I had the opportunity to speak with Len Rosenthal, VP of Marketing for Virtual Instruments the other day. Although the original intent was to discuss NetApp's recent acquisition of Akorri, the conversation turned into a round table discussion of storage virtualization, how critical virtualized storage is to a virtual environment and how difficult it can be to manage virtual storage.
Virtual Instruments' take on the Akorri acquisition was that NetApp would now face the challenge of merging the two corporate cultures, two engineering approaches and the code base of Akorri's products with NetApp's own NetApp® OnCommand™ management software. Virtual Instruments would also point out that their hardware/software approach to managing a storage area network (SAN) would allow a finer grain reporting and control environment than possible with a software-only approach. I expected, by the way, that type of comment in an unsolicited, let-us-tell-you-our-views-of-someone-else's-announcement, discussion.
What I found more interesting was the discussion of virtual storage, how important it is in building a complete, agile virtual environment and how important storage performance can be to overall application performance (see Kaminaro K2 - dramatic application performance improvement, for more commentary on that subject.)
As organizations move applications, application components and services and whole workloads into virtual environments, it is clear that the storage must also be virtual. This makes it easier to allow storage to be accessed from wherever the processing is happening. It also allows many performance optimization techniques to be use to accelerate access to critical pieces of data.
Thanks Len for reaching out.