Hyper-V version 3.0 is the virtualization platform that will ship along with the newest version of Windows Server, expected to become available to small and medium-sized business customers later this year. Windows Server 2012 will change the requirements the platform has regarding the need for shared storage. Previous versions of Hyper-V did not officially require shared storage, but some of its most useful features were only available when such storage was available.
This meant that some functionality such as failover clustering was effectively blocked off from organizations that could not afford to implement a shared storage environment. This is often the case for small and medium-sized businesses, organizations that must be very careful with the allocation of each and every IT dollar. Another important feature unavailable without shared storage in previous versions of Hyper-V was live migration, functionality that can greatly increase the efficiency of IT operations. Additionally, businesses had to run either an NAS or a SAN system in order to use shared storage with the product.
With the Hyper-V 3.0, however, these limitations have fallen away. It will now be possible for businesses using this virtualization platform to take advantage of features like failover clustering and live migration even in the absence of a shared storage system. The new version of Hyper-V will be able to use direct-attached storage instead, an improvement that will greatly benefit many of the small and medium-sized companies that have elected to use Microsoft products to provide network services and virtualization. It will still be true, however, that a shared storage system will result in a higher level of performance. Therefore, businesses that can afford to implement shared storage may wish to go ahead with those plans.
Windows Server 2012 will also incorporate a number of general improvements as regards storage. Small businesses will be able to construct their own platforms for storage if desired by using services that function at the OS level. Virtual machine storage using an iSCSI target is another option.
For more information about the way in which Windows Server 2012 could be a benefit to your small or medium-sized business, contact the highly qualified IT consulting staff at iCorps, a consulting firm serving business clients in the eastern section of the United States with particular emphasis on assisting companies in the New York, Philadelphia, and Boston areas with IT services.