Thin Provisioning Block Storage – A Maturing Technology

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  • Document Category: Other
  • Subject:
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  • Keywords: Basic, data center optimization, efficiency, free, premium, storage Efficiency, Thin Provisioning
  • Document Date: February 28th, 2012
  • Author: Randy Kerns
  • Full Summary:

    Thin Provisioning Block Storage – A Maturing Technology is the fourth paper in the Storage Efficiency Series.  continuation of the focus on storage efficiency, covering the storage system feature thin provisioning and how it can be used for data center optimization.

     

    The Storage Efficiency Series includes:

    Storage Efficiency- IT Perspective

    Storage Efficiency – Vendor Perspective, Systems Vendor

    Storage Efficiency – Vendor Perspective, Storage Vendor

    Storage Efficiency – Vendor Perspective, Data Protection

     

    Document Excerpt:

    Thin provisioning has become prevalent in storage systems today.  As a storage system feature, it has become expected to be present when the purchase of new storage is being considered by Information Technology professionals.  Product offerings from vendors continue to highlight the economic gains from the improvement in storage efficiency with thin provisioning.  Understanding of the value from thin provisioning in storage systems is moving beyond the mere presence of the feature to an evaluation of the implementation and the implications of the characteristics.

    Allocating space on storage as data is written is the basic premise of thin provisioning.  While this seems obvious, previously the entire amount of space was allocated whether it was used or not.  This led to trapped and ineffectively used capacity.  Thin provisioning, or allocating only on write demand, is a means to deal with the imperfect process for assigning storage.  It also permits the capacity potential seen by applications and operating systems (a vestige of the expectation of having a set amount of capacity defined prior to actual use) to be greater than the actual physical available capacity.

Thin Provisioning Block Storage – A Maturing Technology

Thin Provisioning Block Storage – A Maturing Technology is the fourth paper in the Storage Efficiency Series.  continuation of the focus on storage efficiency, covering the storage system feature thin provisioning and how it can be used for data center optimization.

 

The Storage Efficiency Series includes:

Storage Efficiency- IT Perspective

Storage Efficiency – Vendor Perspective, Systems Vendor

Storage Efficiency – Vendor Perspective, Storage Vendor

Storage Efficiency – Vendor Perspective, Data Protection

 

Document Excerpt:

Thin provisioning has become prevalent in storage systems today.  As a storage system feature, it has become expected to be present when the purchase of new storage is being considered by Information Technology professionals.  Product offerings from vendors continue to highlight the economic gains from the improvement in storage efficiency with thin provisioning.  Understanding of the value from thin provisioning in storage systems is moving beyond the mere presence of the feature to an evaluation of the implementation and the implications of the characteristics.

Allocating space on storage as data is written is the basic premise of thin provisioning.  While this seems obvious, previously the entire amount of space was allocated whether it was used or not.  This led to trapped and ineffectively used capacity.  Thin provisioning, or allocating only on write demand, is a means to deal with the imperfect process for assigning storage.  It also permits the capacity potential seen by applications and operating systems (a vestige of the expectation of having a set amount of capacity defined prior to actual use) to be greater than the actual physical available capacity.