Microsoft Launches StorSimple Cloud Array, Free Update for 8000 Series

Microsoft (MSFT) is aiming to help customers simplify the cost and effort needed to manage their cloud storage solutions with the launch of its newStorSimple Cloud Array and a free update for its StorSimple 8000 Series.

The StorSimple Virtual Array is a software-only version of the StorSimple 8000 series, and allows customers to utilize hybrid cloud storage using a virtual machine. The software is compatible with both Microsoft Hyper-V and VMware hypervisors, and can be customized with either Network Attached Storage (NAS) or Storage Area Network (SAN) configurations, depending on a user’s specific business needs, according to the announcement.

StorSimple Virtual Array also includes integrated primary storage, data protection, archiving and disaster recovery abilities in a single unit, which Microsoft said makes it an ideal solution for small environments with little to no IT infrastructure in place. The StorSimple Manager manages the array so that admins can access all of the system’s features through a single console.  StorSimple Virtual Array is currently available in public preview globally, although a specific release date was not announced.

Microsoft also announced the general availability of StorSimple 8000 Series Update 2, which adds local volumes and the StorSimple Cloud Appliance for free. With Local volumes, Microsoft said users can designate their primary storage to stay in a local drive rather than having data tiered to the Azure cloud. The new update gives users the option to choose the company’s “high-performance Azure premium storage” as the local SSD storage tier, which is designed to run the most taxing analytics and dev/test environments, according to the announcement.

Finally, Microsoft has added protection and management recovery solutions for workloads with the addition of Azure site recovery, which allows users to simplify their disaster recovery strategy, according to Mike Schultz, general manager of Cloud and Platform Marketing at Microsoft.

Microsoft has already cited several companies that have had success with its StorSimple solutions, including Textron and Mazda. Hopefully the company’s latest product releases will help SMB and enterprise users alike sort and make sense of their cloud data repositories with greater ease so they can focus on driving innovation and creating new revenue streams.