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Sans Storage Arrays Are Self Contained Systems

SAN storage arrays are self-contained disk systems, providing excellent data handling capabilities in an efficiently organized system. This technology is a marked step beyond the traditional method of managing data, which is maintaining a disk attached to each server on the network. In effect, a company can consolidate its disks into a single, logical setup. This is naturally much easier to manage, so network admins can backup data more easily and keep data from becoming fragmented, which is a common issue with individually managed disks.

What is the difference between SAN storage arrays and NAS systems?

Network attached systems, also known as NAS, are connected to the network using a standard Ethernet protocol, which means NAS systems are subject to slowdowns and other issues if a network is stressed. NAS systems only allow file level access as well, so when data is retrieved from the system, it has to pass through the extra overhead, slowing it down a bit. Still, NAS systems are an ideal solution for companies that don’t require elite data transfer speeds and don’t want to spend a lot of money on a system.

SAN storage arrays are not just another device on the company’s network. Instead, these disk systems connect all of the company’s storage subsystems to each other using highly sophisticated Fibre Channel protocol. Fibre Channel offers elite transfer speeds, and units attached to each other in this way can be accessed so quickly that they are practically linked physically. In fact, people on the network may not even notice the overhead that typically comes with data backup, as the system is extremely quick. The only drawback with Fibre Channel is that it is a relatively new protocol, so manufacturers sometimes implement the technology in ways that aren’t compatible with each other. However, with its current 4 Gbps speed (experts believe Fibre Channel will eventually offer transfer speeds of up to 10 Gbps) and flexibility (Fibre Channel can be used with optical fiber and coaxial cable), it is quickly replacing SCSI protocol.

Though it may not be something users or company owners think about, network administrators want to control where their company’s data goes physically. With physical control over the business’s data, a network admin can prioritize data and keep it organized so that a network admin always knows where it is. These systems offer block level access, so IT professionals won’t have to fight the system to get the access they need.

As businesses grow, they have to consider their data organization more often, and more seriously. In enterprise applications, companies often choose NAS and SAN systems to operate on their network. The NAS can handle lower priority data and data that is accessed less, while SAN storage arrays can maintain data that needs to be accessed frequently and quickly. With smart organization like this, a business will be able to get the most out of its data.

NAS Storage Arrays Are An Affordable Storage Solution

NAS storage arrays are a popular option for businesses that need to add onto their data handling capabilities, and to do it without exploding an IT budget. These devices are dedicated entirely to maintaining one or more drives, each of them capable of holding hundreds of GBs of data. It is, compared to traditional servers, a rather simple device and can be managed even without the help of an IT expert. And because it is accessible through the company’s network, anyone with authentication can access the company’s data from anywhere, as long as they have a connection. It’s this extra accessibility, in addition to the impressive data handling, that makes these devices a top choice for businesses of any size.

Why should businesses consider NAS storage arrays over desktop storage?

Any business that grows beyond a few workstations will soon find that data management can be a major chore without the right tools. One of these tools is a device dedicated to maintaining the company’s hard drives. By centralizing the company’s data, it will be much more accessible to all employees, allowing them to operate from multiple workstations or locations at once. It will also ensure all data is current. One of the problems with splitting up data handling over multiple devices is that multiple copies of the data may exist in varying states. It’s common for employees to accidentally save over existing data or use data that is no longer relevant to the company’s needs. This is a waste of time, and something that is easily rectified with NAS storage arrays.

These devices are much less expensive than upgrading to a new set of servers, which is what some companies do when they need to scale up their data handling capabilities. Instead, businesses should consider attaching one of these devices to the network, as they are extremely scalable and only need extra drives as the business’s data handling needs increase. In fact, most systems offer hot swapping capabilities, so new drives can be plugged in without bringing down the network.

Fault tolerance is a significant concern for companies, as a single error can destroy an entire reservoir of data if it is not backed up and protected properly. NAS storage devices are designed with sophisticated fault tolerance software or hardware, like RAID. With RAID, data can be written to multiple drives simultaneously, so if one drive fails, other drives can take over and provide data without loss of stability. And because such devices act like a private cloud for the business, they are easy to secure against outside threats.

Eventually, a business is going to have to organize and monitor the way its data is handled. These devices are a natural, low cost and low effort solution that can provide excellent storage capabilities for many years.

3 Good Reasons To Use A HP NAS Server

HP NAS server solutions are ideal for the ever changing storage needs of enterprise level and large businesses. NAS (network attached storage) combines optimized software and HP rack mount and blade servers to create the industry standard for network storage technologies. NAS utilizes a collection of connected hard drives via a network. These networked drives allow multiple computers on the network to share storage space at the same time. State of the art, high-end storage that will grow efficiently with unstructured data storage requirements. Unstructured data consists of large files such as video, graphics, sound, documents, email, and backups. Any combination of these can form vast volumes of collected data that needs high-speed access. Cost-effective file-server solutions are available that will serve a company’s needs today, and far into the future. Meeting the challenge of consolidating large amounts of data are Hewlett-Packard’s network attached storage solutions. They suit changing IT environments while reducing costs, simplifying file handling and resource utilization, as well as implementing data security.

Ease of Use

HP NAS server storage solutions are designed and implemented to assist a business’s efforts to address storage challenges associated with the rapid expansion of content. The need for secure, efficient data storage, as well as fast access to information only increases over time. The server infrastructure must perform efficiently, reliably, and most importantly be scalable to match organizational growth, long into the future. Network attached storage takes multi-application processing capabilities to the next level, enabling a firm to share large volumes of a variety of data with multiple users on a network, with easy and efficient access.

Cost Reduction

Since an HP NAS server offers cost-effective upgradable storage solutions for mid-size to large companies that require affordable shared storage. They are ideal for the budget conscious IT department. The architecture of network storage is such that it is a robust design for expanding a firm’s existing investment in storage technology. Upgrading does not require adding larger, more expensive servers, just the seamless addition of extra hard drives. The implementation of used or refurbished servers offers additional savings. SourceTech offers, along with new products, high-quality used equipment that is thoroughly examined, cleaned, tested, and restored before marketing.

Data Security

By the simple addition of another drive in the HP NAS server, it is possible to expand available space on the network, when and if it is needed. Since these systems typically have more than one hard drive installed, they create logical, reliable, redundant storage backup. The result is greater data protection and recovery in the event of a catastrophic disk failure.

Companies that seek to take full advantage of HP NAS server options should consider partnering with a storage solutions firm that has a thorough understanding of current server technology and system environments. Firms such as SourceTech can implement established methodologies and help design or upgrade a storage environment that facilitates growth and decreases costs while keeping files secure, therefore reducing the risk of data loss.

Storage Arrays

Sun Storage ArrayThe more a business grows, the more data it produces and maintains, which means storage arrays will eventually become a necessity. At first, when there are only a few people working for the company, it’s possible to tie everyone to a single, large hard drive and pull data from it. It’s not the fastest solution, but it can work when there aren’t many people involved. Before long, though, the business will need specialized hardware to handle data writing and protection. This should be considered an investment, however, because adding the hardware will boost productivity significantly, and ensure there is a safety net in place in case the worst happens.

What is the purpose of storage arrays?

Simply put, this equipment consists of a series of disks housed in a chassis built for the purpose of keeping them safe and operating at peak capacity. This system groups the disks together so that they form larger units, which means they can logically approach data reading and writing with little drop in performance. So, a series of 100 GB disks can operate like a single disk several hundred GB in size, writing huge swaths of data that can be quickly retrieved when needed. The system controller can also read or write from multiple disks at once, so it can handle a greater number of data transfers and requests from users all over the network. This is the essential element of the system, as multiple people accessing a single large disk, or disks not maintained by a controller can bring the system to a screeching halt. So, not only does this hardware offer a deep reservoir to place the data, it makes it possible to access it in an expeditious manner.

Another essential function of storage arrays is the data protection they offer. As data is one of the company’s most important assets, security is a top priority, and because these systems are private, they are much easier to secure. And with RAID protection, a company won’t have to worry about the stability of their data. Hardware or software-based RAID comes in many varieties, but its primary purpose is to improve data management or provide redundancy. With some forms of RAID, the data is written to multiple disks simultaneously, so if one disk fails, the data can be retrieved from another disk seamlessly. With RAID, it’s even possible to weather two disk failures at once.

There are multiple brands that offer excellent storage arrays, though Hitachi, NetApp and EMC are the current leading brands. All three brands can handle hundreds of drives while maintaining peak performance, which is enough for even big data applications, such as institutions that run simulations or maintain real-time financial data. These brands also provide hot-swappable capabilities, so drives can be removed and plugged in without having to bring the system down.

And like network servers, storage arrays are available in a refurbished option. Refurbished hardware offers the same reliability and lifespan that newer models offer, but at a greatly reduced cost and with custom features the business requires.

If a server is the brains of the operation, these systems are its heart, channeling data where it needs to go and ensuring it is managed with maximum efficiency.