Jamie Gruener on FC SAN technology

Jamie Gruener on FC SAN technology

Jamie Gruener
Senior Analyst of Enterprise Computing and Networking at Yankee Group
In his role at Yankee Group, Jamie covers the storage market and is responsible for delivering expert insight on storage networking standards and emerging storage technologies. His areas of expertise include SAN management and virtualization. His research also covers carrier integration of storage technology, content distribution, server technologies and the storage service provider market.

QUESTION: Why would I invest in Fibre Channel SAN technology when I can achieve similar performance at a reduced cost using Gigabit Ethernet? Isn't TCP/IP bases storage networking the direction we're truly going and won't the adoption of iSCSI further that movement?

ANSWER: It depends on whether or not you have already invested in Fibre Channel. For those customers that have, it makes sense to continue that investment. Storage networking will truly be IP-based in a number of cases because it promises to be easier to install and manage than Fibre Channel. But, the industry isn't there yet so customers need to weigh the need to deploy storage networking today on a mature technology such as Fibre Channel versus trying something new such as iSCSI. iSCSI will have a strong role as a workgroup and departmental SAN interconnect but more large vendor support needs to be in place for customers to truly take advantage of it. It will also likely play a significant role in blade server architectures as a consolidated way for these new, dense servers to access storage.

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