It's about time — sort of — Part II: Sepaton's OST

it’s no secret that I’m a fan of OST.  So any of the vendors that I work with that don’t support it get to hear me say on a regular basis that they need to support it ASAP.  So I read with excitement that Sepaton demonstrated support for OST at Symantec Vision.

There are two reasons why I’m saying “It’s about time — sort of.”  The first reason is that they chose to implement OST over IP, instead of over Fibre Channel (the way FalconStor did).  They probably did it this way because OST is easier to implement over IP than Fibre Channel (or so I’ve heard).  But if they’re going to do it over IP, that means they’re going to have to upgrade their heads to support 10 GbE (it would be pointless at this point with just GbE).  What that means is that existing customers who want to upgrade to OST are going to have to upgrade their heads.  Will they be able to just add a 10 GbE card?  I hope so?  Will they need to fully replace the head altogether?  I hope not.  I just got done giving Data Domain a hard time about their “just replace the head” philosophy, so if that’s Sepaton’s answer to existing customers, it sucks just as much.

OST over Fibre Channel would have been much cooler.  Hey, Sepaton, you just gave Data Domain a hard time because their GDA won’t support LAN-free backup of NDMP or RMAN.  Right back atcha.

The second reason is Sepaton’s track record of completely missing their shipping dates.  Dedupe took at least a year longer than promised.  Their TSM support also took a lot longer to be released than NetBackup support, although it was promised in the next quarter.  As recently as a year ago, other customers were promised NetWorker support, only to wait much longer than they were told.  (It’s out now, but one customer reported it took a year longer than promised.)  What does this have to do with their Symantec Vision demo, you ask?  They demo’d the product but said that it would be available in the second half of 2010.  That gives them almost eight months, and eight months is a long time.

Please, Sepaton, prove me wrong.  Release OST support in GA by the end of 2010.  I will make a youtube video of me eating my hat (cause eating a crow would just be gross).  I promise.

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Written by W. Curtis Preston (@wcpreston). For those of you unfamiliar with my work, I've specialized in backup & recovery since 1993. I've written the O'Reilly books on backup and have worked with a number of native and commercial tools. I am now Chief Technical Evangelist at Druva, the leading provider of cloud-based data protection and data management tools for endpoints, infrastructure, and cloud applications. These posts reflect my own opinion and are not necessarily the opinion of my employer.