Managing a massive storage network can be a daunting task. And if you have not implemented the best storage practices and techniques, you will be in a hard position trying to deal with the glitches that might occur every now and then. Below, we list out seven data storage tips that you will definitely find useful.
- Upgrade Hardware
If the hardware being used for storage is very old, then it probably is time to replace it with a new one. It is recommended that you don’t stretch out the life of a storage device that is past its prime. You must replace all such old and failing storage devices with modern and upgraded ones. And remember to buy storage solutions that come with central management features. This will allow you to integrate the new storage devices to the existing network with ease and enable you to manage it better.
- Database Tuning
Some people try to resolve storage performance issues by stacking up even more expensive storage devices. However, this usually is not an effective solution. At best, there will only be a marginal improvement in the performance of your storage device. And this is where database tuning comes into the picture. Ideally, a system profiling that is followed by database tuning should be good enough to give a big boost in terms of performance. And if the I/O response is extremely slow, the problem can be identified by checking the I/O queues together with the idle cores.
- Load Balancing
In case you don’t have the option of controlling load balancing hardware, the best thing you can do is to use custom software solutions that are designed for this specific purpose. You have open-source and commercial software to choose from, which include Hipache, Nginx, and so on. Only through proper load balancing can you increase a cluster’s performance. And this allows you to benefit more from the extra nodes that you add to the storage clusters.
- Backup Cloud Data
If a large portion of the data is being stored on the cloud, it is necessary that you take regular backups of the same. Only this can guarantee data resiliency. The cloud provider may be offering data backups, but it is likely that the time limit of the backup is too limited to be of any long-term use to you. For example, if your business is using the Microsoft Office 365 package, you should know that the service only offers about 30 days of backup. And this too can change from time to time depending on the company’s policies. So, if you want the backup of the data to be available for more than 30 days, you need to store it somewhere else rather than rely on the service provider alone.
- Garbage Collection
NAND SSD storage devices require periodic optimization and garbage collection. There are certain storage systems that will automatically do the cleaning as and when required while other devices require manual cleaning. Usually, UNMAP and TRIM commands are given to the SSD in order to trigger a low level cleanup. So, if you have an SSD on Windows, all you have to do is to click the Optimize option from the Volumes property. The device will do the UNMAP or TRIM to optimize itself.
In simple words, micro-tiering is the automatic transfer and manipulation of physical and virtual data that is primarily stored in SSD and flash drives. There will be a data migration engine that will track every single virtual page in the volume, deciding when to and when not to move these pages. The least used pages will be dumped in the process and will instead be replaced by most requested content.
- Disaster Recovery As A Service
You should also think of getting a Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) for your entire storage network. These services act as a failover that will allow you to be up and running with your business applications whenever you want in case your primary storage is hit with any disaster that blocks you from using it. It is to be noted here that DRaaS is not a cheap service and will cost you some serious money. But ask yourself a simple question – are you willing to risk the reputation and profits of your business by being unable to provide any service to your customer for several hours or days when struck with a disaster? If your answer is no, then you definitely need a DRaaS service.