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Cloud storage: Just another storage tier?
This article is part of the Storage magazine issue of Vol. 8 Num. 9 January 2010
If you dig a little deeper, you'll find cloud storage has been adopted in some sectors as a data archive tier, and has been delivering cost-saving benefits for quite some time. Every few years a technology comes along that gets hyped to the point that no one is truly sure what it means anymore. In the storage world, storage virtualization and information lifecycle management (ILM) are two of those technologies that received a lot of vendor buildup and held a lot of promise for reducing the cost and complexity of the storage infrastructure but never really played out. The latest and greatest technology to hit the peak of the hype cycle is cloud storage. Data storage vendors aren't doing themselves any favors with all the hype and cloudy (forgive the pun) long-term vision around cloud storage, but it doesn't appear to be headed down the same road as ILM and storage virtualization. Unlike with ILM and the original vision (2001-2002 timeframe) of storage virtualization, there are some real and immediate benefits that can be derived ...
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Features in this issue
With vSphere, VMware addresses many of the past storage-related shortcomings that created headaches for storage pros.
In their 3 Gbps incarnation, SAS drives have proved popular in low-end and nearline data storage systems, but at 6 Gbps, SAS-2 poses a serious threat to Fibre Channel interface drives and could change the landscape of high-end storage arrays.
Storage shops often struggle with anticipating new capacity requirements and ensuring that business needs can be met. After virtualizing its storage, Ford Motor Co. took a unique approach to allocation issues and made capacity planning as simple as balancing a checkbook.
Our monthly survey shows that backing up remote and branch offices is still a tough nut to crack for some companies. But newer tools -- like data dedupe -- are helping to ensure that remote data is protected.
NetApp, winner of all three previous Quality Awards for midrange NAS systems and one for enterprise NAS products, gets nudged aside as Hewlett-Packard and IBM prevail in our latest survey.
Columns in this issue
Storage vendors have become so enamored of the term "cloud storage" that it's hard to tell what it means anymore. But if you can get past the marketing hype, you'll find cloud storage has been adopted in some sectors as a data archive tier, and has been delivering cost-saving benefits for quite some time.
Despite the buzz about solid state and storage for VMware environments, 2009 wasn't a particularly banner year for standout storage technologies. Here's hoping the real storage innovations will come in 2010.