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January - 2010 - issue > CEO Spotlight
Cheap-and-Deep-Gains-Traction-in-Enterprise-Storage-
Murli Thirumale
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Enterprise storage vendors have to adapt quickly to two changes. Firstly, adopt the technologies of Solid state devices (SSDs), Dedupe and Cloud and secondly, respond to the trend of “consolidated selling”. The advent of cheaper SSDs or flash storage will change the landscape of performance optimized storage and in the next few years, this will be the default for “shallow and fast” storage. On the “cheap and deep” front, most of the Terabytes in storage will be Deduped SATA drives. Finally, the adoption of cloud storage will be enabled by virtualization. The public cloud, both compute and storage will be largely used by smaller companies and internet businesses.

Emphasis is moving to consolidated selling of “servers, storage, and networking” as a joint strategic bundle at the top levels to companies. Cisco’s entry into the server market and HP’s entry into the network are popular examples of consolidated selling. However, where the customer’s preference lies is yet to be determined. They could switch to buying this bundle from a single vendor or stay with buying the best of breed in each area from the vendor who specialize on it.

Some people bemoan the fact that venture capital is harder to raise. Finding true compelling customer pain points, building excellent teams, raising capital and executing without too many disruptions to achieve true traction are perennial entrepreneur challenges. The days of “get lucky” are gone but the days of “get going” are back and good opportunities abound. Being an entrepreneur is still a “great career option” and, more importantly, creating great products and companies from scratch with a great team of people has always been “great for the soul”.

Murli Thirumale is the CEO of Ocarina Networks

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