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Vol. 7 No. 4 June 2008

Our View: Quantifying a galaxy's worth of data

If numbers don't lie, then we're all in for some storage overload. In the "digital universe" (which for now presumably includes just Earth), the amount of data collected by 2011 will be 1.9 trillion gigabytes, according to a recent IDC report commissioned by EMC. But how did they get that number? Dave Reinsel, co-author and group VP, says IDC arrived at its number by plugging digital storage shipments and content forecasts into an in-house algorithm. "I looked at tape, optical, disk and flash, and came up with how much we have shipped and how much will be available in the future," he says. Teammate John Gantz created an algorithm and applied it to digital content sources that included cameras, videos, LCD TVs, X-rays and RFID tags. IDC doesn't have competitors disputing its claim. No other research firm has yet tried to quantify all the world's data, leaving us to stagger under the weight of 1.9 trillion gigs of data until next year's estimate piles on more. --Christine Cignoli

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Features in this issue

  • Gaps seen in file archiving tools

  • 10 key considerations for email archiving

    If you haven't standardized on an email archiving product, it can be time-consuming to find one that fits your company's needs. We list the 10 questions that will help you narrow down the list of available products and find the one that best suits your requirements.

  • QUALITY AWARDS III: NetApp sweeps NAS awards

    After a clean sweep of both the enterprise and midrange categories, NetApp is the undisputed NAS king. BlueArc Corp., last year's enterprise winner, didn't have a chance to challenge NetApp with too few responses to make the final cut.

  • Ask the Expert: Connecting two data centers

    I'm connecting two data centers, 70km apart, and I want to use EMC Symmetrix for synchronous replication. Will that distance work?

  • Migrate data without mistakes

    by  Deni Connor

    Data migrations are a fact of life. In many cases, the migration ends up being a tedious process. Automated tools can help ease migration woes. Host-based migration software takes the load off the storage array and can easily bridge the gap when migrating data between heterogeneous storage systems. But array-based migration may be preferred for technology refreshes.

  • The big crunch: Capacity grows, budgets shrink

    The brief respite storage managers enjoyed from the ever-escalating need for more disk capacity appears to be over. Respondents to our 2008 Purchasing Intentions survey say they'll add an average of 47TB of new disk capacity this year. But they'll have to do it with smaller storage budgets. And while virtualization could help respondents use their storage more efficiently, it's still receiving a cool reception.

Columns in this issue