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Access "Virtualization eases file migration"

Published: 20 Oct 2012

WHILE MANY USERS are still grappling with the benefits of file virtualization, some who have deployed it say it can eliminate the downtime associated with data migration and simplify storage provisioning. Blackboard Inc., Washington, D.C., develops and hosts e-learning software used by more than 3 million students at approximately 500 schools and higher education institutions. Hosted customers store their data across several Network Appliance filers with aggregate capacity of 100TB, says Ahmar Abbas, Blackboard's VP of ASP services. The content--papers, quizzes, discussion threads, etc.--is growing at 65% to 85% per year, and volumes fill up quickly. But unlike traditional businesses that shut down after 5 p.m. or on weekends, there's no good time for Blackboard to do maintenance like data migration. "In higher education, our busiest time is Sundays from 9 p.m. to 3 a.m.," he says, as students log on to the system to prepare for the week ahead. "For K-12 schools, it's from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m." Last fall, Abbas brought in NeoPath Networks' File Director to help ... Access >>>

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