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Spindler also said solution providers and customers should remember when looking at dedupe technologies that vendors can claim anything they want about that dedupe data compression.
“Most vendors make outrageous claims, including some who say they offer up to 500:1 dedupe,” he said. “But the actual data capacity recovered really depends on the data. If data is retained for very long times, customers will get the biggest ratios as there is a lot of redundancy in long-term data archives.”
Mark Teter, CTO of Advanced Systems Group, a Denver-based solution provider, said he is seeing a spark of customer interest in applying dedupe technology to primary data as well as to backup data, especially in heavily virtualized environments.
Teter cited NetApp as a leader in primary dedupe technology, which the vendor makes available free-of-charge with its primary storage arrays.
“Just turn it on,” Teter said. “NetApp has a file system that manages dedupe performance when it’s in use. It’s the one big storage vendor who is really providing a solution suitable for deduping online primary storage.”
Even so, Teter said, deduping at the primary storage level will take time to catch on. With new 2-TB SATA hard drives, the high capacity of newer storage arrays means customers see less of a reason to dedupe just to cut capacity requirements, he said. “It’s still new, and slowly moving into primary data.”