Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


09:49 AM
George Crump
George Crump

The Future Of Storage As A Virtual Machine

In our last few entries we looked at what can be done today with storage software running as virtual machines. In this entry we will consider what the future holds for storage as a virtual machine. Storage as a virtual machine may be the only way you apply data services in the future.

In our last few entries we looked at what can be done today with storage software running as virtual machines. In this entry we will consider what the future holds for storage as a virtual machine. Storage as a virtual machine may be the only way you apply data services in the future.First let's realize that with a few exceptions in the high end, most storage systems today run on standard Intel processors. When you select a storage system more often you are selecting it based on the capabilities of the software. It is what that software enables you to do with that hardware that matters. Again, there are exceptions, and we will look at those in a future entry.

Today many of the storage manufacturers are positioning storage as a virtual machine as a way to test and evaluate their products. Running storage as a virtual machine in production is limited to smaller environments with modest storage I/O demands. There is a concern that in larger environments, once fully throttled in a production environment virtual storage appliances may not be able to provide consistent enough performance.

One thing we know for sure is that cost of more processing power is going to get less and less expensive. We are to the point that many applications now have all the compute muscle they need to get the job done. So much so that we can have these processors act as multiple application servers via server virtualization. With each release of a new processor family the potential for excess processing power increases. As that occurs the thought of making the virtual infrastructure do more than just host applications becomes more attractive to a wider range of data centers. It leaves the door open for more widespread implementation of storage as a virtual machine as production solutions.

Virtualization does not limit the method by which storage services can be delivered. We have seen that the traditional dual controller type of storage architecture can be virtualized, NAS services can be virtualized and even clustered storage services can be virtualized by creating a virtual machine on each node in the virtual infrastructure. Today a case for highly customized hardware to perform specific functions can be made. In the foreseeable future while the need for these specialized storage systems will continue their appeal will wane.

For most data centers the increasing in processing power plus the standardized appearance of virtual machines will lead to storage services being moved to virtual appliances instead of standalone systems. Manufacturers will need to offer both virtual versions of their storage systems as well as standalone hardware versions. A key will be how well the virtual version of the appliance will be able to migrate to the standalone hardware version.

As excess processing power continues to rise the future is laden with virtual machines, and storage, at least storage services, will not escape that consolidation. The economics not only make sense for the users of those services but also the manufacturers as well. Storage as a virtual machine allows storage manufacturers to become storage software developers.

Track us on Twitter: http://twitter.com/storageswiss

Subscribe to our RSS feed.

George Crump is lead analyst of Storage Switzerland, an IT analyst firm focused on the storage and virtualization segments. Find Storage Switzerland's disclosure statement here.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Inside the Ransomware Campaigns Targeting Exchange Servers
Kelly Sheridan, Staff Editor, Dark Reading,  4/2/2021
Beyond MITRE ATT&CK: The Case for a New Cyber Kill Chain
Rik Turner, Principal Analyst, Infrastructure Solutions, Omdia,  3/30/2021
Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you today!
Flash Poll
Twitter Feed
Dark Reading - Bug Report
Bug Report
Enterprise Vulnerabilities
From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-17
The overlayfs implementation in the linux kernel did not properly validate with respect to user namespaces the setting of file capabilities on files in an underlying file system. Due to the combination of unprivileged user namespaces along with a patch carried in the Ubuntu kernel to allow unprivile...
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-17
Shiftfs, an out-of-tree stacking file system included in Ubuntu Linux kernels, did not properly handle faults occurring during copy_from_user() correctly. These could lead to either a double-free situation or memory not being freed at all. An attacker could use this to cause a denial of service (ker...
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-17
A command injection vulnerability has been reported to affect QTS and QuTS hero. If exploited, this vulnerability allows attackers to execute arbitrary commands in a compromised application. We have already fixed this vulnerability in the following versions: QTS Build 20210202 and later Q...
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-17
An SQL injection vulnerability has been reported to affect QNAP NAS running Multimedia Console or the Media Streaming add-on. If exploited, the vulnerability allows remote attackers to obtain application information. QNAP has already fixed this vulnerability in the following versions of Multimedia C...
PUBLISHED: 2021-04-16
jose-node-esm-runtime is an npm package which provides a number of cryptographic functions. In versions prior to 3.11.4 the AES_CBC_HMAC_SHA2 Algorithm (A128CBC-HS256, A192CBC-HS384, A256CBC-HS512) decryption would always execute both HMAC tag verification and CBC decryption, if either failed `JWEDe...