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Deconstructing islands of SANs

LAS VEGAS - Companies now have islands of SANs and want to bring that back down to a single unified view, said Bob Schultz, senior vice-president and general manager of HP StorageWorks during a keynote speech at the Americas StorageWorks conference.

Another problem is over-provisioning and buying more storage than is really needed. Poor provisioning can result in data utilization as low as 44 per cent, the real issue is about money. “How do I shift money spent on infrastructure to money spent on innovation?” he said.

In the enterprise space, we’re seeing the consolidation of data centres, which includes both servers and storage, said Parag Suri, category business manager for HP Canada’s StorageWorks Division. And partners can bring technologies to the table for managing this infrastructure in a unified way, he added. “As a company we’re working with partners to solve the entire data centre problem instead of [doing it] piecemeal.”

In the SMB space, more small and mid-size businesses are acquiring storage products for backup and recovery. “I’ve never seen small businesses so concerned about backup before,” he said. “It’s great news for dealers.”

He also sees opportunities for dealers in the utility computing space, which is catching on in the mid-market. Partners will be able to work in conjunction with HP, he said, on developing financial instruments and metering technology for pay-as-you-go models.

Companies are now viewing “insight” as an asset, and looking for insight into their organizations. “I don’t hear a lot of people in IT talking about it,” said Tom Baylark, president of TnP Consulting. Too many vendors think they can pump information into repositories and provide access to it, but that’s not enough – they have to refine it into something that’s usable, he said. The value of information lifecycle management, he added, is it allows you to incubate new business models, validate business strategies and develop proactive and reactive models.

Warner Bros., for example, is turning to an advanced storage strategy to store its intellectual property, from classics like “Gone with the Wind” to Bugs Bunny cartoons, which have started to deteriorate on film.