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Top 10 storage resource management bloopers

A storage expert put together his list of ten storage resource management bloopers. Consider these your warning!

"Don't be the next victim of sloppy storage management," warned Steven Toole, searchWindowsManageability's storage expert. Toole has seen IT managers felled by hurricanes, porn, music lovers, and even junk mail. It's not pretty, he said, and it can happen to you.

So, let these ten true stories serve as your warning. This list was submitted by Toole, vice president of marketing at storage product vendor WQuinn, Inc. of Reston, Va. "These stories illustrate what can happen without effective, real-time storage resource management controls in place," Toole said.

  1. The storage hurricane. Whenever hurricane warnings were issued, the servers crashed. The cause: panicked users simultaneously backing up their hard drives to the servers, exceeding server capacities. Real-time space allocations can prevent this.
  2. The mp3 jukebox. At a New York City financial services firm, a mailroom employee brought in his entire music CD collection and copied 20 G bytes of mp3 files to the production server. No wonder backups took so long. File blocking keeps mp3s off servers.
  3. Porngate. This well-organized user kept his library of pornographic gif files on the company server. He had a separate subdirectory for each young lady, organized alphabetically by name. Policy-based file blocking says who can and can't store graphic files on company servers.
  4. Drop the dupes. A leading manufacturing company had over 200,000 duplicate files on the server. Copy that! Automated, scheduled storage resource management (SRM) reporting identifies duplicate files.
  5. Love bites. Last year's Love Bug virus caused $10 billion in damages across the corporate IT world. One user spent two full days recovering from this heartache. Blocking VBS, EXE and DLL file types protects server integrity against viruses.
  6. Not enough hours in the day. This company's "nightly" backup cycle took 24 hours to complete. Policy-based storage grooming slashed this by 30%.
  7. Storage cops. A ton of junk mail and unused files were eating up the storage capacity and sapping the performance of this IT manager's network. His first housecleaning effort involved spending almost an entire week per month cleaning junk files off the server and sending nasty messages to users, pleading with them to practice better storage hygiene. Now he has automated the entire process with policy-based SRM.
  8. Babysitting application servers. This admin used to watch capacity levels of 1,200 servers the old fashioned way ? one at a time. Now he receives space allocation alerts as each one approaches critical performance levels so he can take corrective action and avoid server failure.
  9. Outdated data overload. This user never cleaned off the server's outdated files. When he finally ran an SRM report on outdated files, his list of files not accessed in over one year was 800 pages long. Regularly scheduled SRM reports can automatically identify files not accessed over a recent period to move them offline and free up server space.
  10. Costly expansion. This user was about to spend $25,000 on an additional RAID array. Instead, he ran some SRM reports and freed up about 30% of his utilized disk space, eliminating the need for the expansion. So, instead of spending $25,000, he spent $1,300 on software products.

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