Monday, 08 August 2011

IOCELL Acquires Ximeta's SOHO, SMB Storage Technology

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IOCELL Networks last week purchased the rights to a technology called NDAS (network direct attached storage) from Ximeta, the company that originally created it.

NDAS, which Ximeta developed in 2003, is a way to connect any direct-attach digital storage device into standard Ethernet networks, allowing all users or systems on the network the ability to directly control, use, and share those devices.

The acquisition, terms of which were not disclosed, gives IOCELL the ability to control the entire NDAS market from development to marketing to OEM, said John Park, founder and CEO of Plainsboro, N.J.-based IOCELL, in a recent interview.

NDAS utilizes the processors in each PC instead of a processor in a NAS enclosure to handle networked storage, said Scott Giller, vice president of sales for the company.

"Our architecture lets each system access data from a network storage drive on a network as a local drive," Giller said. "Each PC has a NDAS driver, and the storage shows up as a local drive."

IOCELL provides 1-bay and 2-bay enclosures into which customers connect their own SATA drives, Giller said.

NDAS is a cost-effective way to handle networked storage for SOHO and small business customers, Giller said. "There's no CPU in the networked storage, and no performance bottleneck," he said. "And it's simple. There's no configuration or IP address needed. The storage shows up automatically. And because there's no IP address, the storage cannot be accessed directly via the Internet."

However, Giller admitted, that data could still be accessed over the Internet if someone found a way to remotely control PC on the network.

Ximeta originally developed the NDAS technology and related chipsets and sold them to storage OEMs in Taiwan and China, Park said. Prior to acquiring Ximeta NDAS, IOCELL was a licensee of the technology and sold it in products under the NetDisk brand, he said.

"But to maintain and build up sales of our company, we offered cash to Ximeta to purchase the technology," he said.

As a result of the acquisition, IOCELL hired a Ximeta engineer, hired other engineers, and moved NDAS R&D from Korea to the U.S., Park said.

IOCELL's NDAS technology is available through D&H.