The fastest servers and network connections in the world are not much help if storage systems cannot read or write data at a rapid pace. Performance-hungry databases, time-consuming data analyses, frequently accessed online applications and virtualized server or desktop environments can lead to storage bottlenecks very quickly.
Solid state drives (SSDs) can increase speed by a factor of 100 or more, and they considerably outperform hard disks. Performance and response issues could be solved immediately if all the data in performance-intensive applications resided on a storage system equipped with SSDs. Although SSDs are more expensive in terms of purchase price, the added cost is offset when they are deployed in environments which require high performance levels.
Temporary solutions based on hard disks can be expensive as well – and their performance is much lower than SSD solutions. Approaches such as investments in dedicated storage systems per application, the distribution of data over as many hard disks as possible, or frequent system tuning are only stop-gap solutions at best. And they usually deliver relatively poor overall storage system utilization.