I ran into this cool article on creating a storage service catalog. Storage is one of the holy trinity of infrastructure management along with compute and network (security is under network). Storage is expensive and can be dangerous if you don't retain, secure or delete stuff according to business policie.
When people ask for cloud services or fear cloud services, it's storage management that is the main bugaboo. One of my customers has 100 year retention requirements for some of their data -- so yeah big deal.
So i'm often asked what should be in a storage catalog; well this is is a good example.And I like it because this can be a very useful component for ITSM service level management and cloud computing.
A SNIA presentation about Tiered Services and Classification (PDF) provides a good framework for administrators to create their own storage service catalog. The relevant slide from the 2007 presentation is shown in Figure A.
Click the image to enlarge.
This tool can be a great way to give specific quantification for your delivered storage services. While Tier 1 storage to one organization may not be the same to another, the metrics in the Excel document that I prepare can allow you to quantify how the various tiers will perform based on this SNIA resource. Further, you can even add a Tier 0 category if you wish.
These storage service levels are your low-level component storage services which will serve as components for a service request for higher level "composite" services, i.e. bundles.
You'd build on top of these components bundles such as an application. And we wouldn't ask the customer necessarily questions about throughput, but we may ask the customer if any regulations apply to the app which then would automatically select the right retention and security policies.
The example usese four tiers, but there can be more or less. And thet automated service catalog can drive small variations in service levels through automation without generating unmanageable complexity.
By the way, this example also illustrates the value of automation. With newScale's service catalog wizards, we can drive the customers through english questions that select the proper tier, capacity, back up, etc. But because the Tiers are defined in the automation tools for EMC or NetApp, the provisioning can happen automatically. And the policies can be embedded in their resource managers so, for example, data accessability policies are executed.
A shout out to Rick Vanover of Alliance Data for the useful info.