Brocade’s announcement today supporting Microsoft Windows Server 2012 and their new Virtual Fibre Channel for Hyper-V feature is important on several fronts. Not only does it offer customers more choice and flexibility, it opens the door to new virtualized workloads. Virtual Fibre Channel for Hyper-V allows virtual machine (VM) partitions to directly access Fibre Channel SAN storage. This new capability simplifies storage connectivity for virtualized workloads, and enables Fibre Channel (FC) SAN customers to leverage their existing SAN infrastructure for mission critical virtualized workloads.
Is this really that big a deal? Ask any storage administrator and you’ll find out that it is a BIG deal. With Virtual Fibre Channel, Hyper-V customers can now cluster Microsoft Exchange, SQL Server or other key application VMs across a highly available, highly reliable, and highly scalable FC SAN infrastructure for failover and workload balancing. It also enables live migration of virtual machines across Hyper-V hosts without disruption or re-configuration of the SAN, reducing downtime. In addition, multipath I/O functionality can now be used to ensure continuous connectivity to FC storage from within a Virtual machine. All of this adds up to increased application availability, flexibility and efficiency for dynamic applications and virtualized workloads.
To support the new Virtual Fibre Channel capability you will need an NPIV-enabled host adapter and NPIV-enabled SAN--both of which are available from Brocade and its OEM partners. Combining Brocade award-winning adapters together with Brocade SAN switch and management platforms enable an enterprise-class storage infrastructure for your Hyper-V environments for industry-leading availability, scalability and performance.