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Enterprise Storage Strategies

Stephen Foskett

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Top Stories by Stephen Foskett

Much discussion in the cloud computing world has focused on a simple question: Is a private cloud infrastructure worthy of the name? It's been posed in many ways, with some going so far as claiming that there is no such thing as a private cloud. Although discussions like these are all too common in many areas, the question really amounts to little more than counting angels dancing on pin heads. The key issue is whether private cloud-style infrastructure can deliver real benefits like public clouds can. First, let's set out some definitions: The draft NIST definition, perhaps the best we have at this point, states that "Cloud computing is a pay-per-use model for enabling available, convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, services) that can be rapidly provisioned and rel... (more)

What Is a Backup?

The word "backup" gets thrown around so much that folks tuned in to the world of enterprise storage can start getting surly. One of the best ways to annoy a backup administrator is to start talking about how well the backup will facilitate disaster recovery, e-discovery, and compliance! So what is a backup anyway? Is it different from an archive? SNIA defines a backup as follows: "A collection of data stored on (usually removable) non-volatile storage media for purposes of recovery in case the original copy of data is lost or becomes inaccessible; also called a backup copy.To be ... (more)

Why Isn't Storage Getting Cheaper? Part 1: Too Cheap to Manage

The application of Moore's Law may have led to incredible advances in computing, but the growth of storage capacity is even more impressive. Disk and tape storage density has grown by a factor of 10 every five years, driving out cost and bulk. $250 bought an amazing 20 GB of hard disk space in 1999, but this is nothing compared to the 2 TB that can be had for the same money today. Yet enterprise storage costs have not dropped. The real cost of an enterprise storage array has not fallen significantly in that same period. In fact, the total cost of maintaining storage has actually ... (more)

Why Isn't Storage Getting Cheaper? Part 5: Storage as a Service

Although the capacity of storage systems keeps growing, data growth keeps absorbing available capacity. In an effort to contain costs, IT organizations turned to tiered storage but have encountered a "glass floor": Disk space is a small component of costs, reducing the impact of hardware solutions. IT organizations have long turned to outsourced services to enable cost savings on non-core infrastructure and organizational elements, and manaed storage as a service promises to deliver remarkable savings. Why isn't storage getting cheaper? This series of articles attempts to answer ... (more)

Everyone Should Be Skeptical About Cloud Service Providers

As we plummet down into Gartner's "trough of disillusionment", the cloud skeptics are making their voices heard. Although my professional focus is at the forefront of the cloud storage wave, I can not disagree with the content of articles with sensational headlines like "Cloud Storage: It's Strictly For Airheads" and "Why Cloud Storage Use Could Be Limited in Enterprises". The authors are doing exactly what everyone should be doing: Questioning the viability and suitability of cloud storage in the enterprise. The truth is, although I'm not the "cloud police", not all managed stora... (more)