Friday, September 30, 2011

Zerowait turned the model upside down

Over the last two weeks I was traveling around the USA visiting customers in NV, TX, AZ, and CO. It is a lot of fun to visit with customers and hear them tell me how Zerowait has made their storage management and maintenance tasks easier and more affordable. As regular readers know, Zerowait has specialized in the niche of NetApp legacy support for almost ten years and we have been working with NetApp equipment since 1998. Over the years we have built up a large and loyal customer base, and now our NetApp support customers are adding our SimplStor product line to their Storage infrastructure on an ever increasing basis.

Last week I was meeting with a customer in the Phoenix, AZ area and he told me that their storage budget for 2012 already includes Zerowait's legacy support for their NetApp equipment and a SimplStor for tape replacement.

I was in Denver, Colorado talking to a customer earlier this week and he said that "Zerowait has turned the storage model upside down." We laughed about that comment and I asked him to explain why he said that. From our customer's point of view Zerowait is a service company and the introduction of a hardware platform by a service company is unique. I doubt if it is unique, but it is unusual.

SimplStor is the culmination of conversations with our customers who wanted a long term, reliable, storage solution that did not lock them into the proprietary vendor's upgrade cycle. By using high reliability proven commercially available components and best of breed open source software we created a storage platform that answers the needs of our international customers.

Before the rush at SEGWhether I was talking to customers on an individual basis or in groups at the SEG show in San Antonio, our customers were enthusiastic about our company, services and products.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Delaware's Governor visits Zerowait!

Governor Markell Visits Zerowait
Governor Markell Visits Zerowait

Delaware's Governor Markell visited Zerowait's HQ today to learn more about our NetApp Storage support , technology, and our fast growing SimplStor product line. We discussed the amount of international business we do and how we are growing our business even in these difficult Economic times through our focus on our international market niche. The Governor's team was interested in our technology and services and in particular how Zerowait can help the big banks that are located in Delaware save money on their storage infrastructure as their storage requirements continue to grow.

Governor Markell's team highlighted how Delaware has a great location midway between DC and New York and they were impressed how a company started in Delaware has grown into an international business, and liked the fact that Zerowait's Delaware built products were being used in the Australian VFX business.

It was great having the Governor visit our facility today.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Storage Industry Consolidation Continues

Storage Industry Consolidation Continues

I read an article today that BluArc was purchased by HDS. We have several customers in the Media and entertainment businesses that have some BluArc in their storage environments.

“TOKYO | Thu Sep 8, 2011 1:30am EDT

(Reuters) – Hitachi Ltd (6501.T) said on Thursday it has bought struggling California-based network storage company BlueArc Corp in an all-cash transaction after a five-year OEM partnership, in the latest such move to take advantage of the yen’s strength.

Hitachi did not reveal the cost of the acquisition, but Japan’s Asahi newspaper said it was about $500-600 million.”

It will be interesting to see what Hitachi does with the product line and the support of the product over the next few years. The acquisition highlights another reason why our customers who worked with us on the development of Zerowait’s SimplStor product line were emphatic in their desire that we build and support an open source non proprietary Operating System and File System as primary features and benefits of SimplStor. Our customers understand that the expense and maintenance of Proprietary Operating Systems and File Systems adds to their costs. What seems like a great feature in a proprietary software or firmware can become a liability when the code is no longer supported.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Storage support growth

I saw an interesting article today written by Chris Mellor in which he speculates on why NetApp’s market share may be declining.

Firstly, NetApp has slipped from second to third place in the rankings compared to the previous quarter. It had a 13.5 per cent share then but has only 12.8 per cent now; whereas IBM, with whom it has changed places, has grown from a 12.2 per cent share to a 13.7 per cent one.

It is not a significant change as yet, but as the article explains it is an interesting one. Coincidentally, Zerowait is experiencing a significant increase in our NetApp support service and support contracts and many of our new customers are turning away from NetApp support and upgrades because they don’t see the value add in NetApp’s forced upgrades anymore.

As the overall macro economy continues to wobble, we see more and more customers looking to conserve cash. Zerowait provides two easy ways for NetApp’s customers to conserve their IT budget dollars.

First Zerowait’s NetApp support provides our customers a simple way to get continued value out of their aging high availability storage assets. We are still supporting NetApp systems that are over 10 years old and they are still serving data reliably.

Second – Zerowait’s SimplStor product line is being embraced by more and more of our NetApp customers as a complementary and fiscally responsible way to store lower tier data. Many of our customers are keeping tier one data on their NetApp infrastructure but putting tier two and beyond on our SimplStor products.

If you are looking for an alternative to NetApp’s high priced storage products, licenses, and support why not give one of our offices a call to discuss your storage issues and infrastructure. Zerowait’s reliable and affordable alternative solutions have been embraced by companies around the world.

As an added bonus for a limited time we are offering our Exception Reporter for free to help you manage your Filers.