VMWare and Virtual Servers


I have a VM cluster attached to a NetAPP SAN.  I just wanted to know when building, for example a SQL server, if it was physical I would configure separate drives for TempDB, Users databases, page file etc.  If the server was virtual and I create additional drives on the same datastore on the SAN, what is the difference if I was just to create a single drive in one datastore and install SQL on one drive, woulld there be any disadvantage ?
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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
If you are using a NetApp filer, all the disks in the aggregate and volume, will all (likely) be RAID-DP.

You will then provision a LUN or NFS Export (volume) from that storage pool, and present this datastore to VMware ESXi.

You'll then create a VM, with virtual disks, on the datastore, all these virtual disks will perform the same.

So the benefit is easier management, if you create multipe disks, e.g. for logs, db, OS, and Pagefile, there are some documents in NetApp NOW, we stipulates, creating datastores for pagefiles, and swap files, and therefore, do not DeDupe these volumes. (exclude them).

It depends on how complex you want to make your storage, for performance, and efficiency.
From a performance perspective, there's no advantage in creating multiple drives (which used to be the main reason to do so) because everything ends up on the same aggregate (unless you have a big system with multiple aggregates).

But if you use Netapp snapshots (snapmanager) or making backups, there may be good reasons to create multiple drives. Snapshotting/backing up a TempDB makes no sense and wastes valuable storage space. So for big SQL servers, it can make sense.

For small systems, I wouldn't bother.
Vitor MontalvãoMSSQL Senior EngineerCommented:
It's always good to have separate disks so a database won't consume the disk space of another database.
For example, if you have 3 databases (db1, db2 and db3) and each one has is own disk, if by chance db1 fills all data or log file it won't stop db2 and db3 for growing since they are in other disks.

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