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Vol. 1 No. 4 June 2002

Virtualization has a credibility problem

As head of storage management for insurance giant Aetna, Hartford, CT, Steve Pomposi has plenty of reasons to be excited about storage virtualization. After all, he manages a large, heterogeneous storage infrastructure at Aetna that contains well in excess of 100TB of data. Managing that complex infrastructure is an expensive task that demands the attention of senior technicians every time storage is added or reallocated within the environment. Virtualized storage solutions are supposed to resolve these kinds of thorny issues. By placing a layer between the storage subsystem and the systems accessing it, virtualization should allow IT managers to add, configure and manage multivendor disk arrays with ease, letting applications and systems access a unified pool of storage. Adding a disk array in this environment doesn't require making infrastructure components aware of the new hardware. Rather, the virtual pool of storage grows incrementally and immediately becomes available to all devices on the other side of the abstraction. ...

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