Q: What products do you sell?
A: We carefully select storage products and companies for whom we will act as a reseller. We are currently representing Scale Computing and their TrueCluster™ scalable and low cost data storage system. Scale’s storage system requires no migration as new nodes are added to increase storage capabilities and provides a superior file management system for instant data retrieval.
We also represent ExaGrid and their disk-based solution. The ExaGrid system is based on standard servers that are shipped along with ExaGrid’s unique software to deliver a complete turnkey solution for disk-based backup. The ExaGrid system is rack-mountable and uses standard components, including Intel quad-core Xeon processors, enterprise SATA drives, and Gigabit Ethernet connection(s).
Q: How does Scale Computing and ExaGrid complement each other?
A: Though Scale Computing and ExaGrid use different grid computing paradigms for their implementations, both are superior to other product lines. Each allows for true scalability in linear fashion as more nodes are virtualized into their respective systems. Scale Computing and ExaGrid serve different aspects of the information technology infrastructure; therefore, they can co-exist naturally fulfilling iSCSI/CIFS/NFS/SAMBA data storage needs with Scale Computing’s ICS architecture storage nodes while having it hardened to ExaGrid’s disk-based appliance.
Q: What is cloud computing?
A: Cloud computing is a style of computing in which scalable (utilizing only what you need) and often virtualized resources are provided as a service over the Internet. Users need not have knowledge of, expertise in, or control over the technology infrastructure in the "cloud" that supports them. A simple example of cloud computing is having an e-mail account with providers like Yahoo, Gmail, or Hotmail. As a user of these e-mail service providers, you are using their software, hardware (servers), and platforms to send and receive e-mail via the Internet.
Q: What is virtualization?
A: The word virtualization comes from VM or Virtual Machine. A virtual machine (computer or server) is created through software or partitioning of a hard drive so that it can perform the functions of 2 or more computers or servers. For instance if you use a Mac computer you can create a virtual PC on your Mac to utilize software designed for a PC. In companies, it had been common to have a server for each operating system or purpose. The company might have a server for the Windows operating system and one for a Linux based system. In addition it likely would also have a Microsoft Exchange server just for e-mail. By creating a VM for Linux and a VM for Microsoft Exchange, a single server is all that is needed to meet the company needs. The use of virtualization reduces operating costs significantly not only in necessary hardware but also in the number of people needed to administer the servers.
Q: Why is tape backup outdated?
A: Tape as a backup solution can be very burdensome and extremely time consuming. It also takes a monumental amount of manual monitoring in order to successfully perform routine backups. Equipment needs to be maintained, cleaned, loaded, changed and labelled correctly for backups to run smoothly. Once a backup is done a number of problems can arise. For instance, tapes may be blank or become jammed in the tape reader, files could be corrupt or missing, tapes may be damaged due to dirty heads, humidity or temperature, or tapes may have been mislabelled, lost or stolen.
Q: What is disk-based backup?
A: Disk-based backup uses a hard drive, rather than another type of storage medium. A disk-based backup solution typically writes the same data to a file on a disk volume as it would write to a tape drive. Therefore, when a backup to disk operation is completed, a single file the size of the backup will exist on disk that contains all the backed-up files.
Q: What does deduplication mean and why is it important?
A: Deduplication is similar to data compression. Incorporating a data deduplication solution into your data storage system will eliminate redundant data, decrease storage requirements and improve bandwidth success. Deduplication also lowers storage costs because fewer system disks are needed, and it also decreases backup and recovery times since there will be less data on the system to transfer.
Q: What does ICS mean?
A: ICS means Intelligent Clustered Storage. Scale Computing delivers this architecture. ICS utilizes software to create global namespace across all nodes in the cluster, which allows this one cluster to achieve unlimited scalability. ICS is unique to other storage systems and offers the following features: pay as you grow, no single point of failure, up to 75 percent reduction in administration time, consolidation of SAN and NAS and moderately priced for even greater redundancies.
Q: What does NAS mean?
A: NAS means Network Attached Storage. NAS is a data storage device that uses special mechanisms to connect directly to the network medium. These mechanisms are given a specific IP address and then can be retrieved by the client via the server, which acts as the gateway to the desired data, or in some instances clients can access these devices directly without a mediator. Network Attached Storage’s main benefit is that it is an environment that has many servers that manage many different operating systems, and the data storage, security, management and data backup can be centralized.
Q: What does SAN mean?
A: SAN means Storage Area Network. SAN is a network of storage disks that connect multiple servers to a centralized location of disk storage. Storage Area Networks decrease the amount of time spent on system administration. SAN allows a company to treat its storage as a single resource, which allows for simplified maintenance and routine backups.
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