Few computer technologies have evolved as rapidly or as dramatically as data storage, particularly at the enterprise level. Storage-hungry applications like online transaction processing, financial modeling and seismic data analysis have always sucked up huge amounts of data, and new enterprise workloads and use cases like analytics, compliance, e-discovery and e-commerce are chewing up hundreds of terabytes and even petabytes at a dizzying pace.
But as important as added capacity and even higher performance are, IT organizations need even more from their storage vendors. Storage is becoming more difficult to manage, even as storage management software improves its functionality. As data center infrastructure becomes increasingly heterogeneous, virtualized and cloud-based, IT professionals and storage administrators need more than higher capacity and improved performance measured in reduced latency and increased IOPS.
Organizations are also placing higher value on issues such as reliability, data protection and data recovery because of how heavily they rely on data and build their businesses around it. The bottom line is that IT organizations need a comprehensive, enterprise-wide approach to storage architecture that reduces complexity, eases deployment and addresses storage on a long-term basis with investment protection.
Unified Storage Architecture
The increased use of virtualization, cloud computing, software-defined infrastructure and other new models is a fact of life in today’s data centers, and more than likely will accelerate in the coming years. Add to this the reality of pressure on IT leaders to do more with less—both budgets and manpower resources—and it becomes obvious that new infrastructure approaches are needed. Storage, in particular, has an acute need for a more coordinated approach in order to help organizations reduce complexity and improve cost efficiency, while continuing to meet the escalating needs of business stakeholders.
A single, unifying storage architecture confers many benefits to organizations, ranging from common management, data mobility and improved service levels to cost savings on both operating and capital expenses. Additionally, the approach gives organizations the ability to introduce new technologies more rapidly and seamlessly, including flash storage, software-defined infrastructure, cloud-based solutions and many others.