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Network Appliance Inc., aka NetApp, will acquire Spinnaker Networks Inc. for $300 million in stock, officials said Tuesday.

The deal will expand Network Appliance’s technology holdings. Currently, NetApp’s. storage servers currently can cluster only two nodes, however Spinnaker’s software allows for hundreds of nodes on a single cluster, explained Suresh Vasudevan, senior director of software at the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based NetApp.

Several pioneers of the popular Network File System founded the privately-owned Spinnaker in 1999, and it now has a staff of 83-employees.

Besides large-scale clustering technology, the Pittsburg-based Spinnaker has virtualization technology, Vasudevan said. The startup’s technology works in both network-attached storage (NAS) and on storage area network (SAN) environments, but has focused on the former so far, he said. NetApp will use both approaches, he noted.

Network Appliance’s product roadmap is to first make Spinnaker’s technologies work with NetApp’s own hardware, and later to port the technology to NetApp’s DataOnTap operating system, he said, declining to state a timeframe for the integration.

Spinnaker’s customers include Acxiom Corp., Lucasfilm Ltd.’s Industrial Light & Magic and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies.