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1.3 Chapter Summary

Storage Virtualization Overview

  • Storage virtualization depends upon lower layer standards but is not defined by a standards body.
  • Storage virtualization provides an abstraction layer over physical storage systems and enables multiple storage assets to be treated as a single logical entity.
  • Granular forms of storage virtualization occur in technologies such as RAID.
  • The value of storage virtualization is in its ability to automate tedious administrative tasks and reduce costs of storage management.
  • The Compaq ENSA initiative leverages storage virtualization for creation of a storage utility.
  • Storage virtualization must maintain reliable and transparent access to underlying storage assets.
  • Virtualization technology is being driven by all major storage providers.

Core Concepts

  • Virtualization provides a foundation of logical abstraction upon which more advanced functionality can be built.
  • To streamline storage operations, logical abstraction should support automation of routine administrative tasks.
  • Automated processes should be policy-based to further reduce manual intervention.
  • Logical abstraction, automation, and policy-driven management enable storage virtualization to support application-aware storage management.
  • The tight integration of operating systems and virtualization technology will enable applications to more fully leverage virtualized storage.
  • Storage virtualization facilitates interoperability of storage systems.
  • Virtualization technology can be supported on hosts, networks, or storage arrays and tape subsystems.
  • In-band virtualization provides both control and data along the same connection path.
  • Out-of-band virtualization separates control and data on different connection paths.
  • Not all storage environments require or benefit from virtualization.
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