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Adding value to storage virtualization

Storage is a huge market for VARs with many competitors. The difference between getting a contract and not getting a contract may boil down to the type of value you can add to a product. The same is true for storage virtualization.

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How can VARs add value to storage virtualization? Through hosting, software, support etc?
VARs should challenge themselves to add value to virtualization by bringing the honest reality to potential customers. While virtualization can provide some amazing benefits, it does not make life simpler. VARs need to help educate the customers about the different layers and generations of storage virtualizations. Start with the decades old Logical Volume Managers and moving on to middle aged SANs and rounding the corner to cutting edge virtualization appliances. Expose the long term benefits and consequences of adding another layer in an already complex stack which includes disk arrays, microcode, SAN swicthes, patch panels, fiber cables, HBAs, drivers, multi-pathing software, volume managers, operating systems and file systems. Adding another layer may be warranted, but it won't necessarily make life easier.
This was first published in February 2007

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