Technology Tames the Data Deluge

Signs that the runaway growth of data being stored by organisations might be coming under control are revealed in new research published today in the latest edition of the Hitachi Data Systems Storage Index.

The new research, which is conducted biannually among a sample of 840 IT directors in 21 countries across Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), suggests that technology is finally taming the data deluge that has been swamping organisations in recent years.

What the latest Hitachi Index is showing, commented John Taffinder, Executive Vice President, Hitachi Data Systems EMEA, is that IT directors are looking for, and increasingly finding, solutions to the large amount of under-utilised storage within their networks.

The results show, he continued that storage management technologies which give IT directors much greater control over their storage environment are fast approaching universal deployment. This is the most likely explanation for the fact that the number of IT directors expecting data growth over the next 12 months has moderated from 75 per cent to 67 per cent.

Other evidence from the Hitachi Data Systems Index confirms that what underlies the change is more likely to be technological than economic, with IT directors also reporting that the pressure to reduce operating costs is actually declining as a driver for their storage investment decisions.

The march towards technological solutions is highlighted in several Index findings. The Index shows that the number of IT directors who believe they have storage management technology already in place has risen from 58 per cent to 70 per cent in the current Index and factoring in the future implementation plans anticipated, this number is predicted to reach 90 per cent within 24 months.

Looking to specific aspects of storage management technologies, the Index shows that scepticism about achieving open standards in storage which enable equipment and software from different suppliers to interoperate freely - is waning rapidly. The number of IT directors who are not confident about open standards being achieved within the next 24 months is down to just 23 per cent now from a figure of 38 per cent when the first Index was compiled. The optimists now total 47 per cent, up from 29 per cent in the original Index and from 39 per cent since the last Index alone.

There has also been a sudden jump in the latest Index among the number of IT directors for whom storage virtualisation the ability to pool any storage device from any vendor into what appears to be a single storage device managed from a central console - is the number one storage technology priority. This figure is up from six per cent of the sample, where it has been static since the Index began, to 10 per cent, with completed virtualisation implementations up from seven per cent to 15 per cent over the same period.

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