Microsofts vision for storage as you can see from the

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Microsoft’s vision for storage As you can see from the previous section, Windows Server 2012 introduced a lot of new storage features and capabilities to the Windows Server platform. Together with System Center 2012 SP1, Windows Server 2012 provided organizations with a cost-effective solution for building and deploying private clouds using file-based storage access composed of low-cost commodity storage accessed over a standard Ethernet network. Although the R2 release of Windows Server 2012 adds a number of incremental improvements to both file- and block-based storage and to how storage is managed on the Windows Server platform, it also represents something more. Microsoft’s vision and goals with respect to storage for this new release are threefold: To greatly reduce the capital and operational storage and available costs for organizations deploying Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) services for private clouds, hosted clouds, and cloud service providers. To disaggregate compute and storage resources so they can be independently managed and scaled at each layer of cloud infrastructure. To allow enterprises to build software-defined storage solutions using inexpensive, industry-standard servers, networks, and shared JBOD storage. With this focus in mind, the incremental improvements to storage capabilities in Windows Server 2012 R2 are designed to specifically target the above three goals. Building the solution using Windows Server 2012 R2 To understand how Windows Server 2012 R2 can be used to implement the above vision for cloud computing, let’s look at an example. Figure 3-1 shows the compute, networking, and storage components of a simple private cloud solution built using the Windows Server platform. You can think of this solution as having four layers as follows: Compute layer At the top are several Hyper-V hosts joined together in a failover cluster. These hosts use commodity server hardware to provide cost-efficient scale-out capabilities. For example, if the solution needs more processing power to run more workloads running in virtual machines, you can add another commodity server to the Hyper-V cluster. Utilizing the scale-out approach like this is often a more cost-effective solution for organizations than using a scale-up solution that involves only two expensive high-end host machines, where you need to add another processor to each host if you want to run more workloads.
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30 CHAPTER 3 Storage Network layer A low-cost industry-standard Ethernet network is used to connect the Hyper-V cluster that provides compute resources for the solution with the Scale-out File Servers (SoFS) that provide virtualized storage resources for the cloud. This kind of approach can be a lot more cost-effective for many organizations than utilizing a proprietary SAN for their storage layer. That’s because you don’t need to install expensive host bus adapters (HBAs) in the Hyper-V hosts to enable them to connect to storage volumes (logical unit numbers, or LUNs) provisioned on the SAN.
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