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Does Fragmentation Hurt Storage Network Performance?

Oct 21, 2009, 10:34 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Drew Robb)

[ Thanks to Paul Shread for this link. ]

"The SAN guys explain that RAID, SAN algorithms, array controllers and so on either minimize or eliminate fragmentation as a factor inside the SAN. Some go so far as to say that defragmentation can even curtail overall performance by interfering with operations.

"The benefits of defragmentation can clearly be seen in DAS environments," said Scott DesBles, director of technical solutions at Compellent Technologies (NYSE: CML). "But in a data center with virtualized storage such as the Compellent SAN, defragmentation provides little benefit and can actually hinder the SAN from managing data as efficiently as it should."

"Such sentiments largely prevail throughout the SAN OEM community. Yet some analysts and users take a different view.

""Fragmentation is one of those gnarly subjects open for debate that exists from DAS all the way to SAN attached storage," said Greg Schulz, senior analyst and founder of Storage IO Group. "I'm of the opinion that it is an issue."

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