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Violin Memory and Symantec are announcing a deal today that will allow Violin to move up the food chain in flash memory storage systems for enterprises.

Violin makes storage devices that replace hard drives with arrays of flash memory chips in enterprises. That helps data center servers keep up with the huge demands of web users. But today the company is moving from a device provider to a storage system maker — one step up in the electronics food chain — thanks to an alliance with system security vendor Symantec. Violin is adding Symantec’s data management services to its arrays, making it easier to manage stored data.

Storage and the proper use of server resources have become complex issues for enterprises. Flash memory arrays, such as those Violin makes, help speed up the retrieval of data from memory. As companies consolidate their data centers through increased use of virtualization, or software that maximizes the efficient use of computing resources, they have to deal with the constraints of hard drives and older storage management systems. The result is that storage becomes a bottleneck to the whole system. But now Violin and Symantec are attacking part of that problem.

Violin says the result of its nine-month collaboration with Symantec is a storage solution that requires no compromises on speed, scale, reliability, and costs. Symantec’s software has been optimized to run on Violin’s memory arrays. The software includes snapshots, cloning, deduplication, replication, and thin provisioning. These are all functions that storage software has to handle in order to ensure that enterprise data is secure and backed up as much as possible.

“Violin is at the forefront of offering tier 1 storage that is built from the ground up,” said Narayan Venkat, vice president of products for Violin Memory. “We have been delivering storage at the speed of memory with disk array prices, and now we’ve partnered with Symantec to build a comprehensive flash-optimized data management suite that extends the benefits of speed and scale to data protection, disaster avoidance, and storage efficiency.”

“Symantec has been delivering data management and replication solutions for over a decade,” said Don Angspatt, vice president of product management for the Storage and Availability Management Group for Symantec Corp. “The opportunity to work with Violin, a leader in flash storage arrays, was exciting and the effort to optimize our technologies over the last year will provide enterprises a unique solution that will further enable the consolidation and virtualization of their data centers.”

Gerrit Schutte, senior vice president and CIO of ConAgra Foods and a Violin customer, said the combination of Violin and Symantec makes a compelling case for enterprise clients to use both vendors.

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