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StoreVirtual VSA + VMware Virtual Storage: Updated Guide


Hewlett Packard Enterprise VMware vExpert, Calvin Zito, discusses updated HPE best practices on StoreVirtual VSA + VMware virtual storage solutions.

VMware and StoreVirtual teams have been developing solutions together since the LeftHand Networks days, back when the software behind the VSA technology was called “SAN/iQ” – I know some of you remember that. Fast forward to 2016: VMware has come out with a bunch of new vSphere features that enhance StoreVirtual VSA storage environments. Clearly this partnership continues to make both technologies better.

The updated HPE best practices guide not only shows you how to integrate vSphere with StoreVirtual VSA, it also goes into details about new vSphere features that provide increased performance optimization and easier provisioning, monitoring, and troubleshooting for virtualized environments.

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Here's the paper: HPE StoreVirtual VSA with VMware vSphere: Design considerations and best practices

New Storage Features

There's a great summary of what the paper covers on page 3 that I want to reproduce here.

With vSphere, VMware continues to increase both its infrastructure and application services. This also influences storage deployments with VMware vSphere:

  • Storage Distributed Resource Scheduler (Storage DRS) aggregates storage into pools, simplifies scale management, ensures best VM load balancing, and helps avoid storage resource bottlenecks.
  • vSphere supports VMDKs up to 62 TB in vSphere 5.5 and later, 64 TB is still the maximum size of the VMFS datastore.
  • Improved vSphere Storage APIs for Array Integration (VAAI) and new vSphere Storage APIs for Storage Awareness (VASA) enhance performance and bring array information into DRS and profile-driven features.

HPE StoreVirtual VSA increases and builds upon features found in the HPE LeftHand operating system:

  • VAAI improves storage efficiency and performance. 
  • HPE StoreVirtual expands application integration with Application-managed Snapshots for VMware. Application-consistent point-in-time copies allow speedy and reliable Virtual Machine (VM) recovery. 
  • HPE StoreVirtual features “Zero to VSA” assisted and automated installation for easy deployment of HPE StoreVirtual VSA Virtual SAN Appliance (VSA). 
  • HPE StoreVirtual supports Storage Replication Adapter (SRA) for VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager offering integrated storage failover and failback. 
  • Network RAID 5 and 6 dynamic stripe size improves efficiency and is applied to the entire volume stack. Scheduled snapshots for space efficiency are no longer required. 
  • Successfully addressing and deploying these new features across the solution is imperative if you wish to maximize the return on investment (ROI) for HPE StoreVirtual VSA and VMware vSphere while continuing to meet the dynamic needs of the business.

To help you successfully deploy these new features and maximize the performance and scalability of your vSphere environment, this paper presents best practices for configuring and tuning.

Start from the beginning and get your free VSA

So be sure to check out the  paper. If you're new to the idea of StoreVirtual VSA, I still recommend the paper but I also did a series of blog posts last year that is more of StoreVirutal VSA introduction with a series of blue prints. This post was prior to the HP separation so please excuse the old branding and replace HP with HPE!

Lastly, I'd be remiss if I didn't point you to the free 1TB StoreVirtual VSA that you can get. Check out the post titled "New company, new features for 1TB VSA trial" - it has everything you need to know to download and get going with your 1TB VSA. 


About the Author

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I'm Calvin Zito, a 33 year veteran in the IT industry and have worked in storage for 25 years. I wasvExpert 2016.jpg just named a VMware vExpert for the sixth consecutive year. As an early adopter of social media and active in communities, I've blogged for 7 years. I started my "social persona" as HPStorageGuy but with the HP separation, you can find me on Twitter as @CalvinZito. You can also contact me via email.

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About the Author


I have worked at HP and now HPE since 1983, all of it around storage but 100% focused on storage since 1990. I blog, create videos, and podcasts to help you better understand HPE Storage.