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Virtual server initiatives are straining already overwhelmed file storage environments. Unstructured data is growing faster than ever, thanks largely to the proliferation of endpoint capture devices and advances in hardware and software that allow bigger, richer files to be created. Virtualization is exacerbating the problem because many organizations are underpinning their virtualized environments for both server and desktop virtualization with file servers, since it can be much easier to manage the virtual server storage environment using NAS. This further accelerates the growth rate of unstructured data. This paper looks at the challenges associated with managing unstructured data in virtualized environments at scale, and how to get unstructured data under control through file server consolidation. It provides guidelines to help organizations understand what to look for in their consolidated file storage environments in order to make them as efficient as possible through deduplication, tiering, and migration while efficiently keeping data protected and meeting SLAs.
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