IBM Storage Insights: Here’s To Your Storage’s Health…
Storage systems are inherently complex and IT users need to manage their storage environment’s performance, capacity utilization, and health constantly. Vendors have long helped with Call Home capabilities where a storage system sends storage usage data to a vendor. Now IBM has turbocharged Call Home with Storage Insights where more data is collected, where users are able to better self-service their needs through using a feature-rich dashboard, and where IBM can provide deeper and broader technical support when the user needs that extra level of storage management support. Let’s look more deeply into IBM Storage Insights.
IBM Storage Insights Delivers a Turbocharged Call Home Capability
Call Home has long been a standard and well-accepted feature for many block-based storage systems whereby metadata (such as on performance and capacity utilization) is transmitted from a customer datacenter to a vendor site for storage monitoring purposes. The data can then be used for diagnostic, analysis, and planning purposes that can include proactive alerts to avert a potential problem (such as an early detection of a bad batch of disks that are starting to degrade below acceptable levels) or to more rapidly accelerate the resolution of a problem that has unexpectedly occurred.
Although Call Home capabilities vary among vendors, traditional systems can be limited in a number of ways:
Reactive alerts only to error conditions such as hardware failures as limited metadata prevents broader usage value; for example, among many other concerns, this means that proactive support for configuration optimization may not be available
Users do not have an interface with the system at the vendor site that allows them to self-service, self-manage the process as much as possible; that means a greater (and unnecessary) level of reliance on the vendor for support; while necessary support is valuable, you do not want to in-effect delegate decision-making to someone who is not as familiar with your storage systems as you are
May focus on individual storage systems rather than on all the storage systems so there is no unified pane of glass for an IT user to view all critical events easily (usually at a single glance); this makes a storage administrator’s life more difficult
The overview of IBM Storage Insights below reveals how IBM turbocharges Storage Insights to overcome those limitations and to provide even more features and functionality.
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NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT Review.