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Storage-area network (SAN)

Terms related to storage area networks, including definitions about SAN management and words and phrases about virtual SANs, Fibre Channel and iSCSI SANs.

ATA - ZON

  • ATA over Ethernet (AoE) - ATA over Ethernet (AoE) is an open source network protocol designed to connect storage devices and servers in a storage area network (SAN).
  • backup storage device - A data storage device for backup makes copies of data actively in use.
  • base address - A base address is a unique location in primary storage (or main memory) that serves as a reference point for other memory locations called absolute addresses.
  • block storage - Block storage is data storage typically used in storage-area network (SAN) environments where data is stored in volumes, also referred to as blocks.
  • buffer credits or buffer-to-buffer credits (BBCs) - Buffer credits, also called buffer-to-buffer credits (BBCs), allow data communication in a Fibre Channelstorage area network (SAN) where there are long spans of fiber opticcable.
  • cloud NAS (cloud network attached storage) - Cloud NAS (network attached storage) is remote storage that is accessed over the Internet as if it was local.
  • cloud storage - Cloud storage is a service model in which data is maintained, managed, backed up remotely and made available to users over a network (typically the Internet).
  • cloud storage API - A cloud storage API is an application program interface that connects a locally-based application to a cloud-based storage system, so that a user can send data to it and access and work with data stored in it.
  • cloud storage gateway - A cloud storage gateway is a hardware- or software-based appliance that serves as a bridge between local applications and remote cloud-based storage.
  • compaction - In a data center, compaction is the reduction or consolidation of hardware to make better use of physical floor space.
  • data availability - Data availability is a term used by some computer storage manufacturers and storage service providers (SSPs) to describe products and services that ensure that data continues to be available at a required level of performance in situations ranging from normal through "disastrous.
  • data protection management (DPM) - Data protection management (DPM) is the administration of backup processes to ensure that tasks run on schedule, and that data is securely backed up and recoverable.
  • ESCON (Enterprise Systems Connection) - ESCON (Enterprise Systems Connection) is a marketing name for a set of IBM and vendor products that interconnect S/390 computers with each other and with attached storage, locally attached workstations, and other devices using optical fiber technology and dynamically modifiable switches called ESCON Directors.
  • Ethernet hard drive - An Ethernet hard drive is an external hard drive with a direct Ethernet interface to simplify storage networks, data centers and cloud operations.
  • failover - Failover is a backup operational mode in which the functions of a system component (such as a processor, server, network, or database, for example) are assumed by secondary system components when the primary component becomes unavailable through either failure or scheduled down time.
  • fat provisioning (FP) - Fat provisioning (FP) is the conventional storage provisioning model, in which space is allocated beyond current needs, in anticipation of growing need and increased data complexity.
  • FCoE (Fibre Channel over Ethernet) - FCoE (Fibre Channel over Ethernet) is a storage protocol that enable Fibre Channel communications to run directly over Ethernet.
  • Fibre Channel - Fibre Channel is a high-speed networking technology primarily used for transmitting data among data centers, computer servers, switches and storage at data rates of up to 128 Gbps.
  • Fibre Channel adapter - A Fibre Channel (FC) adapter is a hardware component that provides connectivity from a server to a storage area network (SAN).
  • Fibre Channel over IP (FCIP or FC/IP) - Fibre Channel over IP (FCIP or FC/IP, also known as Fibre Channel tunneling or storage tunneling) is an Internet Protocol (IP)-based storage networking technology developed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF).
  • Fibre Channel switch (FC switch) - A Fibre Channel switch is a networking device that is compatible with the Fibre Channel (FC) protocol and designed for use in a dedicated storage area network (SAN).
  • flash storage - Flash storage is any type of drive, repository or system that uses flash memory to keep data for an extended period of time.
  • hard zoning - Hard zoning is used to allocate resources and control access in a storage-area network (SAN).
  • high availability (HA) - High availability (HA) is the ability of a system or system component to be continuously operational for a desirably long length of time.
  • HIPPI (High-Performance Parallel Interface) - HIPPI (High-Performance Parallel Interface) is a standard point-to-point protocol for transmitting large amounts of data at up to billions of bits per second over relatively short distances, mainly on local area networks (LAN s).
  • hot swap - A hot swap is the replacement of a hard drive, CD-ROM drive, power supply, or other device with a similar device while the computer system using it remains in operation.
  • iFCP (Internet Fibre Channel Protocol) - iFCP (Internet Fibre Channel Protocol) is an emerging standard for extending Fibre Channel storage networks across the Internet.
  • intelligent switch - An intelligent switch is a high-level storage area network (SAN) routing switch that provides features such as storage virtualization, quality of service (QoS), remote mirroring, data sharing, protocol conversion, and advanced security.
  • Internet Small Computer System Interface (iSCSI) adapter - An iSCSI adapter is a network interface card that enables the transmission of data between host computers and iSCSI-based storage arrays and typically handles the TCP/IP processing.
  • Iometer - Iometer allows users to set custom input/output profiles to simulate different application workloads for testing.
  • IP SAN (Internet Protocol storage area network) - An IP SAN is a dedicated storage area network (SAN) that allows multiple servers to access pools of shared block storage devices using storage protocols that depend on the Internet Engineering Taskforce standard Internet Protocol suite.
  • IP storage - IP storage is a general term for several approaches to using the Internet Protocol (IP) in a storage area network (SAN) usually over Gigabit Ethernet.
  • iSCSI initiator - An iSCSI initiator is software or hardware that enables a host computer to transmit data to an iSCSI-based storage array through a network adapter over a TCP-based IP network.
  • LAN-free backup - LAN-free backup is the process of backing up server data to a centralized storage device rather than moving it across a local-area network (LAN).
  • logical unit number (LUN) - A logical unit number (LUN) identifies one or more physical or virtual storage devices to a SCSI initiator in a host server to enable data exchange.
  • LUN masking - LUN masking is a further constraint added to zoning, subdividing access to the port so that only LUNs authorized to access a specific server can access the corresponding port.
  • LUN zoning - LUN zoning is a method of configuring SAN fabric to match logical unit numbers (LUNs) to the proper servers.
  • Microsoft iSCSI Initiator - Microsoft iSCSI Initiator is a tool that connects external iSCSI-based storage to host computers with an Ethernet network adapter.
  • mount point - Whether it comes from a partition on the same drive, a new hard drive, media inserted into an optical drive or some form of flash memory, any file system must be mounted before it can be displayed and its file system read.
  • Multipath I/O (MPIO) - Multipath I/O (MPIO) is a Microsoft framework designed to mitigate the effects of a host bus adapter (HBA) failure by providing an alternate data path between storage network devices.
  • multipathing (SAN multipathing) - Multipathing, also called SAN multipathing or I/O multipathing, is the establishment of multiple physical routes between a server and the storage device that supports it.
  • multiprotocol storage - Multiprotocol storage, also known as unified or federated storage, supports protocols traditionally associated with SAN block-based and NAS file-based storage in a single device.
  • NAS accelerator - A NAS accelerator (network-attached storage accelerator) is a printed circuit card that offloads TCP/IP processing from a microprocessor.
  • network-attached storage (NAS) - Network-attached storage (NAS) is dedicated file storage that enables multiple users and heterogeneous client devices to retrieve data from centralized disk capacity.
  • NVMe over Fibre Channel (NVMe over FC) or FC-NVMe standard - Nonvolatile memory express over Fibre Channel (NVMe over FC) -- which is implemented through the Fibre Channel-NVMe (FC-NVMe) standard -- is a technology specification designed to enable NVMe-based message commands to transfer data and status information between a host computer and a target storage subsystem over a Fibre Channel network fabric.
  • oversubscription - Oversubscription, in a SAN (storage area network) switching environment, is the practice of connecting multiple devices to the same switch port to optimize switch use.
  • pathing (path control) - Pathing (sometimes called path control) is a networking approach used to address the specific needs of storage networks (as compared to ordinary message networks) by changing the way that communication paths are managed and organized.
  • physical address - A physical address is a binary number in the form of logical high and low states on an address bus that corresponds to a particular cell of primary storage (also called main memory), or to a particular register in a memory-mapped I/O (input/output) device.
  • SAN file system - A SAN file system (that is, a storage area network file system) is programming that enables the sharing of the same copies of files stored on common storage media among multiple servers that may have different operating systems.
  • SAN island - A SAN island is a storage area network (SAN) that exists as a discrete, isolated entity within a larger SAN.
  • SAN routing - SAN (storage area network) routing is a technology used for interconnecting SAN islands (separately designated logical portions of a storage area network) within a larger network.
  • SAN-in-a-box - A SAN-in-a-box, also known as a SAN-in-a-can or a SAN kit, is a data storage device that includes all the basic SAN components are in a single package.
  • serial-attached SCSI (SAS) - Serial-attached SCSI (SAS) is a point-to-point protocol used to transfer digital data between servers and SAS storage devices.
  • serverless backup - Serverless data backup removes backup procedures from production servers so that the time usually spent on backup functions can be used for other server tasks.
  • soft zoning - Soft zoning is used to allocate resources and control access in a storage-area network (SAN).
  • storage area management (SAM) - Storage area management (SAM) is a still-evolving set of procedures, services, and standards for comprehensively managing the infrastructure of a storage area network (SAN), including all components within all servers, the disk arrays, the tape libraries, the switches, the routers, and the programs.
  • storage area network (SAN) - A storage area network (SAN) is a dedicated high-speed network or subnetwork that interconnects and presents shared pools of storage devices to multiple servers.
  • storage consolidation - Storage consolidation, also called storage convergence is a method of centralizing data storage among multiple servers.
  • storage distance extension - Storage distance extension refers to any of several different technologies that allow data communication in Fibre Channel storage area networks (SANs) over long spans of fiber optic cable.
  • storage encryption - Storage encryption is the use of encryption/decryption of backed-up and archived data, both in transit and on storage media.
  • storage filer - A storage filer is a file server designed and programmed for high-volume data storage, backup, and archiving.
  • storage pools - Storage pools are capacity aggregated from disparate physical storage resources in a shared storage environment.
  • storage provisioning - Storage provisioning is the process of assigning storage, usually in the form of server disk drive space, in order to optimize the performance of a storage area network (SAN).
  • storage replication service - A storage replication service is a managed service in which stored or archived data is duplicated in real time over a storage area network (SAN).
  • storage resource management (SRM) - An important goal of storage resource management is to make it easier for storage administrators to reclaim unused storage.
  • storage security - Storage security is the group of parameters and settings that make storage resources available to authorized users and trusted networks - and unavailable to other entities.
  • storage service provider (SSP) - Also see two related terms, application service provider and management service provider.
  • storage snapshot - A storage snapshot is a set of reference markers for data at a particular point in time.
  • storage utilization - Storage utilization is a measure of how well the available data storage space in an enterprise is used.
  • storage virtualization - Storage virtualization is the pooling of physical storage from multiple storage devices into what appears to be a single storage device -- or pool of available storage capacity -- that is managed from a central console.
  • switching fabric - Switching fabric is the combination of hardware and software that moves data coming in to a network node out by the correct port (door) to the next node in the network.
  • tape backup - Tape can help fix an unstructured data backup issue and is a good archiving medium.
  • thin provisioning (TP) - Thin provisioning (TP) is a method of optimizing the efficiency with which the available space is utilized in storage area networks.
  • tiered storage - Tiered storage is a way to assign different categories of data to various types of storage media with the objective of reducing the total cost of storage.
  • unified storage (multiprotocol storage) - Unified storage -- sometimes called network unified storage or multiprotocol storage -- is a storage system that runs and manages files and applications from a single device.
  • utility storage - Utility storage is a service model in which a provider makes storage capacity available to an individual, an organization or a business unit on a pay-per-use basis.
  • Virtual File Allocation Table (VFAT) - Virtual File Allocation Table (VFAT) is the part of the Windows 95 and later operating system that handles long file names, which otherwise could not be handled by the original file allocation table file allocation table (FAT) programming.
  • virtual LUN or thin LUN - A virtual LUN (virtual logical unit number) is a representation of a storage area that is not tied to any physical storage allocation.
  • virtual storage area network (VSAN) - A virtual storage area network (VSAN) is a logical partition in a storage area network (SAN).
  • Virtual Storage Portal (VSP) - Another meaning for VSP is vertical solutions provider.
  • virtual tape - Virtual tape is an archival storage technology that makes it possible to save data as if it were being stored on tape although it may actually be stored on hard disk or on another storage medium.
  • wide-area file services (WAFS) - Wide-area file services (WAFS) is a storage technology that makes it possible to access a remote data center as though it were local.
  • Zadara VPSA and ZIOS - Zadara Storage provides block, file or object storage with varying levels of compute and capacity through its ZIOS and VPSA platforms.
  • zoning - In a storage area network (SAN), zoning is the allocation of resources for device load balancing and for selectively allowing access to data only to certain users.

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