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XRAID ES 4 and 16 TB Storage for Mac

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 15 comments

Active Storage said that its new XRAID ES for the Mac OS X will come in both 4 TB and 16 TB versions. However, both solutions may require a monthly payment plan.

Active Storage said that its new XRAID ES for the Mac OS X will come in both 4 TB and 16 TB versions. However, both solutions may require a monthly payment plan.

Why is that? The 4 TB version of Active Storage's XRAID ES will cost consumers a "ground breaking" $6,999, or as the company described it, .67 per GB. The 16 TB version actually breaks into the five digit price range (after taxes), costing the end-user a staggering $9,999 USD. That much cash could buy a car or serve as a down payment for a house; Active Storage even calls the XRAID ES pricetag "affordable." However, for corporations and educational institutions with Mac environments, "affordable" very well may be the case.

Based upon the original XRAID, the new ES version was designed to be easy to install, easy to use, and geared for "business critical applications" that require a high level of data integrity. According to Active Storage, the ES is ideal for non-Xsan based Mac OS X Server applications, and could even serve as the ultimate storage solution for file-sharing, database services, web hosting, iChat and more. The ES also offers a battery back up 72-hour support option as well to protect critical data during a power outage.

"Active Storage continues to innovate in the storage space with these two new products", says Bob Wilson, President of Solutioneering LLC. "We see the Active Storage XRAID™ ES 4TB model combined with Solutioneering's Data:enRoute ILM software as a real breakthrough for smaller businesses wanting to step up to professional grade data management - and a way to finally stop juggling sneaker-net external drives and slow, consumer-grade NAS devices."

As disclosed in the specs, the ES provides redundant power (a backup power source for switch operation), triple-redundant cooling, redundant Fibre Channel connections, and up to 744 MB/s in a RAID 5 configuration. Whether consumers use the 4 TB or 16 TB versions, the ES is easily upgradable in the field by adding a second RAID controller. Upgrading the base ES configuration will not only provide increased throughput, but true Active/Active redundant operation, and the ability to add expansion systems for increased capacity.

So what exactly does Active/Active mean? In many RAID scenarios, one drive stays active while the other remains on standby. The active drive takes on all or most of the functions while the standby drive waits for the active drive to fail; this method is called Active/Standby redundancy. However, an Active/Active scenario means that all RAID drives accept traffic, and when one drive fails, another drive will take over the failed unit's functions. With all drives staying active, traffic (throughput) speeds are faster; adding an additional RAID and set of drives simply increases the traffic speed overall.

Based on the specs, the 4 TB version more than likely contains four 1 TB drives, however Active Storage said that this setup can be expanded to 16 TB while remaining in the same enclosure. The 16 TB version, on the other hand, will need a secondary enclosure when expanding to 32 TB, with each enclosure consisting of 16 1 TB drives.

"For us, the Active Storage XRAID re-opens exciting possibilities with new potential customers as well as many prospects that liked the old Apple Xserve RAID but were waiting for a new and improved model” said Richard Bauer, President and CEO of Cloverleaf Communications. “Together we will provide virtualization across heterogeneous SAN & NAS; Enterprise level Data-Protection & Disaster Recovery; Non-disruptive any-to-any Data Migration; Virtually unlimited scalability supporting up to 12PB capacity with up to 255TB per volume, 192,000 snapshots, unlimited number of storage tiers all for a fraction of price of other similar solutions."

For more information on purchasing the XRAID ES, head here for phone and email information. Active Storage products are sold by selected Value Added Resellers Worldwide.


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  • 10 Hide
    svenolsen , April 9, 2009 10:11 PM
    the_one111What would you be using RAID for on a mac anyway?Pirated songs?I mean, media, yeah, but... really... 16 TB?


    C'mon, comments like that make us PC folk seem ignorant. We may not like Apple itself, but there are lots of film and production companies that do high end NLE work on Macs. I use Windows everyday and even I can acknowledge that.
Other Comments
  • -1 Hide
    the_one111 , April 9, 2009 9:07 PM
    What would you be using RAID for on a mac anyway?

    Pirated songs?

    I mean, media, yeah, but... really... 16 TB?
  • 0 Hide
    zuesacuatl , April 9, 2009 9:18 PM
    We use raid here for our Macs since the school district purchases Macs for student use we needed a raid solution to protect data.
  • 4 Hide
    SneakySnake , April 9, 2009 9:22 PM
    I own a Mac Pro and why wouldn't I just buy 4x 1.5 TB HDD's and then buy a raid card. That'll cost me a one time fee of about $1200 ($700 for the raid card, + about $130 each for the HDD's).

    Heck, I could even get a quad channel 4 GB Fiber Channel card as well and then another Mac Pro with a Fiber Channel card and I'd be paying about the same as they're asking
  • 3 Hide
    sublifer , April 9, 2009 9:27 PM
    **cough cough** Apple tax **cough cough**
  • -3 Hide
    grieve , April 9, 2009 9:31 PM
    sublifer**cough cough** Apple tax **cough cough**

    nice :) 
  • 4 Hide
    joex444 , April 9, 2009 9:57 PM
    Its funny. On this article, the google ad beneath it:

    "12TB High-End NAS $2999".

    Yeah, I mean, come on. 16TB is tricky because you need either two 8 channel RAID cards that can work together, or a single 16 channel card. That's expensive. The 16 drives themselves would be about $1600. But the 4TB is cheap as hell. I can run a 4TB RAID5 array for $500 (5x1TB drives) + $330 (HighPoint 4320 PCI-e 8channel RAID5 card with Intel IOP).

    The thing I found extremely idiotic is why to quadruple the capacity is only an increase of 43% in the price department.

    Oh, and the Price / GB is not 67c. Its $1.71/GB for the 4TB and $0.61 for the 16TB.
  • 10 Hide
    svenolsen , April 9, 2009 10:11 PM
    the_one111What would you be using RAID for on a mac anyway?Pirated songs?I mean, media, yeah, but... really... 16 TB?


    C'mon, comments like that make us PC folk seem ignorant. We may not like Apple itself, but there are lots of film and production companies that do high end NLE work on Macs. I use Windows everyday and even I can acknowledge that.
  • 2 Hide
    Shadow703793 , April 9, 2009 10:30 PM
    Note: RAID will not prevent data loss from software "accidents". It will only help with a possible loss related to hardware failure. Don't you dare tell me Mac's are immune to being hacked (see PWN2OWN), infected with virus,etc.
  • 0 Hide
    the_one111 , April 9, 2009 10:31 PM
    svenolsenC'mon, comments like that make us PC folk seem ignorant. We may not like Apple itself, but there are lots of film and production companies that do high end NLE work on Macs. I use Windows everyday and even I can acknowledge that.

    Lots? Last time I checked apple had only 10% of the market share...
  • -1 Hide
    seboj , April 10, 2009 2:51 AM
    Quote:
    for the Mac OS X


    What a waste. :p 
  • 2 Hide
    wira020 , April 10, 2009 9:55 AM
    mac always acting like the high class version of computer... so let them play the price game among themselves.. thank god i'm sane!
  • 3 Hide
    marokero , April 10, 2009 2:05 PM
    There's always been a lot of hate for Apple here... Last I checked G-Technology wasn't any cheaper at 16TB with their G-Speed XL model, costing $12K. There are options out there, that work for both mac and pc equally well, and are more affordable.
  • -3 Hide
    dark_lord69 , April 10, 2009 2:45 PM
    "However, both solutions may require a monthly payment plan."
    "The 16 TB version actually breaks into the five digit price range (after taxes), costing the end-user a staggering $9,999 USD."

    Damn, I just saw a 2 GB drive yesterday for $250
    so $250 + $250 = $500 for 4GB
    OK, so it's not NEARLY as fast but comon you really think it's worth it to have a bit more speed. Really you can setup a killer RAID 0 mirrored for redundancy and STILL spend less. Corporations have no idea how to save money.
  • -3 Hide
    mamw93 , April 11, 2009 3:08 AM
    Yet another reason why MACS SUCK!!!!
  • 0 Hide
    WyomingKnott , April 14, 2009 2:47 PM
    Ooh Ooh - where can I get a house for $10,000 down?

    (I must be in a bad mood today - this is the second news item that I have snarked.)