EMC eyes cloudscape with massive product push

At EMC World, the company has introduced 42 software and hardware products for storage, data management and virtualisation, saying there is no point in taking a 'one size fits all' approach to cloud needs

EMC bet its future on there being no 'one size fits all' approach to cloud computing or tackling big data, as it mounted its largest ever product launch on Monday.

The 42 new products, announced at EMC World conference in Las Vegas, span EMC's entire storage, backup, virtualisation and data management portfolio.

The message from the two men at the top of EMC, chief executive Joe Tucci and chief operating officer Pat Gelsinger, is that it is preparing for a future where organisations store and manage data in an increasing number of ways.

"Any time you have a message out there that this is the best way to do storage, or anything in IT, it's downright foolish," said Tucci at the event.

For example, the company discussed its plans for new ways that customers could tier data between fast but expensive storage such as flash drives, and slower but cheaper media like Sata drives.

The company announced one of its three new VMAX storage arrays, the new VMAX 40K array, will allow users to swap HDDs for faster flash or SAS drives to boost I/O rates. The three new VMAX arrays also support Federated Tiered Storage, that simplifies the storage of data across different media.

Also unveiled was a new entry-level device in EMC's VNX unified storage system, the VNXe 3150, which incorporates flash storage and simplifies management in virtualised environments.

Flash plans

EMC briefly detailed its plans following its recent acquisition of XtremIO, the the Israeli storage architecture firm that designs all-flash storage arrays, with Gelsinger saying that the first product resulting from the deal will be released next year.

EMC first entered the flash storage market in 2008 when it integrated it into its enterprise storage arrays; since then, the company has ramped up that business while developing systems and software to fill out its portfolio. Last year, EMC shipped more than 24 petabytes of flash drive capacity to customers.

EMC also already offers VFCache, its PCIe flash card for servers which it says gives businesses a low-latency, high-throughput halfway house for data, as it travels between the processor and the storage layer.

Tucci also reaffirmed EMC's commitment to supporting hybrid clouds, where companies make use of both private and public cloud services.

"There's this big debate going on over whether there will be private or public clouds, and I believe it's a stupid question," he said.

"We firmly believe that there will be hundreds of thousands of private clouds and thousands of big companies will stand up public clouds. So it's a world of both, the power of 'and' and not 'or'."

There's this big debate going on over whether there will be private or public clouds, and I believe it's a stupid question.

– Joe Tucci, EMC

At EMC World, the company announced it will combine its VPLEX virtual storage with EMC RecoverPoint data protection to offer customers the ability to replicate data between two datacentres while a third site offers disaster protection. The company said that the model is suited to organisations that want a reliable way to share data in a hybrid cloud environment.

It also revealed enhancements to its Atmos private cloud infrastructure-as-a-service platform that will make it easier and quicker to move data to and from Atmos-powered clouds.

Tucci said that the wide variety of product released on Monday is the result of the company investing billions a year on acquiring new technology, split roughly equally between in-house R&D and the purchase of other businesses.

"We are a company that spends more than $4.5bn per year of revenue on technology, so we are heart and soul a technology company," he said. 


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