The big crunch: Capacity grows, budgets shrink


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With dedupe being integrated into more and more virtual tape libraries (VTLs), it's now taken far more seriously as a sound method to remedy stressed-out backup systems. Twenty-four percent of our respondents will implement (or have already implemented) dedupe technology in 2008, which is up from last fall's 17%. And another 42% have begun to evaluate dedupe or plan to do so this year (see "On storage managers' radar for 2008," below). Underscoring dedupe's ascendancy, Data Domain Inc.--a company that makes deduplication appliances--rose to fifth place on our survey's "Main vendor for disk-to-disk backup" list, overtaking such stalwarts as Sun Microsystems Inc. and NetApp. And 44% of respondents will increase dedupe spending this year vs. 31% a year ago.

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Manulife Financial's Veronneau is also keen on dedupe. "Between now and the end of the year, we're looking at the possibility of doing deduplication," he says. Veronneau says the very nature of his business makes dedupe a viable option. "An insurance company, investment company--think of how many documents we have and how many copies of those we probably have."

Kocur at MSA Associates sees data classification as a crucial step in helping to trim what's on her shop's systems to ease their backup process. "In order to be able to cut, you got to know what you've got," she says. Kocur says she'll need to enlist the content management groups at MSA. "I really need them to take ownership and clean up their stuff."

Over the past few surveys, VTL technology seemed to fall from favor, with the number of planned implementations decreasing each year. But this time around, it's apparent that interest in VTL has been renewed. Thirty-one percent are using a VTL, up from 23% last fall. And 32% say they've deployed a VTL--or plan to--this year (vs. 28% last fall).

Veronneau is also about to implement a VTL, which he hopes will not only ease backup window woes, but reduce Manulife Financial's tape inventories. "With 200TB of data on the midrange [arrays], I have 1.4PB of data on tapes."

This was first published in June 2008

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