Legal Storage Upgrade - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Hardware & Infrastructure
09:25 AM

Legal Storage Upgrade

Law firm turns to IP-based SAN to save money and handle growing numbers of electronic documents

Law firms have been slow to embrace electronic documents. But now that they have, they also need to upgrade their storage and archiving systems.


Storage needs are growing rapidly, says CIO Walsh (left), with Muhammed Husaini.
Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon LLP employs 550 people, and its lawyers have been demanding better tools to store and manage electronic documents. "The need for storage is growing quite rapidly," CIO Steve Walsh says. "We process a lot of evidence in litigation, and it's all electronic now."

Last year, the firm used 90 Gbytes to store litigation data; this year, it's up to around 600 Gbytes. That required Walsh to change the firm's storage infrastructure, moving from a bunch of high-capacity disk drives to an automated storage area network. Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon first looked at Fibre Channel storage networks because it thought that was the only way to get the performance it needed. There also were questions about the maturity of IP-based SANs.

However, after looking at SANs from three Fibre Channel storage vendors and analyzing cost and other factors, the firm decided to go with an IP SAN from Intransa Inc. "We kept our analysis open after we looked at the pricing for a Fibre Channel SAN, including training and implementation," says the law firm's network manager, Muhammed Husaini. "Intransa is based on the Ethernet backbone, and everyone knows that."

Walsh says the firm spent less than $80,000 on the SAN. "Some of the Fibre Channel SANs we looked at cost four to five times as much," he says. "We had performance issues at the beginning, but software improvements were made by Intransa in time to meet our needs."

Intransa is continuing to beef up the performance of its SAN, and the latest version of its operating system, StorControl, has improvements in capacity, performance, and snapshot-replication capabilities. It can now handle four storage controllers and six disk enclosures. It also improves performance to 360 Mbytes per second and increases capacity to 24 terabytes.

The product should appeal to businesses where cost is a factor, top performance isn't a requirement, and IP expertise is available, says Greg Schulz, an analyst at research firm Evaluator Group. But, he says, "small companies looking for screaming performance would still have to choose Fibre Channel."

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
2021 State of ITOps and SecOps Report
2021 State of ITOps and SecOps Report
This new report from InformationWeek explores what we've learned over the past year, critical trends around ITOps and SecOps, and where leaders are focusing their time and efforts to support a growing digital economy. Download it today!
InformationWeek Is Getting an Upgrade!

Find out more about our plans to improve the look, functionality, and performance of the InformationWeek site in the coming months.

Remote Work Tops SF, NYC for Most High-Paying Job Openings
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  7/20/2021
Blockchain Gets Real Across Industries
Lisa Morgan, Freelance Writer,  7/22/2021
Seeking a Competitive Edge vs. Chasing Savings in the Cloud
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  7/19/2021
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
Monitoring Critical Cloud Workloads Report
In this report, our experts will discuss how to advance your ability to monitor critical workloads as they move about the various cloud platforms in your company.
White Papers
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll