To address the storage needs of small and mid-sized businesses, Iomega launched its StorCenter ix12-300 Rackmount NAS this week. Positioned toward businesses with 250 or fewer users, the ix12-300r appliance comes in a 2U form factor and provides features previously found only in higher-end or enterprise offerings.
According to the Iomega, the StorCenter ix12-300r is built for SMBs, as well as for remote workgroups, distributed departments and branch offices that require reliable and advanced storage capabilities - without the need for a dedicated IT staff. It can accommodate up to 12 hard-disk drives of 2TB each, providing 24TB of storage.
I took a closer look at its features and as you would expect of storage devices in this class, the ix12 sports multiple capabilities beyond its basic abilities to serve as a file-storage appliance supporting common protocols such as CIFS, NFS, AFP, FTP, HTTP/S, and webDAV.
For block-level data storage, the network storage device can also functions as a SAN or DAS via iSCSI, and as a backup to disk (B2D) backup target. Indeed, Iomega says the ix12-300r has been tested and certified with popular backup applications, which include Symantec Backup Exec, EMC Retrospect, and Acronis TrueImage and Backup and Recovery 10. In addition, the ix12 comes certified as a shared-storage device for virtualized environments such as Microsoft's Hyper-V in Windows Server 2008 R2, VMware's vSphere product line and Citrix XenServer.
The StorCenter ix12-300r is powered by an Intel Core2 Duo CPU with 2GB of main memory. Where the operating software is concerned, it uses the 64-bit version of EMC's LifeLine software, which is based on Linux and designed to provide cross-platform support across the major platforms such as Windows, Mac, Linux and UNIX-based computers. Four Gigabit Ethernet connections are in place to support its network connectivity, and can be bonded together to support high workloads. User-replaceable redundant hot-swap fans and power supplies complete its impressive feature list.
Based on information furnished by Iomega, multiple storage pools can be allocated on the StorCenter ix12-300r so it can support multiple roles in the SMB. This might entail assigning a storage pool to serve as a target for tape backup software and another pool to hold images used by virtualization software. The ability to expand online capacity also means that businesses can ramp it up without affecting operations.
A basic configuration for the StorCenter ix12-300r is available starting at $4,999, which comes with 4TB of capacity, which is can be expanded in four-drive increments up to 24TB. The appliance will be available in the United States from mid-May from CDW, or from other channel partners from mid-June on. Outside the U.S., the ix12-300r is available immediately from IT resellers via select distribution channels.