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Is Storage the Ancient Artifact in Your Modern Data Center Strategy?

Many customers we have spoken to are frustrated with their next generation storage options. While data center solutions have been advancing rapidly, storage technology has struggled to keep up. Big data, social media, and media-rich data has been expanding and evolving at an incredible rate. Meanwhile, legacy storage systems have become more and more fragmented and complex trying to keep up with it all. While, software-defined architectures, virtualization, and open source initiatives like OpenStack have improved the flexibility and responsiveness of data center operations, the storage industry has stubbornly languished behind. It is still very common for data center managers to find themselves using traditional, proprietary, inflexible storage solutions in their otherwise modern architectures. These purpose-built storage solutions are often tailored to specific usage scenarios, meaning different platforms must be used for different workloads. In order to support many different types of applications, infrastructure managers are forced to maintain many different types of storage, creating silos of data that are increasingly difficult to access, manage, and scale as business needs change.

It’s time for a more modern kind of storage.

New scale-out storage that uses an open-source Ceph engine offers a compelling way to modernize your storage architecture. Not only is it versatile, combining new object-based storage with traditional file and block storage, it also supports true exabyte scaling. Ceph provides data protection choices at the object-level – casting off hardware RAID protection that struggles with larger and larger drive sizes. This means it is easier to integrate, launch, manage and grow, enabling you to focus more time on managing your data rather than how its stored. It is also hardware flexible, allowing multiple types and brands of storage media to be installed in one shared storage chassis. This makes it easier to upgrade capacity and performance as workload requirements shift over time. With its multi-workload features and open scaling, of the days of complicated upgrades and content migrations become a thing of the past.

It should be easy to migrate from your existing legacy storage.

Traditional array migrations are notoriously costly and complex. While migrating data without loss is not easy, with the right storage partner it can be surprisingly easy to migrate from legacy arrays to the latest scale-out solution. The key is choosing the right technology and supplier. Making a good choice will make all the difference.

Here’s what you should consider when making the change:

  1. Choose Flexibility First: Just like the other parts of your software-defined data center, flexibility is the key part of storage to provide lower TCO. The best storage solutions make it easy for you to convert from legacy storage. Find systems that support multiple media types, multiple interface types, and are configurable per workload.
  2. Embrace Openness: Be sure it is truly open. You don’t want to get locked into another proprietary system. Open means that the storage solution utilizes commercial off the shelf (COTS) hardware. It also means that is uses open source storage software. The storage world is fundamentally shifting, and you don’t want to be “that guy” who overpaid for Solaris when the world went Linux.
  3. Ask for Directions: I know it’s hard, but you really don’t want to wander around lost in the changing storage landscape. You need a team with experience to help you navigate from current (often fractured) storage environments and pull it all together under a single multi-workload platform. Make sure your partner can provide on-site engineering support and has documented procedures in order to make the conversion process go smoothly. Ask for references and meet the team that will do the work on-site.

Follow these simple suggestions and you can prevent storage from becoming the weakest link in your data center strategy.

Aquari Storage’s open-scale storage solution is an easy to deploy, high-performance storage solution for enterprises. Our platform makes storage simple and provides companies with a way to store all of their data in one place. Concurrent is a trusted advisor to defense, telecom, aerospace, automotive, healthcare and energy companies.