What Is A Storage Area Network (SAN)?

SAN Defined

A SAN or storage area network is a specialized, high-speed network that provides block level network access to storage across multiple servers. 

In block level storage, raw volumes of storage are created and each block can be controlled as an individual hard drive and blocks can be individually formatted with the required file system.

SAN works by moving storage resources off the common user network then re-shuffling and re-organizing them into an independent, high-performance network. By doing this it enables access to shared storage to each server, as if it were a drive attached to the server.

A SAN is assembled using three components: cabling, host bus adapters (HBAs), and switches. These are interconnected using a variety of technologies and protocols.

SANs are often used to:

  • Improve application availability 
  • Enhance application performance 
  • Increase storage utilization and improve data protection and security.
  • Play a  role in an organization’s Business Continuity Management. 

In Data Defined, we help make the complex world of data more accessible by explaining some of the most complex aspects of the field.

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