By Dave Raffo | Mar 30, 2010
Dell Inc. today extended its storage lineup, expanding its OEM deal with EMC Corp. by launching Dell-branded versions of EMC's Celerra unified storage and Data Domain backup devices while detailing plans for an object storage platform.
Dell has been reselling Celerra and Data Domain devices, but will now sell most of those models under its own brand. The Dell DX Object Storage Solution platform is based on Dell hardware integrated with software from a slew of partners.
EMC and Dell have co-branded Clariion midrange SAN systems since 2001. With these rollouts, Dell continues its storage strategy of partnering with EMC while also selling its own — and sometimes competitive — storage. Despite its long-standing Clariion partnership, for instance, Dell acquired iSCSI SAN vendor EqualLogic two years ago and has become the iSCSI market leader.
Dell moves into enterprise NAS
Dell will sell EMC Celerra systems as the Dell/EMC NS-120, NS-480 and NS-960 models. The systems handle NAS, Fibre Channel (FC) and iSCSi storage.
While Dell already sells Windows-based NAS, this is its first step into enterprise file-based systems. Dell senior product manager Brett Roscoe said EMC's adding support for block-based storage to the Celerra was a driver of that decision.
"We are recognizing a trend in the industry to drive pools of storage into one consolidated environment," Roscoe said. "We've traditionally been a block storage vendor, but we talked to EMC some time ago about developing an NS system for Dell."
Andrew Reichman, a senior analyst at Cambridge, Mass.-based Forrester Research, said Celerra lets Dell scale into larger storage accounts for customers looking for Ethernet storage than EqualLogic does.
"Having NAS and iSCSI natively in the same box, as Celerra gives you, is a great option," Reichman said. "EqualLogic is good for small, single-box deployments, but it doesn't scale as big as some companies want to, so that's where EMC comes in."