As data center managers consider deployment of a Cloud Computing environment the most important issues they consider include critical application data availability, storage agility and data protection strategies. Early adopters of Cloud Computing have already deployed Virtualization as a key technology in their Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) offerings. Cloud computing extends the benefits of virtualization by increasing the efficiency of server and storage utilization, reducing costs, improving operational efficiency and optimizing datacenter rack and floor space. It builds on first-generation system and storage virtualization with features such as application portability and storage agility to enable higher efficiencies and greater efficiencies across the enterprise. With recent innovation in storage, key features such as thin-provisioning, compression and de-duplication work in concert with virtualized infrastructure on the Storage Appliance to eliminate duplicate data blocks, compress data and allocate the amount of storage being consumed by users. Data services such as snapshots and clones provide instant and optionally, unattended backups that can be used in the short term for recovery of critical data. Disaster recovery is all the more important within the cloud computing environment and built in replication services enable a robust solution in case of a catastrophic event or simply for purposes of backup and recovery.

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