Dell's PowerVault MD3 brings 180TB of storage to the rack

New enclosures from Dell offer high density and expandable storage to manufacturing, oil and gas, and healthcare industries. Smaller enclosures means a saving of power and cooling costs.

Dell has announced a new low-end drive enclosure that crams a lot of storage into a data storage capacity into a small space.

The new PowerVault MD3 series enclosures can hold up to a total of 60 2.5-inch or 3.5-inch 3TB hard drives, which allows a single 4U rack to hold 180TB of data. As storage needs grow, this can be increased up to 180 drives using a specially designed high-density expansion enclosure. This allows for a whopping 540TB of storage in a single box when using 3TB drives.

If you want something a little more modest, the MD3 also comes in a 12 disk (3.5-inch only) and 24 disk (2.5-inch only) enclosures, both of which can be expanded to 192 drives.

The data on these drives is accessed using Fibre Channel, iSCSI or SAS, and most of the range make use of controller software that offers Dynamic Disk Pools which, according to Dell, allows for recovery from dead hard drives much faster than using RAID.

For the traditionalists, RAID 0, 1, 5, 6 and 10 is available across the MD3 range of enclosures.

The strength -- and Dell's unique selling point -- of the PowerVault MD3 is the high data density. Smaller footprint also means a saving of power and cooling costs.

MD3 enclosures are managed by Dell's MD Storage Manager software, a client-based Java application that has been designed for ease of use irrespective of the admin's level of familiarity with storage systems.

The PowerVault MD3 is aimed at manufacturing, oil and gas, and healthcare industries, and is also well suited to those wanting a high-capacity video surveillance storage.

Image source: Dell.