Click here for Part 1
For the NAS specific area:
There will be more products coming to market that address the consolidation of NAS devices. These are primarily focused on management and allowing NAS devices to scale by addition without incurring the additive administrative efforts. Additional capabilities such as redistributing capacity, workload balancing and some data protection will be offered by some and will become a differentiating factor. The SMB/departmental market segment should be the primary target for these products although some vendor will go after the much smaller (but higher margin) enterprise data center market.
NAS vendors will all offer TCP/IP accelerators as part of the product portfolios. This has started to some degree already and with IBM offering the TCP/IP accelerators integrated into its NAS offerings. It won't be long before every vendor must to be competitive. This will enable much greater performance for NAS products and make them much more viable in performance demanding environments. NAS will continue to be the storage of choice using IP networks because of the acceleration that provides greatly improved performance.
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This was first published in December 2002