A new paradigm for storage system

Tech July 24, 2012 00:00

By Trairatt Chaisamran

3,236 Viewed

In the world of enterprise business, IT is adopted to help businesses increase their productivity.


A variety of applications are deployed and linked to the enterprise’s database and storage system. The larger the organisation and more the number of branches, the greater the complexity of the IT system.
In the present IT environment, where every application works and runs concurrently, many organisations face a problem when some applications that have higher business priority are still queued in the bottleneck of the I/O system.
The situation can be compared to medical service in a hospital where there are patients with different levels of symptoms. Imagine a situation where doctors offered medical services only on a “first-come-first-served” basis instead of looking at the severity of the symptoms, causing patients in need of immediate attention to wait in the queue. It would have serious consequences. The problem, likewise, could also happen with the existing IT system.  
To tackle such a problem, many organisations have found a solution by increasing speed and accessibility by storing data of some applications separately. Even though this solution offers effectiveness on the matter, it brings a higher cost to the storage system while the overall problems remain unsolved.
Advanced technology is another factor that creates a loophole in the storage hardware system. As the microchip used for data processing hits “nanosecond” speed while the processing power in the storage drive works at “millisecond” speed, the system inevitably faces difficulty in data transfer in the drive’s I/O system. Expansion of storage is required even though the existing storage drive has not reached its full capacity.
The increasing number of drives makes the administration of storage system more complex. The growing internal operating cost on space expansion and energy consumption is also the following issue.
Administrating speed, capacity, and application priority in the storage system is critical. Each organisation needs to consider deploying an efficient storage solution that not only serves the storage’s workload but also is worth the investment. Today, the increase in storage drives is no longer the final answer to solve the problem as every additional drive also means rise in operational cost.
To better manage the storage system, the concept of Quality of Service (QoS) comes to play a significant role to help enterprises administrate the storage speed and capacity as well as specify application priority and its right of use.
Apart from managing the storage workload and application priority, the new method of QoS lets users determine QoS settings to maintain quality of service to best meet the requirements of business applications.
QoS provides dynamic flexibility, enabling business applications to be specified the quality of service for I/O sessions with a guaranteed minimal level of service. So, enterprises can ensure that all applications will get the service levels they require even though there are a mass of activities run on the system at that time.
It’s speculated that QoS will be an innovative solution that will change the face of the world’s storage system, allowing business enterprises to make best use of storage resources to serve the real requirements of business applications.
Trairatt Chaisamran is general manager of First Logic.