F5 Data Manager provides extensive reporting capabilities that can help
IT organizations better understand the profile and characteristics of their file data. It highlights opportunities to optimize and improve file data management strategy over time.2
Client Case Study: Background 3
Detailed Reporting 3
Total Storage Capacity 4
File Age 5
File Type 6
Top Owners 7
Trend Reporting 8
Storage Usage 8
Top Owners 9
Advanced Reporting 10
Top Owners 10
Return on Investment 11
Statistics in Data Manager Reports 12
Data Manager Trial 133
Enterprise organizations are struggling to keep up with the rapid growth of the file data they must manage. With
IT groups stretched to the breaking point, it often seems like the easiest solution is to continue purchasing more storage capacity. However, this can lead to unsustainable storage and operational costs. To effectively reduce these costs, organizations must better understand their file storage requirements.
Data Manager™ provides a lightweight reporting solution that gives organizations visibility into their file data and file storage requirements. This paper will discuss how Data Manager reports can be used to visualize how data is growing. It includes charts and tables that are excerpts from an actual Data Manager report, plus brief analyses of the data. The analyses were provided by an F5 Networks expert to the customer to help them understand what
Data Manager had uncovered and what corrective action, if any, was required. All identifiable customer information has been removed.
Client Case Study: Background
This company (whose name is being withheld for privacy) is a fast-growing, mid-size enterprise. Their IT organization was struggling to cope with storage growth rates that exceeded 50 percent annually, which was causing a series of problems: • Individual users and applications were frequently hitting the capacity limits on their network shares, even though the aggregate storage utilization for the entire organization was below 50 percent.
• Provisioning additional capacity and moving data required constant IT attention and often required client and application downtime.
• Backup times were growing increasingly lengthy and often exceeding available backup windows. Some full backups were taking 36 hours to complete.
• Data migrations due to consolidations and upgrades were painful and time-consuming and often required business downtime.
• Costs for managing the explosive data growth were increasing unsustainably, far outstripping growth in their IT budget. This company was considering implementing a file virtualization solution to resolve these issues. However, the IT organization wanted to first understand its existing file storage environment and identify particular areas of need.
This company used F5 Data Manager, a software solution that is installed on a server running Microsoft Windows, to inventory its file system. Data Manager provided reporting and capacity forecasting capabilities, then helped the IT team identify key trends and problem areas that could be improved with file virtualization.
Data Manager presents a wealth of information about file data, file systems, and file storage devices. The standard detailed reports it generates are useful for visualizing a file storage environment at a specific point in time. A good strategy for understanding this information is to examine characteristics of the overall environment, identify potential areas of concern, and then investigate those specific areas.4
Total Storage Capacity
Figure 1: Disk capacity statistics as displayed by Data Manager
The company used Data Manager to perform an inventory of all file shares in its environment—a mix of NetApp
FAS, EMC Celerra, and Windows file servers. The cumulative storage