It’s a bit of an understatement to say that enterprise storage is complicated.
Seagate alone has 7 different drive families in the enterprise storage space with 26 capacity points, and 101 model numbers. Everything from SSDs to hard drives, encrypted to non-encrypted, FIPS to non-FIPS…the landscape can be daunting for anyone to navigate.
You might ask: Why so many options? Can’t we just have one or two drives that meet the demands of enterprise servers and storage? This used to be the case when there was simply Seagate Cheetah 10K back in the late 90s early 2000s. Times have changed…enter the realm of:
By definition tiered storage “is the assignment of different categories of data to different types of storage media in order to reduce total storage cost. Categories may be based on levels of protection needed, performance requirements, frequency of use, and other considerations,” according to SearchStorage.com.
What “drives” data’s level of protection, performance requirements, frequency of use, etc. is largely the applications creating and delivering that data, as well as the nature of the data itself, and how quickly, and how often it is needed. The idea being that the less often the data is needed, the more it should reside on lower cost, higher capacity storage. The most mission critical data being at the highest tier (Tier 0) – commonly called “the SSD tier,” and the least accessed being in the lowest tier (Tier 3), commonly termed “the archive tier.”
To simplify things – consider this visual by Seagate: