I recently wrote an article on using Network-Attached Storage (NAS) devices for supporting virtualization. You can find the article, Using advanced NAS features in virtualization at SearchServerVirtualization. From the article’s introduction:
When it comes to determining the type of storage to deploy, are you a storage-technology snob? Or do you consider network-attached storage (NAS) devices as part of your storage strategy?
There’s clearly a perception among some systems administrators that high-end solutions such as Fibre Channel-based SANs provide the better performance. Or they might prefer products based on iSCSI, which provide some of the same benefits such as block-level disk I/O. Plus, iSCSI-based products run over existing copper-based Ethernet connections instead of requiring a much more expensive fiber optic infrastructure, making them even more attractive to admins.
So where does this leave the tried and true NAS device? While newer technologies get most of the attention, modern NAS devices provide many new features, including ones that simplify virtualization and support larger numbers of virtual machines (VMs). How these advanced features benefit virtualization will be the focus of this tip.
Personally, I think NAS solutions are great for organizations of all sizes. They’re certainly far more cost effective than Fibre Channel SANs and work well with solutions that don’t need block-level I/O.
Read the full article to learn about these advanced features and to find out if or how NAS devices can help alleviate potential storage-related issues for your virtual infrastructure.