Azure Offers Backing Up VMware VMs with a Freeware Tool
Posted by Augusto Alvarez on
November 21, 2016
After hearing some news about Microsoft like, largely investing in Open Source hardware, PowerShell open source and for Linux, SQL Server for Linux, MS joining the Linux foundation, and so many others; you may think hell just starting freezing, but no, this is how Microsoft is engaging the world now. Integration is the keyword, and we salute them for that.
Adding a new feature among these is the recent update to their main backup tool for cloud: Azure Backup Server now supports VMware virtual machines. MABS (Microsoft Azure Backup Server) it is not a new tool, it’s been around for a while now offering backups for Hyper-V virtual machines, physical machines, file servers, SQL, SharePoint and Exchange.
Deploy VM Fleet to benchmark your storage system
Posted by Romain Serre on
October 25, 2016
VM Fleet is a collection of scripts that enables to deploy virtual machines which perform I/O to stress the underlying storage system. To achieve I/O, the VMs leverages DiskSpd which is a Microsoft tool.
When you implement an infrastructure based on Hyper-V, you usually want to get the maximum IOPS and MB/s that your storage can deliver. This tool helps you to get this information by stressing your storage. In this topic, we will see how to deploy a VM Fleet to benchmark the storage system.
The latest updates in vSphere 6.5 and VSAN 6.5
Posted by Askar Kopbayev on
October 18, 2016
This day has come – vSphere 6.5 has been just announced. As many of you I have been waiting for the presentation of new vSphere during VMworld event in the USA, but I guess VMware preferred to use vSphere 6.5 as a treat for those who were in doubt whether to attend VMworld Europe or not after all VMworld US were made available online to everyone; or perhaps VMware hasn’t decided what features should be included into the GA release.
In this post, I will try to cover all new features of vSphere 6.5 and VSAN 6.5, but if I missed something feel free to let me know by leaving a comment.
To be honest, there is so much to talk about and some of the new features require separate posts to be explained properly. Therefore, please don’t expect detailed review of the every single feature.. This is more ‘What’s new in vSphere 6.5 and VSAN 6.5′ overview, but in the future posts I will be talking about some of the most interesting improvements and enhancements in detail.
How to Protect your Data on Nano Server using Storage Replica?
Posted by Charbel Nemnom on
October 10, 2016
With the release of Windows Server 2016, there’s a lot of new features that have been added to increase availability and security. One hot feature that will add a lot of benefits for small, medium and enterprise business environments is Storage Replica (SR). Be sure that’s going to help you in your Disaster Recovery Plan and protect your data against catastrophic losses.
Are We Trending Toward Disaster?
Posted by Jon Toigo on
October 6, 2016
Interestingly, in the enterprise data center trade shows I have attended recently, the focus was on systemic risk and systemic performance rather than on discrete products or technologies; exactly the opposite of what I’ve read about hypervisor and cloud shows, where the focus has been on faster processors, faster storage (NVMe, 3D NAND) and faster networks (100 GbE). This may be a reflection of the two communities of practitioners that exist in contemporary IT: the AppDev folks and the Ops folks.
Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V Backup Rises to the challenges
Posted by Didier Van Hoye on
September 19, 2016
In Windows Sever 2016 Microsoft improved Hyper-V backup to address many of the concerns mentioned in our previous Hyper-V backup challenges Windows Server 2016 needs to address:
- They avoid the need for agents by making the API’s remotely accessible. It’s all WMI calls directly to Hyper-V.
- They implemented their own CBT mechanism for Windows Server 2016 Hyper-V to reduce the amount of data that needs to be copied during every backup. This can be leveraged by any backup vendor and takes away the responsibility of creating CBT from the backup vendors. This makes it easier for them to support Hyper-V releases faster. This also avoids the need for inserting drivers into the IO path of the Hyper-V hosts. Sure the testing & certification still has to happen as all vendors now can be impacted by a bug MSFT introduced.
- They are no longer dependent on the host VSS infrastructure. This eliminates storage overhead as wells as the storage fabric IO overhead associated with performance issues when needing to use host level VSS snapshots on the entire LUN/CSV for even a single VM.
- This helps avoid the need for hardware VSS providers delivered by storage vendors and delivers better results with storage solution that don’t offer hardware providers.
- Storage vendors and backup vendors can still integrate this with their snapshots for speedy and easy backup and restores. But as the backup work at the VM level is separated from an (optional) host VSS snapshot the performance hit is less and the total duration significantly reduced.
- It’s efficient in regard to the number of data that needs to be copied to the backup target and stored there. This reduces capacity needed and for some vendors the almost hard dependency on deduplication to make it even feasible in regards to cost.
- These capabilities are available to anyone (backup vendors, storage vendors, home grown PowerShell scripts …) who wishes to leverage them and doesn’t prevent them from implementing synthetic full backups, merge backups as they age etc. It’s capable enough to allow great backup solutions to be built on top of it.
Let’s dive in together and take a closer look.
How to Deploy and Manage Storage Spaces Direct Cluster using SCVMM 2016?
Posted by Charbel Nemnom on
August 18, 2016
Windows Server 2016 – Storage Spaces Direct Hyper-converged [image credit: Microsoft]
With the release of Windows Server 2016, Microsoft is introducing Storage Spaces Direct (S2D), which enables building highly available Software-Defined Storage systems with local attached storage. This storage can be leveraged by VMs running on the same cluster (in hyper-converged mode) or the storage can be presented as a File Share (in disaggregated mode). The hyper-converged deployment scenario has the Hyper-V (compute) and Storage Spaces Direct (storage) components on the same cluster. Virtual machine’s files are stored on local CSVs. Once Storage Spaces Direct is configured and the CSV volumes are available, configuring and provisioning Hyper-V is the same process and uses the same tools that you would use with any other Hyper-V deployment on a failover cluster.
Seagate introduces 60TB SSD drive
Posted by Oksana Zybinskaya on
August 16, 2016
Seagate shows off two new SSD products: an 8TB NVMe drive and a spacious 60TB SSD prototype in a 3.5-inch form factor.
This 60TB consists of more than a 1,000 Micron 3D NAND dice fitted into a full-size, 3.5-inch disk form factor package. Apparently, it has dual port 12Gbit/s SAS interface and 150,000 random read IOPS, with undisclosed write IOPS. The sequential read/write numbers should be 1.5 and 1.0GB/sec.
Nytro XP7200 with heat sink on top
Shared virtual hard disks in Hyper-V 2016
Posted by Oksana Zybinskaya on
August 9, 2016
A new feature called VHD Set for Hyper-V in Windows Server 2016 has been introduced by Microsoft. It allows sharing virtual hard disks between several servers in order to implement guest cluster easily without using complex technologies such as NPIV, virtual HBA, or virtual SAN.
As VHD Set, Shared VHDX enables sharing a virtual hard disk between multiple virtual machines. This feature is useful for implementing a guest cluster where shared disks are required (e.g., SQL Server AlwaysOn/FCI or File Servers).
Manage storage QoS Policies from VMM 2016
Posted by Romain Serre on
June 17, 2016
The QoS policy was a feature included in Windows Server 2012 R2 that enabled to set a minimum and a maximum IOPS on a VHD(X). These policies were not centralized and you had to set the QoS policy on each VHD(X) independently.
In Windows Server 2016, Microsoft has improved this feature because the policy can now be stored in the cluster database. You can create a policy based on a minimum / maximum IOPS and/or a bandwidth. This policy can be applied to a VHD(X) (Dedicated Policy Type) or to a set of VHD(X) (Aggregated policy Type).