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Vol. 6 No. 7 September 2007

Fast CAS facts

Content-addressed storage (CAS) systems locate items by unique identifiers based on the content itself rather than its location in storage. This is different from data deduplication, which scans block-level data for duplicate blocks and replaces duplicates with pointers to the original copy of the block. When an object is stored in a CAS system, its content is scanned and an identifier, such as a hash value, is generated and then used to retrieve the object as needed. Because each object's identifier is based on its content, it's easy to verify that the retrieved object hasn't been changed since it was stored, which makes CAS a good fit for compliance-related storage. But that also means any change to an object stored in a CAS system creates a new object that's stored separately, so CAS is best suited to data that won't change once it's saved. When you're considering CAS, remember that storing an object in a CAS system requires more time and computing power than storing it in a conventional file system. --Rick Cook For the full ...

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Features in this issue

  • Fast CAS facts

  • Backup and archiving get closer together

  • How SANs aid backup

    by  Bradley Hughey

    The primary motivation for building a SAN is often to meet a pressing need for performance, scalability or both. But today's new SAN buyers are looking for more than performance and scalability; they're interested in better ways of protecting their data, using such techniques as snapshots of SAN volumes and sometimes even relying on newer technologies to replace traditional backups.

  • Protect Exchange data

    by  Jerome Wendt

    Email is now firmly established as a critical application, with more than 60% of enterprises using Microsoft Exchange for their corporate email, according to Gartner. This widespread adoption of Microsoft Exchange, and growing electronic discovery requirements, make protecting it a more complicated proposition than just performing simple backups and recoveries.

  • New role for tape libraries

    by  Jerome Wendt

    Tape libraries are finally assuming the role they were designed for: longterm protection and preservation of data. But as disk assumes its new role as the initial target for backups and the source for restores, tape library vendors need to shore up their abilities to interact with disk libraries and provide users with some definitive answers on encryption.

  • Understanding dedupe ratios

    by  Jerome Wendt

Columns in this issue

  • Editorial: Backing up garbage

  • Storage Bin: Who ate the backup?

    It's astounding that in this age of technological advancements we still talk about things like backup, let alone agonize over it.

  • Best Practices: Sorting out remote-office backup

    Remote-office data has always been something of a corporate orphan when it came to backup. Once upon a time, "out of sight, out of mind" might have worked, but times have changed. Regulatory compliance, legal liability issues and the cost of producing data for ediscovery make it clear remote data can no longer be ignored.

  • Best Practices: Pull the plug on high energy costs

    by  Dianne McAdam

    Spiraling energy costs are taking an increasingly big chunk of the data center budget. Data centers are grappling with rising electrical bills and, in some locations, limitations on the amount of available power are forcing IT anagers to rethink their basic processes.

  • Hot Spots: Managing storage in a virtual server world

    Server virtualization is the big data center story, and storage managers need to design their storage systems to take advantage of a virtualized server environment. There are steps you can take now to ensure that your storage systems are up to the task.

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