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Storage gets exciting for 2013

February 8, 2013 No Comments

Data StorageBig changes are in store for big data in 2013, as companies increasingly adopt newer methods of data management and storage. Historically, the data storage field innovates slowly, with a low rate of adoption for change that hovers around 1 to 2 percent each year. Three technologies remain poised to change data management: solid state drives, Ethernet-based storage protocols and data virtualization. Storage professionals are finally starting to move on these fronts, upgrading infrastructure in 2012, in part to keep up with the ever-growing amount of information organized.

Thirty-one percent of IT organizations responding to Information Week’s State of Storage Survey 2012 reported managing over 100 terabytes (TB) of data. These higher amounts of stored data mean that some organizations may be faced with a dilemma: Upgrade hardware to store data or hire more staff to maintain growing data storage. While new technologies do make data safeguarding easier, managers still report worry about having adequate personnel to run applications that are critical to operations management.

Changes in Networked Storage

Ethernet-based networking is gaining popularity over the older Fibre Channel technology, largely due to the increased availability and lowered cost of 10 and 100-count gigabyte Ethernet (10 GigE and 100 GigE, respectively). The technology made wide adoption of Voice over IP (VoIP) and Storage Ethernet possible.

Ethernet networking, when combined with Network Attached Storage, makes an effective file sharing system that allows for automation of data management processes. Ethernet and NAS file storage technologies have a 46 percent year-over-year growth rate. Twenty-nine percent of Information Week’s storage survey responders reported using 10 GigE for their storage infrastructure. Notable in the storage world, the system offers a low cost of ownership, flexibility to meet varying system needs and rollout ease that allows organizations to get up and running with Ethernet storage quickly. This trend is popular in data centers and other organizations that require intensive data management.


Virtualization makes more efficient use of hardware, reduces overall hardware costs and means less sysadmin time spent on server maintenance. Although the technology has been around for time, it’s gaining traction. Twenty-four percent of survey respondents indicated an adoption of virtualization technologies in 2011, with across-the-board uptick in technologies related to virtualization.

Solid State Drives

Solid state drives and storage arrays are coming down in price, which paves the way for higher adoption rates. The drives, which remain in a solid state instead of spinning like traditional hard disks, offer increased stability for better data management. Just replacing a traditional drive with an SSD isn’t enough, however. Much of the older infrastructure was designed to work with spinning drives.

Solid state storage offers greater reliability, performance and lifetime than spinning storage media. Expect to see more solid-state storage devices coming to market to respond to the needs of this changing technology. This is definitely the direction that storage is headed in. While spinning media may have a worthy lifespan ahead of it, SSS offers greater data security and safeguarding over time because the equipment lasts longer.

Expect 2013 to bring enhanced reporting and analytics to all aspects of storage, to support the increasingly agile workflow. As data output slows somewhat, IT managers can stop reacting to growth and make better decisions to leverage resources for data management.

About the author: Dawn Altnam lives and works in the Midwest, and she enjoys following the business tech world. After furthering her education, she has spent some time researching her interests and blogging of her discoveries often. Follow her on Twitter! @DawnAltnam


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