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What is the difference between Provisioned Storage and Datastore?

Posted on 2011-03-04
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
On VSphere Client on a VM machine in Summary tab, in Ressources section what is the difference between Provisioned Storage and Datastore?
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Question by:SAM2009
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by:coolsport00
ID: 35039184
Provisioned Storage is what you've allocated it's VMDK. A datastore is a proprietary VMFS volume that stores VMs.

Hope that helps.

~coolsport00
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by:SAM2009
ID: 35039506
You mean Datastore is for VMFS where OS is installed (C drive) and Provisioned Storage  it's VMDK which use for logical drive ?
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by:coolsport00
coolsport00 earned 332 total points
ID: 35039529
Let me clarify my Datastore definition -> it is storage, like your hard disk is in our workstation. It typically houses VMs (mostly), but can also be a storage location for ISOs, or whatever data you want to put there. It's formatted as VMFS, a VMware proprietary file system. Provisioned Storage is just the term that describes the amount of strorage you have given a VM's virtual disk.

Hope that helps.

~coolsport00
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by:coolsport00
ID: 35039624
Typo - "like your hard disk in *your* workstation" :)
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Paul Solovyovsky earned 336 total points
ID: 35039630
Keep in mind that you may have provisioned more storage than actually exists in your datastore.  If you are using thin provisioning you have to keep an eye out.

Example:  your datastore is 300GB.  You provision a VM with a 400GB volume but thin provision it.  Initially the amount of actual data in the VM is 100GB and everyone is happy. Let's say you try to add another 250GB of data to the VM by a user since he thinks that there is plenty of space in the VM.  This is what you have to be carefull of as it will take down your VM hard.

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by:coolsport00
ID: 35039656
Correct,...good additional point "paulsolov"; and 'Provisioned' can be more than 'used' due to ...say...snapshots being present. So, it can be a bit confusing.
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by:SAM2009
ID: 35039693
Ok I see so normally Provisoned Storage should be less than datastore right?
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Assisted Solution

by:WolfofWharfStreet
WolfofWharfStreet earned 332 total points
ID: 35040419
Provisioned Storage is how much Space the VM has reserved for itself.

It will usually be

1x the amount of RAM you have assigned to the VM
1x the amount of disk space you have assigned to the VM
1x the amount of disk space you have assigned to the VM per active snapshot of the VM

So you could have a 100GB Datastore and a VM with 616GB provisioned for it (if you were daft)

VM with 200GB Thin provisioned disk (more than you have, but allowable)
16GB RAM
2x Snapshots

In an ideal world, your provisioned space will always be less than your Datastore capacity, if its not you're on the way to potential headaches.
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Expert Comment

by:coolsport00
ID: 35040437
Yes..almost always.
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Author Closing Comment

by:SAM2009
ID: 35040790
Thank you everybody for your helps!
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