There had been numbers of review and discussion regarding the choices of storage for us to run on Virtual Environment today. I believed that the hot discussion is always moving talk about the right storage with right design and implementation to the VM farm always. The most hottest topic are still regarding the NFS, ISCSI and FC implementation which provide better features, performance and reliability.

Personally, I had 3 of it running in my environment now and of course, I had spent a huge number of times to really test out all the solution and compare apple to apple to further study of my requirement. Here are some reading I get from my test for 3 solution above.

For I/O performance, I am using the IO meter as to generate the max output to the storage. I manage to get 190MB/s for my FC storage on 100 % read, and I only managed to get the output of 170MB/s on ISCSI, but on NFS, I only managed to get at 125MB/s. If we look at the number here, and compare to my high load R900 ESX host, actually it is more than enough to handle the number of VM I have in the ESX host. There are a lot of article introduce NFS, and the features of Netapps, but remember, ESX itself had improved from time to time. Thin Provisioning is no longer new thing, as you may get it with many vendor today by free as well as volume snap. But Dedupe will still be an interesting technology in netapps. If we look at FC, you will mostly lose all this technology, but it provide a stable performance as you need to virtualize some heavy environment moving forward. I am currently still test out the storage solution before I decide to go with a final choice. I will suggest to keep an eye on the technology trend as we may also remember that the VMware ESX 4 is on the way, which may change the game of storage strategy significantly.