The convergence theme here in beautiful Boston, Massachusetts is steaming hot! and Dell just announced what I believe is an interesting industry first: a full-fledged, 14 disk drives, dual controller Equallogic array that fits a double width blade slot.

The new Equallogic PS-M4110 is a 10 Gbit workhorse available in several disk configurations including a particularly interesting hybrid configuration with 5 SSDs and 9 SAS drives that provides 7.2TB raw capacity in a way that seems to fit perfectly a VDI environment, the new converged story that Dell is pushing combines the trusty M1000e blade enclosure with the new PS-M4110 plus the recently announced Force10 MXL blade interconnect switch that brings Force 10 IP inside the blade chassis with future-proof 40Gb interconnect on the outside, in a package that strongly shows how Dell is serious about using its own IP in creating converged solutions for the SMB/SME market.

Also, Dell is announcing the new Equallogic 6.0 code, available in the next quarter timeframe, that will enhance the product with new features such as synchronous replication and snapshot space borrowing

Let’s talk about Compellent

But at DSF we’re not just talking about Equallogic, Compellent is also game for new product announcements, starting with the new SC8000 controller (a.k.a. Series 50), a brand new 2U controller based on the successful Poweredge 12G platform, that will leverage the new Storage Center 6.0 64-bit code to provide large quantities of cache (up to 128GB in a dual controller scenario) and faster connectivity options like 16Gb FC.

SAS Disk enclosures are getting a lifting too, they will not be sourced from Xyratex anymore but instead will be developed in house, SC200 and SC220 can respectively carry 12 x 3,5″ disk drives or 24 x 2,5″ disk drives or SSDs in a 2U package.

Not just Block’s fun

A 2U form factor is also used by the new NAS appliance, purposely built by Dell combining their server expertise and Exanet IP. The new Exanet platform is based on a custom developed Poweredge server, two controllers in 2U, a complete HA configuration with cache mirroring built into it thus eliminating the need for an external UPS like the previous iteration of the FS7500.

The new NAS family based on the Exanet IP, which is rebranded as Fluid File System is the following:

  • FS8600 – Compellent product up to four HA pairs per single system.
  • FS7600 – EqualLogic product, up to two HA pairs per group.
  • NX3600 – Powervault product, single HA pair.

Everything at Dell is now developed under Fresh Air guidelines, Warmer data centers will lower cooling costs and energy requirements, which is a win-win situation for both the environment and the business.

We’re not done yet at Dell Storage Forum, but this list of things is surely exciting and enough to keep Dell busy for the next few months.

DISCLAIMER: Dell invited me to Dell Storage Forum, and as such was responsible for my airfare and hotel accommodations. Dell did not ask for, nor did they receive any consideration for this article.