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Vol. 4 No. 2 April 2005

Clustering storage

Traditional vs. clustered NAS storage Storage systems typically become siloed as more capacity is required. Multiple connections are required to allow hosts to access all installed storage. In a clustered storage system, the storage controllers communicate with each other internally and present a single file system to the hosts. Multiplatform hosts can connect to the cluster through a single connection to a switch which, in turn, is attached to the cluster. The storage side of the data center is waking up to what the server side has known for some time: Clustering is cool. Clustering has improved the reliability, availability and manageability of data center servers while allowing bundles of inexpensive configurations like blades to replace costly, monolithic servers. The benefits of server clustering haven't escaped the notice of the storage industry, but clustering storage involves challenges other than just tying servers together. Vendors have taken diverse paths to address those challenges, but they fall into two main ...

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Features in this issue

  • Pros and cons of VTLs

    by  W. Curtis Preston

    VTLs aren't perfect, and this tip outlines some caveats about the technology that you need to know before implementing a VTL.

  • First Look: Crossroads Systems' DataMover 240f

    Crossroads Systems' DataMover 240f is a SAN edge device that takes on one of the most vexing backup bottlenecks by keeping data flowing through the network pipes.

  • Are SATA drives ready for the enterprise?

    SATA drives are great low-cost alternatives to pricey Fibre Channel and SCSI drives, but they lack the reliability and performance that mission-critical applications demand. But new technologies are bringing SATA up to enterprise-class standards.

  • Keep track of backups

    Backup reporting tools help track backup failures and determine their cause. Some tools can identify weak links in your backup processes where there's a potential for failure.

Columns in this issue