Putting a Different Spin on Storage

Michael Vizard

Somewhere along the line IT organizations allowed the storage to, no pun intended, spin out of control. As part of an effort to apply storage technologies ranging from Fibre Channel and iSCSI to any number of types of disk drives on the other, the end result has been the deployment of a lot of storage architectures that are all wrapped up somewhere by a proprietary API.

And even though storage vendors not too long ago pledged to change this state of affairs when they collectively announced support for an approach to content addressable storage (CAS) that would create standard interfaces as a derivative of an open source effort called Project Honeycomb, nothing much has changed. IT organizations still throw storage hardware at every application and hardly anybody has an intelligent approach toward optimizing the storage of data based on the real performance requirements of any given application.

And worse yet, IT organizations can't readily redeploy storage between applications because each application has been tied to a specific set of proprietary storage APIs.

Seven10 is out to change all that with a StorFirst EAS file system that installs on top of Windows Server. That file system reconciles the management of all the different storage protocols for any given application, thereby making it relatively simple to redeploy any given storage asset for use with any application. That level of flexibility is going to be critical as IT organizations look to reuse storage assets as the data requirements for any given application continue grow and change.

According to Seven10 president Robert Moulton, the biggest issue that IT organizations face today when it comes to storage is not the technology, but rather bad habits about how they use and deploy storage assets that have been conditioned into them for the past two decades. But Moulton is certain that with the advent of virtualization and tough economic conditions that require reexamining all things IT, a new era of intelligent storage management where we stop treating all data equally is now here to stay.

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