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Storage Resource Analysis (SRA): Part 9

The end result

Continuing the blog posts on Storage Resource Analysis (SRA), this will be the final post. This post focuses on the end result of running an analysis in our Storage environment.

Read the entire series of posts on Storage Resource Analysis (SRA):

Part 1: Storage Resource Analysis and Storage Economics

Part 2: The IT — Storage World of 2009

Part 3: The IT — Storage Budgets of 2009

Part 4: Some Fundamental Questions

Part 5: Facts about your Data

Part 6: Inconsistencies in Storage Environments

Part 7: The Technical Case

Part 8: The Business Case

Part 9: The End Result

In this blog post we will try to wrap up some important things we discussed in the previous blog posts.

Here is how Storage Analysis of your Infrastructure help you

  1. Reduce CAPEX
  2. Reduce OPEX
  3. Reduce Total Cost of Ownership
  4. Not spend CAPEX for implementation
  5. OPEX savings should pay for analysis by achieving efficiency and higher utilization
  6. Immediate ROI
  7. Make sure your numbers are not some arbitrary numbers; they have to be real dollars, not a 5 year plan to consolidate your assets, remember the word Immediate ROI.
  8. Understand how much you will be paying at a front end of the deal, understand how much you will be paying as an ongoing cost, understand how much upgrades will cost, understand how many resources you will need to deploy (hardware, software, licenses, training, manpower), understand how reporting works, etc
  9. Gain operational efficiency
  10. Process should be agent less
  11. Should work Cross platform (EMC, HDS, NetApp, 3Par, IBM, HP)
  12. Data should be collected during business hours, it should be light weight, more or less not require change controls.
  13. Data should be collected possibly from the least numbers of places (host) but get a full representation of the host environment as well as storage environment.
  14. Don’t try to analyze your environment based on what someone else is using, rather see what best fits your environment based on your business processes, rules and needs. Do not just evaluate an OEM operational tool; idea is to look beyond it.
  15. PB’s of storage should be analyzed within hours, not months.
  16. Minimum Training
  17. Maximum Drill Down for Reports
  18. Reports for various folks within an organization like Storage Operators, Storage Admins, Host Admins, Storage Managers, Infrastructure Managers, CIO’s Office.
  19. Check how your Configurations are setup in your environment
  20. Check how your tiering is setup in your environment
  21. Check for inconsistencies
  22. Check for reclamation

So the above might help you get much closer to your possible goals of 2009, “DO MORE WITH LESS”.

Storage Analysis is not something you should run once, but as an organization establish a team of engineers who are responsible around increasing efficiency and utilization of your storage environment. Don’t forget your storage is between 30 to 35% of your IT budgets. Better efficiency will help you save millions on the front end (CapEx) and millions on backend (OpEx).

The “PRACTICE OF STORAGE ECONOMICS”, which seems to be a big thing every OEM is jumping on to these days, should be followed within your organization.

It has to be made a Practice, not just a onetime reclamation exercise. Best example, we live in our house and how often do we clean it, repairs, ongoing work to make it better every time. Storage is the same way, it needs work.


We have been talking to a large manufacturer here in the US. They have in excess of 10 PB of Storage. During our initial meeting with them about Storage, they mentioned how they have been able to successfully implement a plan in their organization for Storage Reclamation which has helped them reduce millions of dollars in Storage purchases. Also on the other hand, due to the Storage economics practice, they have managed to increase their operational efficiency in storage and thereby reduce their OpEx, again savings which would account for millions.

Really happy talking to these customers, that they are not driven by an OEM to just purchase new storage, but rather their internal practices help them achieve what they target for.

What are your experiences with Storage and have you implemented a Storage Economics practice within your organization?

About the author

Devang Panchigar

With more than 7 Years of IT experience, Devang is currently the Director of Technology Solutions and IT Operations at Computer Data Source, Inc. Devang has held several positions in the past including Sr. Systems Engineer, Sr. Network Engineer, Technical Support Manager, Director of Storage Support & Operations. He has been responsible for creating and managing worldwide technical support teams, technology solutions team, operations management, service delivery, pre and post sales support, marketing and business planning. In his current role Devang oversees multiple aspects of the Technology Solutions Group that works with various Multinational and Fortune 500 companies providing them infrastructure services. Along with various industry certifications, Devang holds a Bachelor of Science from South Gujarat University, India and a Master of Science in Computer Science from North Carolina A&T State University.

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