Before we look at what is Nearline Storage or NLS for short, it’s important to understand, the situations online and offline storage is used.
Online storage is used for data that is in active use and can be easily accessed. Offline storage is used to backup of the online data normally in a compressed format to save space. In case of data lose the backup can be used to restore the original data.
Nearline storage is somewhere in between online and offline storage, a type of intermediary storage. Offering a comprise by giving the accessibility of online storage yet space saving attributes (i.e. data compression) of offline storage.
Managing Data Growth
Above is an example of projected data growth in an SAP BW system (1 terabyte in 2012) on average the system would grow approximately 30% per year so by 2016 the size of the BW system is just below 3 terabytes. In orange is the same system using NLS, data that was 2-3years old was moved to Nearline Storage because data this was infrequently accessed by it’s users. By moving the older data to NLS it was still accessible, but at the same time was compressed by up to 90%, therefore significantly reducing the storage space required by nearly 50% with BW system size falling just under 1.5 terabytes by 2016.
Nearline storage is becoming an integral part of any organizations information lifecycle management especially nowadays with the vast amounts of data that is being generated leading to unprecedented data growth. And for those who are transitioning towards new technology such as In-memory computing for faster processing of data, but where storage costs are considerable higher than more conventional types of storage.
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