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Managing storage for virtual environments: A complete guide

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Storage magazine June 2014: New Storage Features in VMware and Hyper-V

There's a struggle between doing storage the "old way" and the new demands that virtual servers put on networked storage. Storage vendors have retooled their systems to be virtual machine (VM)-friendlier and startups offer VM-specific arrays, but now hypervisor vendors like VMware and Microsoft have enhanced their server virtualization platforms with storage features that help to integrate storage into the new paradigms of hypervisor management.

Whether your servers are virtualized or not, storage is the key to how well the data center infrastructure performs. Identifying storage performance bottlenecks and eliminating them is vital to restoring order and performance to an environment.

Hadoop is the poster child of the big data hullabaloo, but it seems contrary to traditional shared storage. But tapping into the Hadoop Distributed File System can bring these disparate worlds together.

These are also closely related to: "Managing storage for virtual environments: A complete guide"

  • Tintri VMstore: Application-Aware Storage

    Server virtualization brings tremendous value in terms of adding operational agility and significant cost savings through consolidation, increased utilization, and workload portability, but storage can be an inhibitor to realizing that value.

    Traditional storage systems were not designed to be shared between applications, and the gyrations required to do so, such as mapping LUNs, volumes, ports, and zones, introduce complexity without solving the entire storage challenge related to supporting virtual environments. 

    This is because they cannot provide sufficient quality of service to ensure the right applications get the right amount of resources.  What is needed is a solution that is application-aware in order to ensure application quality of service.  That is the approach Tintri took with its VMstore.

  • Buyer's checklist: Purpose-built storage for virtual servers

    As virtual server technology gradually grew to dominance in most data centers, it became apparent that many traditional storage systems weren’t up to the task of serving these new virtualized server environments. Performance issues cropped up as SANs and network-attached storage systems struggled to deliver the IOPS and throughput required by virtual machines. But the new virtual server model also helped to create a new category of storage array: hypervisor-aware storage systems that were built from the ground up to provide storage for virtual environments, with a special emphasis on performance and agility.

    This Buyer’s Checklist on Purpose-Built Storage for Virtual Servers describes how these storage systems differ from traditional arrays, provides insights into some of their unique features and offers guidance on evaluating, purchasing and deploying these storage systems.

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