Top 10 Fascinating Storage Stories of 2023

Could flash replace spinning disk within the next five years? Pure Storage believes so, but there are differing opinions on the future of hard disk drives (HDDs). In the meantime, quad-level cell (QLC) flash technology has become more mainstream, offering benefits in terms of cost and capacity.

Toyota recently experienced a 36-hour outage at 14 of its car plants, prompting an investigation into potential causes related to database capacity planning. Additionally, the rising cost of energy has highlighted the need for environmentally friendly storage solutions, but there are challenges to overcome in achieving this.

Artificial intelligence (AI) was a significant trend in 2023, leading to concerns about data protection and compliance risks. The emergence of data processing units (DPUs), a hardware offload, also gained attention and was examined in detail.

These are just a few of the top storage stories covered by Computer Weekly in 2023. Pure Storage claims that spinning disk drives are on the decline, but not everyone agrees. Toshiba’s Rainer Kaese, for example, believes that HDDs still have value, particularly as data volumes continue to grow.

An analysis of drive prices reveals that the cost of flash drives per gigabyte has decreased by about 10% over the past six months, while HDD prices have remained stable.

While QLC flash offers high density, it does have limitations in terms of lifespan. This raises questions about its cost-effectiveness compared to other flash storage technologies like triple-level cell (TLC) and multi-level cell (MLC), as well as how suppliers are addressing durability issues.

The cause of Toyota’s 36-hour production halt at multiple plants was found to be related to database deletes and reorganization. This puts a spotlight on the importance of effective database capacity planning.

Generative artificial intelligence (GenAI) poses potential risks to data privacy, as well as implications for backup and compliance. These concerns are explored in depth.

Upgrading storage infrastructure can lead to energy savings. However, it requires careful planning and consideration, whether adopting new hardware, utilizing the cloud, or utilizing as-a-service procurement models.

Data processing units (DPUs) are the latest hardware offload devices to emerge in the era of composable infrastructure. They are available as physical hardware or even in the cloud.

The cloud continues to play a significant role in server usage, backup, and disaster recovery. However, there is still some uncertainty when it comes to container backup.

Cloud providers charge for data transfers between their platforms, including transfers to other providers and within the same cloud. Strategies to mitigate unexpected high costs, known as “bill shock,” are discussed.

Overall, these articles provide valuable insights into the current state and future developments in the storage industry.

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