In the fourth quarter of calendar year 2002, Aberdeen’s Storage and Storage Management practice conducted a Web survey of IT departments regarding storage trends that are expected to emerge in 2003. The respondents selected for analysis were IT executives, including CIOs, CTOs and managers of IT departments.

New Storage Management Tools — This Could Be the Year

Storage resource management (SRM) is a little further along the maturity curve; thus, 27.5 percent of the respondents rated putting in place storage resource management software as a high-level action, and another 30 percent rated it as a medium-level action. A total of 57.5 percent together for high- or medium-level actions is a positive indication of a high level of interest.

That interest also extends to SAN (storage area network) management (which may or may not be clearly distinguished in the mind of the respondent from SRM). Putting in place SAN management and/or a storage management framework is a high-level action item for 30 percent of the IT managers and a medium-level action item for another 17.5 percent.

Contrast SRM adoption with two technologies that have been around for a while: remote mirroring and point-in-time copying. IT managers say that adopting or extending remote mirroring is a high- or medium-level action for 52.5 percent of them and adopting or extending point-in-time copy is a high- or medium-level action for 47.5 percent. Providing connections to system management software is a high- or medium-level action item for 52.5 percent of IT managers. Adopting new backup/restore software is a high-level action item for only 15 percent of the IT managers, but another 30% percent consider it a medium-level action item.

When asked if they planned to expand current SANs, 52.5 percent of the respondents said that it was a high- or medium-level action item, but the other 47.5 percent either did not plan to expand or did not have a SAN to expand.

Only 15 percent of the respondents stated that implementing their first SAN is a high-level action item. Another 27.5 percent consider it a medium-level action item. Therefore, in total, only about 40 percent are candidates for implementing a new SAN, whereas about 60 percent are not.

Whether expanding current NAS configuration(s) or implementing an NAS configuration that they did not have already in place, the answer was the same: 40 percent said that they considered it a high- or medium-level action item.

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