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Is data center storage growing?

I know that the demand for storage has risen but revenue has not kept pace due to dropping hardware prices. Even so, what's the rate of increase in the storage used by an average data center server and how is this expected to increase over time? I'd like to plan my network accordingly. Is the number of servers per data center also increasing over time?

It's hard to make a general statement about data center storage growth, since it varies by company. I find that most data centers I have been in usually experience between 10-20% growth rate year over year. This does vary though. I have some accounts growing at 100% per quarter, and others who are static.

One thing that is common though is that since most environments are moving to a SAN, consolidation of servers is a natural path.


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Our data center storage is certainly growing. We work with a lot of video assets, and it is often the case that a single asset needs to be stored in multiple formats for rapid distribution to different devices, platforms, and delivery paradigms. I would say that the growth is somewhat less than exponential but more than linear, more like something close to the order of O(n logn) as we’re not only adding new assets and transcoding those into the standard set of encodings, but we’re also adding new encoding formats for existing assets.