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Economy and capacity at odds

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"We're investigating possibly using LTO-4," says Olympic Associates' Winsor. With big changes in store for their production storage systems, she says, "I think it would be a good time to re-evaluate our tape backup."

While those saying they'll increase disk-to-disk (D2D) spending contracted a bit from the spring, 80% will continue to spend at previous levels or increase spending for D2D backup this year, which is consistent with the results we've seen over a three-year period. And of all the features storage managers want to see in their backup apps, the ability to back up to disk continues to top the charts (60% vs. 56% last spring).

Plans to implement VTLs also eased a bit, with 24% saying they'll go that route vs. 32% last spring, but we saw a similar spring-fall shift last year.

Deduplication still generates the most sizzle among backup technologies, topping our hot list with 67% of those surveyed planning to implement it or evaluate it this year. Sixty-six percent say they'll maintain or increase spending levels for dedupe, which is about the same as last spring, but nearly 10 points higher than spring 2007. There's also been a steady drop in the number of managers who say they have no dedupe plans (37% in spring 2007 vs. the current 30%).

For Winsor, updating Olympic Associates' tape systems to LTO-4 drives is a backup priority, but dedupe is also on the list.

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"We're definitely going to have to take a look at that," she says. Horwitz is even more emphatic about Temple University's interest: "I'd be really surprised if we don't implement some sort of dedupe solution within the next six months."

Additional evidence of the increase in interest and spending for dedupe is Data Domain Inc.'s rise into the top five vendors respondents cited as their main D2D vendor last spring; in this survey, Data Domain solidified its hold on that place by adding a little more than a point to its tally.

ProAssurance's Clemons says they will implement dedupe on backup and some primary storage. "We're supposed to get our first Data Domain box by the end of the year," he says. For primary storage, Clemons will tap the ability of his NetApp boxes to compress data. "We expect to have some decrease in disk utilization because of the deduplication from the NetApp," he notes.


This was first published in October 2008

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