Onaro tackles capacity/provisioning management

By Kevin Komiega

—Onaro today added three new products to its SANscreen management software suite: SANscreen Capacity Manager 1.0, SANscreen Provisioning Manager 1.0, and a tool called Application Dashboard. The trio of new components brings with it the potential to simplify capacity planning and storage provisioning while offering application teams a better understanding of where their storage comes from.

The SANscreen suite already has several integrated storage management tools, including Service Insight, Service Assurance, Application Insight, and Replication Assurance. On the whole, SANscreen provides an inventory of all devices in the SAN, visibility into storage service levels, and root-cause analysis of service disruption, and aggregates information to assist users in the storage planning process. With the additions of the Application Dashboard, Capacity Manager, and Provisioning Manager, Onaro is attempting to help users track current and future storage requirements and reduce the time it takes to provision storage for applications.

Tying it all together in one management suite is Onaro's main goal. "We're extending data-center automation to storage. Building out our software with both capacity and provisioning management enables more cross-functional management capabilities," says Bryan Semple, Onaro's vice president of marketing.

Semple claims the improved allocation reporting in Capacity Manager can help users reduce capacity costs by up to 10%, while Provisioning Manager can cut provisioning time by 20% and reduce standby capacity by up to 30%.

SANscreen Capacity Manager 1.0 is designed to track storage asset utilization in large, distributed data centers. The software gathers real-time allocation information by data center, storage tier, or by business unit to improve capacity forecasting. The software also provides global chargeback information and offers automated tiering assignment rules and policies for managing advanced tiering schemes.

SANscreen Provisioning Manager 1.0 accelerates application provisioning time and reduces standby capacity by creating a tier reservation forecast based on actual storage requirements. Provisioning Manager can also be used to create a repeatable process for creating provisioning plans for tiered storage environments.

According to Semple, most organizations maintain large storage resource buffers because they lack detailed visibility into immediate storage demands.

The new Application Dashboard, a feature of SANscreen Service Assurance, provides application management teams with visibility into the service levels delivered by the storage environment.

"It's sometimes difficult for non-technical or non-storage users to understand how storage resources are delivered," says Semple. "The Application Dashboard provides application managers visibility into their storage environment."

According to an Onaro research study involving 25 enterprise customers this past year, storage administrators typically spend about 10% of their day answering routine storage status questions posed by help desks and application teams. Semple says the Application Dashboard eliminates the need for inefficient communication between IT teams within an organization by enabling all parts of IT to operate off the same set of storage service level information.

Capacity Manager 1.0 and Provisioning Manager 1.0 are both priced by capacity, starting at $250 per terabyte, while Service Assurance 4.0 is priced from $185 per port.

This article was originally published on September 04, 2007