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Vol. 11 Num. 1 March 2012

2012: Year of the infrastruggle

Don’t let yourself be dazzled by bright lights and other storage bling -- the hardware might be cool to look at, but it’s the software that’s going to make a difference. It’s always geeky fun to dig down and explore the nuances among storage hardware products, but I’m finding those discussions increasingly irrelevant. To paraphrase an insight offered by fictional Cosmonaut Lev Andropov in the 1998 movie Armageddon, “Components. American components, Russian components, all made in Taiwan!” Simply put, all disk drives in enterprise arrays come from one of three sources. The chassis or trays into which drives are mounted come from one of four or five providers. Cable harnesses, connectors, adapters and so on all come from the same suppliers. Even the cabinets into which these components are mounted come from a common supply chain, with the key difference in their cost to vendors, I’m told, being color. Black is the most expensive choice. That makes the bezel plate on the front of the box, customized with a logo and sometimes ...

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