GuidesStorage Horizon 2008 Page 2

Storage Horizon 2008 Page 2

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Predictions for 2008 and 2009

And now it’s time to look ahead. Some of these are easy calls and some are a stretch.


  • By 2009, at least one additional vendor will support T10 OSD file systems (see Let’s Bid Adieu to Block Devices and SCSI). Having OSD file systems will likely allow better scalability over most current block-based file systems.
  • Multiple implementations of NFSv4.1 will be available by early 2009 with pNFS support. This is a standard to watch, since it has the potential to change a significant portion of what happens in large environments.
  • No significant changes will be available for error management in large system configurations. Though we need a big change in error management, there will be none forthcoming. This is an easy prediction, unfortunately.
  • Undetectable errors will dictate more software changes in the data path beyond T10 DIF and Sun ZFS. People are starting to realize that undetectable errors are a bigger issue than they initially thought (see When Bits Go Bad).


  • PCIe 2.0 (5GB/sec) will be come available in servers with AMD and Intel CPUs.
  • By the end of the year, SAS drive shipments will exceed FC drive shipments for new systems.
  • SAS 2.5 drives will become the standard for enterprise drives by early 2009, with shipments exceeding 3.5 inch drives (this is a bit of a stretch, so we’ll see how it turns out).
  • 8Gbit FC will enter the market for both HBAs and switches late in 2008. This will have a limited impact in 2008 and might have an effect in 2009.
  • Tape density will finally hit 1TB uncompressed in 2008. If you predict it every year, you’ll eventually be right.
  • Disk drive density will continue to grow, but the growth will continue to slow. This is an easy prediction unless there is an unforeseen technology breakthrough.
  • Flash technology will begin to be integrated into enterprise environments to address the IOPS per watt issue. I’ll write more on flash drives in an article next year.

Those are my predictions for 2008 and 2009. I didn’t do much better than a coin toss last year, but hopefully the industry won’t let me down this year. Happy holidays, and best wishes for a prosperous 2008.

Henry Newman, a regular Enterprise Storage Forum contributor, is an industry consultant with 27 years experience in high-performance computing and storage.

This article was originally published on Enterprise Storage Forum.

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