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Thin provisioning in depth
This article is part of the Vol. 10 Num. 2 April 2011 issue of Storage magazine
Thin provisioning can help you use your disk capacity much more efficiently, but you need to get under the hood a little to understand how thin provisioning will work in your environment. Nobody wants to pay for something they're not using, but enterprise data storage managers do it all the time. The inflexible nature of disk storage purchasing and provisioning leads to shockingly low levels of capacity utilization. Improving the efficiency of storage has been a persistent theme of the industry and a goal for most storage professionals for a decade, but only thin provisioning technology has delivered tangible, real-world benefits. The concept of thin provisioning may be simple to comprehend, but it's a complex technology to implement effectively. If an array only allocates storage capacity that contains data, it can store far more data than one that allocates all remaining (and unnecessary) "white space." But storage arrays are quite a few steps removed from the applications that store and use data, and no standard communication...
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Features in this issue
Thin provisioning can help you use your disk capacity much more efficiently, but you need to get under the hood to understand how the technology might work in your environment.
With Exchange Server 2010, Microsoft made some significant changes to the email app's database structure, and those changes may also affect the storage it resides on.
Whether used singly or combined, server virtualization and storage virtualization are making an impact on IT's ability to deliver disaster recovery, and to do so cost effectively.
Columns in this issue
What kind of data drives are you using? Are they 6 Gig SAS? Solid state? Or good old Fibre Channel (FC)? More than half of the companies in our survey favor FC for their top tier.
Four different news reports all point to the same fact: Data is growing uncontrollably. It's time for storage shops to start cleaning house.
A lot of attention has been focused on security issues related to cloud backup, but bandwidth and transfer issues may be bigger problems.
Cloud storage is a next-generation IT infrastructure that's altering the data storage landscape. And its cast of key players is beginning to take shape.
Cloud storage is likely to become a significant part of your data storage infrastructure. But test the waters before locking into a vendor.