Essential technologies for improved storage efficiency

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As the world becomes more interconnected, instrumented and intelligent, more and more information is created. This influx of information creates both challenges and opportunities. Companies must build smarter information infrastructures that can handle all of this information and manage it intelligently. IBM has invested billions of dollars developing smart storage solutions that embody a set of essential technologies: virtualization, thin provisioning, deduplication, compression and automated tiering that will enable you to manage the influx of information and unlock new business opportunities.

Storage virtualization

In many IT departments, increased user demand has led to haphazard storage growth, resulting in sprawling, heterogeneous storage environments. These environments make it difficult to achieve optimal utilization and to provision storage capacity for new users and applications. Storage virtualization can put an end to these problems. It enables companies to logically aggregate disk storage so capacity can be efficiently allocated across applications and users.

Thin provisioning

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Companies need more flexibility than ever before and must be able to react to changes in the marketplace, customer behavior and their business processes. To maintain this level of flexibility, organizations must be able to deploy new applications quickly, which places a great burden on storage infrastructures Thin provisioning provides a way for organizations to optimize the utilization of available storage by allocating storage space as needed from a shared pool.

Data deduplication

As companies continue to create more and more information, backups become more difficult and more costly. Most information that is backed up isn't unique but rather a copy of the original. Data deduplication can help ensure that information is stored only once. By eliminating redundant data, organizations can ultimately increase agility and improve responsiveness to changing marketplace conditions.

Data compression

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Companies are currently challenged to reduce the storage footprint of their primary, active storage. Addressing this challenge is essential because efficiency improvements in primary storage can improve efficiency for downstream data copies and backups too. Real-time data compression is the latest innovation in primary storage optimization technology. According to initial IBM findings, this capability can shrink data up to 80 percent before it is written to the storage system, improving efficiency for both the disks and storage system cache.

Automated tiering

Automated tiering can help reduce costs and improve access times by storing information more intelligently. Information that is searched for and accessed more frequently can be automatically moved to faster solid-state drives (SSDs) while information that is seldom used is moved to less expensive disks. This technique helps produce faster search results, minimize management overhead and reduce the cost of storing information.

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