A group of interested parties from a cross section of industry vendors has started a discussion around the merits of supporting Exchange Server on VMDK’s on top of NFS. Technically there is no reason why it should not be supported. It works great and Exchange and Windows don’t even know they’re virtual. They just talk SCSI to their virtual disks. Supportability might be a concern so having some sort of a certification or QA program is important. But provided robust, performant and reliable storage systems are used and Exchange continues to use block SCSI protocol to a VMDK why does it matter that the underlying protocol to the physical storage is NFS? I believe this provides choice to customers, and in fact many customers have been choosing this for a long time and running Exchange like this in production. They’ve continued to get support under their premier agreements. But I believe this should be extended to all customers for any qualified storage platforms. If you agree and you want to see choice of protocol provided the abstraction is solid and proven then support the movement. Vote Exchange on VMDK on NFS!
This post appeared on the Long White Virtual Clouds blog at longwhiteclouds.com, by Michael Webster +. Copyright © 2014 – IT Solutions 2000 Ltd and Michael Webster +. All rights reserved. Not to be reproduced for commercial purposes without written permission.
I've been following Josh's movement and wish you all the best in making waves and getting this done. Is there a reason why SQL Server clustering isn't being addressed in the same way? It seems to me the same argument still applies.
Thanks and all the best,
Thanks Mike, appreciate the support.
You're welcome. Any thoughts on getting SQL Clustering on NFS support like Exchange?
With SQL Server my preference would be to use AlwaysOn Availability Groups in SQL 2012 and avoid the need for shared disk failover clustering altogether. But technically the limitation is with vSphere at the moment. VMDK's can't be used for clustering across boxes, at the moment. I'm expecting that will be addressed by VMware in a future release.