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Vol. 10 Num. 10 December 2011

Determining the real cost of storage

Vendors tout dollars per gigabyte per I/O, but figuring out what a data storage system will really cost your company is a much more complicated process. If your job involves storing data, you already know storage eats up budget dollars faster than just about anything else in IT. But as daily practitioners, we rarely notice just how many bucks storage is truly consuming. The marketing hype for data storage products stays focused on magic bullets like “more capacity per dollar” or “more I/O per dollar,” but the cost of storage is about more than that. One of the best ways to consider the true cost of storage is to think about what’s required to store a single piece of data over its entire lifetime. This is called the “lifecycle cost of data storage,” and it includes the technologies, processes and workflows across all types of storage. This type of bottom-up look at storing a piece of data over a period of time not only helps us understand what data storage truly costs, but helps us determine what we should be looking for when we’...

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