How Data-Aware Storage Improves Locality Issues

Data can be stored in many locations in a small-to-medium-sized business’ storage environment. Between local disk storage, layered apps, mobile devices, enterprise storage systems and the cloud, it can be a full time job for a storage admin to maintain visibility over storage locality, much less ensure that security and compliance concerns are being addressed early in the data lifecycle and that up-to-date governance policies are in place to keep data from going dark.

Thankfully, not all data is created equal. In fact, in some cases there is certain data that does not need to be kept at all. Despite traditional strategies to store everything in hopes of preparing for events that might call on a company to produce obscure records and documents, smart storage pros recognize the need to control their data by storing it in the right places and by truly understanding what the data is.  For example, storing data that could potentially be damaging to the company in the cloud could cause irreparable harm.

Next time you’re struggling with a disparate landscape of data locality, try asking these questions to help sort out the information you’re working with:

Are we trusting the wrong hosts with sensitive data?
Many companies become preoccupied with security concerns for specific platforms, when the factor they should consider is the nature of the data itself. Discussions about cloud storage security or whether data should rest in primary cache and flash are null and void unless you can fully assess what it contains, who owns it, who accesses it and when. The more you understand about your data, the more you can make an informed decision about its storage locality and in turn, help enhance business.

“How can we better empower storage administrators?”
The location of a given file within a storage array shouldn’t be a cause of anxiety. Give storage admins the tools they need to become data detectives. Avoid siloed applications that introduce complexity into the environment, and invest in tools that help organize data by its details. As a result, the differences between critical information that must be shared and protected in certain conditions within a storage environment and stale data the organization can easily move off the array and back up on tape or somewhere else.

“Is my storage today living up to its potential to support data governance?”
As data shifts locations within a storage array, the critical factor that helps admins avoid stress, implement impactful governance protocols and maintain data security is the ability to analyze data at the point of storage. When data-aware storage is in play, files become tremendous resources that answer practical questions, avoid going dark throughout the data lifecycle, and most importantly, inform data governance policies. Data-aware storage provides a sustainable, intelligent storage system that directs storage admins toward valuable data insights that can inform business operations.

Learn how to apply data-aware storage insights by watching the DataGravity Discovery Series demo.

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Gabe Maentz

Gabe serves as a Systems Engineer for DataGravity and is committed to helping our channel partners and customers succeed. Gabe brings over 15 years of Information Technology experience working for leading companies like Dick's Sporting Goods, Kimberly-Clark Corp., and Epic Systems. He was recently recognized as a vExpert for his contributions to the IT community.