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Priority Health goes to great lengths with its SANs to insure its data is safe.

The health insurance provider has a sizable SAN environment: three Hewlett-Packard EVA 500s, two HP XP12000s (rebranded Hitachi Data System TagmaStores), and two HP MSA1500s, and last summer switched from Brocade switches to Cisco directors. The Grand Rapids, Mich., firm runs two autonomous SANs with segregated fabrics so it never has to shut down its production system.

Jake Roersma, manager of network engineering, says he has 74 Tbytes of data and hes constantly adding disk to keep up with 28 percent to 30 percent annual growth.

And what’s he doing for storage resource management (SRM)?

“Excel spreadsheets,” he says, dismissing SRM as "hit or miss." Many vendors will support some arrays but not others, or some parts of those arrays, but it's never a complete package. "Here’s the way storage management should work: You should pre-allocate it, click a button, and it does it the allocation automatically. That would take a huge burden off a SAN administrator’s plate."

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