Friday, November 19, 2010

November I

When Facebook is down, our world comes to a virtual seems. This is what happened recently and here's the official answer about the reasons behind the outage. Facebook -as other companies- is struggling to contain and manage their data growth.
As this Gartner study shows, data growth (and related topics like archiving, data reduction techniques, storage consolidation) will remain IT's biggest challenges moving into 2011!

Moving from the future to the past: Linear-tape-open (aka LTO) celebrated its 10-year anniversary this month! LTO is also part of my past in the storage industry: I had the pleasure to initiate and co-author the very first release of the IBM LTO Redbook back in 2000! And after a quick research, some websites with that very first release of the book did surface!
The technology behind this very succesful architecture has not changed, the capacity certainly has: LTO 1 had a native capacity of only 100 GB, today, LTO 5 can store 1'500 GB und the LTO Roadmap shows LTO 8 with a planned capacity of 12'800 GB!

On the Microsoft side of the industry, there was recently an idea to repeat a procedure initiated in the eighties in the phone industry: Back then, splitting up AT&T into the so-called "Baby Bells" did not really improve service or costs for the consumers in the long run. Read here about a proposal to break up Microsoft into a number of "Baby Bills".

In terms of mergers and acquisitions, the past weeks brought the acquisition of 3PAR thru HP and Isilon thru EMC. What's next? Compellent (CML), Coraid, CommVault (CVLT), Riverbed (RVBD)?
Related to Scale-Out NAS, at IBM we do our own development (as you may remember, we already sell the SONAS product since about 10 months) and have recently published very detailed material on how we plan to grow this architecture into an even more scalable and flexible cloud offering which can span across the globe seamlessly. Details about "Panache" are available on the IBM Research website here.

And lastly, the 16 Gbps Fibre Channel standard is ready to roll: FCIA has announced the completion of the new standard and we expect products to hit the market in first half of 2011. Interesting detail is, that the 16 Gbps transmission will be based on a new encoding scheme: 8 Gbps was based on 8b/10b enncoding while 16 Gbps will use 64b/66b, so less overhead and much more usable bandwidth for data!
Major drivers for deployment of 16 Gbps technology will be server virtualization (hundreds of servers in one system!) as well as use of SSD technology in storage arrays.

Happy Thanksgiving!