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Data Demands - 260 GB per Person by 2011

Businesses that think they are sheltered from data growth better think again. Recent statistical evidence suggests that by 2011 every man, woman and child on the globe will each consume over 260 GBs of data.  While this has many implications, it clearly illustrates that businesses better be prepared to continue to identify and implement more cost-effective data storage solutions such as the NEO S-Series with its new LTO-5 tape drives from Overland Storage.

To arrive at the 260 GB per person number, one only needs to look at two recent pieces of statistical data. First, IDC predicted last month (March 2010) that the amount of data stored in the world will reach 1.8 zettabytes by 2011. This is 10 times the amount of data that was stored in 2006.

Consider how the business world has changed. Rich media (audio, graphics, photos, video, etc.) is becoming omnipresent in business documents regardless of the form they take - spreadsheets, Word documents, PowerPoints or email.

Further, the advent of devices like Blackberries, iPods, iPads, digital cameras, digital video recorders and smart phones have only made it that much easier to create more data which adds to the data growth. If anything, the 260 GB/person may even be LOW for a developed nation like the US that has ready access to all of these types of technology and people who are not afraid to use.

The bad news is that businesses are not immune to these trends and maybe are even more susceptible to them. So what can businesses, irrespective of their size, do with this number to help them forecast and prepare for the future storage capacity and data protection needs of their business? Two things:
  • First, make sure you pick storage platforms that can scale. Assume that the 260 GB/person number for 2011 is correct. That means that if you have 50 employees in your organization, you better put in place a production storage system that can scale to at least 13 TBs (50 x 260 GB) by 2011 and even higher in the years to come. New solutions such as the Overland Storage SnapServer SAN S2000 that start out as small as 7.2 TBs and can scale to 120 TBs are good options for environments with these needs.
  • Second, make sure you select a data protection platform that can scale to match this production data growth. If data growth on production storage is escalating, then the capacity requirements to protect this data are EXPLODING. Requirements for data protection can easily be 5x or greater of the storage capacity that is used in production. This is why tape and solutions like the Overland Storage NEO S Series with its new LTO-5 tape drive support remains relevant.
While organizations may use disk as a primary backup target, it can get more difficult for them to affordably scale it or get the full range of management options (data immutability, energy savings, portability and cost-effective archive) that tape provides.
 
This is where a solution like the NEO S Series with its new support for LTO-5 technology comes into play. LTO-5 media scales to 1.5 TB of native storage capacity and can achieve up to 140 MB/sec or 500 GB/hour of throughput. Further, because LTO-5 media starts at around $110/cartridge, organizations can get tens of TBs of storage capacity for their data protection needs at a fraction of the price of what it cost them to purchase comparable disk solution.

One of the overwhelming advantages of using NEO as your long-term storage solution is its cost-effectiveness. Overland Storage is taking that affordability advantage one step further with their Upgrade and Save Cash Back Program. With cash rebates of up to $12,000, Overland is offering great incentives for users to upgrade their storage technology.

Businesses contemplating an upgrade should do so now, even if they do not necessarily need the extra capacity that LTO-5 technology provide. By upgrading now, they can save on some of the upfront costs associated with the cost the LTO-5 drive and then they can continue to save by writing to their existing LTO-4 cartridges until such a time that either the prices of LTO-5 media declines or until they need the storage capacity that LTO-5 cartridges provide.

From the smallest business to the largest enterprise, no business is immune to the massive data growth that is taking place worldwide today. And with the amount of data is anticipated to reach 260 GB/person by next year, they need to put in solutions that can scale.

Storage providers like Overland Storage are doing exactly that by delivering complementary storage solutions that meet a variety of data protection needs in both their production and data protection environments. The SnapServer SAN 2000 used in conjunction with the NEO S Series and its newly announced LTO-5 technologies give IT managers  new options to cost-effectively deploy storage solutions that meet today's needs while giving them the ability to scale to meet the forecasted storage demands of tomorrow.
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