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Achieving Par

Optimize Blog - August 30, 2010 - 0 comments

For those of you thinking we are about to offer some latest golf tips, we’re sorry but you’re going to be disappointed. The ‘par’ we are talking about is 3Par the digital storage company currently the subject of competing bids from rivals HP and Dell.
HP (Hewlett Packard) has raised its bid in the battle with rival Dell to take control of the data storage firm with an offer of US$1.8bn with the move coming just hours after Dell agreed a deal to take over 3Par, having matched HP’s earlier bid of US$1.6bn, tabled on Monday.
Both companies have plenty of cash although HP probably has the greater resources to close the deal but probably the bids will come down to what the value of 3Par actually is. Analysts are suggesting that any additional increase may be over-valuing the company.
Undoubtedly the fit for both protagonists is a good one as the forecast for ‘cloud computing’ (nothing to do with meteorology…) appears really strong and a critical offering for businesses and consumers going forward. The bidding war for 3Par reflects the growing interest in the technology that allows users to access files or services remotely over the internet, rather than just from their own local servers. 3Par says its storage systems can cut storage administration costs by up to 90% and infrastructure costs by up to 75%.
Now we confess that, given the choice, we still like to handle ‘real’ CD cases and shuffle paper copies of copious quantities of commercial reports, avidly marking them with our luminous highlighter pens. But it is undeniable that more and more people are wanting to transact as much as possible in a virtual, downloadable world. CD sales have fallen 50% in recent times, digital book readers proliferate and the cost of on site data storage for businesses continues to escalate in comparison to remote storage.
One thing we know from a hard lesson learned is that back-up services are a lot less expensive than having to recover lost data! Online storage services like Dropbox allow you to keep 2GB of data in their cloud for free – along with Microsoft Skydrive (25GB) and Adrive (50GB). Google Docs and Microsoft Office Live also let you view, edit and share your documents online.
Ultimately whoever finally wins the battle for control of 3Par, it is clear that the digital, virtual world will see continuing strong demand and the way in which we transact business will continue to shift. More and more information is captured and stored by businesses and this will require a review of their information management strategies. Of course the issue is always around the management of risk and the balance between costs and data security.
By nature as individuals we like to store data and hoard documents “just in case we might need them at some point in the future”. It is not always clear to the individual what the true cost of data storage is so as you look through your inbox today, how much of that data actually enables you to be effective in your role and how much of it are you hanging on to as a safety blanket “just in case?”
Take a close look at your data management and how much you are willing to spend “just in case…”

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