by clicking on the page. A slider will appear, allowing you to adjust your zoom level. Return to the original size by clicking on the page again.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider on the top right.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field and click on "In This Issue" or "All Issues" to search the current issue or the archive of back issues respectively.
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
this publication and page.
displays a table of sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays thumbnails of every page in the issue. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse through every available issue.
GCN : August 2014
Future data centers will need a storage rethink STORAGE IS a constant in any discussion about data center design, but it often gets pushed to the periphery and comes up only when other things have been settled. But next-generation data centers will be responsible for handling far higher data volumes than they do now, and storage is a key issue. In the past, it s been relatively easy to simply throw extra storage capacity into a data center as needed by adding new disk drives. Current demands on data centers, however, such as the IT-as-a-Service that clouds provide, are rapidly making traditional stor- age systems obsolete. Newer storage infrastructures must scale almost without limit, said Eric Slack, an analyst at consultant Storage Switzerland. On top of that, they need to be extremely exible, ef cient, economical and consistent. "Combining the workloads generated by different users or applications from different departments [or different organizations] on the same infrastructure is particularly demanding of any shared storage envi- ronment," he wrote in a recent blog post. Storage supporting the next-generation data center needs to expand on-the- y, be con gured for each user and then recon gured as often as neces- sary, he said. Additionally, it needs to be ef ciently managed and provide consistent performance daily, and "that s not something current-generation stor- age systems can do." Data centers will need storage architectures that place data close to the compute resources when it s needed, said Daniel Bizo, an analyst at 451 Re- search, and then move it to low-cost storage when it s not, and do this without human intervention or complex management settings. That sounds simple enough, he said, "but doing that ef ciently at scale is a nontrivial engineering challenge." One emerging technology trend that could man- age that is the convergence of server and storage systems, both physically and logically, Bizo said. So, expanding the shared storage complex into the server layer through managed shared caching or tiering is one answer. Another is "full convergence," in which compute resources and shared networked storage are collapsed into, and controlled on, a single physical system. In theory, these hyper-converged systems should provide a good modular approach to the next- generation data center with the added advantage of simpler management. Instead of needing separate management regimes for servers, storage and vir- tualization, you can manage one thing. And you get extra capacity and performance by simply adding more hyper-converged appliances. They are not at the right point now, Bizo said, be- cause they are somewhat limited in the exibility of compute-to-storage ratios. But he thinks advance- ments in interconnect technology, such as Intel s recently announced silicon photonics, which could provide compute-to-storage data transfer speeds of between 25 and 50 gigabits per second, will break down the current physical limitations of hyper-con- verged systems. They could then be able to scale to capacities as high as 1 petabyte per node, he said. Slack believes that spinning disk drives, even ones as fast as the current generation, won t be fast enough for next-generation data centers, particularly for the storage that will be needed close to the com- pute resources. Drives made with solid-state ash storage, which has improved enormously in both price and reliability, will provide the answer. • FOR THE FULL REPORT, GO TO GCN.com/CDWGNextGenDataCenter Get More Online... More Next-Generation Data Center Report Articles: Agencies seek boosts in ef ciency, performance Next-Gen designs: Custom or generic? Agencies look to a software-de ned future The modular data center gets some traction SPONSORED REPORT: SNAPSHOT NEXT-GENERATION DATA CENTERS