Someone's gotta test
Expanding on jmith's comments ... if you've got mission critical data, you probably need to pay "insurance" to someone in the form of testing. Full disclosure, I'm with a testing company. Today, the storage vendors do a substantial amount of testing before they release new products. They often do Functional Testing – the investigation under simulated load of various functions of the storage system (e.g., backup, etc.) They do Error Injection, the investigation under simulated load of specific failure scenarios (e.g., fail-over when a drive fails), and Soak Testing – the observation of the storage system under load sustained over significant time. Through Compatibility Testing, they determine that the interaction of storage hardware, software and networking is compatible with major other subsystems, like virtualizers and database systems. And they do a huge degree of Regression Testing, to ensure that new releases don’t break things that used to work. Finally, they do Limits Finding, that is, they determine the workload conditions that drive performance below minimal thresholds, and they often document storage behavior at the failure point. Having said that, IMO, the smartest IT users still do their own performance testing with their own mission critical apps.