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Data centre spending heading back to pre-recession levels

Simon Quicke

With demand coming from the cloud and more awareness of the need to upgrade existing systems to lower energy alternatives the prospects in the data centre market are looking fairly rosy.

The latest analysis of the prospects of the market from Gartner indicate that worldwide spending on data centre hardware is expected to rise by 12.7% this year compared to last, with a total of 98.9bn spent, and then carry on growing until it hits the $126.2bn mark in 2015.

That will finally take the market back to pre-recessionary levels and beyond where things stood before it all went wrong in 2008 with growth coming from emerging markets with storage one of the main drivers for spending.

"Storage is the main driver for growth. Although only a quarter of data center hardware spending is on storage, almost half of the growth in spending will be from the storage market," said Jon Hardcastle, research director at Gartner.

But some in the industry thought the belief in the strength of storage demand might be misplaced and could potentially undermine the growth predictions.

"It's interesting to see Gartner predicting a rise in data centre spending - especially their belief that storage will play a major part in this. With the sheer amount of business data growing, it's no surprise that storage needs are increasing. However, some recent advances in technology might impact these growth predictions," said Richard Davies, CEO of ElasticStack.

"Typically, businesses have separated servers and storage in the data centre for extra resilience. However, advances in distributed block storage combined with virtualisation, mean you can run storage and compute on the same commodity hardware without compromising on resilience. The result is that many companies will start reducing their investments in SANs and sweating the disks in their servers much harder," he added.

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