IBM Delivers New Storage Options for i
October 14, 2008 Alex Woodie
Among last week’s IBM Power announcements was the debut of the System Storage 7214 Tape and DVD Enclosure Express, a new product that allows users to externally connect one or two DAT, LTO, or DVD drives to Power Systems servers via SAS connections. The 7214 Express is designed for use where there is no room for additional storage in the server’s internal bays, and where space is limited or non-existent in rack-mounted servers.
The 7214 Express attaches to Power Systems servers’ external storage through an external serial attached SCSI (SAS) adapter, which offers fast (3 GB per second) data transfer speeds without the additional cabling of standard SCSI connections.
The device provides an enclosure for up to two DAT72 36 GB tape drives, up to two DAT160 80 GB tape drives, up to two half-high LTO Ultrium 4 800 GB tape drives, or up to two DVD-RAM optical drives. Users can mix and match among the different drive options, but they must start with at least one when ordering the 7214 Express.
The 7214 Express fits industry-standard 19-inch racks, and takes up 1U of rack space. It includes an integrated card control sensor that tracks drive function and notifies users of maintenance requirements.
The 7214 works with i5/OS V5R4 (incorrectly called i 5.4 in IBM’s announcement) and i 6.1 (formerly known as i5/OS V6R1), in addition to AIX 5L V5.3 and 6.1, SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 10 SP1 or later, and Red Hat Enterprise Linux for POWER V4.6, or later.
Users must have a PCI-X DDR Dual-x4 External SAS Controller Adapter installed before attaching the 7214 Express to a Power System server; attaching the device through the server’s integrated SAS adapter is not recommended by IBM.
The 7214 Express 1U2 is available now, at a cost of $1,795 (not including drives or cabling). For more information, visit www-03.ibm.com/systems/storage/tape/7214/browse.html.