Employee Perspective: How to Build a Thriving Storage Ecosystem

Infrastructure leaders face the daunting task of keeping up with the business at the same time dealing with a technology landscape that is changing at a relentless pace.

Gone are the days when the only thing we had to manage was the data center. Today’s businesses are demanding that infrastructure leaders orchestrate internal and external systems and services in an efficient and effective manner.

The one thing we can count on in our line of work is that everything in our environment will land into one of three system states:

  • Legacy systems – Those that you just can’t seem to get rid of. They are getting more expensive by the day and are distracting from other work.
  • Steady State – The core production systems that are running your business and need most of your attention.
  • Inbound Projects – The laundry list of requests for resources to support initiatives ranging from the well thought-out and resourced, to the unfunded science project that failed to account for any of the supporting infrastructure.

You can survive by hunkering down and holding projects at bay, but let’s face it; that is a very limited survival strategy. The other option is to chose to thrive by building an ecosystem that is designed to facilitate change. Position yourself as a pragmatic visionary that cannot only keep your infrastructure running but you can also leverage new technologies to deliver a dynamic and cost effective ecosystem.

Having seen many different people and organizations trying to solve the same problems over the years, I’ve come to the conclusion that a keen understanding of flexibility is something that all successful infrastructures leaders have in common.  By building an ecosystem that accounts for the smooth transition through the lifecycle, successful infrastructure leaders reduce operational friction, freeing up resources to support the emerging technologies. Having worked with and observed many successful infrastructure leaders over the years, I have noticed that even the best of them struggled with a lack of flexibility in their storage environments.   The industry has come along way with compute and network by realizing much of the flexibility potential that disciplines have to offer. Storage however, seemed to be held hostage by proprietary systems that had no interest of playing well within the ecosystem. Being a major line item in any budget, this lack of flexibility left most infrastructure leaders frustrated, me included. Then, along came Nexenta.

Nexenta is the global leader in Open Source-driven Software-Defined Storage- what we call Open Software-Defined Storage (OpenSDS). We uniquely integrate software-only “Open Source” collaboration with industry standard hardware-centric “Software-Defined Storage” (SDS) innovation.  The OpenSDS model finally gives infrastructure leaders the flexibility they need to deal with the onslaught of the hybrid-cloud revolution, Big Data and AI just to name a few.  Instead of guessing which legacy storage array (handcuffs) to buy you can now service the majority of your needs through a common and expansive product portfolio:

When we talk about flexibility, simplicity is often the key. Looking at what is needed to support the dynamic ecosystems, it’s important to understand that in it’s simplest form the majority of the data is going to land on block, file or object storage somewhere. With the OpenSDS model you can meet a wide variety of use cases by modifying the underlying hardware but still have common operations across all platforms. As your needs change the storage can be adjusted to accommodate those needs without a wholesale change to your infrastructure. Additionally, as you settle into your consumption and usage patterns you can tune the underlying hardware that best supports your use case. Nexenta’s SDS solutions are just in time to solve your problems, and are made for you.

-Rick Hayes, VP, Customer Service 

Posted in Uncategorized

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