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VMWare Fault Tolerance without a SAN

Posted on 2014-01-16
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Hi All.

I've been told that it is possible to setup a vmware cluster to run virtual machines with Fault Tolerance enabled without the need of an external shared storage.

A storage would be created using disk units from both servers in the cluster and shared between them, so should one of them fail, the storage would still be available because it is mirrored in both machines.

In other words, the required shared storage is created using the physical resources of the very same physical computers hosting the FT-enabled virtual machines.

Is this true at all?

Thank you.
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Question by:ScreenFox
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2) earned 2000 total points
ID: 39784807
Yes, this can be done, with additional software, it's not included by default with VMware vSphere (depends which license you pick and package) using many different Virtual SAN products, which use the local resources (e.g. local disks of the hypervisor), in effect VMs which are hosting the shared storage, and then the hypervisors "loop back" and use shared storage on themselves!

Here are some Virtual SAN Products, ALL are available for evaluation and trials for FREE!

VMware vSphere Storage Appliance (VSA)

HP StoreVirtual VSA

SvSAN - by StorMagic

SAN Symphony by DataCore

StarWind iSCSI SAN & NAS V6

StarWind iSCSI SAN Free Edition Ideal iSCSI SAN at ZERO cost

All of the above except the FREE edition offer a Clustered Storage solution between at least two hosts, which is highly available, to ensure your shared storage is always available, which will be *critical* to your FT solution. All are certified by VMware.

The grand daddy of all the products is HP Store Virtual VSA (used to be called LeftHand, before HP purchased). e.g. is was the first. VMware entry into the virtual SAN arena, has come very late, and it's the newest.

We use and have installed all the products, our favourite is HP StoreVirtual VSA
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by:ScreenFox
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Thank you so much!
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LVL 123
ID: 39785123
No problems.
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