In my last blog I promised to reveal The Hottest Technology at last week's Storage Networking World (SNW) show but first, the runners up.
5. Solid-state disk (SSD) drives. There was a lot of talk about SSDs at SNW (mostly in the context of the raging SSD-vs.-HDD debate), but there weren't many product introductions at the show, although Intel did announce production shipments of its new line of enterprise-class flash drives, which will eventually spur further price erosion in this yet-to-get-hot market.
4. Cloud-based storage. Again, a lot of talk, but few vendors. The only cloud storage vendor I met with was Nirvanix, although this services category is expected to grow rapidly over the next couple quarters. For more on this subject, see "What is cloud-based storage?"
3. Storage efficiency technologies, most notably data de-duplication and thin provisioning. Data de-duplication for secondary storage is becoming widespread, but there was a lot of talk at the show about data de-dupe for primary storage from vendors such as NetApp, Storwize, Ocarina Networks, and there will be much more to come.
2. Server virtualization. This is clearly the dominant IT trend, but there are so many storage technologies focused on optimizing virtual servers that it didn't quite make the top of my list.
And the winner is . . .
Fibre Channel over Ethernet (FCoE). This is admittedly an odd choice because, in terms of end-user adoption, FCoE may be years away, but
For one, FCoE was the topic of the only major press conference at the show (hosted by QLogic, Cisco, NetApp and VMware).
Two, a number of vendors made FCoE product -- or at least product certification -- announcements at the show (albeit prototypes in most cases), including EMC, NetApp, Brocade, Emulex and QLogic.
And three, FCoE will provide controversy (as in 10Gbps iSCSI over Ethernet vs. Fibre Channel over Ethernet) for years to come.
I'll address the controversial side of FCoE in my next blog.