep throwing people at the problem because we don't have the people to throw."