Hyper-V Software-Defined Storage

During a recent Storage Switzerland webinar, the audience was asked what their plans were for implementing Hyper-V into their environment. 50% of the respondents stated that they plan to exclusively  deploy Hyper-V into their data center while another 25% responded that they intend to run a mixed Hyper-V and VMware infrastructure.

Watch our on-demand webinar and download our white paper "Three Keys To Cost Effective Hyper-V Storage" which is exclusively available to on-demand viewers.


Furthermore, the balance of the respondents (25%) are either considering a Hyper-V roll-out or already have Hyper-V deployed in a remote office. While VMware is the market share leader (56%), Microsoft has been making steady gains ever since it entered the virtualization market space in 2008. According to a recent article by NASDAQ, Hyper-V’s market share increased from 20 – 28% from 2008 to 2013, while VMware’s market share slid from 64 to 56% over the same timeframe.

In fact, the polling numbers from the recent Storage Switzerland and StarWinds webinar reflect this broader trend of hypervisor diversification taking place throughout the industry. By introducing a second hypervisor system into the data center, businesses can negotiate better pricing terms with their vendors and avoid getting locked-in to a single hypervisor operating system.

Is SDS All The Same?

But the question then becomes, what storage technologies are best suited for managing either an all Hyper-V implementation or a mix of Hyper-V and VMware? Software-defined storage (SDS) solutions that manage internal storage resources on the host are getting a lot of attention due to the entry into the space of some prominent industry companies like VMware. But are all SDS technologies created equally?

When evaluating SDS solutions, IT planners may want to consider what the architecture prerequisites are for implementing a particular offering. For instance, does the SDS platform require a minimum of two or three server nodes for an initial deployment? In addition, is it mandatory to install flash on each node? These are critically important questions as the requirements of the architecture can dramatically impact the total cost of ownership of the solution.

Another consideration is whether the SDS offering integrates directly at the hypervisor layer and runs natively under the Windows operating system. Some SDS technologies need to run as a Linux VM on the hypervisor. This can introduce additional management complexity, particularly in those environments that are 100% Windows based.

SDS Architecture Flexibility

The following on-demand version of the Storage Switzerland and StarWind Software webcast outlines how Microsoft data center environments need a flexible SDS solution that can start with as little as a two node server deployment and scale-out to support dozens of nodes while providing support for mixed Hyper-V and VMware hypervisor environments. Furthermore, to keep costs in check, there should be no fixed storage architectural requirements. Ideally, businesses should be able to deploy internal, server-side hard disk drives (HDD) or a mix of flash and HDD to meet the performance requirements of their virtual machines. Lastly, organizations need a full-featured storage solution that ensures data resiliency both locally and offsite for DR purposes.

Watch our on-demand webinar “Don’t Let Storage Eat Your Hyper-V Savings” and download our white paper “Three Keys To Cost Effective Hyper-V Storage” which is exclusively available to on-demand viewers. By registering with our BrightTalk Channel, you will also gain access to over 100 Storage Switzerland on-demand webinars without having to re-register.

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StarWind Software is a client of Storage Switzerland

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As a 22 year IT veteran, Colm has worked in a variety of capacities ranging from technical support of critical OLTP environments to consultative sales and marketing for system integrators and manufacturers. His focus in the enterprise storage, backup and disaster recovery solutions space extends from mainframe and distributed computing environments across a wide range of industries.

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