Storage Optimization

What’s Next for Online Storage

Posted in Featured,Storage by storageoptimization on February 4, 2009

Pete Steege has a post today that rightly alerts us to the next wave of storage capacity demand–fatter network pipes, which, as he puts it, “beget fat storage.”

Also worth noting today: The NY Times is reporting that Netflix is taking a step closer to an “any movie, any time” model. 
Plenty to consider in the upcoming storage crunch.

2 Responses to 'What’s Next for Online Storage'

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  1. Pete Steege said,

    Read today that less than 20% of healthcare companies are digitally compliant. Wonder if fatter pipes creates an opportunity for an enterprising SaaS company?

  2. storageoptimization said,

    Yes. A couple of things are conspiring to make cloud storage – or SaaS – a cost-effective solution for specific verticals. It’s not just that pipes are getting fatter, but also storage optimization – data type specific dedupe and compression – means that specific file sets, such as those for medical images, genomics, and health records – can be deeply reduced in size at the customer side before being moved over the pipe. This saves on both bandwidth and, of course, on the storage it takes to store all that stuff and get compliant. Different markets have different requirements – medical images need to be encrypted (they are patient data) and vendors like Iron Mountain Digital have end-to-end cloud storage services that manage everything from the encryption to the movement of data, and tracking the integrity of it over time. Other data sets, like genomics research, is often intended to be shared – so no encryption – but the files can be huge, and sharing them is a lot more feasible if you can make them 66% smaller before sending them. My view, in the long run, is that the cloud and storage optimization go hand in hand – the vendors who field successful Storage-as-a-Service offerings will have intelligent content-aware compression and dedupe built in to both the client side and the storage data center in a way that a) makes it more possible to move large amounts of data over networks to remote storage locations and b) delivers on the promise of cloud storage, which is that a cloud vendor can store nearline data for a lot less money than you can by buying storage yourself. Because they are starting with a clean sheet of paper as they design their storage data centers, the cloud / SaaS vendors can build new architectures that leverage commodity building blocks and deeply integrated storage optimization as integral elements of what they offer.

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