Red Hat Buys into Storage

Hoping to take advantage of the growing popularity of Linux in storage
networks, Red Hat announced plans to acquire storage infrastructure
software firm Sistina Software.

“With enterprise-class storage management capabilities in place, Linux
operating environments look more trustworthy than ever,” said John Webster,
senior analyst and founder of Data Mobility Group. In February, Webster wrote a paper predicting that Linux-based storage would begin to make inroads into data centers and would equate to a $2 billion market opportunity.

Sistina figured prominently in that paper, described by Webster as “one of the companies in the vanguard of the Linux storage movement.”

Red Hat said the acquisition, combined with its Open Source Architecture
strategy, “will provide enterprise Linux customers a path to virtualization
and vendor-independent storage solutions.”

With speed and the capability to support big block sizes while delivering cost
savings, Linux’s popularity for storage solutions has been growing.

Sistina bills its storage infrastructure software as a foundation for
building, integrating and deploying data-sharing storage solutions across
the enterprise.

The company’s products include the following:

  • Sistina GFS, a Linux-based cluster file
    system

  • Logical Volume Manager, which Sistina describes as “a major building block in Linux” that’s designed to
    enable enterprise-level disk volume management by grouping arbitrary
    physical disks into virtual disk volumes

  • Sistina GFS for Oracle9i RAC,
    which is designed to help reduce the complexity of implementing and maintaining an
    Oracle9i RAC system.

“The acquisition of the Sistina technology and world-class development team,
in close collaboration with the open source community, will greatly
accelerate the availability and advancement of open source storage solutions
for the enterprise,” Paul Cormier, Red Hat’s executive vice president of engineering, said in a
statement.

Sistina’s engineering team, consisting of industry experts in clustering and
virtualization, will augment Red Hat’s development efforts. The integrated
team will work to make all of Sistina’s technologies open source and
available as a part of a subscription in the first half of 2004, Red Hat
said.

The $31 million stock-based acquisition is expected to be completed in early
January.

Shares of Red Hat were up 16 percent in early trading Friday on
the company’s move into storage and news of its strong
earnings
.

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