I have a lot of thoughts on the path storage is moving which might take a few pages to expound upon. I’ll probably update this as I consolidate my line of thought, but here is what I’m seeing right now:
The “unified interface” jives with the disturbing trend I see from most of the storage vendors. They are marketing to the CFO/CIO/CTO with their pitches of simplicity of use and throwing out the term “IT Generalist” to sell it because they wont have to hire a dedicated storage admin to manage it all. For the C-level that’s a win-win. They can get the latest/greatest and won’t have the ongoing expense of a dedicated worker to manage it.
Those of us in the trenches that have to actually make it work really don’t like that message because I think in our view it devalues the amount of training and expertise we have accomplished and it also is highly inaccurate. So when EMC has their dog and pony show with a kid with an IPAD managing a VNX its a slap in the face to the people who have to make that shit work and its a pretty scummy marketing ploy because the C-level doesn’t know any better (well most of them dont).
Established vendors are still over charging for JBOD and still trying to nickel and dime their customers for features that should be included in nearly all arrays *cough* netapp/emc *cough*
Some major players have tried to buy market share and revenue at the expense of innovation *cough* HP/IBM *cough*
Many of the smaller and new companies are not falling into the trap of trying to be all things to everyone, they are carving out niches and taking away large chunks of business that the major players have taken for granted.
Shoving multiple disparate disk types into an array and auto-tuning it for workload performance is swell, until the workload doesn’t jive with the vanilla auto-tiering schemes and shits itself
De-dupe was much overhyped and has yet to deliver on the promises it has made for the last 5 years or so. I simply don’t find that much value in it yet. Same for Encryption (which should be handled at the client level and not the array anyway)