We’re back with our multi-part series on System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012 R2 (SCVMM 2012 R2) and Scale-Out File Server (SoFS). In part one, we built a virtual SoFS lab, and in part two we configured the fabric. Last time, in part three, we created a clustered file server. Moving on, in this post we will leverage some of the additional features added in SCVMM 2012 R2 to manage storage spaces and offer SMB3 shares for our hosts.
So, rev up the VMM console, and let’s get started!
Find your way back to the Fabric view in VMM, and navigate back down to the Storage node of the tree.
VMM will now rescan the file server and should detect all the storage that is attached, ready for us to move on with the actual configuration.
Now, back in the console we will create a storage pool for the Windows Storage Space environment enabled using our shared disk on the scale-out file server.
At this point, if you change your focus and login to the console of one of your SoFS nodes, take a peek in your Server Manager and expand the File Server area. Navigate to the Storage Pools to see both the physical disks in the lower right. Using Failover Cluster Manager (it might not actually be installed, so keep that in mind) on the Storage\Pools view, you should now see the new pool.
Back in VMM, we will now take a disk slice from the pool.
To see what just happened, change back to your SoFS node again in Server Manager, and you will now see the new slice will be listed in the Virtual Disks pane of the storage pool. From Failover Cluster Manager, this should in be presented in the Storage\Disk view.
Now that you can begin to appreciate the abilities hidden in VMM, assume for a moment that the system been managed was a large EMC, Hitachi, or other well-known vendors system. The procedure would be the same, with VMM taking the responsibility to communicate with the storage device via interfaces like SMI-S and carve up the associated disks ready for consumption and automation.
Our objective, however, for this post is to look at the potential of managing a SoFS to service up some SMB3 shares to VMM and its managed hosts, ready to host your virtual machines. So let’s get to it! Switch back to VMM Fabric.
Now, change back again to your SoFS machine, and you will now observe that VMM has indeed created another LUN, mounted that LUN as a CSV, and of course shared this work to the world as vShare01, just as instructed. NICE!
Of course, there is no value in all of this if we cannot deploy our virtual machines to the storage, so let’s complete this blog series by making sure we do just that. Hop back into VMM.
Easy, right? Of course, you can repeat this for some other hosts to use the share.
With the only task remaining to prove this all worked, you can now proceed to deploy a VM to your host, and VMM will ensure to place it on the new storage for you.
The objective of this series was to illustrate that VMM is no longer focused solely on virtual machines, but has over the last number of releases moved to a evolvement as a complete fabric management tool. To leverage this in your environments, you need to trust the tool. Hopefully from the examples I have shared in this series, you can start the process of building a completely virtual lab and begin to experience and experiment with all this hidden power.
Please use the comments section to let me know if you would like some other scenarios covered, and I’ll attempt to make that happen for you.