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A SAN is a specialized network that provides highly available storage subsystems to multiple hosts (servers). This storage network is primarily based on fibre optic technology and allows for very high transfer rates (up to 400 MB/s) between hosts and the storage system. The basic idea of a SAN lies in the consolidation of data storage, thereby reducing the degree of management required to administer multiple, standalone servers, each with their directly attached storage. SANs are extremely flexible, easily scalable and offer a high degree of investment protection. Servers, storage devices and switches can simply be added as an organization grows.
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