Introduction to Storage Area Network (SAN) -Part1

As we all know Information is the basic Asset for any Company . It is the currency of business as we may say  . So to ensure That business delivers the expected results they must have access to accurate information and without delay. Here come The SAN which has been regarded as the ultimate responses to all these need.

The Major Subjects That Ringed the Storage precedence 

1-Infrastructure Simplification: Consolidation(many servers in one server) ,Virtualization,Automated Management
2-information lifecycle Management : Managing data through lifecycle to conception until  Disposal in a manner that optimizes storage and lower The cost
3-Buisness Continuity: Maintaining access to data all the times and protecting Critical data

4-The increase of amount of data used by 60% per year Makes the SAN enters the arena

SO What is SAN ?

SANs are the leading storage infrastructure for the
global economy of today. SANs offer simplified storage management, scalability,
flexibility, availability, and improved data access, movement, and backup.
The storage Network Industry Association (SNIA) Defines The SAN as any Network whose primary purpose is to transfer data between computer  systems and storage elements . So it is not as people always think that SAN must be a Fiber it can be Ethernet if its primary purpose to provide access to storage Elements is also considered SAN. Also SAN are sometimes  used for system interconnection in clusters to increase the computing power.
A SAN can also be the whole storage system which consists of storage elements Storage Devices, Computer Systems , all control software , communicating over the Network.
SAN can use routers, gateways, hubs , switches and directors to allow any device to any device connection across the network as it eliminates the traditional connection between the server and the storage. So SAN can be local or extended over geographical distances.

SAN enables many servers to share a common storage utility, which may comprise many storage devices including disk, tape, Optical Storage and the storage utility may be located far from the servers that use it.

There are 3 ways SAN uses in data Transfer
1-Server to storage : Many servers access same storage
2-Server to Server: SAN for high High-speed , High volume communication between Servers .
3-Storage to Storage : This the best Technique in data transfers as you don’t need server intervention in backing up the data or when a remote device mirroring is done across the SAN.

We will stop  at this part and Continue in Part2

Mina Samir fahmy
Associate infrastructure Associate at Ingazat information Technology
Twitter : @Eng_Minasamir

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