Unified storage solutions have been a boon to IT administrators bombarded with a plethora of storage protocols over the past decade or so. But there are a number of traps you need to be aware of to make the most out of the technology, according to this article in Enterprise IT Planet.
Chief among them is the assumption that SAN and NAS capacity will grow at an equal rate, which those of you who have both formats in place can attest is not the case. With NAS being the more expensive proposition, it often serves as a second tier to the more adaptable SAN. If you're not careful, you could wind up paying for increased NAS capacity that you don't need.
There's certainly no shortage of options when it comes to implementing unified storage environments. RelData recently unveiled Version 2.0 of its RELvos virtualization operating system, delivering high-speed IP SAN and NAS storage services and WAN data replication aboard the 9000 Series appliance. The package can be tied to the 9240 storage gateway that matches the NetApp V6070 in performance at a fraction of the cost.
Hosting services have a new solution aimed at their specific needs in BlueArc's Titan 2000. The diskless server system offers the ability to boot Windows servers directly, without a hard drive, freeing up IT staff for other duties.
A somewhat different approach to unified storage is available from EqualLogic. The company has developed a NAS gateway for Windows Storage Server that lets you consolidate and scale data within an iSCSI SAN, even while integrating file services with Windows, Unix, Linux and Apple systems. The company claims its approach overcomes the limitations of having to scale SAN and NAS environments simultaneously.
Unified storage systems are likely to become increasingly popular as storage requirements grow and become more varied. It also makes it easier for enterprises that have already invested in NAS technology to leverage it a little further.