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Emulex, Sun sign OEM agreement

Emulex has signed a non-exclusive OEM (original equipment manufacturer) agreement with Sun to produce host bus adapters (HBAs) for Sun’s operating systems and servers.

Emulex has signed a non-exclusive OEM (original equipment manufacturer) agreement with Sun to produce host bus adapters (HBAs) for Sun’s operating systems and servers.

An HBA is a card inside a server that allows it to attach to other storage area networks (SANs).

Under the terms of the agreement, Sun is now branding, selling and supporting Fibre Channel HBAs from Emulex within the latest Solaris 10 operating system and legacy Solaris environments. It will enable Sun to sell and support Emulex SAN connectivity solutions to end users who have standardised their data centres on the Emulex family of LightPulse HBAs.

“Our agreement with Emulex to include their high-performance SAN connectivity technology into our portfolio of end-to-end system and storage solutions ensures we are delivering the tools our customers need to manage and operate mission-critical applications,” said James Whitemore, vice president of marketing for network storage at Sun.

The branded Sun StorEdge HBAs, known as models SG-XPCI1FC-EMI and SG-XPCI2FC-EM1, will be based on Emulex’s 2Gbytes/second LP10000 family of single and dual channel HBAs.

While Emulex already have a large installed base of HBAs among Solaris OS users, Jim McCluney, Emulex president and chief operating officer, said the partnership would allow the two companies to jointly meet the needs of Sun’s large end user customer base.

“Teaming with Sun to deliver interoperable supported storage infrastructure solutions provides a tremendous opportunity for Emulex to expand its breadth of Solaris users beyond the current installed base. More importantly, this agreement allows our end user customers, such as large financial institutions, to continue deploying the Emulex SAN connectivity solutions they have standardised on throughout their data centre environments,” McCluney explained.

Aside from introducing Sun-branded HBA models, the agreement resolves a previous issue with running Emulex HBAs in a Solaris environment: the lack of native support for Sun’s Leadville driver. The two companies will address this by extending Sun’s StorEdge SAN Foundation software to integrate the Emulex-based Fibre Channel Architecture driver within Solaris 10, Solaris 9 and Solaris 8. By doing so, systems administrators who had to resort to a fair amount of manual configuration will be able to reconfigure their storage — in order to integrate the Leadville architecture — without having to reboot.

“This is exactly what Sun/Emulex customers have been asking for — a completely supported solution. Now Sun customers have all the power of the Leadville architecture for their Emulex HBAs. It’s a big win-win,” said Steve Duplessie, founder and senior analyst Enterprise Strategy Group.

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