Virtualized storage allows organizations to manage their data as simple as dragging and dropping files into a folder. A game-changer in today’s data-driven landscape, virtualized storage does not store your data; it can also smartly allocate, protect, and optimize storage resources.
Intrigues? You should be. Read on to discover the ins and outs of virtualized storage and whether it fits your organization’s needs.
What is Virtualized Storage?
Virtualized storage abstracts physical storage resources and pools them into a unified and flexible storage environment. This unified nature of virtualized storage allows for centralized management, flexibility, and security while keeping costs low.
Why is Virtualized Storage Crucial?
Centralized Management: Virtualized systems simplify administrative tasks by consolidating data into a single interface, reducing errors and allowing centralized access to data.
Scalability: Organizations can accommodate their growing needs without extensive hardware investments.
Data Protection: Virtualized systems include features such as automated backups and disaster recovery, enabling organizations to safeguard their data against loss or corruption.
Cost-Efficiency: Virtualized storage optimizes the utilization of existing storage resources, reducing the need for additional hardware and thereby lowering both capital and operational expenses.
Remote Access: Virtualized storage enables secure data access from various geographic locations, facilitating seamless collaboration and remote work options.
How Does Virtualized Storage Work?
Virtualized environments use specialized software to combine different physical storage devices like hard drives and SSDs into one big pool of storage. This makes it simple for organizations to manage and use the storage space.
This is possible using a “hypervisor.” You can think of the hypervisor as the manager of the storage pool. The hypervisor is what decides where to store data and also manages any new data. Additionally, the hypervisor secures the data and keeps it safe. It can also move the data to deliver better efficiency.
Types of Storage Virtualization
Network-based virtualization operates at the network level using a dedicated appliance or switch between the servers and storage devices.
A network-based virtualization can take multiple storage devices — even from different vendors — and make them appear as a single unit. This is beneficial for organizations, given it allows them to have a mix of additional storage hardware while having the liberty of managing them via a single interface.
It is very simple to implement as it does not require organizations to disturb the existing storage setups and allows them to scale up easily.
This type of virtualization comes built-in the storage hardware itself, usually in high-end storage arrays. Array-based virtualization pools the storage within a specific array and can also pool storage from arrays of the same family.
It is appreciated for its high-performance and being optimized for a specific hardware it is part of. Nevertheless, it is less flexible compared to the Network-based virtualization.
File and Block Storage
File and Block storage environments are just like your computer’s file system. This is suitable for storing documents or data that is frequently changed.
You can configure these storage types however you like, as it is more like a raw storage space. However, they are only suitable for databases and applications that need fast and low-level access to data.
Key Features of Virtualized Storage
Virtualized storage ensures that your data is accessible whenever you need it, and there is little to no downtime. Today, organizational data is a key aspect for businesses, and any downtime can result in huge losses.
Virtualized storage includes data recovery features in case of hardware failure or data corruption. For context, it makes regular backups and stores these data in separate locations. So, in the case of a disaster, the backups can be used for data restoration. Such a system allows for business continuity even during data loss events.
Storage pooling allows you to combine multiple storage devices into a single pool. So, instead of managing different storage devices separately, you can manage the entire pool from one central location. It is beneficial, given it allows for simple management and more efficient use of available resources.
Benefits of Virtualized Storage
Be it small business or large enterprises, virtual storage is a boon for organizations as it offers multiple benefits:
Virtualized storage reduces the reliance on physical hardware and cuts down the upfront capital expenditures and even ongoing operational costs. This makes it easy for organizations — of any size — to adopt it without worrying about the financial stress of hardware acquisition.
Virtual storage technology allows for intelligent resource allocation. This ensures that data is stored and accessed in the most efficient manner possible. So, there is faster data retrieval and better overall system performance.
Simplified IT Management
The centralized nature of virtualized storage simplifies administrative tasks for organizations. So, it is simple for IT teams to manage storage resources through a single interface. This will reduce the time and effort required for routine operations.
Your data storage needs will grow as your organization grows. And that’s where virtualized storage will be useful. You can easily accommodate the growth, given that virtualized storage allows you to scale up storage without requiring a complete system overhaul.
Virtualized storage comes with features like automated backups and disaster recovery. This allows you to make your data more resilient against loss or corruption. There is an extra layer of security built into the system, and you do not have to invest more money into buying additional security systems.
Remote Access and Collaboration
Virtualized storage environments come with remote access features, so it is simple for teams to collaborate from around the world seamlessly.
Virtualized storage isn’t just a cool trend among businesses. It is a revolution that allows businesses to change how they manage, access, and secure their data. Its benefits, like high availability, disaster recovery, and storage pooling, allow businesses to use this more than just a data management solution. Whether you are a small business or a large enterprise, adopting virtualized storage is simple. And if you are looking for efficiency, security, and scalability in your organization — virtualized storage systems are the way to go.