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Nishan Systems switches featured in Microsoft demonstration at Storage Network World

Nishan Systems’ IP storage switch included in Microsoft Corporation’s interoperability lab demonstration to highlight benefits of internet storage name service (iSNS) for enterprise-class IP storage area networks (SANs)

Storage Networking World, Scottsdale, AZ - 14th April 2003 - Nishan Systems (, the world's first supplier of native IP storage solutions, today demonstrated its IPS 4300 IP storage switch together with Microsoft’s Windows Server 2003 software, providing device discovery capabilities within IP storage environments using the Internet Storage Name Service (iSNS) protocol. Showcased at Storage Network World Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona today, the iSNS demonstration supports Microsoft’s iSCSI (Internet SCSI) Software Initiator and iSNS client with Nishan’s iSNS server developed by Nishan for its IP storage switch product line.

The multi-vendor demonstration highlights the ability of iSNS to automatically recognise and attach storage resources to iSCSI clients within a storage area network (SAN). As storage devices are inserted into or removed from the storage network, the iSNS server within the Nishan switch updates the Microsoft iSNS client through a state change notification (SCN) message. This facilitates device discovery within IP-based storage networks and minimises the amount of manual administration required for adds, moves and changes within an IP SAN.

“We are pleased to be working with Nishan Systems on this demonstration of the benefits of iSCSI and iSNS, illustrating how our mutual customers can scale to enterprise-class IP storage networks,” said Zane Adam, director of product management and marketing, Enterprise Storage Division, Microsoft Corp. “iSCSI is gaining momentum and we are working together with our industry partners to make enterprise storage operations more accessible to a broader spectrum of customers.”

The iSNS protocol facilitates the discovery and authorised connectivity between servers and storage targets in an IP-based storage network. Any mix of iSCSI and Fibre Channel devices can be automatically registered with an iSNS server. The server in turn enables only authorised connections between designated hosts and storage arrays. An iSNS server may also facilitate security in an IP SAN by acting as a repository for encryption keys. The iSNS protocol is designed to support thousands of devices in an IP storage network for enterprise-class storage applications. The protocol is being defined for standardisation by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).

“Nishan is delighted to participate with Microsoft in this demonstration of iSNS technology,” said Tom Clark, Director of Technical Marketing, Nishan Systems. “This is a significant proof-point of the viability of IP SANs for enterprise networks. Our customers will be able to deploy hundreds or thousands of servers in a single storage network and benefit from automated discovery and secure connection to their storage resources.”

Microsoft will deliver Internet SCSI (iSCSI) support for Windows client and server environments in June. A beta version of the Microsoft iSCSI Software Initiator is currently available. iSCSI, recently ratified by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), will provide a lower-cost option for customers that require high levels of performance and reliability for their planned storage area network (SAN) implementations. According to Gartner Dataquest,* by 2006 iSCSI will emerge to connect nearly 1.5 million servers to SANs — more than any competing technology.

Nishan IP Storage switches support Fibre Channel switching, Gigabit Ethernet switching, and wire-speed conversion between Fibre Channel and Gigabit Ethernet. Interfaces can be configured to support iSCSI end systems, Fibre Channel end systems, or Fibre Channel SANs. The multi-protocol switches also support, via iSCSI or iFCP (Internet Fibre Channel Protocol), remote storage links of any distance across high-speed IP networks. They can be used to connect existing Fibre Channel SANs through a standard expansion port (E_Port) interface or to build an IP SAN fabric that integrates Fibre Channel and iSCSI devices with data centre, metro-area, or wide-area IP networks.


Rose Ross and Hannah Knowles
Omarketing Limited
T: +44 (0) 208 255 5225

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About Nishan Systems

Nishan Systems, the world's first supplier of native IP storage solutions, builds open storage networking products based on IP and Ethernet, the international networking standards. Nishan's multi-protocol storage framework supports iSCSI, iFCP, iSNS, and Fibre Channel. The highly reliable and manageable IP storage routing extends seamlessly from the data centre to the metro area and beyond. Nishan's products are fully compatible with the millions of LAN, MAN, and WAN routers and switches already installed and mastered by IT professionals. Nishan Systems has been named to top company rankings in Computerworld, Red Herring Magazine, and the San Francisco Chronicle, and Nishan's IP storage switches recently received the InfoWorld Readers' Choice Award for best new storage products. Nishan Systems, a full voting member of the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), is based in San Jose, California, and can be reached at,

and at +44 (0) 1344 742 873.

Nishan Systems, the Nishan Systems logo, Blended Fabric and MultiService Interface, are trademarks of Nishan Systems, Inc. Other trademarked or registered names are the property of their respective owners.

* “Storage Network Infrastructure 2002: Market Share and Forecast,” June 25, 2002, by James Opfer

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