by May 5, 2003 0 comments

Sampath Kumar is today in the same situation as CIOs in many medium-sized enterprises in India who have purchased storage in an ad-hoc manner and often as an after-thought after servers were procured. 

The company has a backup policy in the sense that every day incremental backup is taken in DAT and at the end of the week a full backup is carried out. But this distributed storage backup is becoming increasingly difficult to manage. 

Avijit Basu
Marketing Manager, 
Network Storage Solutions, 
HP India

Today, media management is an issue and human errors can also crop up. The backup window is increasing and due to environmental conditions, the media can get spoilt in which case it might 
not be possible to restore backed-up data when it 
is required. 

Plus the chairman and other business heads want updated sales, billing and production data on a daily basis. And government regulations make it mandatory to have archived data available quickly. As the data grows with business, Sampath also needs to access online data faster. Also, his IT infrastructure has to be more robust and always running. At the same time Sampath knows that he cannot ask his chairman for a large investment. 

After discussions with the Business Heads on the current and future requirements as he realizes that the following are required:

  • Customer relationship management will be required 
  • The current MRP will be required to be augmented to enterprise-wide resource planning 
  • Some of the key personnel individual data need to be protected 
  • Data is becoming critical to be one up against competition 

Instead of going in for an overall IT augmentation of all the company’s offices with faster links/connectivity, application software and storage, Sampath should consolidate the servers in the HO with a couple of faster and speedier (with headrooms) hosts with an external disk-array solution. This will help him to consolidate his online storage for database applications with high speed Fiber Channel based link at the Data Center. The servers will thus free themselves from I/O constraints as well as provide redundancy. By using a cost-effective SAN, he will not be constrained by the bandwidth of his LAN. For backup, he should deploy automated tape solutions like a library with more sophisticated backup software to avoid long backup windows, minimize human errors and easy media management. 

Linking his factory with high-speed links may make sense. Later on, other offices can be linked 
as well. For his non-critical apps like messaging, Web hosting and file servers Sampath can look at NAS solutions. 

Once the consolidation in the HO is implemented, he should look at remote backup and mirroring as a part of DR (disaster recovery) plan. The DR site should be part of his next plan.

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