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Method and means for resiliency license optimization in storage service delivery environments

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000237829D
Publication Date: 2014-Jul-15
Document File: 7 page(s) / 186K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Disclosed is a method to use consolidation as a means of reducing the cost of resiliency licenses in enterprise storage environments with various practical constraints.

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Method and means for resiliency license optimization in storage service delivery environments

In enterprise storage environments, data protection is important and many resiliency solutions have been proposed. The essence of such resiliency schemes is to replicate data from a primary location to one or more secondary locations for protection. Usually a storage volume needing protection is linked with a secondary storage volume. Such a relationship is called a replication session, and the session type can be one of a variety currently offered. The input/output (I/O) activities of the primary (source) volume are duplicated to the secondary (target) volume.

Figure 1: Resiliency relationship of volumes before consolidation

In order to provide resiliency functionality and establish a session type, the participating storage devices (i.e., that hosting the source volumes and that hosting the target volumes) need a specific resiliency license, which can be purchased along with the

storage device. Bulk purchase of licenses can enhance the management flexibility and data protection capability, but can introduce unnecessary capital expenditure.

Therefore, a method is needed to consolidate the volumes with resiliency requirements on a small number of storage devices with proper licenses, without affecting the resiliency and performance of the applications. The consolidation process can help the storage administrator for future procurement planning, as it reflects the actual usage of the costly storage resiliency licenses (i.e., how many licensed devices are actually needed for the current storage resiliency requirements).

The consolidation outcome is illustrated in Figure 2. Figure 1 illustrates three replication sessions before consolidation. All four

storage devices are part of a replication session and thus four software licenses are needed. However, if the storage volumes are meticulously migrated around as shown in Figure 2 (i.e. after consolidation), only two storage devices are involved in any of the replication sessions, and hence only two licenses are needed.

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Figure 2: After consolidation

Although the licenses fees on Devices 3 and 4 might have already been expensed, such consolidation planning can benefit the storage administrator and service provider for future budget planning and cost-aware optimization. Carefully consolidating replication sessions (migrating corresponding storage volumes), can reduce the license cost without affecting the replication functionalities.

The consolidation process is not straightforward. Many challenges make the consolidation decision non-trivial and challenging. For example, the volumes with resiliency requirements may have anti-affinity constraints; for example, the source volume and target volume must be on different storage devices for data protection. Another example is that a certain volume with resiliency

protection requires certain capabilities of the storage device, such as a S...