Data Virtualization Simplifies and Accelerates VVOL Adoption

Data Virtualization Simplifies and Accelerates VVOL Adoption

Posted in tech

Contributed by Josh Miner, Primary Data Senior Director of Product Marketing

VMware vSphere 6 delivers an exciting breakthrough called Virtual Volumes (VVOLs), which enables the provisioning, monitoring and management of storage at the virtual disk level. However, upgrading to VMware vSphere 6 may require the purchase of new, VVOL-supported storage. Today, the list of qualified storage is short, making it costly and challenging to rapidly adopt VMware’s advanced virtualization solutions, but new technologies are emerging to overcome these hurdles. Let’s take a look at the benefits VVOLs offer beyond the traditional VMware approach, how VVOLs resolve them, and how data virtualization can resolve the problem of limited vendor support.

Moving Beyond the Challenges of Existing Virtualization Storage

With the traditional approach, organizations typically create multiple datastores to provide the many data services VMs require, which greatly increases management complexity. Pinpointing problems, such as locating a VM that is consuming resources, is difficult. Further, even though VMs often have very different requirements, storage implementations typically depend upon a single set of policies, and it’s impossible to assign different storage services to VMs within a traditional datastore.

VVOLs Simplifies and Empowers Storage Management

VMware vSphere 6 eliminates the challenges of traditional storage architectures for virtualization. It replaces the need to manage multiple datastores and it also allows organizations to set policies at the virtual disk (VMDK) level. This means that VMs get exactly the levels of availability, data protection/recoverability, optimal block sizes, and performance they require.

Data Virtualization Simplifies and Accelerates VVOLs Adoption

While organizations are eager to benefit from VVOLs, options for VVOLs-ready storage are currently limited. In addition, adding new storage can take months depending on the enterprise’s budget and procurement process. Data virtualization offers a solution by abstracting data from underlying hardware. This makes it possible to create a universal VVOLs provider that makes existing and new storage resources—from server-side flash to NAS and cloud storage—VVOL-capable. Regardless of storage vendor management, or protocol type, only one VVOL datastore is presented to VMware, greatly simplifying manageability. Administrators assign Storage Policies using vSphere Storage Policy Based Management (SPBM) in vCenter that are mapped to data virtualization objectives. This makes it possible to take advantage of data virtualization’s automated storage management to guarantee VMs receive the performance and protection levels they require, and at the lowest cost.

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