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What will the storage world look like between 2004 and 2009?

Looking to the years 2004 to 2009, what do you see happening in the world of storage management and what kind of goals should I be striving for?

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Consolidate, automate and establish a storage utility approach. It's easier said than done, and books have been written about this topic so I really can't do justice here.

Why consolidate? Because you likely have too many disparate storage systems and too many tools to keep track of right now.

Why automate? Because you really don't want to be doing the manual task you end up doing 80% of the week when you could be planning out capacity better and determining new strategies for better efficiency.

Why establish a storage utility? Because if you don't it is likely your CTO at some point will come into your office and tell you that there is no more money available to buy more management tools or even worse, that you are out of a job. Think of ways to leverage your existing investment and innovating where you can identify clear need -- establishing compliance strategies for government regulations or determining how to better manage business continuity programs. Storage management tools will increasingly be integrated, so you need to consider which vendors you want to standardize on and stick with them for a while.

This was first published in April 2003

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