The storage consolidation journey Part 1

Consolidation is not only about relocating storage hardware to one central location, focusing on saving money, or serving as a one-time event; storage consolidation is also about doing more with less. At HP, consolidation is an ongoing process, one that addresses the entire IT environment – people,

processes, and technology. Consolidation is about making the IT environment more effective, efficient, and agile.

Consolidation impacts three basic business values: cost, service level, and business flexibility.

Each of these values is important to business success.

Cost savings are achieved through consolidation by:

  • Increasing disk capacity utilization from the typical 50 per cent or less to 80 per cent
  • Reducing the number of near-line (tape/optical) devices needed by 50 per cent to 75 per cent
  • Reducing staffing costs by up to 80 per cent – the single largest IT cost component
  • Reducing the number of required servers

Service levels are improved through consolidation by:

  • Centrally monitoring and proactively managing storage
  • Increasing performance and availability
  • Adding new disaster recovery capabilities

Business flexibility comes from consolidation by:

  • Faster time to application deployment
  • Scaling capacity and backup without impacting applications
  • Providing a stable foundation to react quickly to business demands

Why consolidate?

An organization cannot control its business environment, but it can manage how change is handled –as long as the IT department is agile enough to anticipate or react to new opportunities driven by a continually and dramatically changing marketplace. To be agile, a company needs an adaptive IT infrastructure that provides continuous and secure operations, is managed automatically and intelligently, and optimally uses resources.

Consolidation allows finite resources to be used in an adaptive manner to achieve efficient and flexible IT services.

IT consolidation is not a one-time event, but a journey, a series of stages, each adding a layer of sophistication. Each organization ’s journey will be unique. A particular company may be starting the consolidation journey at the beginning, or they may have already traveled part way down the consolidation road. For example, a company may move to consolidate core worldwide enterprise applications such as SAP, Oracle databases, and e-mail directly, while also driving consolidation of operations to a central location from separate remote data centers.

Each stage of the consolidation journey addresses different business issues, and results in a different blend and size of business benefits.

Distributed storage

For years, organizations have relied almost exclusively on the traditional DAS architecture. In this architecture, stora

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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