Active Storage’s ActiveSAN Provides Option for Xserve Users Left in the Lurch

Late in 2010, when Apple announced that it was discontinuing its line of Xserve servers, many in the storage community suddenly had a gaping hole in their workflow. At the NAB Show this week, Active Storage, which was launched in 2008 by a group of former Apple staffers, has unveiled a viable alternative that suits many of the preferences of former Xserve users.

ActiveSAN is a server-based metadata-controller appliance for Xsan and StorNext networks. It incorporates Active Storage product design and an Intel Nehalem server platform in 1RU.

“ActiveSAN looks very similar to Apple’s Xserve,” says Active Storage’s VP of Business Development Skip Levens. “When Apple announced they were ending the Xserve, we came out and said we are now going to build a highly powerful alternative. It is very familiar to Xsan users, and they will feel right at home. But now they can take advantage of all the extra power in Quantum’s StoreNext.”

Active Storage collaborated closely with Quantum, the manufacturer of StorNext, to address the needs of Xsan users moving from Apple Xserve metadata controllers. Migration strategies from Xserve-based Xsan networks to ActiveSAN include implementation of Access Control Lists (ACLs) for permission control and the use of extended attributes.

ActiveSAN operates on Linux OS and the Quantum StorNext SAN file system. It features an Active Storage-designed user interface and management suite.

Each appliance includes Linux OS; StorNext with high-availability, dual channel 8-GB Fibre Channel card; ActiveSAN Admin software; and ActiveStats software.

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