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Ten-year storage systems bring tremendous benefits

Thanks to solid-state technology, the lifespan of advanced storage systems is taking a step-function increase. This advance will bring a great cost benefit to IT operations.

Nimbus Data has released a 100% solid-state drive (SSD) system with a 10-year endurance guarantee. This is double what is generally expected of a storage system with spinning hard disk drives. That is because electro-mechanical devices used in spinning drives have much more difficult time reaching longer lifespans when they are in constant use.

The not-so-subtle implications of the 10-year lifespan will become a competitive issue and other vendors will make similar announcements for their systems, proving again that competition is a good thing.

From a customer perspective, a storage system that that can last 10 years and continue to provide value in storing information can have major impacts in IT. The primary consideration, as always, is the economic impact.

• Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) is dramatically changed with the longer lifespan. Many of the costs included in TCO are divided by the service lifespan of the storage system. Changing to a 10-year lifespan greatly reduces acquisition and training costs.

• The operational expense of migrating from one system to another, primarily represented in the time required for administrators to manage the migration, is reduced over 10 years.

• Risks that occur when a new system is introduced into IT are also reduced as fewer introductions are done with the longer lifespan.

• Solid state offers power reduction savings from transitions from one generation of disk drive technology to the next. This simplifies cost savings in ROI.

Because of these factors, a system‘s expected lifespan will become a major factor when evaluating all-SSD arrays.

(Randy Kerns is Senior Strategist at Evaluator Group, an IT analyst firm).

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