As noted in my last column, cloud computing is a hot topic in the general IT space, and cloud-based storage is (arguably) one of the hottest topics in the storage space, at least in terms of end-user interest, as opposed to actual buying. Cloud storage has been touted as the panacea for storage managers’ biggest headaches – backup and recovery – for everything from small office, home office (SOHO) environments to large enterprises.
However, one place where cloud-based storage may not be the best fit is in remote office and branch office (ROBO) environments, as explained in “Strategies for ROBO data protection,” by the Evaluator Group’s Russ Fellows, page 12. For those environments, you may be better off with technologies such as disk-based backup targets, virtual tape libraries (VTLs), remote replication, WAN acceleration, data deduplication and/or remote access techniques.
If clouds aren’t the hottest topic in IT, then virtualization is. But as most of you have found out, along with the obvious benefits of server virtualization there are a lot of challenges, particularly from a storage perspective.
Our Special Report in this issue, “SAN management for virtual servers,” takes a look at some tools that can help you get a grip on ‘VM sprawl’ by giving you deeper visibility into your SAN – from the application layer to the disk layer – in order to solve a variety of problems; most notably, performance problems. It’s a product category that the Taneja Group refers to as virtual infrastructure optimization (VIO), and it includes tools from vendors such as Akorri, NetApp, Virtual Instruments, and others.
The storage issues associated with virtual servers are so acute that InfoStor recently launched a four-part Webcast series on the topic in conjunction with our partner, Virtual Strategy Magazine (virtual-strategy.com). The first two Webcasts are archived on infostor.com:
- Virtual Servers: Six Ways to Reduce Your Backup Window, presented by executives from Vizioncore
- Eliminating the I/O Bottleneck that Limits Scalability in Today’s Virtual Servers, presented by Neterion.
Check the Webcasts section on infostor.com for details on upcoming presentations in this series.