The End Result: Simplified Data Management
The Global Namespace has delivered exactly as we had hoped. The rigid mappings that made management so difficult before have been broken. Immediately after virtualizing our storage environment, we phased out an old storage array with 4TB of data. This took just three days instead of several months. In addition to saving us a huge amount of time, we didn't have to manually perform the migration - nor did we have to touch the application code. Now we don't need to maintain old gear or pay to support it. But, more importantly, we don't have to take resources from the organization to help with these migrations. People are able to keep working on their other deliverables. All the work is done by the file virtualization devices.As a side benefit, the solution we selected has some replication functionality that saved us a lot of money as well. Because so many storage vendors implement replication in the storage array, it means we had to have the same storage in both our production and test/development environments in order to have data flow between those two data centers. Now, we have installed less expensive storage in the test/development environment, which doesn't need the same performance and availability characteristics of the production environment. Final Note of Advice This is the type of project that really requires you to have a lot of faith in the vendor who is supplying and supporting your Global Namespace. You also really need faith in the Sales Engineer (SE) who is actually implementing the technology with you. I encourage you to do your research, vet the company and talk to their customers before getting too far down the path. Burzin N. Engineer is Vice President of Infrastructure Technology at Shopzilla, Inc. Burzin has more than 18 years of experience in the IT industry. His experience ranges from system and database administration to network/storage design and architecture. His technology focal points revolve around solving today's largest IT problems such as server consolidation, virtualization, data mobility and ILM. At Shopzilla, Burzin is responsible for all facets of IT, including network, storage, systems and internal IT. He holds a Master of Science in Computer Science from the University of Southern California. He can be reached at bengineer at shopzilla dot com.
Also, the Global Namespace masked the underlying complexity of the physical environment. It removed the need for us to keep manually balancing our mount points in order to optimize our application performance.