Survey: Businesses struggle with interoperability

One in four businesses is struggling with a lack of integrated or interoperable storage solutions, according to a survey issued by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA).

Entitled Storage Management, Where Are We Now? the report also found certification and testing were perceived as significant barriers for a business wishing to adopt new technologies to escape the situation.

SNIA A/NZ chairman, Garry Barker, said although the interoperability issue had been around for many years, it had worsened as more installations embraced multiple storage technologies.

"[In response], SNIA has developed the Storage Management Initiative Specification [SMI-S] to enable storage administrators, operators and planners to manage mixed environments without some of the very struggles highlighted in the survey," he said.

One in six survey respondents also matched the profile of a user struggling with storage asset management and infrastructure, with respondents identifying increased multi-vendor interoperability as offering the most help, the report stated.

"The idea of machines not being able to connect to each other has not totally disappeared as a problem," Barker said. "But such problems are now more the exception than the rule, largely thanks to the early work of SNIA in its technology labs.

"Most vendors are also embracing the SMI-S, so that it becomes manageable to have multiple types of different technologies on the floor, hence reducing cost and complexity."

Barker said that the storage industry had, in more recent times, recognised the value of disk and tape storage virtualisation as a primary means of simplifying storage tasks with some vendors now providing virtualisation capabilities.

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