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Storage Basics: An Introduction to the Fundamentals of Storage Technology
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  • Title Storage Basics: An Introduction to the Fundamentals of Storage Technology
  • Author(s) Fujitsu Siemens Computers
  • Publisher: Fujitsu Siemens Computers (January 2009)
  • eBook 103 pages
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: N/A
  • ISBN-13: N/A
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Book Description

A concise and accessible description of storage and information systems, filling a large gap in reference material for this critical topic area.

Storage is one of the most basic operations performed by computers, yet it continues to evolve. In the days of mainframes, data was stored physically separate from the actual processing unit, but was still only accessible through the processing units. As PCbased servers became more commonplace, storage devices went “inside the box” or in external boxes that were connected directly to the system. Each of these approaches was valid in its time, but as our need to store increasing volumes of data and our need to make it more accessible grew, other alternatives were needed.

Network storage is a generic term used to describe network-based data storage, but there are many technologies within it. Direct Attached Storage (DAS) is a storage device that is directly attached to a host system. The simplest example of DAS is the internal hard drive of a server computer, though storage devices housed in an external box come under this banner as well. DAS is still, by far, the most common method of storing data for computer systems.

Network Attached Storage, or NAS, is a data storage mechanism that uses special devices connected directly to the network media. These devices are assigned an IP address and can then be accessed by clients via a server that acts as a gateway to the data, or in some cases allows the device to be accessed directly by the clients without an intermediary.

A Storage Area Network (SAN) is a network of storage devices that are connected to each other and to a server, or cluster of servers, which act as an access point to the SAN. In some configurations a SAN is also connected to the network. SANs use special switches as a mechanism to connect the devices. These switches, which look a lot like a normal Ethernet networking switch, act as the connectivity point

Why is it important to learn the basics of storage technology? As mentioned earlier, how enterprises store data is becoming more than a best practice, it's becoming a legal matter as well, and the penalties for individuals and corporations can be severe.

Storage is also a growing area within IT, which means employment opportunities exist now, and should exist for some time. According to a one study, fewer than 25 percent of either Unix-/Linux- or Windows-based IT organizations had their own storage management team at the end of 2004. By the end of 2006, however, that number is expected to soar above 75 percent.

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