When was the last time you gave your storage solutions an in-depth and thorough review? Whichever enterprise storage solution you use for your organization, it’s important to make sure that the brain of your operations is working smoothly and data is flowing where it’s needed, when it’s needed.
Continue reading to learn some tips for examining the performance of your enterprise storage solution.
How to Perform a Storage Solution Checkup for Your Enterprise
1. Check the Backup Process. Have you noticed that your storage is slower during certain times? The cause could be connected to how you are backing up your data. Check to make sure that your database admins (DBAs) are not using your enterprise’s primary storage array to back up performance logs. These jobs should be done on less critical secondary storage.
Backing up your data on primary storage affects the storage solution in a couple of ways. Not only do most backup operations involve massive writes, but backup to primary storage also defeats the original purpose of backup: high availability and rapid recovery. If something happens to your primary storage system, backups stored on that device may not be available or salvageable for recovery.
2. Brush up on Best Practices. Be honest here, are you following all the enterprise storage best practices? When was the last time you updated your drivers? Are you using the vendor or industry recommended best practices with other features? If you are making sure that your backups are being performed on secondary storage, and are still experiencing slowdowns, there is a chance that not following the best practices for your storage hardware and/or software is the culprit. Understandably, it is not hard to fall out of line with the best practices with all of the hardware and related components in a data center environment. In many cases, you may need a refresh or carve out some time to analyze performance to bring your storage solution back into compliance. Even small changes, like updates to drivers, can make a difference in storage system performance.3. Check the Data Center Components. As more cutting-edge storage technology becomes available, it’s important to ask yourself if your enterprise’s current IT environment can function with the new bells and whistles. What are the network switches? Does the network have enough bandwidth to manage data transfer to and from the storage solution at optimal speeds?
The bottom line is that storage is only as fast as the weakest link. No matter how much speed the storage system offers, consider flash storage, the network bandwidth available may not match the speed of the storage. For example, some storage systems may require 40 GbE in order to operate at peak performance. This means the surrounding network switches will need to accommodate 40 GbE as well. If your components do not meet the requirements, you will need to upgrade them so they match what is required.
4. Check Storage Space. When was the last time you checked the storage space? Sometimes issues that arise with your storage have nothing to do with the equipment itself, but instead are caused by a lack of space for new data. Don’t let this happen to your enterprise. Performing regular storage checkups will help you stay on top of any storage shortages that may be in your future and allow you to plan accordingly. While small storage systems may have attractive initial pricing, remember one thing—nobody shrinks a storage footprint—they always grow it. If your first instinct is to focus solely on storage cost, you may end up regretting it when faced with a costly upgrade a lot sooner than anticipated.
If you perform these four checks on your enterprise storage solution regularly, you will be much better equipped to find and correct any potential issues before they arise. Need help wading through any of the steps above or finding the right storage solution for your enterprise? WEI has a team of storage solution experts that can find the answers for your unique enterprise needs; contact us today to learn more.
Get more information about managing storage performance with our white paper: Enterprise Storage Checkup