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Vol. 6 No. 10 December 2007

Best Practices: Viewing virtualization from every angle

Virtualization can be a tricky technology for storage managers who need to apply traditional methods while navigating new obstacles. Storage teams with lots of activity on the systems virtualization side face an interesting challenge: How should they deal with virtual hosts? Should they be treated as individual servers or as applications running on host systems? And what's the best way to ensure that virtual hosts don't cause a tilt in the delicate IO balance? In this article I outline key considerations for storage architects and administrators who design and implement virtualized systems. Before we start, let's review the different kinds of virtualized systems. Virtualization can exist at the physical layer or logical layer. Physical layer virtualization lets you have system resources dynamically assigned to operating systems. Logical layer virtualization lets you have a host operating system (also known as a hypervisor) that runs on a single physical box. Logical layer virtualization comes in two flavors: a type-1 or ...

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Features in this issue

  • Talking up server virtualization, security at SNW

  • VTL data management issues

    As disk libraries become the primary backup target for near-term data recoveries, storage managers are exploring new ways to exploit tape's high capacity, low cost and mobility. Disk is the best medium for fast backups and recoveries, and many companies have turned to virtual tape libraries as a way to put disk in their backup process. On the surface, it may seem easy to implement a VTL, but there are many subtle operational issues that must be dealt with to ensure that your data can be recovered quickly when needed.

  • Snapshot: Will you adopt LTO-4?

Columns in this issue