Whether it's from work habits, the proliferation of rich media content, or data retention regulations, unstructured file-based data represents the fastest growing data type. Since most of today’s data management tools operate at the block and volume level, businesses often have no intelligent way of keeping this exponential file growth under control. This results in file system chaos as their unstructured data consumes more and more of their valuable storage resources.
Many organizations deal with the proliferation of user data by simply purchasing more storage every year. Even though buying disk storage can be relatively inexpensive, managing it isn’t. Storage management can be an expensive drain on an organization’s budget since it often relies on manual, redundant processes that divert IT time and money from more strategic projects. Increased storage requirements also have a significant impact on power, cooling and space requirements in the data center.
To address these challenges and help you turn the chaos of your file systems into organized efficiency Novell has released Novell File Management Suite, a storage solution bundle that delivers intelligent storage and data management at the file level. This bundle enables you to better track the growth of storage, allocate and manage storage based on identity, and save money in the administration and procurement of storage resources. (See Why Identity Matters.)
Novell File Management Suite is comprised of the following three individual products, which work together to dramatically improve the efficiency, effectiveness and manageability of your file storage infrastructure:
- Novell Dynamic File Services
- Novell Storage Manager
- Novell File Reporte
Novell Dynamic File Services has been available for Linux and NetWare since Novell Open Enterprise Server 2 shipped. Now available for Windows environments through Novell File Management Suite, Novell Dynamic File Services dynamically allocates and optimizes storage resources based on actual data usage in a manner that can result in significant savings.
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Novell Dynamic File Services does this by letting you create independent partitions (or “tiers”) for your users’ unstructured data, such as documents, spreadsheets, videos, presentations, text files, etc. This tiering automatically stores newly created user data and more frequently used data on a primary partition, which would be located on your higher-performance disk storage devices. Based on policy, older, static, or less active user data would be transparently moved to a secondary partition residing on less expensive storage. (See Figure 1.)
Even though data is dynamically and intelligently allocated between different physical storage tiers, to users it appears as if their data is located in a single volume where they originally stored it. Novell Dynamic File Services accomplishes this by presenting users a virtual overlay of the independent storage partitions.
While Novell Dynamic File Services optimizes file-level physical storage allocation and usage, Novell Storage Manager automates the full lifecycle management of file-level user and group storage. (See Figure 2.) Leveraging user identities, policies, and events that occur in the directory, the solution automates a comprehensive set of storage management tasks, including user storage provisioning, deprovisioning, storage rights management, quota management, file grooming, storage resizing, storage relocation, file and directory orphan management, load balancing, archiving and storage cleanup. (See Clean and Simple Moves.)
One of the things that makes Novell Storage Manager unique is that it manages storage based on identity. It provides a bridge between users’ identities and roles in an organization and their storage resources. When a user is provisioned in the directory, Novell Storage Manager sees this event, reads the storage policy stored in the directory and provisions access for this user’s personal and collaborative storage resources. Novell Storage Manager automates other storage management tasks in the same way. When a directory event on a user or group object occurs (i.e. user role change, user transfer, user termination, quota assignments, etc.), Novell Storage Manager applies the defined policy for that event, appropriately provisioning and managing the storage for that user or group.