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Nine data storage companies to watch

Flash memory, virtualization and cloud computing targeted by innovative new storage companies

By , Network World
August 10, 2009 12:09 AM ET

Page 4 of 5

Funding: $10 million from Greylock Partners

Who's using the product: Vocera, Scout Labs, Savvion and others


Founded: June 2006

Headquarters: Ongar, United Kingdom

What it offers: GridBank, software that automatically moves data from primary storage to less expensive secondary storage or third-party cloud platforms, assisting the process of long-term data preservation. The software also can quickly find and retrieve files in e-discovery or recovery situations, according to Tarmin. A new partnership allows Tarmin's software to integrate with the cloud storage platform offered by vendor Nirvanix.

How company got its start: Founder and CEO Shahbaz Ali, who was previously responsible for MasterCard's worldwide archiving and content retention strategies, wanted to build software that expanded the usefulness of archiving, secondary storage and data management products he had been using.

Why it's worth watching: Tarmin can help customers archive data that is unchanging and infrequently accessed, which accounts for the "overwhelming majority of corporate data," says Enterprise Strategy Group analyst Lauren Whitehouse. The start-up's software can also help companies comply with various document retention requirements, she says.

Tarmin's "grid-based architecture enables capacity and performance scalability, as well as cost-effectiveness, and its intelligent storage software allows organizations to manage the full lifecycle of their information and automate all storage management processes," Whitehouse says.

How company got its name: Tarmin was a minor Star Trek character who was a historian trained in "telepathic memory retrieval."

Funding: $4.6 million

Who's using the product: Tarmin's technology is aimed at small businesses and large enterprises, and users include the City of Safford, Ariz.

WhipTail Founded: December 2008

Headquarters: Summit, N.J.

What it offers: WhipTail's eponymous appliances provide solid-state disks in capacities of 1.5TB to 6TB, with speeds exceeding 100,000 input/output operations per second.

How company got its start: WhipTail is a spinoff of TheAdmins, a reseller that partners with Cisco, Microsoft, VMware and other big IT vendors. The companies share a common management team.

Why it's worth watching: Similar to SandForce, WhipTail uses multi-level cell flash chips normally used in consumer devices, but employs special software to optimize the write cycle. WhipTail says this allows the company to keep prices down and ensure that disks last a minimum of seven years. "They're using multi-level cell and a very smart technique for managing it," says analyst Jim Bagley of Storage Strategies Now.

How company got its name: After whiptail lizards, which are sometimes called racerunners because of their ability to run about 17 miles per hour.

CEO: Ed Rebholz, who is also president and CEO of reseller TheAdmins.

Funding: Privately funded

Who's using the product: Fareportal, Raritan Bay Medical Center and several other mid- to large-size enterprises

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