StarWind HyperConverged Appliance

Value Proposition

StarWind HCA is a turnkey hyperconverged platform that unifies commodity servers, disks and flash, with your hypervisor of choice (VMware vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V) and associated software into a single manageable layer. It’s a true “plug-and-play” IT infrastructure building block – flexible, easily scalable and cost efficient.

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Unlike typical hyperconverged solutions, StarWind HCA provides a space efficient footprint with scaling from a high-availability installation of just 2 servers. Switches are not required, flash is optional, in addition to 10-100 GbE networking (1GbE available upon request). With less hardware to purchase and maintain, StarWind HCA is easier to manage while capital and operational cost are lowered. Typical hidden costs present in the form of hardware or software requirements in alternative solutions are avoided. Utilizing the worldwide proven technologies of StarWind VSAN, StarWind HyperConverged Appliance provides enterprise-class performance with unrivaled cost and simplicity.

Unlike a traditional approach where compute and storage layers are separated, StarWind HCA adopts a hyperconverged infrastructure. It merges both layers together in a single appliance, enabling simplicity for executing IT operations and requiring less hardware to perform the same task. To further increase the simplicity and efficiency, the whole appliance is covered by a single “support umbrella” by StarWind.

All the components from several vendors are covered by a single “support umbrella” with StarWind as your “one throat to choke” in terms of support. Besides, StarWind HCA all-flash models are within SMB and ROBO budgets thanks to hardware discount StarWind shares with the customers.


Exceptional Simplicity

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance is turnkey virtualization appliance built from best of breed components. With a single support umbrella approach, it is extremely simple to manage and requires minimal effort from IT operations.


StarWind HyperConverged Appliance is the most affordable turnkey virtualization solution available in the marketplace today. Due to its designed and intelligent use of hardware, less hardware is required bringing a “sum of all the parts” cost benefit.

Performance and Features

StarWind HCA unifies best of breed hardware and software from proven vendors. It delivers enterprise-class performance without complexity, risks or high costs. Being truly software-defined, HCA gets new features and performance boosts with simple non-disruptive software updates.

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Starwind Virtual San
Hybrid CloudNEW

StarWind Virtual SAN extends existing workloads to Azure public cloud, transforming the existing infrastructure into Hybrid Cloud. StarWind distributes highly available shared storage between the clouds, providing Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery for optimal RTPO. The Hyper-V ecosystem is managed by such familiar and convenient orchestrators as StarWind Manager, Hyper-V, and SCVMM.

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StarWind ProActive SupportNEW

StarWind ProActive Support provides your business with an unprecedented level of services availability and data security by preventing failures proactively instead of dealing with consequences. In the case of a problem, StarWind engineer gets an alert and reaches out to you to resolve it, saving your valuable time and efforts.

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Data Locality

The “data locality” approach effectively maximizes the performance of the IT infrastructure by keeping compute and storage resources for every virtual machine on its physical node. This allows processing most of the I/O locally, eliminating the problem of slow data transfer through interconnect fabrics and providing lower latency.

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StarWind Web-based Management

StarWind Web-based Management provides system administrators with the ability to access and manage their StarWind infrastructure via HTML5 web console from any remote location. This functionality delivers the full control over the storage-related operations from a PC or Android, iOS or Windows mobile device.

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Grid Architecture

The “grid architecture” allows building a highly fault-tolerant cluster by connecting a number of nodes together into a single grid. Such cluster topology provides a high rate of resiliency, allowing the cluster to stay operational even after multiple nodes failure while maintaining the principle of “data locality” for ultimate performance.

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and Compression

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance includes space reduction technologies for increased performance and capacity utilization. Deduplication and compression reduce the actual amount of data to be transferred, written, read or processed, therefore removing the unnecessary workload from HDD, flash and interconnect.

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Scale-Up and

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance scales according to business needs, allowing both scale-out and scale-up architectures. Ready HCA nodes or individual flash and disks can be added to handle the growing workload without “overkill” over-provisioning and over-spend.

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Unified Storage

StarWind HCA is versatile due to the help of multiprotocol StarWind Virtual SAN. It deploys industry-standard protocols allowing users to create virtually any architecture. StarWind HCA supports: SMB3, including SMB Direct and SMB Multichannel, NFS and iSCSI, VVols, NVMf and iSER. Initially designed to create virtualization infrastructure from the ground-up, StarWind HCA can still become a part of existing architecture.

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StarWind VVols

The integration of VMware VVols support in StarWind products makes vSphere storage management highly efficient, simple and automated. StarWind VVols allows providing VMs with fine-tuned storage policies based on pre-defined storage configurations with required performance and resiliency characteristics.

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Fault Tolerance
and High Availability

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance achieves fault-tolerance and high availability with a minimalistic two-node setup. It utilizes StarWind Virtual SAN, MS S2D or VMware vSAN to “mirror” storage and caches between the nodes. As a result, the appliance can withstand failures of individual disks, memory modules or even an entire node without compromising uptime.

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StarWind HCA adopts a hyperconverged architecture, combining compute and storage resources into one scalable layer. It is easy to manage and extremely cost-efficient, reducing all virtualization expenses, including energy consumption. For these reasons, Hyper-convergence is suited for organizations with limited budgets and understaffed IT teams.

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Converged ("Compute and Storage separated")

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance is, obviously, hyperconverged. However, it can integrate with with an existing “compute and storage separated” architecture, serving storage outside the appliance. It uses industry-standard uplink protocols: SMB3, NFS, iSCSI, NVMe over Fabrics, iSER, and SMB Direct.

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Server-Side Cache

StarWind HCA utilizes multi-tiered RAM and flash caching for exceptional performance, reducing I/O latency to an absolute minimum. Utilizing StarWind VSAN, it achieves high performance with conventional SATA SSD, RAM and MLC flash. Cache is distributed between the nodes, achieving fast and reliable write-back policy without employing costly proprietary hardware.

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Hardware Agnostic
and Commodity Hardware

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance takes advantage of commercial off-the-shelf hardware enabling unrivaled cost-efficiency. By avoiding the necessity for proprietary hardware, end-to-end solutions can be architected for much lower cost.

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StarWind HyperConverged Appliance is pre-integrated with an industry-leading backup solution – Veeam Backup and Replication. It will ensure the safety of mission-critical data and minimize the risk of data corruption even in case of disasters without impacting performance and data integrity. Optional public cloud integration for disaster recovery can be provided.

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Snapshots and Automated Storage Tiering

StarWind HCA employs StarWind VSAN inter-node tiering technology for performance-boosting and avoiding the need for costly flash storage. It can offload the rarely-used “cold” data from expensive primary storage to an inexpensive secondary tier or public cloud therefore avoiding performance degradation, prolonging flash life, reducing infrastructure cost and increasing usable space.

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Tape Library (VTL)

Virtual Tape Library (VTL) is an optional included feature that eliminates the need for physical tape by retaining all data on inexpensive, fast and high-capacity drives. In StarWind HCA, it is available in a software-only form as part of StarWind VSAN functionality.

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StarWind Log-Structured File System (LSFS)

StarWind HyperConverged Appliance employs StarWind VSAN Log-structuring feature to handle virtualization workload. It battles issues causing performance degradation such as “I/O blender” scenarios. As a result, log-structuring makes the minimalistic resources sufficient for even enterprise routines in addition to everyday tasks.

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Starwind Swordfish Provider

StarWind Swordfish Plugin allows to easily manage, allocate and scale infrastructures based on StarWind Virtual SAN as well as setups with StarWind VSAN being part of a bigger storage infrastructure. Swordfish API comes as a part of VSAN installation, making StarWind deployment extra simple and eliminating the need to install additional software to manage the infrastructure.

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StarWind iSER

StarWind iSER completely eliminates the problem of network bottleneck by supplying higher bandwidth for block storage transfers. Further, it ensures the highest performance in the clustered systems by avoiding latency issues. Therefore, with StarWind iSER, VM migration, data and VM replication become faster and easier to perform.

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HCA Models

With StarWind HCA there is a model line for every workload and performance requirement.

All Flash

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HCA All Flash packs most powerful compute and high-performance storage, granting uncompromised performance for IOPS-hungry applications.


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HCA Hybrid provides balanced compute and capacity ratio for your applications. Tiered storage effectively addresses both capacity and performance requirements of your applications.


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HCA Disk is designed for applications with moderate compute and high storage requirements. It can also be added as a capacity or DR node to the existing cluster.

To download the software products please make your choice below. An installer link and the license key will be sent to the e-mail address you specify. Please check the Free vs. Paid document if you are uncertain of the StarWind Virtual SAN version. A totally unrestricted NFR (Not For Resale) version of StarWind Virtual SAN is available for certain use cases. Learn more here. The Release Notes can be found here.

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