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Storage: Outlook for 2011

By Dick Weisinger

As organizations continue to generate ever more structured and unstructured data, the management of storage for that data is becoming increasingly important.  Storage has been transformed from being a boring conversation about tapes and disk drives to a hot topic about big data and virtualization.

The outlook for data storage trends in 2011 include the following:

Virtualization is a driving force behind IT infrastructure both on-premise and cloud environments.  Expect to see more storage options targeting the backup and recovery of virtual environments.

Retention versus Destruction.  Expect to see much discussion around the competing ideas of keeping all data indefinitely versus a plan to destroy old data based on a retention schedule.

Cloud and On-Premise Hybrid computing.  Expect to see more work in the area of creating seamless integration of local and remote computing environments and data storage.

Expanded Cloud.  Expect to see cloud storage options to continue to expand at a rapid pace in 2011.

More Storage Options.  Cloud computing, hardware appliances, and more sophisticated software will all continue to bring change to the field of data storage.

Online Backups.  Backups will increasingly be maintained online using file-based storage, rather than off-line.

Cheaper Storage.  Expect hardware storage prices to continue to decline, particularly SSD and Flash drive prices.

Consolidated Storage Market.  2010 was a year of consolidations and mergers of storage vendors.  Expect the consolidation activity to continue in 2011.

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