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Storage predictions for 2015

Chris Poelker | Dec. 15, 2014
The technologies and trends in data storage that will impact your life in 2015

Think about that, even with current high speed 10Gb Ethernet cards in your servers, you can only move about 4.5TB per hour per link. In today's world, four Terabyte (4TB) is a typical capacity of a single enterprise disk drive, let's say your organization has about a hundred of them which need to be backed up.

100 x 4 =400 / 4.5 = 88 hours to back it up!

Even if you multiplex two connections, it's still 44 hours per 100 drives. Remember the Ethernet protocol was built for sharing files and objects, not blocks. This is why a SAN is still a good idea for data protection. The fibre channel protocol was built for moving large blocks of data fast. I see the traditional dedupe and backup solutions vendors adding 100Gb/s Ethernet or InfiniBand as the interconnect in 2015.

The physics of protecting large amounts of data will drive the adoption of protection as a service in the new data center. Continuous protection will be used to assure data is always protected for applications requiring stringent service levels. Everything else will be protected either by snapshots, or some form of geographic multiplexing of data objects for dispersion and protection (Erasure coding is an example).

In fact, the method of providing guaranteed performance and protection may become the deciding value factor in the solutions you choose in 2015. Other factors will be the ability to dynamically mirror or migrate data between storage vendors and clouds, the ability to dynamically move and track data to archives, and the ability to provide metadata about the stored data so it can be used as a big data source. The inclusion of snapshots and clones for test and development storage will be a given, as will be integrated multi-tenancy and security.  The best solutions will include storage abstraction and policy based intelligence, which I describe as a Data Services Engine (DSE)

Storage in 2015
Data services engine in 2015

Next steps
The advent of converged data centers into server node based building blocks will require a new way to architect how data centers are built, and in determining the value of a particular solution building block being procured. New standards for measurement in units of combined storage, network and CPU performance will need to be adopted. Current standards for measuring power efficiency units and floor space requirements need to be included. Let's define this unit of measurement as a DCE, or data center element. Data center elements can be combined together into racks to create a data center unit (DCU). The DCU becomes the modular building block for the next generation data center.


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