IT is rife with examples of how new technologies resulted in the law of unintended consequences being applied. The latest example of this could very well be software-defined storage.
According to Sanbolic CEO Momchil Michailov, as more IT organizations become familiar with software-defined storage, they are going to rely less on proprietary storage solutions, which come loaded with magnetic and solid-state disks that have been marked up significantly in terms of pricing, in favor of acquiring software that allows them to dynamically build storage solutions using commodity magnetic and solid-state drives (SSDs).
That approach, says Michailov, will drive the cost of storage down to about two and a half cents per IOP from the five to six dollars per IOP that the average IT organization pays today.
Michailov says this phenomenon is already being played out in organizations such as Google that have invested millions of dollars in commodity storage. Most enterprise IT organizations have not been able to develop the same expertise themselves, but with the advent of software-defined storage offerings such as the Sanbolic Melio file system, it becomes a lot easier for IT organizations of any size to deploy commodity storage.
Just how big a threat this proves to be to companies such as EMC and NetApp remains to be seen. But Michailov says as awareness of software-defined storage continues to grow, it will soon become a purely economic discussion.
Even storage administrators who are conservative and resistant to change will soon be willing to adopt new approaches that promise to deliver storage at much less cost when the demand for data storage begins to drastically increase.