Server virtualization solutions
Server virtualization technology offers a number of flexibility benefits, and can dramatically reduce the costs associated with server infrastructure. Unfortunately, all of the gains realized by virtualizing server infrastructure are often substituted by dramatic increases in storage cost and capacity requirements.
VM sprawl leads to storage sprawl
Highly-virtualized server environments require more storage than physical server environments to meet the same performance requirements. The ease of deploying new VMs without rigorous policies in place has also led to an increase in “server sprawl” which requires additional storage. And while server virtualization technology lets us “thin provision” servers and still meet performance requirements, we can’t seem to do that without either incurring major performance hits or having to purchase very expensive, enterprise-class arrays.
The benefits of a storage hypervisor
When you used server virtualization technology to consolidate servers, you reaped cost savings across several areas. By increasing the utilization of your server hardware, you required less physical infrastructure to meet your computing needs. Because you needed fewer physical servers, your energy and floor space costs went down. And because your “servers” were now really just files, you reaped a lot of administrative benefits – they were easier to deploy, easier to re-purpose, easier to backup, and easier to recover. This ease of use afforded a “self-service” aspect to server deployment and retirement that never existed with physical servers. This was all made possible by a server hypervisor.
Think about what the same general approach, in a “storage hypervisor”, could offer - increased utilization of the storage hardware would allow you to increase server densities on your hosts, lowering storage cost/server. You would need less storage infrastructure to meet any given performance need, and it would provide an easy way for server administrators, not storage administrators, to deploy storage as VMs are brought into service and retired after initial configuration.
Self-service VM storage provisioning
If you’re the server administrator, having to involve the storage administrators each time you want to deploy a new VM complicates the process. If you’re the storage administrator, while you may find distracting the frequent requests for help every time a server administrator wants to spin up a new VM, you have to be involved to make sure that the storage is correctly provisioned and deployed.
If you’re the server administrator, how would you like to be able to deploy new VMs on-demand without having to involve storage administrators?
If you’re the storage administrator, how would you like to let the server administrator handle their own storage needs – after an initial storage configuration step that occurs once, not every time you spin up a VM – with the assurance storage will be deployed without risk?
This is what a storage hypervisor will do for you.
Robust management flexibility
Virsto provides ample management flexibility that adds value in test and development environments:
- Live migration of VMs for HA failover, workload balancing, and maintenance purposes.
- High performance snapshot backup of cluster-aware virtual disks using native hypervisor snapshot APIs.
- Support for volumes greater than 2TB in size.
- Allocated storage is automatically returned to the storage pool on clone deletion.
- Bulk operations like create, delete, mount, and unmounts for literally thousands of storage objects through simple, wizard-driven processes that have the look and feel of the native hypervisor management environment.
- Storage tiering provides additional flexibility in testing a mix of storage technologies to get the best blend of performance and cost-effectiveness to meet business objectives.