Storage vendors of every stripe have been feverishly working to hitch their wagons to the server virtualisation juggernaut. Going far beyond the basic integration and certification activities that one would expect for support of a popular application, storage products are integrating management functionality and working to develop other ways to distinguish and differentiate their VMware support.
Stories by Jim Damoulakis
Survey after survey indicates that interest in and adoption of storage virtualisation is increasing. But I cringe a bit when I see those surveys, because it's often impossible to determine what the numbers really tell us. How does each respondent define storage virtualisation?
Evidence is mounting of a growing cynicism regarding green initiatives within the IT infrastructure space. We may be reaching a point where vendor hype has hit saturation point and is beginning to meet with customer resistance. While there is a genuine concern about datacentre power consumption, particularly with regard to accommodating increasingly dense technology footprints, the larger concern for most, particularly in the current climate, is controlling costs.
Somewhere near the top of the list of activities that storage people like doing least is data migration. Slow, time-consuming, and often scheduled at convenient times such as 3am Sunday morning, it has to rank up there with tasks like disaster recovery testing and SAN reconfiguration. To make matters worse, the process often seems to be a prime candidate for Murphy’s Law, often exceeding scheduled windows or needing to be rolled back and rescheduled due to unforeseen problems.
If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it. Some may argue that there are exceptions to this truism, but backup/recovery is not one of them. While there is certainly a growing effort being made to measure backup success rates, this metric alone is not sufficient to signify a healthy backup environment. While success rate is one important risk indicator, additional risk metrics, along with other efficiency and service-level metrics, are necessary to build a true picture of backup health. Here are a few more metrics to consider: