Monday, April 13, 2009

The "Virtual" World

Most companies today are expanding their virtual environment, instead of purchasing additional hardware. Makes sense! Buy one beefier box, instead of several little boxes. The one thing that you have to be care of is your SAN. Watch that I/O and timeouts, or you'll bring your SAN to it's knees if you are not careful. Be mindful about how you deploy or spread the load across your storage. However, not the topic I want to talk about at this very moment. I ran across this and wanted to pass it along.

Eliminate planned downtime for server maintenance.

Eliminate planned downtime with VMware VMotion and VMware Storage VMotion VMware VMotion and Storage VMotion enable the live migration of virtual machines across physical servers and storage arrays with zero downtime, continuous service availability and complete transaction integrity. VMware customers use VMotion and Storage VMotion to:
• Eliminate planned downtime associated with server and storage maintenance
• Dynamically load balance workloads in order to optimize performance
Here is a quick overview of the steps you need to take to enable non-disruptive migration of virtual machines:

Step 1:
Set up your shared storage infrastructure

Shared storage, such as fiber channel or iSCSI SAN or NAS, is a prerequisite for enabling live migration of virtual machines. Chapter 8 of the VMware Infrastructure Comprehensive Evaluator’s Guide offers detailed instructions on how to create and/or configure shared storage for use in a virtual infrastructure. You should also make sure you set up virtual networking before you implement live migration with VMware VMotion. To learn the fundamentals about networking in a virtual environment, check out the new VMware white paper, “Conceptual Networking Overview".

Step 2:
Migrate a virtual machine from one physical server to another with VMware VMotion

Once you have implemented your shared storage infrastructure, you can begin migrating virtual machines from one physical server to another with VMware VMotion. You can find an overview of VMotion in Chapter 9 of the VMware Infrastructure Evaluator’s Guide.

Step 3 (optional):
Move live virtual machine disks files across storage arrays using VMware Storage VMotion

In addition to VMotion, VMware Infrastructure also includes a product called VMware Storage VMotion, which lets you move your virtual machine's disk files from one physical storage device to another with no disruption or downtime. Refer to Chapter 12 of the Comprehensive Evaluator’s Guide for more detail.

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