The Business Situation
Today, businesses are using – and saving – more data than ever before. Recent studies indicate that the amount of data being retained by most companies is growing at a rate of 70-80% per year. Add tp that, natural and man-made disasters, new government regulations, and the never-ending requirement of reducing costs – IT departments are being asked to do more with less.
The IT Challenge
One element driving the increase in storing and managing information is the priority placed on IT to improve business efficiency and competitive position. In addition, government regulations requiring the long term retention of critical data are causing tremendous growth in storage infrastructure. Unstructured data (documents and images) is another prime contributor to information growth. Unlike traditional database related information, which is stored in rows and columns of, unstructured data may include anything from a mortgage application to a patient x-ray. This is arguably the fastest growing type of data, with projected annual increases between 120-200%.
Regardless of format, all corporate data should have a defined “lifecycle” and defined value. The lifecycle needs to be established in relation to how the information travels through an organization, from inception to archiving, and ultimately to its removal. Ensuring that data is online and available whenever and wherever it is needed, is the most critical concern for everyone who manages corporate IT.
However, aligning price and performance with the value and priority of all corporate information is not only challenging, but often unrealistic. As a result, in order to simplify operations and ensure that established service levels are met, most IT departments deliver a single class of high performance, high-availability storage for all of their data.
Unfortunately, this is neither a cost effective or sustainable IT strategy.
The dcVAST Solution
dcVAST engineers work with organizations to define and align the elements of price, performance, and functionality, with the requirements of supporting various classes of information, and their associated value. This approach of defining the specific lifecycle and value of stored data is called Information Lifecycle Management (ILM), and includes the concept of “tiered strorage”.
We realize that no two operations are identical. Our methodology for addressing your tiered storage requirements incorporates a proven five-step process:
- Assessing the current situation
- Designing the right solution
- Implementing the new infrastructure
- Supporting the infrastructure and its use
- Managing the storage environment
Our vast array of storage options includes primary storage solutions such as SAN (Storage Area Networks), NAS (Network Attached Storage) and DASD (Direct Access Storage Device). Additional storage options include backup and recovery technologies such as magnetic tape, virtual tape libraries, optical storage, and physical off-site storage.
We begin the migration to a tiered storage infrastructure with a dialog between dcVAST IT Solution Architects and the customer’s IT staff and the business unit managers. This discussion helps to classify the level of importance of the entire organization’s applications and information.
Making the move to tiered storage is not a one time event or a reaction to a temporary problem. It is a long term strategy for the management of storage and its infrastructure. Implementing tiered storage saves money, paves the way for continued efficiency, and improves the alignment between business needs and IT budgets. When done well, tiered storage becomes a critical element to the success of the organization. We also provide other storage management services such as Data Archiving and Data DeDuplication.