Landmark Standards Announcement Marks Turning Point for Storage Industry

-- Third-party press release --

Phoenix, Ariz. - April 6, 2004 -- The Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) announced today that the first Storage Management Initiative Specification (SMI-S) conformant products have passed the stringent SNIA Conformance Testing Program (SNIA-CTP) for the specification. This marks the first time in the industry that customers can purchase products built using a tested and standardized management interface which will aid in the deployment and management of multi-vendor storage environments.

14 companies have more than 100 products that have passed the SNIA-CTP. These companies include Brocade, CNT (Nasdaq: CMNT), Dell, EMC Corporation (NYSE: EMC), Hitachi Data Systems, HP (NYSE: HPQ), IBM Corporation, LSI Logic Storage Systems, Inc. (subsidiary of LSI Logic Corporation: NYSE: LSI), McDATA (Nasdaq: MCDT), Network Appliance (Nasdaq: NTAP), QLogic Corporation (Nasdaq: QLGC), Silicon Graphics (NYSE: SGI), StorageTek® (Storage Technology Corp.: NYSE: STK), and Sun Microsystems (Nasdaq: SUNW).

"This is a monumental achievement for the industry and end users," said Ray Dunn, chairman of the SNIA Storage Management Forum. "For the first time ever, end users will be able to select storage management products with SMI-S conformant interfaces, which will help make their storage simpler to implement and manage. We believe SMI-S will ease the day-to-day routines of storage management and that the specification will be widely adopted in all new products by the end of 2005."

The management of conformant storage products by management applications will alleviate some of the pain points associated with IT storage operations. For example, SMI-S will ease the complexity of activities such as discovery and provisioning, as well as lay the foundation for policy management.

Marty LeFebvre, vice president, Technology Strategy at Nielsen Media Research and member of the SNIA End User Council Governing Board, also stated, "From this point forward, SMI-S conformance requirements will be an important element in our RFP's (request for proposals) for any new storage product purchases. Knowing the products we plan to purchase have SMI-S in them, coupled with the fact that the implementation has been independently tested, provides us with a level of assurance that the product will perform to our needs and deliver new efficiencies in our storage management solutions."

The SMI-S v1.0.2 was developed and tested by more than a hundred of the industry's top engineers at the SNIA Technology Center, the industry's largest vendor-neutral operation of multi-vendor storage hardware and software. Through a relationship with the Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF), both the Common Information Model (CIM) and Web Based Enterprise Management (WBEM) provide key components of the architecture for SMI-S. Additionally, through the Storage Management Initiative's complete development value-chain, the end-user community has assisted in defining the features addressed by the specification. This work will continue in the future as additional requirements are defined and added to the specification.

Further solidifying the broad adoption of SMI-S v1.0.2, the specification has entered the InterNational Committee for Information Technology Standards (INCITS) Fast Track process. The process, reserved for specifications that have already passed rigorous technical review, is expected to result in SMI-S becoming an American National Standards Institute (ANSI) standard in the summer of 2004.

The SNIA-CTP ensures that all vendor product implementations and interpretations conform to a specification - in this case, SMI-S v1.0.2. End users seeking to ensure a vendor's claim of conformance to SNIA standards should look for officially badged and tested products.

About the SNIA-CTP

The SNIA- Conformance Test Program (CTP) is the testing process to validate that implementations of a specification conform to the SNIA standard. The testing process is a critical building block to make multivendor storage environments simpler to implement and easier to manage. The SNIA-CTP will evolve as SMI-S matures and other specifications emerge and need to be tested. End users looking to ensure that a vendor's SMI-S implementation conforms to SNIA standards should look for officially badged and tested products, or they can check the www.SNIA.org site for specific details.

About the Storage Management Initiative (SMI)

The SNIA Storage Management Initiative (SMI) is creating and driving to broad adoption, a highly functional and interoperable management interface for multi-vendor storage networking products. By enabling and streamlining the integration of large and diverse multi-vendor storage networks, the initiative is able to expand the overall market for storage networking technology.

About the SNIA

The Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA) is a not-for-profit organization, made up of more than 300 companies and individuals spanning virtually the entire storage industry. SNIA members share a common goal, to advance the adoption of storage networks as complete and trusted solutions. To this end, the SNIA is uniquely committed to delivering standards, education and services that will propel open storage networking solutions into the broader market. For information, visit the SNIA Web site at http://www.snia.org.

Press Contacts:
Karen Phillips
Storage Networking Industry Association
(407) 323-2571
karen@snia.com


Dan La Russo
Ogilvy Public Relations
(303) 634-2632
dan.larusso@ogilvypr.com