New research findings include:
The results of the In-Stat survey present an interesting juncture in the world of storage because many are predicting that cloud-based storage will supplement or replace on-premise storage, and others are claiming that cloud storage could never replace the security and speed found with on-site storage solutions.
While that argument rages on, one has to wonder about the true definition of NAS. In its most basic form, NAS is defined simply as network-attached storage where storage devices can be attached directly to a network and accessed via Ethernet. However, there's a lot more to NAS than just that. NAS is typically designed to provide access to files using traditional operating-system-based file access methods, making a bold plug-and-play simple and inexpensive for small networks.
Price and simplicity are probably the two primary factors that make NAS so attractive to small businesses. The same can probably be said for cloud-based storage. However, NAS in the cloud is not the only option available to small businesses today. There are, of course, storage area network (SAN) solutions that can provide low-cost and simple ways to provision storage solutions.
In the past, SAN solutions proved to be prohibitively expensive for most small businesses. However, the market has evolved with new players coming on board that can offer SANs at a fraction of the cost of the traditional large SAN vendors, such as EMC, Hewlett-Packard and Cisco.
I recently took a look at two smaller vendors that are offering SAN technology and a bit more at a very low cost when compared to the traditional tier-one vendors. Those two reviews clearly show that there is a trend in the SAN market to make storage much cheaper and provide the ability for onsite-based storage to compete with cloud-based storage based upon price and performance. If you're interested in taking a look at alternative SAN vendors before investing in NAS or cloud storage technologies, you might want to check out my reviews of offerings from Nimble Storage and Coraid. You just might be surprised at what you'll find.