Using the F5 Acopia ARX for Automated Storage Tiering
sponsored by F5 Networks

The amount of file data in the enterprise is growing at unprecedented rates. In addition, data is being retained for longer periods of time due to business and regulatory constraints. While not all this data is critical to the day-to-day business operations of the organization, it must all be stored, protected and remain readily accessible should the need arise.

These factors pose a significant problem for IT organizations who, very often, have limited visibility into the data. Information Lifecycle Management (ILM) offers a solution, but many ILM approaches are not easily integrated with deployed technologies. Consequently the majority of file data is being stored on general purpose Network Attached Storage (NAS). This leads to a number of challenges:

  • High costs. While not all data merits the same storage capability in terms of its value to the business at any moment in time, IT groups are forced to provision to the highest common denominator.
  • Inefficiencies. A general purpose storage tier is not necessarily optimal for a specific dataset or business or application need.
  • Unmanageable backup and recovery windows. As the amount of data increases in the general purpose storage tier, so too do the backup and recovery windows.

ILM - the management of information as it changes its business value throughout its lifecycle - promises to address these issues. However, the reality is that ILM initiatives are often derailed or slowed due to the associated complexity and proprietary nature of the various vendor approaches.

Intelligent file virtualization is able to match the business and application needs with storage capability without many of the limitations associated with traditional ILM approaches.
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