Cloud Leads 5 Storage Trends for 2011

When 15 petabytes of data are created each day, the storage status quo doesn't have a chance. See how cloud will shake up enterprise storage in 2011, with this look ahead from two storage experts at IBM.

By Clod Barrera and Steve Wojtowecz, IBM
Thu, January 27, 2011

CIO — As 2010 progressed, a shift in data-storing methods began to take shape. With 15 petabytes of new data being created every day, and the volume of data continuing to grow, the ability to simply store data in a secure and easily-accessible manner presents a challenge for IT departments and vendors.

Traditional methods of storage are proving costly, inefficient and unable to keep pace with client needs; and new, more efficient and intelligent methods of storage are beginning to take their place. The new face of storage for 2011 will look something like this:

1. Storage as a Cloud Service Gains Momentum.

As the volume of data grows at an exponential rate—with sources like IDC predicting a growth rate of nearly 60 percent per year—we're beginning to see a variety of different cloud storage offerings become attractive, including private, public and hybrid models. All three offer enterprises large scale, better planning capabilities and more flexibility to meet unique user demands; but with growing concerns over the vulnerability of critical information on public clouds, the majority of investment this year will go to the private model.

In fact, Gartner predicts that Global 1000 IT organizations will spend more money building private cloud computing services through 2012 than they will on offerings from public cloud-computing service providers. As those customers begin to seek out vendors who can not only store their critical information safely, but can also manage and host their cloud environments, those vendors who are investing in the cloud now will come out on top in the year ahead.

2. Goodbye Storage Status Quo

For enterprises that are driving the shift to the cloud, one thing quickly becomes apparent: status quo won't do. Old processes of storing and managing information can't continue to support the new model. The increasing data deluge matched with the economic downturn is forcing innovation.

New solutions are appearing that integrate virtual storage with other virtual system elements to create fully virtual systems, and there is going to be an increase in software aggregation that will lead to large scale, high performance or high availability solutions for a lower cost. Customers are also going to be seeking improved system efficiencies with real time compression capabilities, de-duplication and data migration.

3. Converged Infrastructure

These solutions will lead to a converged infrastructure that is held together through service management software. As categorization and automated data placement are used to ensure the right resources are being applied to the correct business need, the demands on storage will only increase. Customers will seek vendors that can offer a layer of service management that is able to integrate with servers, storage, software and networking under one offering.

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