For SMBs, storage cost, scalability matter

For SMBs, storage cost, scalability matter
When it comes to storage, small and medium businesses (SMBs) have certain demands and needs that must be met. Scalability and simplicity are quite important as SMBs need solutions that can grow with their future expansion. Similar to large-scale project, cost is another factor that SMBs consider when purchasing a storage system.
Given cost-effectiveness is a major requirement for SMBs, solutions providers roll out products that suit this particular need. “We have one city center system end user who required a complete mirror of their storage on a separate site, but could not afford to have a fully duplicated WAN & VMS for redundant recording,” said Alastair McLeod, Group CEO of Veracity. “We developed a direct-to-storage solution (direct from IP camera) and also a clever video routing technology which allowed the direct backup of the video data across their LAN network without increasing the requirements on the WAN. Being a direct-to-storage solution, it did not involved any additional VMS costs.”

Cloud vs. onsite

Alastair McLeod,
Group CEO, Veracity
Wayne Arvidson, VP,
Intelligence, Surveillance and Security
Solutions, Quantum

One way SMBs may save cost on storage is through the “as-a-service” model, whereby data generated by the security equipment is managed and stored in the cloud, saving the end user the cost in onsite equipment purchasing. “SMB users are primarily focused on solutions that their integrators can implement with a minimum of cost and on-going maintenance. These are key reasons why the ‘surveillance as a service’ model will be attractive moving forward,” said Wayne Arvidson, VP of Intelligence, Surveillance and Security Solutions at Quantum. “As cameras become more sophisticated, they’ll be able to do more in band processing and analytics and integrate in more seamlessly with enterprise storage. This will allow integrators to offer unified monitoring services for multiple customers, thus distributing costs, and give the customer a monthly operating expense versus capital investment model. The ability to treat data in the cloud, whether public or private, the same as if it is on-premise is a unique attribute of our StorNext file system.”
However, some vendors argue that cloud storage is not necessarily so cost-effective, given the cost of uploading video to the cloud and the decreasing cost of onsite storage. “The cost and availability of the required bandwidth to have large capacity video surveillance systems stored in the cloud, means that such approaches are still a very long way off,” McLeod said.


Willie Ho, Product Marketing Manager, Synology

Choosing between whether to deploy NAS or NVR as the main storage system is really dependent on the SMB user’s own project size, needs and budget. “This very much depends on the size of the system. The problem with most NVRs is that their internal storage system is either JBOD or RAID5 – neither of which is designed for surveillance storage. Thus if the system is large enough to require multiple NVRs, it may be worth considering a software-based VMS system running on a smaller number of servers going to external specialist video storage,” said McLeod. “However, if the systems are small, rather than medium-sized, then and an integrated NVR storage unit will be most cost-effective. Whilst long-term reliability may not be a feature of such a system, some brands are now cheap enough simply to replace them every couple of years.”
“In addition to video recording, monitoring, and storage functions, Synology NAS can also act as a multi-functional server, such as mail server, print server, cloud server, web server and etc. With varieties of networking add-ons and built-in modules, Synology NAS can not only be an endpoint, but also a centralized server to provide services within your networks, providing server features like VPN, DHCP, Active Directory, DNS, Proxy, and Radius,” said Willie Ho, Product Marketing Manager at Synology.
Raj Patel, B2B Sales Manager, UK and Ireland, Buffalo

“Every environment has its own requirements. That is why our SMB range covers everything from 2 to 12 bay NAS and SAN solutions,” said Raj Patel, B2B Sales Manager for UK and Ireland at Buffalo. “We do offer NAS and SAN in one box, even for the mix, where iSCSI can live beside all the NAS features. Also Storage requirements can differ in such a way that further planning is required, that’s why we also do offer partial populated solutions, which can grow in the future, with no data lost.”


Another point that small and medium business users should consider is scalability, finding a solution that fits their needs not only for now but also for the future. “A well-designed surveillance storage system can scale up very simply, by dividing the cameras across more and more storage units. Coupled with a straightforward system health monitoring system and a well-designed network, such as system is easily scaled up in a way which is manageable, cost-effective, simple to maintain, easy to understand and which can save a great deal of cost in the long-term,” McLeod said.

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