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Making sense of consolidated storage

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Consolidated storage offers a number of important benefits that makes both business and operational sense.  Forming an integral part of a streamlined IT infrastructure, consolidated storage, for example, sees companies moving their disparate, piecemeal direct attached-storage (DAS) systems to one where an iSCSI RAID is used to provide disk capacity to multiple servers through an IP-based storage area network (iPSAN).

This consolidated approach is easier to administer, freeing up important IT personnel time while the risk of business disruption, as a result disk capacity, is also minimised.  
"Indeed, with RAID technology data will not be lost, and business operations will continue uninterrupted, when a hard drive fails," comments Rajen Naicker, Adaptec product specialist at Drive Control Corporation (DCC).
Importantly, consolidated storage using RAID technology is faster as it uses multiple hard drives in parallel to provide increased performance.
And adhering to the increasing demand for consolidated storage, DCC now offers the Adaptec Snap Server 700i range of iSCSI storage appliances to the South African channel.
The series, which delivers up to 36TBs of capacity using any combination of SAS and SATA drives, is optimised for Linux, VMware, or Windows servers.
Optimising companies' consolidation efforts, the Snap Server 700i spreads data over multiple disks, permitting disk operations to be performed in parallel.
Furthermore, the appliances are easy to manage as they are Microsoft Simple SAN Component compliant and ship with automated setup wizards that reduce setup time.
The system features hot-swappable fans and power supplies to improve reliability.  The hard drives are also hot-swappable and driven by the Adaptec RAID controller, which in turn enhances protection and reliability.
Explains Naicker: "The Snap Server 700i allows companies to move their isolated storage, residing on individual servers, to a consolidated, IP-based system.
"The benefits are numerous with server performance increasing as operations are spread across several disks. Reliability is enhanced through the use of RAID disk technology and redundant components such as power supplies and fans. And storage can be flexibly allocated to servers on the IP SAN without having to take the servers down."
The Server 700i Series storage systems are 1U rack mount units that contain four hot-swappable 250GB, 500GB, or 750GB SATA II hard drives for a total capacity of 1TB, 2TB, or 3TB.
A unit is also available with four hot-swappable 300GB SAS drives for a total capacity of 1.2TB. Capacity modularly can be enhanced by using up to eight 2U Adaptec SANbloc S50 expansion chassis, each of which houses up to 12 hot-swappable drives, to reach total combined capacities as high as 36TB.