In part 2 of our storage subsystem discussion and how to optimize performance we’ll focus on selecting the right storage solution for your situation, taking fault tolerance and high availability into consideration.
The number of storage solutions that are available, in particular to enterprises is extensive to say the least and not always an easy choice. As administrators, some of you will choose to deploy a traditional storage array, backed by SAS or SATA hard drives and directly attached or accessed through a separately managed Fibre Channel or iSCSI fabric. The storage array typically manages the redundancy and performance characteristics internally.
In addition to traditional storage, Windows 2012 supports Commodity Storage, and introduces so-called Storage Spaces. Storage Spaces provide platform storage virtualization, enabling you to deploy a storage solution that are affordable, offer high-availability, are resilient, and offer good performance by using commodity SAS or SATA drives in BJOD enclosures.
The following are some of the options and considerations for a traditional storage array solution:
|· SAS or SATA||Improve performance, and reduce cost. SATA drives are mostly built with higher capacity and lower cost targets than SAS drives. The benefit of SAS is typically better performance than SATA|
|· Hardware RAID capabilities||Maximum performance and reliability|
|· Maximum storage capacity||Total usable storage space|
|· Storage bandwidth||Maximum peak and sustained bandwidths are determined by the number of physical disks in the array, the speed of the controllers, the type of bus protocol (such as SAS or SATA), hardware- or software-managed RAID, and the adapters that are used to connect the storage array to the system|
Most storage solutions provide a form of resiliency and performance-enhancing capabilities. A hardware-managed array is presented to the operating system as a single drive, which is called a logical unit number (LUN), virtual disk, or any other name.
The following are some typical options for storage arrays:
RAID schemes are not new to not of you and as an administrator you know that RAID 5 and RAID 6 are the most difficult to understand and plan for. In our next article we’ll give you a detailed comparison to help you choose the right fault-tolerance scheme for your storage subsystem.