Home > Articles > Networking > Storage

  • Print
  • + Share This
This chapter is from the book

Implementing a Storage Vision

Now, more than ever, companies are adopting storage networks as fundamental building blocks of a storage vision that addresses the capacity, utilization, and management issues related to data storage. This broader strategy or vision is designed to:

  • Reduce the overhead associated with providing storage solutions

  • Maximize critical business continuance capabilities

  • Increase the performance and flexibility of the overall data storage infrastructure

A storage vision begins with the migration to storage networks, and proceeds with the decommissioning of DAS. A storage vision also requires the classification of environments into tiers and the creation of a service-level framework to measure the efficacy and performance of storage-related deliverables. A storage vision culminates in the ability to provide storage services in a utility-like fashion. The net effect of a storage vision is an overall lower TCO for storage.

The need for low-cost, highly-available storage solutions, coupled with the high demand for long-distance replication functionality (spurred by legislation and security concerns), has helped to increase sales of Fibre Channel (FC) storage networking and optical transport products. This increase in product sales occurred even as disk revenues fell dramatically in 2001 and 2002. The management burden of DAS and the difficulties of managing heterogeneous storage on an FC storage network have led to an increased interest in IP storage networks. It is the belief of some vendors that a strong Fibre Channel infrastructure facilitates the adoption of Internet Small Computer Systems Interface (iSCSI), Fibre Channel over IP (FCIP), and IP over Fibre Channel (IPFC).

The soft economic climate of the last three years has fostered the realization that not every application requires five-star accommodations. Application environments are now consolidated to conserve resources. Likewise, business processes are now modified to provide service-level management (SLM) frameworks that match an application's needs to the most appropriate and cost-efficient storage solution. Service-level management is an increasingly important concept in storage management, and, as shown in the case studies in Part II, "Case Studies," SLM forms the framework around which solid storage visions are currently built.

Five years ago, the typical IT department was asked to provide the most expensive server and disk solutions for every conceivable array of applications. At that time, it was customary for IT departments to provide storage capacity based on poorly scoped application requirements. Then, it was acceptable for IT to serve strictly as a cost center. Those days are over. Now, the focus is on cutting costs at a time when legislation and competition actually create new requirements and drive increased costs. In addition, data storage is growing at such a rate that cutting costs without a storage management strategy is almost impossible.

To understand the importance of a storage vision, it is necessary to look at broader trends in the market. An analysis of the overall storage and IT spending rates for the last several years is illustrative of the current storage management headache facing today's IT decision maker.

Irrational Exuberance

It is no secret that corporate spending on information technology hardware, software, and services has slowed dramatically in recent time. If the drop-off in IT spending was dramatic, the run-up previous to the decline was equally spectacular.

No doubt, times have changed and just as electronic commerce and web technologies have matured, business leaders now understand the importance of value case analysis, and are returning to Net Present Value (NPV) and return on investment (ROI) as methods for validating new IT investments.

The "irrational exuberance" in the securities markets of the late 1990s, noticed as early as 1996 by Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan, presented significant hurdles to planners, analysts, and those in charge of charting the path of the U.S. economy.6 This exuberance was fueled in part by Y2K and in part by the multi-million dollar IT budgets burning a hole in the pockets of both Fortune 500 companies and start-ups alike. These firms together shared the collective aim of gaining both a long-term boost in productivity and a competitive edge in the marketplace. The churn-and-burn mentality of the start-ups and dot-coms led to massive capital purchases, inflating the revenues of almost every high-tech company in the value chain.

Table 1-2 clearly shows that one of the primary areas to benefit from exuberant IT spending during this time frame was external disk storage, as highlighted by the increases in vendor revenues between 1999 and 2000.

Table 1-2 Worldwide External Disk Storage Systems Non-OEM Factory Revenue ($M) and Units, 1999-2003 (Source: IDC, 2004)7

Worldwide External Disk Storage Systems Non-OEM Factory Revenue ($M) and Units, 1999-2003

 

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

 

$M

$M

$M

$M

$M

External Disk Storage Systems

$13,591

$13,097

$17,195

$21,751

$18,141

Units

398,978

439,412

566,157

648,121

577,823


These figures are sufficiently eye-opening in that they highlight the marked increase and then sudden decline in overall revenues. Aside from highlighting a precipitous drop in margins, the unit numbers in Table 1-2, coupled with the percentage of DAS sold worldwide during the same timeframe (as shown in Table 1-1), indicate that there is a mountain of DAS currently deployed.

NOTE

As shown in Table 1-1, 87 percent of supplier revenues in 1999 and 78 percent of supplier revenues in 2000 were from sales of DAS solutions.

As is well documented by now, the "damn-the-ROI" mentality prevailed in IT spending until a series of events accelerated the well-known recent economic downturn.

Macro Sources of Economic Downturn

With capital spending trending downwards, many firms began to report disappointing revenues in late 2000 and early 2001. Of those reporting declines, arguably one of the most significant was Cisco Systems.

On February 7, 2001, Cisco Systems missed its quarterly earnings estimates for the first time in almost three years. Cisco Systems, technology bellwether, and long-time advocate of the virtual close-a process that allowed earnings snapshots to be retrieved at any time to provide guidance to its leadership-came up short of analysts' per share expectations for the second quarter of fiscal year 2001. The subsequent write-down of $2.2 billion worth of Cisco inventory sent shockwaves through its supply chain and had a deleterious effect across the industry.8 Companies in many sectors questioned their capability to forecast sales and profitability, shareholders suffered, and visibility into U.S. economic recovery became even murkier.

On September 11, 2001, terrorists attacked the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, killing almost 3000 people. The New York Stock Exchange, NASDAQ, and AMEX exchanges were closed for four days. An already shaky U.S. economy found itself against the ropes, and the United States prepared for a multi-front war. Subsequent foreign intervention (in Afghanistan and eventually Iraq) dampened hopes that an economic upswing was imminent, and six cuts in the federal fund rate (one each in the remaining months of 2001 after the September 11 attacks, and one each in 2002 and 2003), shown in Figure 1-1, indicated that the Federal Open Market Committee (the Federal Reserve) saw little sign of economic revival, equally thwarting hopes of a recovery.

Figure 1Figure 1-1 Federal Fund Rate Cuts Since January 1, 2000

NOTE

On June 30, 2004, the Federal Open Market Committee raised the federal fund rate by one-quarter of one point—its first rate hike in four years.

Data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis highlights the effect of decreased spending for electronic hardware on the U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) during the period in question (shown in Figure 1-2).9

Figure 2Figure 1-2 Electronic and Electric Equipment Manufacturing Contribution to U.S. GDP 1992-2001

Analysis of the effects of economic growth related to the "New Economy" began in October, 2001, when the McKinsey Global Institute released its study titled "U.S. Productivity Growth 1995-2000." This study indicated that although IT spending increased between 1995 and 2000, IT was just one of several factors (including innovation, cyclical demand, and competition) contributing to U.S. productivity growth during this time frame.10

Some point to this "productivity paradox," as it has come to be called, as highlighting the failure of corporate spending on IT products and services to lead to a tangible increase in sustained output of U.S. companies. Although this point is debatable, what is clear is the subsequent decrease in profits for major storage and server vendors, indicating the commoditization of both the disk and the host.

NOTE

Whether or not the economic downturn was officially a recession, there seems to be little doubt at this point. In July, 2003, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) issued a report stating that the last U.S. recession ended in November, 2001. The NBER's Business Cycle Dating Committee, which tracks the timelines of U.S. business cycles, pinned the length of this most recent recession, which began in March, 2001, at eight months, three less than the post-World War II average of 11 months.11

  • + Share This
  • 🔖 Save To Your Account

InformIT Promotional Mailings & Special Offers

I would like to receive exclusive offers and hear about products from InformIT and its family of brands. I can unsubscribe at any time.

Overview


Pearson Education, Inc., 221 River Street, Hoboken, New Jersey 07030, (Pearson) presents this site to provide information about products and services that can be purchased through this site.

This privacy notice provides an overview of our commitment to privacy and describes how we collect, protect, use and share personal information collected through this site. Please note that other Pearson websites and online products and services have their own separate privacy policies.

Collection and Use of Information


To conduct business and deliver products and services, Pearson collects and uses personal information in several ways in connection with this site, including:

Questions and Inquiries

For inquiries and questions, we collect the inquiry or question, together with name, contact details (email address, phone number and mailing address) and any other additional information voluntarily submitted to us through a Contact Us form or an email. We use this information to address the inquiry and respond to the question.

Online Store

For orders and purchases placed through our online store on this site, we collect order details, name, institution name and address (if applicable), email address, phone number, shipping and billing addresses, credit/debit card information, shipping options and any instructions. We use this information to complete transactions, fulfill orders, communicate with individuals placing orders or visiting the online store, and for related purposes.

Surveys

Pearson may offer opportunities to provide feedback or participate in surveys, including surveys evaluating Pearson products, services or sites. Participation is voluntary. Pearson collects information requested in the survey questions and uses the information to evaluate, support, maintain and improve products, services or sites, develop new products and services, conduct educational research and for other purposes specified in the survey.

Contests and Drawings

Occasionally, we may sponsor a contest or drawing. Participation is optional. Pearson collects name, contact information and other information specified on the entry form for the contest or drawing to conduct the contest or drawing. Pearson may collect additional personal information from the winners of a contest or drawing in order to award the prize and for tax reporting purposes, as required by law.

Newsletters

If you have elected to receive email newsletters or promotional mailings and special offers but want to unsubscribe, simply email information@informit.com.

Service Announcements

On rare occasions it is necessary to send out a strictly service related announcement. For instance, if our service is temporarily suspended for maintenance we might send users an email. Generally, users may not opt-out of these communications, though they can deactivate their account information. However, these communications are not promotional in nature.

Customer Service

We communicate with users on a regular basis to provide requested services and in regard to issues relating to their account we reply via email or phone in accordance with the users' wishes when a user submits their information through our Contact Us form.

Other Collection and Use of Information


Application and System Logs

Pearson automatically collects log data to help ensure the delivery, availability and security of this site. Log data may include technical information about how a user or visitor connected to this site, such as browser type, type of computer/device, operating system, internet service provider and IP address. We use this information for support purposes and to monitor the health of the site, identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents and appropriately scale computing resources.

Web Analytics

Pearson may use third party web trend analytical services, including Google Analytics, to collect visitor information, such as IP addresses, browser types, referring pages, pages visited and time spent on a particular site. While these analytical services collect and report information on an anonymous basis, they may use cookies to gather web trend information. The information gathered may enable Pearson (but not the third party web trend services) to link information with application and system log data. Pearson uses this information for system administration and to identify problems, improve service, detect unauthorized access and fraudulent activity, prevent and respond to security incidents, appropriately scale computing resources and otherwise support and deliver this site and its services.

Cookies and Related Technologies

This site uses cookies and similar technologies to personalize content, measure traffic patterns, control security, track use and access of information on this site, and provide interest-based messages and advertising. Users can manage and block the use of cookies through their browser. Disabling or blocking certain cookies may limit the functionality of this site.

Do Not Track

This site currently does not respond to Do Not Track signals.

Security


Pearson uses appropriate physical, administrative and technical security measures to protect personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.

Children


This site is not directed to children under the age of 13.

Marketing


Pearson may send or direct marketing communications to users, provided that

  • Pearson will not use personal information collected or processed as a K-12 school service provider for the purpose of directed or targeted advertising.
  • Such marketing is consistent with applicable law and Pearson's legal obligations.
  • Pearson will not knowingly direct or send marketing communications to an individual who has expressed a preference not to receive marketing.
  • Where required by applicable law, express or implied consent to marketing exists and has not been withdrawn.

Pearson may provide personal information to a third party service provider on a restricted basis to provide marketing solely on behalf of Pearson or an affiliate or customer for whom Pearson is a service provider. Marketing preferences may be changed at any time.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information


If a user's personally identifiable information changes (such as your postal address or email address), we provide a way to correct or update that user's personal data provided to us. This can be done on the Account page. If a user no longer desires our service and desires to delete his or her account, please contact us at customer-service@informit.com and we will process the deletion of a user's account.

Choice/Opt-out


Users can always make an informed choice as to whether they should proceed with certain services offered by InformIT. If you choose to remove yourself from our mailing list(s) simply visit the following page and uncheck any communication you no longer want to receive: www.informit.com/u.aspx.

Sale of Personal Information


Pearson does not rent or sell personal information in exchange for any payment of money.

While Pearson does not sell personal information, as defined in Nevada law, Nevada residents may email a request for no sale of their personal information to NevadaDesignatedRequest@pearson.com.

Supplemental Privacy Statement for California Residents


California residents should read our Supplemental privacy statement for California residents in conjunction with this Privacy Notice. The Supplemental privacy statement for California residents explains Pearson's commitment to comply with California law and applies to personal information of California residents collected in connection with this site and the Services.

Sharing and Disclosure


Pearson may disclose personal information, as follows:

  • As required by law.
  • With the consent of the individual (or their parent, if the individual is a minor)
  • In response to a subpoena, court order or legal process, to the extent permitted or required by law
  • To protect the security and safety of individuals, data, assets and systems, consistent with applicable law
  • In connection the sale, joint venture or other transfer of some or all of its company or assets, subject to the provisions of this Privacy Notice
  • To investigate or address actual or suspected fraud or other illegal activities
  • To exercise its legal rights, including enforcement of the Terms of Use for this site or another contract
  • To affiliated Pearson companies and other companies and organizations who perform work for Pearson and are obligated to protect the privacy of personal information consistent with this Privacy Notice
  • To a school, organization, company or government agency, where Pearson collects or processes the personal information in a school setting or on behalf of such organization, company or government agency.

Links


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of each and every web site that collects Personal Information. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this web site.

Requests and Contact


Please contact us about this Privacy Notice or if you have any requests or questions relating to the privacy of your personal information.

Changes to this Privacy Notice


We may revise this Privacy Notice through an updated posting. We will identify the effective date of the revision in the posting. Often, updates are made to provide greater clarity or to comply with changes in regulatory requirements. If the updates involve material changes to the collection, protection, use or disclosure of Personal Information, Pearson will provide notice of the change through a conspicuous notice on this site or other appropriate way. Continued use of the site after the effective date of a posted revision evidences acceptance. Please contact us if you have questions or concerns about the Privacy Notice or any objection to any revisions.

Last Update: November 17, 2020