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Datacore SanSymphony-V - Storage Hypervisor Product

Updated on December 22, 2011

Upgrade Your Storage Virtualization Solution With A Storage Hypervisor

photo by travelinglibrarian of flickr
photo by travelinglibrarian of flickr

Datacore Steps Up Virtualization

The storage component is an area that many times is left untouched or at least left to conventional hardware-based approaches during a consolidation project in the datacenter. Datacore's SanSymphony-V software aims to change that by providing many of the same benefits of server virtualization in the data storage department through the use of a storage hypervisor. 2012 looks to be a year of advancements in this area with management and their corresponding technical departments likely to decide that the cost-benefit analysis makes such a transformation feasible and correspondingly implementing such vendor solutions as the SanSymphony-V. Datacore calls itself "The Storage Hypervisor Company" and competes with such other products as Virsto's storage hypervisor.

A storage hypervisor is built to provide a layer of abstraction from the underlying hardware and this provides a myriad of advantages and features. For one their is central management whereby system and storage administration can be handled from a gui with the use of tools that are device-independent. Also, a powershell cmdlet library is included with SSY-V version 8.1 which allows the scripting of automated tasks that were generally handled by the gui and opens up the interface to 3rd party tools such as VMware vSphere and Microsoft System Center. Role-based permissions provide separation of power for different endusers so that you may have, for example, a backup administrator user which is capable of performing tasks related to that role but no other while a helpdesk support operator may have a role limited to reviewing the comprehensive analysis and reporting graphs and charts.

The analysis and reporting features provide real-time analysis to provide the necessary storage system feedback for fine tuning or to be piped to business intelligence and other mission critical applications. Increasing IOPS and customizing intelligent workloads is made easier through the use of the storage hypervisor product. Disaster recovery plans can be implemented with greater ease with the use of the asynchronous remote replication feature. The disaster recovery location can always have a up-to-date recovery image available as well as having secondary copies available should emergency arise.

Automated storage tiering has been added as a new feature in SanSymphony version 8.1. A sort of artificial intelligence monitors access history and can then delegate more frequently accessed files and material to top tier disks such as solid state drives (SSDs) while allocating less frequently accessed data to lower-tier, lower cost disk solutions. The automated tiering can upgrade or demote virtual disks in and effort to more accurately optimize the workload while providing support for different brands and models of storage.

Data migration between physical disks becomes easier and non-disruptive with the use of the storage hypervisor. Hardware upgrades can be supported and disks replaced with no down-time and then the old disks recycled into the storage pool or removed from operation. "Mega caches" and other caching tweaks quicken existing storage by using nodes to provide a powerful and intelligent cache implementation that anticipates the next read and write data operations and has it available before the request through pre-fetching and data write coalescing.

Further enterprise level features include load-balancing to spread out the load and implement more fine-tuned strategies avoiding bottlenecks of conventional data storage systems. Online snapshots, site recovery and replication, sync mirroring, thin provision, and virtual disk pooling are more features on the list and that is not even everything. The Datacore storage virtualization solution is truly a comprehensive product that will allow a storage administrator to review existing practices and optimize things for the best return on investment possible.

Newer features include iSCSI redundant mirror paths where fiber was the only option previously, Microsoft System Center Data Protection 2010 Manager and VSS support, offline replication initialization, among other things. With excellent features and manageable pricing, which includes a free trial, the Datacore SanSymphony-V storage hypervisor definitely is a game changer in the data storage virtualization arena. The symphony might just turn the hum of your storage appliances into music for your ears.


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