Forrester study confirms remarkable savings

The storage requirements of Digital Business are formidable: support for diverse workloads, scalability to multiple petabytes, high performance, durability, and—last but certainly not least—a sensible price tag to purchase, operate, and maintain.

Legacy storage systems can’t meet these criteria, and it’s no mystery why: they were never designed to. That’s why so many large and growing enterprises are in the market for alternatives.

Promises, Promises…

Any storage vendor can talk about savings, and most of them do. But what can they actually deliver in the real world? Forrester set out to answer this question in a 3-year study of the Scality RING object storage platform running on Dell storage servers. The research began with extensive interviews of three organizations using the Scality/Dell solution: a top U.S. nonprofit scientific research center, a European system implementation company, and a European research institute.

Forrester obtained detailed data on costs, benefits, and risks from all three organizations, and then constructed a financial model using their proven Total Economic Impact (TEI) methodology. They don’t call it “total” for nothing: the TEI framework involves a detailed accounting of every expenditure from software and hardware capital outlays to additional overhead for migration, development, and training. The raw cost and benefit figures are then risk-adjusted according to issues and concerns highlighted by the three organizations.

The overall research finding is conclusive. In Forrester’s own words, “Scality RING with Dell storage servers delivers performance and scale at a fraction of the price of similar scale-out solutions without compromising durability.”

Real Results

Let’s unpack the specifics of the 3-year risk-adjusted benefits.

An ROI of 229% with payback in less than 6 months after the go-live date. This percentage is the net return, based on the sum of calculated financial benefits and savings minus all solution costs.

$1.5 million in savings from higher durability and elimination of downtime. With its erasure coding technology, the Scality RING on Dell servers averted the average 2.5 hours of storage downtime typically incurred by network-attached storage (NAS) at the same capacity level. Rebuild time for legacy RAID-based systems was also avoided. All in all, the downtime savings netted out to business continuity gains valued at $1,587,015.

A $5.2 million reduction in acquisition costs vs. a comparable scale-out NAS solution.
An equivalent NAS system—with its proprietary hardware and extra networking equipment—came in at triple the price tag of the Scality/Dell platform. Factoring in infrastructure maintenance costs for the NAS solution, Scality/Dell savings swelled to a cool $5,284.826.

$4.65 million in averted expenses for increased storage capacity in years 2 and 3. As capacity requirements expanded, so did the cost of the alternate scale-out NAS platform, owing to the need for additional network infrastructure and appliance software licenses. In contrast, the Scality license is perpetual with only a one-time fee, making it considerably more affordable to scale.

Data durability in excess of 10 nines. In effect, Scality/Dell could keep stored data fully available and accessible even if an entire data center went down, assuring a good night’s sleep for IT executives and line-of-business managers alike.

For full details on these and other results—including charts, graphs, and in-depth descriptions of the TEI framework and methodology—read the Forrester study. Better yet, attend our upcoming live webinar.


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