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SMEs and SDS (Software-Defined Storage) - A Match Made in Heaven


Manish Malpani

January 11, 2018

The Software Defined Storage market making its own growth story. With an explosion of data across enterprises, organizations across the globe are looking at opportunities to manage this data better so that it can be used intelligently. Owing to the functionality and cost benefits that SDS brings to the table, globally it is experiencing great adoption.

According to a report by Markets and Markets, the SDS market is expected to grow from USD 4.72 Billion in 2016 to USD 22.56 Billion by 2021. The report also highlights that the growth of small and medium enterprises is also leading to greater SME adoption.

With technological advancements, the need for better and enhanced data storage has increased as well. Increasing workloads, business processes and the consequent volumes of data within organizations are compelling them to move away from traditional storage methods that are not only costly but also are no longer equipped to handle the constantly increasing data management needs of today’s enterprise. As data becomes the new currency, SME’s too need to look at their storage methodologies to assess if it is future-ready and capable of helping the business grow. SME’s need a cost-effective solution that helps them fulfill their existing needs to manage this data explosion in a cost-effective manner. In this blog, we take a look at a few reasons that make SDS and SME’s best suited for one another.

Managing Growth Storage

Change is a constant in the SME’s life story. Thus, what SMEs demand most is flexibility whether it is to streamline their business processes or to manage the growth in their storage needs. Traditional storage can add more complexity to data management as storage is delivered through hardware devices that are done box by box. This also makes troubleshooting complex as it demands deep product architecture expertise and different skill sets to manage different vendor configurations. It also becomes problematic to achieve greater flexibility as SMEs need scalability to meet growing business demands. SDS takes the pain out of storage management by providing flexible solutions and helps them achieve real-time scalability. With its scale-out architecture, SDS helps SMEs increase or decrease their storage demands according to their business needs.

Easier Replication of Business Processes

Traditional storage systems make integration a complex, effort-intensive and time-consuming task. Since SMEs have to work at the speed of light they need a storage system that helps them reproduce business models and replicate existing business processes faster and more effectively. SDS simplifies this problem by offering policy-based storage management that can efficiently span different arrays along with simplifying administration of storage. Since SDS does not have to deal with the physical constraints of the hardware, storage capabilities become more fluid. It offers simplicity of adding or replicating business processes to ensure the smooth running of the company’s future endeavors. The multiple abstraction layers offered by SDS allow SMEs to manage different storage types and help them be more innovative with data management. SDS also helps SMEs create smarter interactions between storage and workloads by enabling dynamic storage provisioning.

Lower Infrastructure and Capital Costs

SMEs want cost-effective solutions to meet their growing data storage demands. SDS can help SMEs optimize commoditized hardware, help them repurpose existing hardware, provide support to emerging and traditional IT consumption models and provide greater agility, efficiency, and control to meet their changing business demands. SDS also does not have upfront infrastructure and capital costs, have lower maintenance costs and does not demand hardware investments. SDS does not demand expensive or proprietary enclosures, special adaptors or switches as it runs on commodity server hardware and can use spinning disk and flash drives to drive high-performance and provide fully featured storage to SME’s.

Ease of Use

With SDS, SMEs can look away from the pain associated with programming from the hardware in which the storage resides. Since the programming is decoupled from hardware, SMEs can easily add low-cost commodity storage without worrying about breaking existing configurations. SMEs also do not need to worry about vendor lock-in with SDS because of the use of open source software in SDS. SDS also provides the capability to drive configurations for provisioning and policy at an API or CLI level with ease. These abstracted policies help in fulfilling customer and business focused demands.

Disaster Recovery

SDS enables on-demand, cost-effective Disaster Recovery solutions. With SDS Disaster Recovery, SMEs can protect their data in an economical and cost-effective manner. All host-based replicated workloads and data can be stored at the DR site. These sites have a separate infrastructure for Internet and power connectivity and ensure complete data protection in the event of a catastrophe. Data is copied on these sites on a timely basis and these backups are stored on a backup server and are ready for restoration at all times.

The level of automation, flexibility, and scalability that SDS provides can fuel the growth story of SMEs. It can help them not only gain more data storage but also increase workforce efficiencies by ensuring continuous business operations – all these things contribute positively to the organization’s bottom line. Given the growing data proliferation and the need for flexibility, scalability and the efficiencies to go-to-market faster that SMEs demand, it is hardly a wonder that today SDS and SME’s are considered a couple that has found its ‘happily ever after’.

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