News | August 29, 2007

Powerfile Introduces Ultra Energy Efficient Active Archive Appliance Enterprise Edition Data Storage System

August 30, 2007 — PowerFile, an innovator in archive appliances for permanent storage of digital content and assets, announced the introduction of the Active Archive Appliance (A3) Enterprise Edition, the industry’s most energy efficient system for online data storage.
PowerFile’s third generation appliance incorporates industry-standard Blu-ray Disc technology from Panasonic to increase density by a factor of six to an enterprise-class 70TB in a 42U rack enclosure. By introducing a new approach to keeping fixed content data — such as documents, images and media files — accessible on the network and active, PowerFile is able to offer a fully configured 120TB appliance that consumes less than 240W of power .
Prior to the recent introduction of Blu-ray, standard optical storage technologies had not kept pace with the densities of disk- and tape-based alternatives, making it impossible for optical-based systems to meet the storage requirements of large enterprises with hundreds of terabytes of data. Blu-ray changes this by offering 50GB of storage on a single DVD-sized disc with a technology roadmap that promises 200GB per disc. This order of magnitude increase in density is what enables PowerFile to offer up to 70TB of storage in a standard 42U rack enclosure and up to 120TB per appliance.
The A3 Enterprise Edition continues with PowerFile’s tradition of utilizing industry standards to deliver solutions where customers own their data — not their storage vendor. Through strict adherence to standard network access protocols, standard media formats and standard file structures, the A3 Enterprise Edition eliminates the risk of vendor lock-in, a major concern with leading fixed-content solutions such as Content Addressable Storage (CAS) that restrict data access to custom Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) and store data in proprietary formats.
With storage consuming almost 40 percent of data center power, keeping information online and accessible is becoming an increasingly difficult challenge for large organizations. PowerFile’s unique approach of dynamically caching most frequently accessed data and preserving archives in a virtualized, massive array of Blu-ray media, allows the A3 Enterprise Edition to provide the online accessibility of disk-based alternatives while consuming less than 5 percent of the power. The A3 Enterprise Edition consumes less than 20 percent of the power required for leading Massive Array of Idle Disks (MAID) solutions that have been specifically designed to reduce energy consumption.
“Chief information officers at Fortune 500 organizations are managing under-utilized data centers due to power constraints and ever-expanding storage requirements, creating an immediate need for more energy efficient storage technologies,” said Kirk Dunn, CEO of PowerFile. “Large organizations such as Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center are starting to realize that the cost to power and cool infrequently accessed information on spinning disk can quickly exceed the acquisition cost of the equipment. The energy efficiency of the A3 Enterprise Edition is so compelling that it has been approved for customer incentives by some of the largest utility providers including Pacific Gas and Electric Company of California.”
“IT professionals are coming to recognize the enormous storage capacity of Blu-ray media, and the reliability of our drives make them a natural fit for enterprise archiving applications,” said Robin Sweeten, group manager, strategic marketing for the Panasonic Industrial Company. “Panasonic is pleased to be a part of PowerFile’s highly innovative archiving solution which answers the critical storage needs of large organizations with an environmentally conscious, energy-efficient design.”
In addition to extensive qualifications of “archive-grade” Write Once, Read Many (WORM) media that protects important information from accidental erasure, unauthorized modification, data corruption and viruses, the company says PowerFile has developed patented and patent-pending technologies that give the A3 Enterprise Edition industry-leading data integrity that is 1,000 times more reliable than enterprise tape or disk-based RAID.
The A3 Enterprise Edition Base System provides 10TB of archive capacity and 2TB of dynamic cache for a cost of about $41,900, with 10TB Expansion Kits available for about $27,900.

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