Consolidating storage can represent a significant initial investment and must therefore be approached methodically. The best way to select the appropriate storage solution is to first establish a precise and detailed list of requirements. For example:
- Performance (MB/sec, IOPS, RPM, etc.)
- Desired RAID level(s)
- Raw capacity versus useable capacity (i.e.: RAID 1+0 on 50 TB of raw storage will yield approximately 25 TB of useable storage)
- Number of host connections
- Specific OS support required
- Number of storage partitions
- Reliability, availability, serviceability (RAS) requirements
- Amount of memory cache
- Specific features required (i.e.: Snapshots, remote replication, etc)
- Budgetary considerations/limits
- And many more
It might be advisable to retain the services of a storage consultant or architect to assist with establishing a detailed list of all your organization's storage requirements. A RFI (Request for Information) could subsequently be prepared and submitted to a number of selected vendors. It would then be up to the vendors to demonstrate if and how their respective products meet your exact requirements.
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