I was talking with TeraTech’s server tuning consultant Mike Brunt about servers and SANs (Storage Area Networks). When should you use a SAN?
1/ As a SAN systems are typically simply a large number of hard-drives, optical drives etc in an enclosure, it is very easy to add capacity quickly as needed as opposed to adding a complete new server which takes time. So if you database is growing fast you might chose to put the data on a SAN.
2/ If there is a need to allow access to a large volumes of data from multiple systems. A typical case here would be large media files such as photographs-images, movies, music, games etc.
It is generally not a good idea to put CF code on a SAN to share among a cluster of servers – the network traffic will be much slower than accessing the CF code on a local hard drive. Instead use automated tools to copy updated code between servers in the cluster. More on that later.