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Top Storage Grinches 2007

What's stealing the joy -- seasonal or otherwise -- from data centers worldwide? The end of the year is a good time to take stock.

We don't think this is nay-saying. After all, what IT pro worth their Blackberry can possibly declare total satisfaction with the state of the art? The steep growth of data, and the ongoing need for better, faster, and cheaper solutions on already-squeezed budgets make for a challenging and unforgiving environment.

This holiday season, we revisit some of storage networkers' chief concerns about the industry in general and their suppliers in particular. Following is the list, in no particular order. PS: Feel free to add your own observations to the message board, or write to us.

Grinch No. 1: Capacity-based storage software licensing. Storage customers have complained for years about the trend among large suppliers such as EMC, HDS, and IBM to license certain software features of storage systems according to the capacity of the system involved, instead of by feature or function.

In a Byte and Switch poll on the subject, over half the respondents felt the policy was unreasonable, even though it's solidly entrenched among large vendors. Maybe with time and pressure from the right quarters, suppliers will start to rethink their approach. But this is the storage market, so who knows?

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