LenovoEMC Extends Iomega Storage a LifeLine

LenovoEMC today announced a first for the company. The storage systems maker, which last year embarked on a big name change from Iomega to its current brand, is releasing its LifeLine 4.0 software without accompanying hardware to extend the capabilities and value of its customers’ StorCenter network storage products.

In the history of Iomega — and LenovoEMC’s short stint thus far — LifeLine 4.0 is the “first software announcement ever,” explains Jay Krone, managing director of product marketing for LenovoEMC.

EMC, Iomega’s parent company, announced last year that it was entering into a joint venture with Lenovo, the Chinese PC maker, to form a new company called LenovoEMC. Iomega’s tech would anchor its product portfolio, and for the time being, keep the decades-old brand alive on many of its storage devices.

A StorCenter Software Upgrade

Today, the company is taking a break from tradition by delivering a software-only update for its StorCenter ix and px series network storage systems.

LifeLine 4.0 brings features typically associated with enterprise-grade storage platforms to small and midsized businesses (SMBs). Chief among them are the storage operating system’s new snapshot capabilities. “Snapshots are an enterprise-expected capability” that can extend powerful data protection functionality to small businesses, explains Krone.

Version 4.0 of the software offers point-in-time backups of storage volumes, data restoration capabilities and the power to take snapshots even while the system is writing to disk. It also supports Volume Shadow Copy, “the secret sauce” for backups in Windows environments, Krone says.

Another big new feature is flash caching. While Iomega’s systems have long supported solid-state drives (SSDs), the new storage OS now “watches I/O patterns,” says Krone and automatically moves data into an “SSD cache for higher performance.”

Finally, the company’s new Integrated Virtualization Technology (IVX) allows the StorCenter px12-300r and px12-450r rackmount arrays to run multiple virtual machines (VMs), helping small businesses squeeze even more value from their IT investments.

Krone reveals that for many customers, “the px12 is the biggest computer on the premises.” With IVX, they can now run “up to four virtual machines” (Windows and Linux) and cut down on the cost of deploying and maintaining new servers. Now businesses can use their StorCenter px12-300r and px12-450r to “run LifeLine, Windows Print Server, and Linux for Web services,” he adds.

Small businesses can expect to accomplish more with less, says LenovoEMC president and general manager Eric Arcese. “LenovoEMC LifeLine 4.0 improves upon our previous version of LifeLine, bringing advanced computing options and capabilities to our network storage products that organizations of all sizes can benefit from,” he states in company remarks.

No longer should small businesses want for flexible, enterprise-class storage management capabilities. “Businesses today need rock-solid, dependable, affordable and innovative network storage, and this new version of LifeLine brings those attributes together with an intuitive menu of choices that can be tailored to the needs of any organization.  Existing and new customers will benefit from the latest technology embedded in the new version of LifeLine,” boasts Arcese.

LifeLine 4.0 will be available next week as a free download for owners of Iomega ix and px storage systems.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Internetnews.com, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

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