Storage infrastructure fundamentals and Basics - Quick Reference Guide

This quick reference guide will help you to learn the basics of Storage infrastructure and its uses in the current and next generation IT datacenters. The next generation IT datacenters are basically the data centers which can also support cloud computing services (i.e which can host both private and public clouds) along with the traditional data center requirements. This tutorial will cover all the basic introduction of the SAN, NAS features along with their physical and logical infrastructure.

Most of these lessons are abstracted from various storage certification guides such as SNIA, EMC, IBM & Comptia and consolidated into a single tutorial to give you the best possible guidelines to become Storage expert. Based upon this tutorials, it is also recommended to get trained on the vendor specific storage arrays if you are planning your career in Storage area.

Chapter 1: Overview of IT Datacenter

DATA types

1.1 Introduction to Data and Information

In the digital world, data is constantly produced. This data is used by businesses to make decisions. There are different types of data, including...
Google Datacenter

1.2 Introduction to Storage Infrastructure and IT Datacenters

In the previous post, we learned the basics of Data and Information and need for a intelligent storage systems which can store, manage and...
Characteristics of a DataCenter

1.3 Key Characteristics of IT Datacenter

In the previous post, we understood the concepts of storage device, storage arrays and IT Datacenter. We also understood the various components of IT...
IT Data Center Design

1.4 Data Center Design and its Components

Data centers are key to any organization that values its data. In the modern world, the data center is more of a technology engine...

Follow Us

Chapter 2: Intelligent Storage Arrays (Systems)

Types of Storage Devices

2.1 Types of Storage Devices used in Storage Arrays

There are different types of storage devices which can be used for storing the data and based upon the business requirement & cost, storage...
Hard Disk Drive (HDD)

2.2 ElectroMechanical Hard Disk Drive (HDD) Overview

A hard disk drive is a persistent storage device that stores and retrieves data using rapidly rotating disks (platters) coated with magnetic material. The...
Solid State Drive (SSD)

2.3 Solid State Drive (SSD) Overview

Solid State Drives (SSDs) are storage devices that contain non-volatile flash memory. Solid state drives are superior to mechanical hard disk drives (HDD) in...

Chapter 3: Introduction to RAID Techniques

What is a RAID 

3.1 Redundant Array of Independent Disks (RAID) Overview

One of the main feature why the storage systems became intelligent is by using the technique called RAID. A group of disk drives which...
RAID Levels

3.2 Types of RAID Levels

There are different types of RAID levels which we can use in the storage systems. The RAID level selection depends on the parameters such as...
RAID 0 and its use cases

3.3 Overview of RAID 0 and its use cases

RAID 0 does not offer data redundancy as it does not use parity or mirroring techniques. RAID 0 uses striping technique to store the...
RAID 1 and its use cases

3.4 Overview of RAID 1 and its use cases

RAID 1 uses the mirroring technique. In this RAID configuration, data is mirrored to provide fault tolerance. A RAID 1 set consists of two...

Chapter 4: Fibre Channel (FC) SAN and Protocols

SAN Protocols

4.1 Introduction to SAN Protocols

The next generation IT platform is built on social networking, mobile computing, cloud services, and big data analytics technologies. Applications that support these technologies...
Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Components

4.2 Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Components

FC SAN is made up of several physical and logical components. Such as  Host bus adapters and converged network adapters FC Switches and directors FC Storage Arrays FC...
Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Protocol

4.3 Overview of Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Protocol

Traditionally, compute operating systems have communicated with peripheral devices over channel connections, such as Enterprise Systems Connection (ESCON) and SCSI. Channel technologies provide high...

Chapter 5: Fibre Channel over IP (FCIP) SAN and Protocols

Introduction to IP SAN

5.1 Introduction to IP SAN and their components

As discussed in previous chapter Fibre Channel (FC) SAN provides high performance and scalability. These advantages of FC SAN come with the burden of...
iSCSI Interfaces

5.2 iSCSI Interfaces and Connectivity types

iSCSI SANs are composed of initiators and targets connected by an IP network where server acts as the initiator or ISCSI host and the...
iSCSI Architecture

5.3 iSCSI Architecture and Addressing

SCSI is the command protocol that works at the application layer of the Open System Interconnection (OSI) model. The initiators and the targets use...

Chapter 6: Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) SAN and Protocols

Converged Enhanced Ethernet (CEE) Network

6.1 The need for a Converged Enhanced Ethernet (CEE) Network

In today's data center environment, we generally have at least two major networks - Ethernet network and Fibre Channel network. Ethernet is used for transferring regular management traffic...
Converged Enhanced Ethernet (CEE)

6.2 Functions of Converged Enhanced Ethernet (CEE)

Conventional Ethernet is lossy in nature, which means that frames might be dropped or lost under congestion conditions. Therefore, Converged Enhanced Ethernet (CEE) provides...
Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) SAN

6.3 Introduction to Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) SAN

As discussed in previous 2 posts, traditional Data Centers typically have multiple networks to handle various types of network traffic for example, an Ethernet...

Chapter 7: Introduction to Block Based Storage Systems (SAN)

Block Based Storage Systems

7.1 Block Based Storage Systems (SAN) Overview

A block-based storage system is the traditional storage systems which provides hosts with block-level access to the storage volumes. In this type of storage...
Cache technique in Block Based Storage Systems

7.2 Importance of Cache technique in Block Based Storage Systems

Cache is a semiconductor memory where data is placed temporarily to reduce the time required to service I/O requests from the hosts. Cache improves...
Storage Capacity Optimization Techniques

7.3 Storage Provisioning and Capacity Optimization Techniques

The storage space from the storage systems is assigned to the individual physical hosts or VMware (hypervisor) hosts whenever it is requested. This allocation...

Chapter 8: Introduction to File Based Storage Systems (NAS)

Network Attached Storage (NAS)  Overview

8.1 File based Storage Systems (NAS) Overview

There are 2 types of traditional storage techniques used in any organization data centers. They are  Block storage File storage Block storage shares raw devices...
NAS Array

8.2 How NAS is different from SAN and DAS

Generally NAS storage is often used for unstructured data storage such as shared folders and document repositories. SAN and NAS have been around for years. SAN...
NAS Protocols

8.3 NAS File Sharing Protocols

Different methods or protocols can be used to access files on a NAS system. The most common methods of accessing NAS systems or NAS...

Chapter 9: Introduction to Object Based Storage Systems (OSD)

Object Storage Introduction

9.1 Object based Storage Systems Introduction

The rapid adoption of next generation technologies like social media, big data analytics, cloud, and mobile application leads to significant data growth. Today, organizations...
Object based storage features

9.2 Key Features of Object based Storage Systems

Object based storage is a new type of storage system designed for cloud-scale scalability. Objects are stored and retrieved from an object store through the...
Object based storage system

9.3 How data is stored and retrieved from Object based Storage...

Unlike SAN and NAS storage systems where data is accessed through block and file level respectively, Object based storage systems stores and retrieves any...

Chapter 10: Introduction to Unified Storage Systems and Software Defined Data centers (Storage & Networking)

Software Defined Storage

10.1 Unified Storage Systems Introduction

In any enterprise data center, different storage systems (block-based, file-based, and object-based storage) are deployed to meet the needs of different applications. In many...

10.2 Software Defined Storage (SDS) Introduction

In a traditional data centers, there are several challenges in provisioning and managing storage in an efficient and cost-effective manner. Some key challenges the...
Software Defined Storage

10.3 Software Defined Storage Architecture Overview

The below diagram shows the generic architecture of a software-defined storage environment. Although the physical storage devices themselves are central to SDS, they are...

Chapter 11: Data Backup and Archive

data backups

11.1 Protecting the Data for short term (Data Backup)

Just as we protect the IT physical infrastructure such as Servers, Storage Systems and network components etc, it is also important for organizations to...
backup architecture

11.2 Data Backup Architecture and Components

The common and widely used Backup Architecture is based on the Server-Client model. Any backup architecture is composed of the following four components. Backup Servers ...
NDMP backup

11.3 Different types of data backup methods

There are different backup methods which can be used to backup the organization's application and their data. Below are the majorly used backup methods in the...

Chapter 12: Introduction to Data Replication Techniques

Data Replication

12.1 Data Replication Techniques Introduction

It is important for any organization to protect their critical data across physical, virtual, and cloud environments to minimize the risk of business disruption....
server based replication

12.2 Introduction to Server based Replication

In the server based replication, the servers resources such as CPU and memory are utilised to perform and manage the replication operation. The server based replication supports...
Remote Replication

12.3 Introduction to Storage System based Replicaion

In the storage system based replication, the storage system operating environment performs the replication process. Unlike Server based replication, server resources such as the...

Chapter 13: Storage Management & Data Security

SAN management

13.1 Introduction to Storage Infrastructure Management

Storage Infrastructure management  defines the management and monitoring of the storage devices in the data centers. The three major areas of management are capacity, performance, and availability. These...
SAN Basic Tutorials

13.2 Introduction to the key Storage Management Operations

The Key Storage Management Operations consists of Storage Monitoring, Storage Alerting, and Storage Reporting. Storage Monitoring provides the performance and availability status of various infrastructure...

13.3 Factors affecting SAN performance

The common factors which can affect storage infrastructure performance are the type of RAID level configured or due to enabling or disabling Cache, due...

Most Read by Others

DATA types

1.1 Introduction to Data and Information

In the digital world, data is constantly produced. This data is used by businesses to make decisions. There are different types of data, including...
Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Architecture and port virtualization

4.4 Introduction to Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Architecture and port virtualization

The FC SAN physical components such as network cables network adapters and hubs or switches can be used to design a Fibre channel Storage...
Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Topologies

4.6 Fibre Channel (FC) SAN Topologies Overview

Out of the FC SAN inter-connectors such as Hub, Switch and Directors, FC Switch and FC Directors are majorly used devices in any Storage...