This article can also be found in the Premium Editorial Download "Storage magazine: Storage Products of the Year Awards 2007."
Download it now to read this article plus other related content.
In 2008, are you willing to spend money to save money?
I see two categories of IT departments this year: those who will sign up for a technology refresh and those who feel their last upgrades were extensive enough to let them sit tight in 2008. For IT departments that have marked 2008 as the year to upgrade, it could be a mixed bag. New technology is like
| the latest toy--it offers a fresh set of features to utilize. However, being an early adopter has risks such as compatibility issues and/or unavailability of the features you currently have on the existing platform. Many vendors announce a refresh with fine print stating delayed availability for certain new or improved features. Whatever the reason for the upgrade, make sure you'll benefit from it.
Also expect accelerated adoption of updated speeds and feeds for IP and Fibre Channel (FC) SANs. Vendors now offer cards and ports that work at (faster) full line speeds, so selective updates may allow you to update only those components that provide benefits to servers that can push the real-life maximum of a storage port or host bus adapter (HBA). The rule of two (i.e., two HBAs per server) used to work well because most servers could hardly push anywhere close to 200MB/sec. With the advent of faster CPUs, backplanes and buses, that rule needs to be revisited. When systems are refreshed, ensure there's adequate bandwidth between the servers and storage.
This was first published in February 2008