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Data Centers Gain Benefits from VM-Centric Storage

March 03, 2016

Virtualization and software defined networking (SDN) are changing the way service providers, enterprises and data centers operate. The advent of cloud computing and the Internet of Things (IoT) has necessitated a sea change in the way networking and storage are handled, and virtual machine (VM)- centric storage is undergoing a transformation to meet the unique demands of hybrid networking and computing.

Storage company Tegile Systems recently surveyed more than 1,000 global IT professionals and found that virtualization has become a common occurrence within the enterprise. More than 60 percent of those queried said a majority of their networking and storage environments were virtualized, with 97 percent indicating at least some workloads were virtualized.

In order for VM-centric storage to be successful, however, organizations need to look at the larger picture, and this is especially true in the data center. Virtualization needs to become a core business initiative, and companies need to decide how much of their networking and storage environments will be virtualized. The demand for scalability also needs to be taken into account, as fluctuating numbers of users, services and applications will impact VM storage resources.

Ultimately, the key to successfully implementing VM storage in the data center is through careful planning. Hypervisors can be useful for this task, and popular solutions like Microsoft Hyper-V, Citrix XenServer and VMware include powerful GUIs to assist with allocating for current and future storage requirements. IT admins may also manage and monitor space allocation through these GUIs, staying on top of how free disk space is being tracked and allocated and planning in advance for expected needs. Users may also set alerts and alarms to adjust and allocate space dynamically as necessary, keeping storage systems operating smoothly and efficiently.

Fortunately, the nature of VM-centric storage is dynamic and most VMs may be modified to adjust for fluctuating needs. Virtualized environments also lend themselves to automation, making monitoring and management tasks that much easier within the data center environment. By carefully planning for present and future needs and staying on top of virtualized resources, data centers can greatly benefit from the efficiencies of VM-centric storage.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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