Mark Peters, an analyst with Enterprise Strategy Group (, says:

What do enterprises need to know about getting the most from their existing storage system?

• Clearly, what are their aims and objectives – for example are they seeking the fastest or the lowest cost? That’ll be a function of the business – it’s type and it’s relative health
• Find out some basics – allocation levels, what flexibility you have (contracts and applications may tie you), how much you’re spending on power, etc.

What are the benefits and pitfalls?

• Long term streamlining fro a thoughtful approach is so much better than ‘ this is just what we ended up with after no planning for X years’!
• A common pitfall is to only look at sticker prices as there’s a) a recession on that leads to ‘deals’ and many products (SSD is a great example) can deliver a lot more bang in the right use-case even though the buck looks big on a simplistic cost/GB analysis. Secondly, it would be a mistake to do this whole exercise once only – it needs to be repeated regularly
• Do not Assume that all data is equally valuable – it seems obvious but many users still have one tier and one service level for everything!

• The toughest thing to do is start! Make a decision to do it!