Lead Innovation: Upgrade to VVols in Hours Instead of Months

Lead Innovation: Upgrade to VVols in Hours Instead of Months

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While server virtualization is standard practice in IT today, storage for virtualized servers has long been lagging behind. In fact, as 77% of enterprises report I/O challenges with virtualization, many resort to spending significantly on overprovisioning to keep VMs operating smoothly. 

One of the most exciting features in the VMware vSphere 6 release — VVols (Virtual Volumes)—gives datacenters the support needed to finally align storage capabilities with VM needs. Virtualization admins can use data virtualization to deploy granular storage management with VVols quickly and easily. To illustrate how, let’s consider a case involving Trent, a CIO at a healthcare company.

Currently, to meet widely varying storage needs, Trent’s team is managing multiple datastores in vCenter across multiple storage devices. To ensure SLAs and protect business continuity, it has become standard practice to overprovision storage by about double the VM requirements. Additionally, since it is difficult for IT to see which VMs are being used and which aren’t, legacy VMs tied to users that have left the enterprise can tie up storage capacity that could be used for new projects for years. The resulting storage sprawl is straining Trent’s budget.

Trent is facing pressure to virtualize as much of his environment as possible. Through talking with peers and researching online, he learns that VVols solve many of the problems his team is currently facing. Trent knows that VVols’ ability to provision, monitor and manage VM storage at the virtual disk level can really help with his organization’s efficiency problems. However, he must overcome two hurdles before he can kick off the VVol project. First, his staff must become knowledgeable in VVol implementation and administration in their little spare time. Second, he must find the budget to replace his existing hardware with VVol-certified storage, and he’s not sure he can do this in the current fiscal year.

After some more research, Trent learns that data virtualization can streamline VVol adoption. First, it eliminates the need to purchase VVol-certified hardware by abstracting Trent’s existing storage within a single VVol-certified dataspace. Second, it reduces his staff’s learning curve and future administration tasks because admins only need to manage a single VVOL datastore that is automatically remediated by VM Storage Policies. This automated remediation also reduces hardware administration, since VM Storage Policies are mapped to data virtualization objectives that dynamically and non-disruptively place VMDKs on the ideal storage device for data’s current needs.

After reaching out to learn more about data virtualization, Trent learns that a 3-month deployment plan shrinks to two days, without the need to purchase any new hardware. His IT lead takes one day to install the data virtualization software, and another day to assign VM Storage Policies to the DataSphere VVol datastore. DataSphere automatically migrates the VMDKs, removing the painful and expensive migration work that his team typically performs.

With data virtualization, Trent is excited that he can deploy VVols this year, in days instead of months, using existing storage hardware. The IT team is thrilled to have a system that is much easier manage, without spending months on extensive planning and weekend migrations. The CEO is happy about not only increasing business agility and responsiveness, but also to have a great CAPEX and OPEX savings story to share with investors on the next earnings call.

Data virtualization makes it easy to lead your organization in adopting VMware’s newest virtualization technologies to extend the benefits of virtualization into the storage serving your applications, using the resources you already have. To learn more about VVols and data virtualization, contact us at deepdive@primarydata.com

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