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Enterprise Storage Strategies

Stephen Foskett

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Top Stories by Stephen Foskett

In my last blog post, I pointed out the new laws in Massachusetts and Nevada that require all personal data in transit to be encrypted. That post generated lots of discussion, including thoughtful responses from Steve Duplessie and Joseph Martins, and I urge you to read those as well. Two key questions remain: What exactly do these laws demand and how will you actually comply with them? Sure, encryption technology is widely available, but actually implementing it has been a slow uphill climb for most IT organizations. Let's examine the implications! What the Law Requires In my years of IT consulting, and especially over the last two, where I focused on litigation readiness, I've come to see that laws are rarely as cut and dried and actionable as IT would like. As pointed out by Martins, the Nevada statute is particularly vague. But even the much more lengthy Massach... (more)

Is a Private Cloud Worthwhile?

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 ... (more)

Cloud Storage: To API Or Not To API

As discussed last week, cloud storage solutions differ in many ways. They can be defined by their pricing model (usage-based or capitalized), their location (on-site or off-site), the granularity of scalability (per-file, standard unit, or per-system), and whether or not they are multi-tenant. But one of the less-discussed but much more technically-challenging differentiators lies in the access method: Some cloud storage systems use a web protocol-based API for access, while others use conventional storage protocols like NFS or SMB. Today we will discuss the implications of which... (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)