5 Tips To Avoid Storage Installation Nightmares

How-To, Guides, & Tips    •   June 6, 2011

Storage Hardware Installation

So you’ve found a hardware vendor who understands your needs, sized an appropriate storage solution, and acquired signatures for the project. Now you can breathe a sigh of relief, right?

Not quite.

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IBM Tape Library TS3500

In the datacenter, the tape library is the ultimate lifeline to combat data loss and data corruption. Tape’s reliability with today’s LTO5 media and off-line status is essential, since tape isn’t as vulnerable to lightning-fast overwrites and corruption.

IBM’s recently announced expansion of the TS3500 Tape Library improves the capability of the IBM Total Storage Tape Library, allowing companies to improve their EMC, IBM, and NetApp environment’s backups and reliability.

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Creative Data: Facebook's Glowing Example [Video]

IT Budget Savings   •   April 26, 2011

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When IT departments face budget shortfalls for necessary capacity, sometimes the only way to bridge the gap is to change the way you think about your data. For some, it’s creatively using hardware and repurposing legacy equipment. For others, it’s managing the way data is stored by creating accountability and management at the user level. Regardless, getting the most out of your budget requires a thorough and creative examination of your business’ environment and asking—how can we do this more effectively and at a lower cost per terabyte?

Today, we went to share an organization that exemplifies the creative ways we help our customers repurpose equipment, get more TB’s for their budget, and do more with less. The company, Facebook, is no secret—but their lesser known Open Compute Project is an example of how a company can think outside of the box (and outside of the traditional vendor offerings) to get more computing power and more storage at a much more affordable price. Here's the video:

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SAN Upgrade

Replacing or upgrading your existing storage array can be a daunting task, since the performance and availability of your business applications hang on what system you decide to use.

Be sure to choose a system or system upgrade that accommodates both short term and long term strategies for growth. While there is no perfect choice as trade-offs exist in all storage offerings, there are several questions you can ask yourself to help guide you in the decision-making process.

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IBM DS4800 as a Disaster Recovery Platform

IBM   •   February 11, 2011

A disruption of your business processes could leave your entire business exposed. Today's companies face escalating customer demands and expectations—there is no room for downtime.

The goal of thorough disaster protection planning is to protect the applications that run your business and minimize unplanned downtime. However, one important consideration is that all planning for any type of a disaster-tolerant solution is always subject to balancing the solution versus the downtime versus the cost.

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Quality Assurance

The IBM DS4800 disk system, coupled with virtualization software, is an ideal platform for a stable, low- cost deployment for test, development, and quality assurance environments.

By deploying a solid virtualization platform on top of a DS4800 storage array throughout their development lab, companies can accelerate software project completion by increasing team productivity of their developers and testers, reduce hardware and administrative costs, and improve the quality of applications that are deployed in production.

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IBM DS4800 as an Archive Storage Platform

IBM   •   February 9, 2011

IBM DS4800

Data archives exist to protect older data that isn't regularly accessed for day-to-day business operations, but may need to be accessed for compliance, regulatory, or referential purposes. An effective archive approach is an integral part of every IT organization, and the IBM DS4800 storage array is an ideal box for a dedicated archival system.

The DS4800 can be fine-tuned and repurposed as an archive platform by utilizing EXP810s with SATA technology to maximize capacity and ensure that data is available for discovery during the full retention cycle.

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IBM EXP5060 At A Glance

IBM   •   January 27, 2011

The IBM System Storage EXP5060 is a 4U storage expansion enclosure (Machine Type 1818, Model G1A) for IBM DS5000 series storage controllers. The IBM EXP5060 is a high density enclosure that can hold up to 60 3.5" SATA drives and fits in a standard 19" rack. When connected to an IBM DS5300 or an IBM DS5100 the EXP5060 can intermix with EXP5000s to connect up to 448 drives. The IBM DS5100 and IBM DS5300 can be configured up to 480 drives by using only EXP5060 enclosures. By using 1TB SATA disk drives, this configuration can scale up to 480TB of raw storage.

IBM EXP5060 front and side views

60 Drives in a single 4U enclosure
The IBM EXP5060 (1818-G1A) high density storage enclosure provides high-volume data transfer and retrieval and can deliver storage functions for multiple drives to multiple hosts. Using hot-swap technology the IBM EXP5060 provides reliable service and ease of management by allowing replacement of drives without shutting down the system.

IBM EXP5060 inside view

By using IBM EXP5060 high desnity enclosures with the IBM DS5300 or IBM DS5100 storage controller, you can significantly reduce operational cost for high capacity applications and effectively reduce the space needed in your data center. By using high efficiency power supplies and variable speed cooling fans, the EXP5060 enclosures can significantly reduce energy costs and cooling requirements.

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5 Tips to Reduce Cost of a Disaster Recovery Build-Out

IT Budget Savings   •   December 8, 2010

A disaster recovery site build is a huge undertaking, with multiple points of financial risk that can undermine the project. This write-up discusses ways that you can reduce cost (December Specials Listed Here) and mitigate risk in your disaster recovery project.

Repurpose Equipment
Saving valuable datacenter space in your production location could fund 100% of your DR project. Consider moving, upgrading and repurposing development, testing or aging production equipment from your primary site to DR. This way you can bring in newer technology to the primary location and transition aging IT assets to the DR location. By doing so you not only reduce the IT capital expense of your DR project; you also free up data center floor space in your production location and provide an opportunity to refresh equipment at your primary location.

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EXP810s can be purchased new or used. Used EXP810s will allow you to save anywhere from $8,000-$15,000 per tray of disk depending on the make/model of the drives being supplied. This is great news for shops that need all the performance they can get - as adding more drives will boost I/O throughput.


As background, the IBM EXP810 - a 4Gbps disk expansion that holds 16 Fiber Channel or 16 Sata disk drives, is currently supported under the IBM DS4300, DS4500, DS4700 & DS4800 storage systems - and is being RPQ'd under the DS5000 storage array(s).

To be clear - the IBM EXP810 can be filled with SATA drives, but you will be required to purchase a fiber channel/Sata intermix kit if your Controller has both Fiber Channel and SATA drives. It's also important to know that SATA and FC drives cannot be intermixed within the same tray (EXP810) of disk.


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