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NAS, SAN, or DAS? Quiz yourself on these 3 types of storage

It's not easy to choose and deploy a data storage infrastructure system. Take this test to find out if you're ready to assess whether DAS, NAS or SAN is right for your business.

NAS, SAN and DAS are common data storage infrastructures. Understanding how they work is critical when upgrading existing storage or planning a new deployment.

The obvious first question to ask is which storage infrastructure -- NAS, SAN or DAS -- is right for a particular business? The answer isn't always clear, or even easy to come up with, because it involves assessing many factors.

To some extent, the size of your business dictates the answer. A small concern might do well to opt for a cheaper, simpler DAS system. But that's not always the case. Other requirements should be considered before jumping to what seems like the obvious conclusion.

Beyond the size and type of business you're running, you'll want to take a hard look at the amount and type of data you collect and store. Is it structured or unstructured data? How much of each are you accumulating? How many people are accessing it? Where are they located?

From there, calculate the storage capacity required to accommodate your organization's data. Next, consider the storage performance issues your business faces. Do employees or customers need fast access to data? When? How often? From where? And don't forget to look beyond your business's current requirements: You'll want a system that can scale to handle future storage needs.

Other less obvious factors to consider in the NAS-SAN-DAS equation include reliability issues. How much downtime can your organization tolerate? What budgetary constraints are you up against? And does your organization have the knowledge and skills it will need to deploy and maintain a particular system?

There's a lot to know when it comes to choosing the right storage infrastructure. Take our quiz to find out if you're as knowledgeable about NAS, SAN and DAS as you should be.

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