I'm relatively new to this list, but have been lurking for a while to get
a feel for the conversations here and appreciated much of the interaction
I'd like to query the collective experience here related to a project that
would provide significant quantites of centralized storage (home and
shared directories) for faculty, staff, and students and may also include
Microsoft Exchange for campus electronic mail. Total storage size to
support both is expected to be 25 to 50 terabytes in the next few years.
We have a variety of perspectives on storage technologies here and are
looking primarily at iSCSI and more traditional SAN offerings as possible
solutions to support home directories and Exchange storage.
There is some debate among our own technical staff about the viability of
iSCSI and its future in the market. We've had one iSCSI vendor bring
equipment in and some of our staff have been impressed with the
capabilities and at least satisfied with the performance. The iSCSI
solutions we've reviewed can offer significant cost savings, allow us more
flexibility in choosing vendors, and have some interesting capabilities
for geographic distribution and failover, but these solutions are not as
proven as the offerings from the big SAN vendors. NAS is not favored in
the Exchange environment, so we've not actively investigated that option.
I'm curious about the experience and perspective of others on storage and
storage directions: Are you deploying iSCSI for enterprise projects and,
if so, are you satisfied with the outcomes? Did you investigate iSCSI and
decide to stick with traditional SANs? What is your view on the future of
iSCSI vs traditional SANs?
Director, Network and Communications Services
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