Storage is a key component of IT strategy. After all, data is the lifeblood of any business. But storage is there to provide data for processing by business critical applications, and the way that data is processed is undergoing huge changes due to server and desktop virtualisation.
The main effect is that where there was once a physical server with an app on it, now there are many virtual servers (or desktops) per box. That has led to massively increased random I/O demands and a number of innovations in the storage market, most notably the incorporation of speedy solid state flash storage.
Virtualisation has also made new demands on data protection. Here we present the top 10 ComputerWeekly and Techtarget articles on virtualisation, storage and backup from 2012.
Virtualised desktops trigger storage spending
A snap survey from SearchStorage.com in the US shows the effects of desktop virtualisation on storage. More than half of respondents bought new storage to support VDI [virtual desktop infrastructure] and more than a third spent on solid state flash storage.
If you’re embarking on a server or desktop virtualisation project, start here. Here we give the lowdown on the key needs, choices and features of storage in virtualised environments.
In this article independent consultant Chris Evans examines the rise of the all-flash array to meet the IOPS demands of virtualisation and walks you through the key vendors in the space.
This is the story of how one organisation suffered I/O issues on a traditional spinning-disk storage array and upgraded to an all-flash product to support a virtual desktop roll-out.
Server and desktop virtualisation is not a project limited to large organisations. SMEs are also embarking on virtualisation. This article sets out the key options available in storage for virtualisation and surveys some of the key storage vendors in the SME sector.
The rise of virtualisation has raised question marks over the entire architecture of existing storage products. Some newcomers in the market have pioneered new designs that marry flash storage, cheap SATA disk, data deduplication and VM-ready drive formatting in what looks like a taste of things to come for the storage array.
Perhaps one of the biggest shake-ups to result from virtualisation will be the appropriation of storage functions by the virtual machine hypervisor. Given that storage is basically disk managed by software, and that much of that management is migrating to the hypervisor, the logical conclusion is that many existing storage products could become redundant. At VMworld in Barcelona, VMware set out its vision for hypervisor-controlled storage.
The rise of virtual servers has introduced unprecedented flexibility to application development, with servers created and deleted in much reduced timescales than was previously possible. Unfortunately that makes storage capacity planning far more difficult. In this article read how to upgrade storage capacity planning for the virtual era.
Before virtualisation effective disaster recovery (DR) meant having a complete hardware and software replica of your IT systems that you could fail over to in unforeseen circumstances. It was costly and difficult to maintain such a fallback infrastructure and consequently many organisations just did without. Now, with virtualisation, hardware is no longer tied to software and getting up and running again following a disaster is far cheaper and simpler than it ever has been. Read this article to find out why there’s no excuse for poor DR provision in the virtualised world.
Update: Virtual server backup
Virtualised environments need to be backed up and doing so differs radically from the way physical servers were protected. In this article from TechTarget’s Storage magazine we set out the key features you need in backup products for virtual machines, such as VMware Changed Block Tracking, granular, rapid recovery, replication support and the ability to also backup physical devices.