March 29, 2012, 3:45 PM —
The evolution of tech is all about replacing manual tasks with automation, which enables you to perform tasks that were impossible or impractical before. You're suddenly freed from mind-numbing manual configuration -- only to face a fresh load of complexity, as you confront shiny new buttons to push.
That's what has happened to storage. Today we have a vast array of options for host-to-storage connectivity -- each with their own pro/con list and constantly changing best practices -- and an equally wide number of on-array performance and capacity optimization software features. While deploying new storage may take a fraction of the time, knowing how best to deploy it in the first place often requires a lot more thought.
To get the most out of modern enterprise storage, at a minimum you need to stay on top of four areas: monitoring, benchmarking, application characteristics, and a shortlist of general best practices. Some of them are as old as storage itself, while others come courtesy of the increasing complexity to be found in modern enterprise storage tech.