Infortrend launches small RAID drives

The storage specialist claims the new drive is the world's first to offer RAID in a 2.5-inch form factor

The RAID storage supplier Infortrend claims to have launched the world's first disk drive in the small 2.5-inch format to come with the controller in the unit.

The EonStor drives will come in two basic types, the B12S-R/G1030 SAS-to-SAS and the B12F-R/G1430 Fibre Channel-to-SAS arrays, and will have the disk controller for RAID storage mounted within the drive chassis, the company said.

The drives were launched on Monday at Storage Networking World Europe 2007 in Frankfurt. A spokesman for Infortrend told "There are other drives out there in this form factor [2.5 inch], but they have to use external controllers. This is the first with the controller in the chassis."

Because of the small 2.5-inch form factor, the drives are 70 percent smaller than conventional 3.5-inch drives, the company said, which helps them to deliver faster performance. By having the drives in the chassis and not mounted externally, the distance the data has to travel is shortened, improving performance.

No pricing for the drives has yet been released, the spokesman said.

Both the B12F and B12S come with a SAS expansion port that supports Infortrend's new B12S-J1000 JBOD using SFF SAS drives, and the drives are also compatible with the company's recently released S12S-J1000 or S16S-J1000 JBODs that house standard 3.5-inch drives.

The 3.5-inch drive JBODs support SATA drives so users can reduce drive costs and build tiered storage applications, the company said. They can then use high-performance SAS drives for mission-critical applications, and cost-effective SATA drives for nearline backup, distribution or archives.