Storage architecture is a term used to explain how storage devices attach to servers and workstations. Your architecture is important for data security, data protection, and data recovery. You can streamline how you store and access information, and you can extend your resources through virtual capabilities. You can expand your resources to meet your growing and evolving needs, and you can simplify your storage management options to guard your investments by protecting your data. Systems include network-attached storage, storage area networks, and Internet Small Computer System Interfaces (iSCSI).
Network-attached storage (NAS) systems are specialized file server solutions that are capable of being plugged directly into a Local Area Network (LAN). NAS systems are capable of providing file level access to your business's data using standardized protocols such as Network File System (NFS) and Common Internet File System (CIFS). NAS connects with both Windows and UNIX users, allowing the same data to be shared between the two different types of storage architectures. NAS is an ideal choice for medium sized companies that are working with a large volume of data.
With NAS architecture, storage is not treated as an integral facet of the server. Instead, it has a design where the server is still responsible for handling data processing.
Storage Area Network
A storage area network (SAN) is a high-speed sub network of dedicated storage devices that are capable of integrating a number of different storage types including tape backups, RAID arrays, JBODs, and CD ROM libraries. The purpose of a SAN network is to facilitate data transfer between disks and computers at the same high speed as if they were directly attached to one another. SAN networks are ideal for larger companies that maintain numerous networks across a large geographical area in addition to medium sized companies that have great expectations for growth. SAN networks are commonly used in banking, finance, petroleum, retail, and manufacturing industries.
An Internet Small Computer System Interface (iSCSI) is an Internet Protocol-based storage networking standard. It is used to link data storage facilities that are developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). The iSCSI protocol facilitates data transfer over intranets and manages storage over long distances by carrying SCSI commands over IP networks. The iSCSI protocol is among the key technologies that are likely to bring a rapid development to the SAN market by increasing the capabilities and performance of storage data transmission. Due to IP networks, an iSCSI can be used to transmit data over local area networks and wide area networks. An iSCSI also transfers data over the Internet and enables location-independent data storage and retrieval.