The Virtualization Room

Mar 18 2011   6:14PM GMT

Storage for virtualization: New vendors, new protocols

AlyssaWood Alyssa Wood Profile: AlyssaWood

Virtualization pros can make their lives easier by consolidating their storage vendors and considering Fibre Channel alternatives.

That’s according to a recent report from Forrester analyst Andrew Reichman, which indicates more customers are moving toward single-vendor solutions for virtualization storage and exploring alternative storage protocols.

Driven by consistency and simplicity, 67% of respondents said they use a single storage vendor for their virtual infrastructure. Many users fear vendor lock-in for their overall virtualization technology, but Reichman’s report says single-vendor storage can eliminate complexity.

Time for storage to step up

In the survey, Forrester customers identified these top three storage challenges: getting a grip on capacity management, controlling costs and maintaining high performance.

Branching out to new protocols could help customers answer these challenges. Fibre Channel remains the top choice — 76% of respondents use it — but 37% said they use NFS, an increase from 18% two years ago. The reasons? Ease of use and cost savings, which Forrester expects will bring NFS into the forefront over the next several years.

Better orchestration between servers, storage and the network will also help increase efficiency, but users must increase their virtualization storage capabilities, the report said.

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