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Top Enterprise Data Storage Trends of 2024

Top Enterprise Data Storage Trends of 2024

Modern businesses rely heavily on data-driven decision-making. With vast amounts of data generated from various sources such as customer interactions, financial transactions, and operational processes, effective storage solutions are essential. They facilitate easy access and analysis of this data, empowering informed decision-making across all departments. Additionally, stringent data security and privacy regulations prevalent in many industries necessitate robust storage solutions to ensure compliance. By mitigating potential legal and financial risks, businesses can operate with confidence in their data handling practices.

Furthermore, secure enterprise data storage plays a crucial role in ensuring business continuity and disaster recovery. In the face of unforeseen events such as hardware failures or cyberattacks, having a reliable storage infrastructure becomes paramount. It safeguards valuable information and minimizes downtime, thereby preserving operational continuity. In fact, according to Forbes, a significant portion of businesses—59%are leveraging data analytics to make better decisions and enhance overall business performance. This underscores the pivotal role that enterprise data storage plays in driving efficiency and competitiveness in the modern business landscape.

As we approach 2024, the data storage landscape is undergoing unprecedented change, fueled by a convergence of technological innovation and evolving business requirements. These trends aren’t mere buzzwords, they represent the future, poised to revolutionize how organizations manage and leverage their invaluable digital assets. The data storage industry is undergoing a significant transformation driven by various factors, including the imperative for enhanced security, speed, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness. Recent projections by IT research firm Gartner indicate a staggering 23-fold increase in shipped petabytes by 2030, signaling a trajectory set to fundamentally reshape current data center and IT operations. To maintain a competitive edge in the storage arena, it’s imperative to closely monitor and adapt to these eight key trends.

Insights into Enterprise Data Storage according to Gartner:

  1. Consumption-based Storage-as-a-Service (STaaS): By 2028, consumption-based STaaS is anticipated to replace over 35% of enterprise storage capital expenditure (capex), marking a substantial increase from less than 10% in 2023. This transition reflects a growing preference for flexible, pay-as-you-go storage solutions that align with evolving business needs.
  2. Cyberstorage Capabilities: By 2028, it’s projected that 100% of storage products will incorporate cyberstorage capabilities focused on active defense beyond recovery from cyber events, a significant rise from just 10% in early 2023. This emphasis underscores the critical importance of cybersecurity in safeguarding sensitive data against evolving threats.
  3. QLC Adoption in SSD Flash Media: By 2027, enterprises are expected to utilize Quad-Level Cell (QLC) technology in 25% of their SSD flash media, a notable increase from 5% in late 2022. This trend reflects advancements in flash storage technology, offering higher capacities and cost efficiencies for storing data-intensive workloads.
  4. Consolidated Unstructured Data Storage Platforms: By 2028, approximately 70% of file and object data is projected to be deployed on consolidated unstructured data storage platforms, up from 35% in early 2023. This consolidation streamlines data management processes and optimizes storage resources across diverse data types.
  5. Expansion of Unstructured Data Capacity: Large enterprises are expected to triple their unstructured data capacity across on-premises, edge, and public cloud locations by 2028, compared to mid-2023. This surge underscores the exponential growth of unstructured data and the need for scalable storage solutions to accommodate it.
  6. Hybrid Cloud File Deployments: By 2027, 60% of Infrastructure and Operations (I&O) leaders are projected to implement hybrid cloud file deployments, a significant rise from 20% in early 2023. This trend reflects the growing adoption of hybrid cloud architectures for seamless data management across on-premises and cloud environments

Read more: Top 20 Enterprise Data Storage Providers to Look Up in 2024

Key Enterprise Data Storage Trends

Hybrid Cloud Integration

Driven by the rapid shift to remote work and evolving client demands, businesses are increasingly embracing cloud solutions for enhanced agility. Forrester reports that 94% of enterprise IT decision-makers in the United States have already implemented some form of cloud deployment.

Despite the growing preference for cloud-native approaches, many organizations opt to maintain critical systems on private clouds or on-premises infrastructure. Concurrently, they leverage public clouds for various business operations and customer services, leading to a surge in hybrid cloud adoption to meet diverse needs.

The ability to seamlessly navigate between these environments is crucial for aligning storage strategies with modern IT operations. The trend toward hybrid cloud integration offers unparalleled data mobility and flexibility, catering to the evolving requirements of businesses in today’s dynamic landscape.

NVMe Over Fabric

By 2027, NVMe-oF adoption in enterprise organizations is projected to reach 25%, a significant increase from less than 10% in mid-2023. NVMe Over Fabric (NVMe-oF) is a network protocol leveraging the parallel-access and low-latency features of NVMe PCIe devices. It enables the tunneling of NVMe commands to remote subsystems, facilitating high-performance data transfer over fabrics like Fibre Channel, InfiniBand, or Ethernet with RDMA.

This trend is driven by the need for low-latency solutions, particularly in environments with NVMe drives. Despite requiring infrastructure upgrades, the benefits of NVMe-oF, including scalable architectures and enhanced storage capabilities, are attracting organizations with high-performance demands.

NVMe-oF accelerates the adoption of next-generation storage architectures, such as disaggregated storage-compute models and software-defined storage. NVMe-TCP, in particular, offers simplicity and cost-effectiveness in Ethernet-based deployments, making it a viable option for various workloads.

To capitalize on this trend, organizations should identify workloads where NVMe-oF’s scalability and performance justify the investment. Targeting high-performance applications like AI/ML, HPC, and in-memory databases is recommended. Additionally, verifying interoperability among storage platforms, network interfaces, and fabric suppliers is essential for seamless integration and optimal performance.

Cyberstorage: Fortifying Data Protection Against Cyber Threats

Gartner predicts that by 2028, 100% of storage products will integrate cyberstorage capabilities focused on active defense beyond recovery from cyber events.

Cyberstorage solutions employ proactive technologies to safeguard structured and unstructured enterprise data from ransomware and other cyberattacks.

The trend toward cyberstorage is driven by the escalating threat landscape, with ransomware and cyberattacks posing significant risks to businesses. Recognizing the critical role of enterprise storage in safeguarding valuable data, organizations are prioritizing cybersecurity measures to prevent and mitigate potential breaches.

As ransomware attacks become increasingly prevalent, IT leaders and storage professionals are embracing new approaches for active defense. The Cybersecurity Framework (CSF) developed by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) offers comprehensive guidance on identifying, protecting, detecting, responding to, and recovering from cyberattacks. In response to this heightened focus on storage security, there has been a proliferation of cyber storage products and data services tailored to combat ransomware attacks effectively.

Also Read: CIO’s Guide to Preventing Ransomware Attacks in B2B Enterprises

Time-Series Database Technology

Time-series databases (TSDBs) are engineered to facilitate rapid data reads and writes, as highlighted by Jesse White, CTO at OpenNMS Group, a provider of open-source network monitoring and management platforms. These databases capitalize on the scalability, resilience, and cost-effectiveness of object storage solutions while minimizing latency impacts through cleverly designed storage layouts and indices.

TSDBs deployed on object storage are targeted at enterprises, managed service providers, and organizations dealing with large volumes of time series data for observability and analytical purposes.

Stable releases of TSDBs compatible with object storage, such as Cortex, Mimir, and InfluxDB IOx, are readily accessible. These solutions leverage object storage APIs, which are widely supported across major cloud providers, with open-source alternatives like MinIO and Ceph offering compatible APIs.

Despite the versatility of TSDBs leveraging object storage, White notes that object storage APIs lack standardization.

QLC All-Flash: A Shift Towards High-Density Storage Solutions

Quad-level cell (QLC)–based storage arrays, enhanced with software-enabled ASIC or FPGA logic, are increasingly adopted for general-purpose block storage and backup/disaster recovery use cases. These arrays o**** improved durability and performance compared to traditional TLC-based arrays, making them viable replacements for HDD disk arrays in file and object use cases such as analytics and backup/disaster recovery.

The trend towards QLC-based storage is driven by the desire to leverage lower-cost flash media across a wider range of applications. Storage vendors are addressing QLC media limitations through software and custom logic, making QLC-equipped arrays increasingly attractive for enterprises seeking long-term benefits such as rapid data restoration in the event of a ransomware attack.

As QLC-equipped arrays gain traction, they have the potential to displace TLC-based flash arrays and hybrid HDD arrays, particularly as the demand for higher-density SSD drives grows with the proliferation of unstructured data. This shift is expected to decrease the market share of traditional hybrid HDD arrays while accelerating the growth of unstructured data storage solutions.

Finally

As we look ahead, the trajectory of IT infrastructure is becoming increasingly clear. Embracing data storage trends is no longer merely an option; it’s a fundamental necessity. It is observed that steady implementation of these advancements, is not out of vanity, but out of a strategic imperative to remain at the forefront of the data-driven landscape. The success of businesses in today’s digitally competitive environment hinges upon their willingness and readiness to adopt these transformative technologies. Businesses must embrace these trends to ensure resilience, agility, and competitiveness in an ever-evolving technological landscape. By aligning their storage strategies with these emerging trends, businesses can position themselves for sustained success in the digital era.

FAQs

1. What are the key drivers behind the adoption of hybrid cloud storage solutions?

The adoption of hybrid cloud storage solutions is driven by the need for greater flexibility, scalability, and resilience in managing enterprise data across diverse environments. It allows organizations to leverage the benefits of both public and private clouds while addressing specific business requirements.

2. How does software-defined storage (SDS) differ from traditional storage approaches?

SDS decouples storage management software from hardware, enabling greater agility, scalability, and automation in storage provisioning and management. Unlike traditional storage solutions, SDS offers flexibility and cost-effectiveness by leveraging commodity hardware and centralized management.

3. What role does artificial intelligence (AI) play in modern storage management?

AI-powered storage management solutions utilize machine learning algorithms to optimize performance, predict and prevent potential issues, and automate routine tasks. By analyzing vast amounts of data, AI enhances storage efficiency, reliability, and security while reducing operational overhead.

4. What are the advantages of object storage over traditional file and block storage?

Object storage provides scalable and cost-effective storage for unstructured data, offering seamless scalability, built-in redundancy, and simplified data management. It is ideal for applications such as content delivery, archival, and analytics that require efficient handling of large volumes of data.

5. How does persistent memory technology enhance storage performance?

Persistent memory technologies such as NVMe and Optane o**** significantly lower latency and higher throughput compared to traditional storage solutions. By bridging the gap between memory and storage, persistent memory accelerates data-intensive workloads and enhances overall system responsiveness.

6. What are the key considerations for organizations looking to adopt AI-driven storage management solutions?

Organizations should assess factors such as data privacy and security, integration capabilities with existing infrastructure, scalability, and vendor support when evaluating AI-driven storage management solutions. Additionally, it’s crucial to define clear objectives and expected outcomes to maximize the value of AI investments.

7. How can organizations ensure data security and compliance in an increasingly complex storage environment?

Implementing encryption, access controls, data classification, and regular audits are essential for maintaining data security and compliance with regulations such as GDPR and CCPA. Additionally, leveraging robust backup and disaster recovery solutions helps mitigate the impact of potential data breaches or compliance violations.

[To share your insights with us as part of editorial or sponsored content, please write to sghosh@martechseries.com]

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