Becoming A Hybrid Cloud Expert
In Windows Server 2012, a Server Message Block (SMB) file share can now store virtual machine (VM) and SQL Server resources in addition to traditional end-user files like office documents. SMB protocol is a network file sharing protocol allowing applications to read and write to files and requesting services from server programs in a computer network. Windows Server 2012 introduces the new 3.0 version of SMB protocol. A Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V host can employ SMB 3.0 file shares as shared storage for storing virtual machine (VM) configuration files, VHDs, and snapshots. Further, SMB file shares can also store user database files of a stand-alone SQL Server 2008 R2. This is a significant feature and provides a capability such that VMs or databases can be dynamically migrated. The following schematic highlights these features.
Hyper-V over SMB
A Windows Server 2012 Hyper-V host can now store virtual machine configuration files, VHDs, and snapshots in file shares over the SMB 3.0 protocol. This can be used for both stand-alone file servers and clustered file servers that use Hyper-V together with shared file storage for the cluster. This feature requires:
SMB 3.0 file share is based on Windows security model and Active Directory infrastructure is required. And the computer account of an intended Hyper-V host employing Hyper-V over SMB will be granted access. The SMB file server must be a Windows Server 2012 with which SMB 3.0 protocol is available by default. One can also use non-Microsoft file servers that implement the SMB 3.0 protocol. For backward compatibility, Hyper-V does not block older versions of SMB, however, the Hyper-V Best Practice Analyzer (BPA) issues an alert when an older version of SMB is detected. Notice a computer that is running Hyper-V is not to be used as the file server for virtual machine storage. This forms a so-called “Loopback” configuration which is not supported.
Configuring SMB File Share
The process to create an SMB share is uneventful and with basic Windows user operations. From Server Manage, go to File and Storage Service and then click Shares of a target server as shown in the following screen capture. Here the included screen capture shows the target server RDVH is remotely accessed via Server Manager. Either form the dropdowns or simply right-clicking to bring up the menu and start the wizard for creating a new share.
Along the process, a system administrator will specify one of the five included file share profiles. For the advanced profile, a target server must install File Share Resource Management for quota control as shown below:
An SMB 3.0 file share comes with various settings. A system administrator can specify Windows to enumerate items based on access control and display only those files and folders a user has permissions to access. In such case, Windows will hide a user from seeing those files the user does not have Read permission. Caching for offline access is optional and an SMB 3.0 share is also Branch Caching ready. File access with encryption is readily available and enabled with a checkbox. The following shows a sample based on the SMB Share – Advanced profile with both caching and quota control enabled.
Hyper-V over SMB signifies a newly emerging trend of cost reductions on storage hardware and a progressing standardization of storage virtualization solutions. With SMB 3.0, a storage administrator can now working on file shares instead of managing storage fabric and logical unit numbers (LUNs). The concepts and operations are directly applicable with those skill sets of Windows system administration, which reduces the overall training and operating costs. The hardware of SMB 3.0 file shares are based on existing converged network with no specialized storage networking hardware, which increases the benefits of existing networks and essentially reduces capital expenditures. The ease of provisioning and management makes storage virtualization solution a much manageable and affordable solution with long-term reductions on capital and operating expenditures.
Call to Action
In today’s episode Yung Chou shows us how we can create a Virtual Machine using Windows Azure. Sign up your free 90-day trial, if not already.In this how-to video Yung creates a Windows Server 2012 virtual machine within a matter of minutes, showing us what options are available as well as how you can manage and remote into it.
Websites & Blogs:
Follow @yungchou Become a Fan @ facebook.com/MicrosoftTechNetRadio Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes, Zune, Stitcher, or RSS
Continuing our Windows Azure how-to series, Yung Chou shows us how easy it is to capture a Virtual Machine as an image in Windows Azure and then use it as a template to deploy additional VMs. Yung also walked through the process to attach a data disk as a local storage for keeping user and application data. Sign up Windows Azure 90-Day Trial, tune in, and follow through the process to realize the power of Windows Azure and cloud computing.
Follow @technetradio Become a Fan @ facebook.com/MicrosoftTechNetRadio Subscribe to our podcast via iTunes, Zune, Stitcher, or RSS
Yung Chou kicks off this special edition Windows Azure series as he covers the basics of cloud computing and how this recent release will greatly impact IT Pros. Tune in as he explains the Infrastructure as a Service model and how this new functionality within Azure will allow for full control and management of your virtual machine and networking environment.
In today’s Windows Azure Virtual Machine how-to, Yung Chou shows us how to customize our virtual machine through load balancing as well as how to make it highly available. Tune in as Yung walks us through configuration and set-up.
After watching this video, follow these next steps:
Step #1 – Start Your Free 90 Day Trial of Windows Azure Step #2 – Download Windows Server 2012 Step #3 – Begin building your own Virtual Machines in Windows Azure!
Yung Chou is back for today’s Azure overview and in this episode he demos for us the Windows Azure website feature. Tune in as he shows just how easy it is to deploy and manage a website within minutes. This is a tool to quickly establish a solid web appearance while Windows Azure automatically provides scalability and high availability with built-in monitoring of performance and usage data. There are open source applications development tools and frameworks readily available as well.