For decades, hard disk drives have been a staple of computing. In the 1990s and 2000s, the sound of an HDD spinning into action was a hallmark sign that a computer was being used. In recent years, however, HDDs have been replaced by solid-state drives, which are now standard in mobile devices, and more common in laptops. Virtualized storage is also making inroads into IT departments, data centers, and data centers.
Technavio predicted that the global storage virtualization market will grow at a 24% compound annual growth rate between 2015 and 2019. This was according to a 2016 report. This shift is expected to be driven by the Internet of Things’ emergence and the continued spread of cloud computing. Both require large amounts of storage to scale services to billions of end-users.
Software-defined storage and storage virtualization
Storage virtualization is also known as software-defined storage (SDS) and describes solutions that are:
SDS can be used to decouple storage hardware from the services that manage it. This allows administrators to more easily perform tasks such backups and archiving. Many organizations don’t realize the benefits of virtualizing storage arrays.
There are many reasons to choose virtual storage, however. Let’s take a look at the main benefits of virtualized storage in your network.
Scalability
We have previously highlighted the importance SDS to cloud computing and the IoT. Its scalability is what makes it so attractive. New storage pools can be automatically or dynamically created, so even the most complex applications can be fulfilled in software. Storage virtualization, unlike other systems, pulls together multiple devices using intelligent software services.

Interoperability
SDS/virtualized data storage is known for its standard interfaces. This means that solutions in this area typically support a wide range of storage protocols and types so that multiple devices can be interconnected. This is a better solution than having to learn the details of each storage array. It saves IT staff time and supports scalable, agile storage capabilities.
Cost-effectiveness
Virtualized storage is not dependent on expensive hardware, as its core power lies in software. You can instead use commodity assets. Organizations can reduce their capital expenditures and still have a flexible storage strategy that can store large amounts of data.
“Virtualized storage is a software-based technology that does not require specialized hardware.
Automation
Virtualized storage is often automated so that it does not require manual intervention from an IT administrator. Automation saves time and reduces the chance of human error during provisioning.
Next steps to learn about storage virtualization
In the coming years, storage virtualization will be a significant market. IT professionals can reap substantial rewards for their companies and their careers by learning more about its technical requirements. It is a great way to start a career as a network administrator or system administrator by taking courses in Cisco networking. Learn more by viewing our course listings and finding a New Horizons Learning Group centre near you.