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StorSimple: Acceptance, Innovation and Update 1 Release

Today I am excited to announce our first major software release for the StorSimple 8000 series since its launch last summer – StorSimple 8000 series Update 1.

Today I am excited to announce our first major software release for the StorSimple 8000 series since its launch last summer – StorSimple 8000 series Update 1.

In this new release we have included StorSimple deployments in Azure Government clouds and other cloud connectivity; an SDK support for Azure PowerShell and Zone Redundant Storage (ZRS) support; and data migration tools that ease the way for customers upgrading from 5000/7000 series to StorSimple 8000 series.

From a multi-cloud support perspective, StorSimple 8000 series is now generally available in Azure Government, which is a physical and network-isolated instance of Microsoft Azure committed to meeting rigorous compliance requirements and U.S. government policies.

Customers can run a commandlet to set the cloud platform on their StorSimple device to Azure Government, prior to registering their StorSimple device on the Azure Government Portal. By setting this option, all data, tiered backups and StorSimple Virtual Appliances will be stored in the Azure Government cloud, and managed through the Azure Government Portal. Setting this option also enables the FIPS mode of operation on the StorSimple device. I am also pleased to announce that the StorSimple 8000 series cryptographic modules have completed validation to the Federal Information Processing Standard – FIPS 140-2.

StorSimple 8000 series also now enables support for customers to define other cloud providers for their backend cloud storage, demonstrating our commitment to provide our customers with flexibility and choice in the cloud. Customers can use Amazon S3, Amazon S3 with RRS, and OpenStack-based clouds, such as HPCS (a cloud solution available from Hewlett-Packard that offers public, private, hybrid, and managed private clouds based on OpenStack technology), as the backend storage for their StorSimple solution. Management of StorSimple data, backups, and other management workflows will continue to be done from the Azure StorSimple service.

Our migration tools enable our customers to upgrade from a StorSimple 5000/7000 Series solution to a StorSimple 8000 Series solution while maintaining their data in-place. Migration is easily orchestrated using a set of Azure PowerShell commandlets. We are starting to add more automation to StorSimple and with the SDK for Azure PowerShell, administrators can use a set of StorSimple Azure PowerShell commands to automate management tasks. For a set of supported StorSimple commandlets, please visit the Azure StorSimple Cmdlets documentation webpage here.

Additionally, StorSimple will now also include support for the Azure Zone Redundant Storage (ZRS). This redundancy option helps keep data durable by storing an equivalent of three copies of data across multiple facilities.

Since the release of the StorSimple 8000 series, customers such as BDO, a financial services firm in Australia and Textron, an aerospace and defense manufacturer in the United States, have consistently noted positive business impact. Russ Phillips, Chief Technology Officer at BDO, recently stated, “Along with our VMware cost avoidance, we’re saving $500,000 [Australian dollars] in storage costs over three years, which is a large slice of our IT budget. That doesn’t include buying backup tapes and the $130,000 per year it costs just to keep tapes on a shelf, not knowing whether they’ve been corrupted. We’ve delivered three times as many projects in the last six months as we did in the two years before we adopted StorSimple hybrid cloud storage.” BDO has been a StorSimple customer for some time now and they continue to embrace our technology with deployment of StorSimple 8000 series solutions.

At Textron, with StorSimple, they have been able to significantly reduce storage costs and also move aging data to a more cost effective storage platform. “We’ve reduced storage costs by 80 percent, or $2.5 million, by moving into Microsoft Azure using StorSimple, which helped us meet our targeted IT budget reductions. We had data that was past its useful life taking up space on all our core storage platforms, and we wanted to move this older data to a cheaper storage solution. We’re happy to let Microsoft innovate and bring new datacenter service offerings to the table so that we can focus on running our business,” said Les Rowland, Chief Architect of Architecture at Textron. Further, Les is planning to test and use the StorSimple Virtual Appliance (SVA), which resides fully within Azure, for specific business use cases at Textron. We are happy to see customers like Textron embrace our innovations like Cloud Snapshots, Tiered Storage, and SVA and put them to use in ways that greatly help their businesses.

At Microsoft we continue to deliver innovative and important hybrid cloud storage solutions globally – and I am excited to see our customers embracing our new innovations. With StorSimple Update 1 we can now deliver even more cloud connectivity, automation, redundancy and data migration capabilities to our customers.

For a comprehensive set of our StorSimple case studies, across multiple industries, as well as white papers and other resources please visit www.microsoft.com/storsimple

Guru Pangal