With the huge generation and transmission of data, organisations continuously face challenges in handling structured and unstructured data. Also, the storage and management of bulk data are complicated and time-consuming.
Storage virtualisation in such circumstances helps facilitate easy backup, and recovery within less time. Go through the complete article to learn the meaning, challenges, prospects, and benefits of storage virtualisation.
What is Storage Virtualisation?
Storage virtualisation is also known as software-defined storage or a virtual SAN (Storage Area Network). Here data is pooled from numerous physical storage devices making them available as a single virtual storage device.
The integration of different storage hardware from multiple networks, clients, and data centres and converging them into one storage device; improve the overall implementation, returns, and economy of an organisation.
Companies are stepping towards adopting storage virtualisation as it helps manage the scattered data through a single pane of glass, enabling flexibility and scalability of stored resources.
Key Benefits of Storage Virtualisation
From the storage virtualisation meaning, it is obvious that the technology helps manage a large amount of data. Also, it is important as the requirement for companies for data storage will continue to increase exponentially with each passing year. The key benefits of storage virtualisation are as follows:
- Presents better space utilisation and storage options for unorganised data and resources.
- Offers easy management of huge data enabling proper location and compiling.
- Enhances the data backup by enabling snapshots of storage resources.
- Provides an easy copy of data from one appliance to another at any specified location.
- With a centralised system to manage numerous clients and vendors, storage virtualisation helps preserve time as well as money.
- Allows migration of data to be completed quickly with fewer or no barriers to the movement.
- Creates better workflows by eliminating multiple arrays for data storage with a central console
- Reduces the need for hardware for storage, making it an easier and cheaper option for storage.
Major Challenges of Storage Virtualisation
The major challenges linked with storage virtualisation are as follows:
- Managing the different software and hardware can get difficult when there are several hardware and software elements.
- Storage systems need frequent upgradation to meet the challenging nature of applications and huge data.
- Despite the ease of accessing data with storage virtualisation, there is always a risk of cyber-attacks and various cyber threats in virtual environments. That is, for the data stored in virtual machines, data security and its governance are the major challenges.
- Amongst the various vendors delivering storage virtualisation solutions, it’s important to find a reliable one. As many a time, it happens when vendors provide storage solutions but ignore the complexities of backing up virtual storage pools.
- Similarly, they fall in situations when there is a need for immediate recovery of data in case of hardware failure or any other issue.
- Storage virtualisation, at times, can lead to access issues. This can be if the LAN connection is disrupted, or internet access is lost due to some reason.
- There comes a time when there is a need to switch from a smaller network to a larger one, as the capacity of the current one is insufficient. The migration process is time-consuming and can even result in downtime.
- Additionally, problems like more significant data analysis, lack of agility, scalability, and more rapid access to data are the common challenges companies face while selecting storage solutions.
Prospects of Storage Virtualisation
Despite being sceptical of security challenges for data storage using cloud-based storage options, companies are opting for virtual storage options. Azure is widely used in the race for virtual storage, followed by Amazon AWS Storage and Google Cloud Storage.
Other leading storage virtualisation providers are AWS, IBM, VMware, Lynx Software Technologies, Citrix, etc. Virtual storage providers have further revolutionised the storage demand by delivering highly scalable solutions and storage and process options.
Thus, the choice of an appropriate virtual storage system help organisations secures their time and money along with ideal vendor support, high performance, and security options.
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