Feeds

Microsoft gets its hypervisor war face on, squares up to VMware

File tanks rumble out of Redmond, headed for NFS lawn

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Microsoft has enlisted X-IO and others as its proxies alongside Hyper-V and SMB in a war against VMware and NFS.

SMB v3, formerly known as CIFS, is Microsoft's preferred way of getting file-based networked storage data into servers running its Hyper-V hypervisor.

The opposing camp is seen as VMware and NFS. X-IO's UK solutions development director Gavin McLaughlin says: "Microsoft are pushing their Windows Server 2012 and Hyper-V customers to move to using file based storage (using SMBv3) over block storage due to the increased simplicity. It’s pretty much MS’ pushback to the VMWare + NFS combo."

The main criteria for storage in this area are: throughput, which takes priority, and then IOPS. The Windows file storage product manager, Jose Barreto, has blogged abut a 5.8GB/sec delivery of files using Mellanox cabling and switches at Interop in Las Vegas in May.

That setup used Windows Server 2012 beta and SMB 3.0, and the 5.8GB/sec was through a single port with data being pumped in by four Fusion-io ioDrive2 PCIe flash drives rated at 1.5GB/sec each.

In June for TechEd, Mellanox announced 10.36GB/sec throughput using Windows Server 2012, SMB 3.0, and Hyper-V. The network link was its FDR 56Gbit/s InfiniBand. OCZ Talos-2R SSDS were used this time.

Violin Memory was at TechEd, showcasing what it called "the world’s first all-flash 'Cluster-in-a-Box' Solution with Windows Server 2012 running natively on the Violin 6000 platform." This should blow the socks off any hard disk drive array doing the same SMB 3.0 file transfer to a Windows Server 201 Hyper-V server.

An X-IO TechEd system, using a rack with ten of its ISE-2 enclosures, did more than 15GB/sec and 125,000 IOPS. There were HP servers, running Windows Server 2012, across a network of InfiniBand links, and QLogic fibre channel switches and HBAs. The sealed ISE-2 enclosures each contained 20 x 10K 2.5-inch SAS disk drives, totalling 104TB of capacity.

X-IO was over the moon. McLaughlin said this was "over 50 per cent higher than anything else possible on the market."

Steve Sicola, X-IO's chief technology officer, called it record-breaking price/performance:

"This is a game changer in the cost of high performance storage solutions, delivering in just one rack what our competitors can only achieve with many times the equipment and at much higher costs."

Sicola was boosted further, with X-IO winning two Best of TechEd awards; Best Hardware and Storage Product, and Attendees' Pick.

X-IO can use this fillip to help its channel sell its storage into Hyper-V shops and so develop its unfulfilled potential when compared to other storage technologies such as iSCSI SANs, and Compellent and 3PAR Fibre Channel SAN storage.

For Microsoft, having rocket-like storage pumping file-based data across SMB links to Hyper-V virtualised Windows Server 2012 is a big fillip too. It wants to reclaim the server-storage stack - and having great performance for Hyper-V virtualised Windows Server 2012 servers with SMB 3.0 and all-flash or speedy disk drive storage is nothing but good news.

Take that VMware; take that NFS; Redmond is on the file warpath. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Shoot-em-up: Sony Online Entertainment hit by 'large scale DDoS attack'
Games disrupted as firm struggles to control network
Cutting cancer rates: Data, models and a happy ending?
How surgery might be making cancer prognoses worse
Silicon Valley jolted by magnitude 6.1 quake – its biggest in 25 years
Did the earth move for you at VMworld – oh, OK. It just did. A lot
Forrester says it's time to give up on physical storage arrays
The physical/virtual storage tipping point may just have arrived
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup
IT departments are embracing cloud backup, but there’s a lot you need to know before choosing a service provider. Learn all the critical things you need to know.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?