Dot Hill Announces New Patents On Data Safeguards

Expands patent portfolio with snapshot and encryption technology

July 27, 2011

3 Min Read


LONGMONT, Colo., July 26, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Dot Hill Systems Corp. (Nasdaq: HILL), a leading provider of Unified Virtual Storage and SAN storage solutions, today announced three new additions to its patent portfolio, including two innovations related to its AssuredSnap(TM) snapshot software for improved data protection, and a new method for safeguarding data on removable storage devices through local encryption.

The 79th U.S. patent awarded to Dot Hill is for a method for efficiently deleting obsolete snapshots. After a controller receives a command to delete a snapshot, the Dot Hill invention checks to see if all other snapshots associated with the same backing store (snapshot repository) are either being deleted or marked for deletion. If it is determined that all such snapshots are either being deleted or marked for deletion, the invention forgoes deleting only the requested snapshot and instead re-initializes the entire backing store - thus saving time compared to alternative approaches that delete only a single snapshot at a time.

The company's 78th U.S. patent 7,975,115 provides an efficient way to manage storage snapshots. A storage snapshot is a set of reference markers, or pointers, to data stored on a disk drive, tape, or in a storage area network (SAN). Snapshots streamline access to stored data and can speed up the process of data recovery.

By creating two separate areas, one for "Preserve Data" and another for "Write Data," which is a working copy of the snapshot, Dot Hill's patented innovation allows users to always be able to return to the specific point in time when the snapshot occurred and recover the original data. Preserved data is never overwritten, so that it preserves the original data pointers as they were at the time of the snapshot.

These two patented approaches are featured in Dot Hill's AssuredSnap software, which offers a reliable and convenient means of backing up and recovering vital data in the event of disaster. Dot Hill offers enterprise class Data Management Software including AssuredCopy(TM), AssuredSnap, and AssuredRemote(TM).

Dot Hill's 77th U.S. patent 7,921,301 provides a method and system for safeguarding information commonly stored on removable storage devices. The invention uses a simple method of local encryption which can be implemented within the array controller to protect data between the controller and cache data, or between the controller and the array data. This simple encryption scheme does not require CPU-intensive data encryption algorithms that can slow down data access. This Dot Hill innovation can be implemented with simple, low-cost hardware, does not slow down reads or writes, and works in redundant configurations.

The latest patents bolster Dot Hill's ever-growing patent portfolio and the company's reputation as an intellectual property leader in the storage industry. In February the company announced the findings of a report validating the strength of Dot Hill's intellectual property holdings and overall patent portfolio as compared to other storage vendors in its peer group. In the report, Dot Hill's patent strength was ranked No. 1 out of a peer group of 15 storage vendors.

"The continued momentum of our patent portfolio, consisting of highly relevant innovations that improve the speed, ease-of-use, reliability and security of our storage systems, can be attributed to a talented design team that is second to none in the storage industry," said Jim Kuenzel, senior vice president of engineering at Dot Hill Systems. "Dot Hill's intellectual property holdings are key to keeping the company on the forefront of 'what's next' in storage."

About Dot Hill

Leveraging its proprietary Assured family of storage solutions, Dot Hill solves many of today's most challenging storage problems - helping IT to improve performance, increase availability, simplify operations, and reduce costs. Dot Hill's solutions combine breakthrough virtualization software with the industry's most flexible and extensive hardware platform and automated management to deliver best-in-class unified virtual storage and SAN solutions. Headquartered in Longmont, Colo., Dot Hill has offices and/or representatives in China, Germany, India, Israel, Japan, Singapore, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

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