Rob Commins, vice president of marketing, Tegile Systems (, says:

Today, database administrators are under pressure to speed transaction response time as well as reduce latency – but they’re under pressure to do it without breaking the bank.

If you are in this situation, one option is to look at using hybrid arrays, which can often deliver similar performance to all-solid-state arrays, but at a fraction of the cost when measured on a dollar per GB or TB basis.

Here’s why:

The requirements of thin provisioning, deduplication and compression are becoming standard check-box items in the enterprise storage system market. But the impact of these features on the performance and ultimate cost of an array is dramatic. While it sounds counter-intuitive, deduplication and compression can actually increase performance. When these data reduction tools are implemented in front of the storage system’s cache resources, applications’ data reduction factors become multipliers to how much data can reside in cache, thus boosting cache hit ratios and ultimately increasing performance.  Other operations, such as a storage system’s metadata processing, RAID operations, and snapshot mapping are also a major performance factor. Implementing a system that minimizes the impact of these overhead functions can produce impressive results.  The end result is the ability to optimize both performance and capacity, whereas these have traditionally been either-or tradeoffs.

For certain data sets, such as database indexes and logs or even entire databases, the ability to ‘pin’ them into a high performance SSD pool is an important capability. This function allows the DBA to dictate which data sets should be held in SSD; eliminating the risk of a performance hit from accessing data on rotating media. 

Why are these points important?

IT organizations are implementing server virtualization, desktop virtualization, shared databases and file services — all of which not only demand high capacity storage, but also high performance storage that can handle multiple concurrent applications. Advances in data reliability, protection and efficiency, such as RAID, compression and de-duplication, also demand better performance. As a result, database administrators need to rebalance the key requirements (capacity, performance, compatibility, usability (fit for purpose), reliability, data protection and value for money) for storage in order to maintain an efficient IT infrastructure that supports critical business operations and applications.

Look for a system that combines a Redirect on Write (ROW) file system with metadata acceleration technology. This combination is really the holy grail of storage – bringing high performance, high capacity and high reliability together at a low cost. This architectural approach coupled with best in class data protection features, results in the most reliable infrastructure at a price that doesn’t break the budget.