The difference between a 2TB SATA drive and the storage provided by your IT department

Every once in a while the question comes up.

How come my IT department is charging me tens of dollars per gigabyte of storage for my application per month when I can pay less than 15 cents per gigabyte at Best Buy (where a 2TB drive might cost less than $150)?


The conversation then includes long discussions about many topics, including:

          The difference between consumer-grade drives and enterprise-grade drives

          The characteristics of SATA drives, SAS drives, FC drives and SSD drives

          The mean time between failure (MTBF) of drives, especially SATA drives

          The role of a RAID controller and storage arrays and how they add to the cost of storage

          The IOPS requirements of certain enterprise applications

          The relationship between a drive’s rotation speed and the number of IOPS a hard drive can deliver

          The extra disk space required for snapshots and backups

          The desire for site replication solutions and their associated costs

          The post-acquisition costs of storage, including the resources to manage it

          How IT uses charge-backs to avoid misuse of resources by other departments

          And a whole assortment of related topics…


By the end of it, while whoever asked the question is still unhappy with the charges, they are usually more understanding.


Now the real fun is when this type of discussion happens on a public forum, like Slashdot.

Continue on to

Comments (1)

  1. Dale says:

    Three years ago, at a different company, I was asked to pay $100 per GB per month for email inbox storage.  Thought it was price gorging then, and still do now.

    At least your post puts that $100 into some perspective.