Yes, you read it right – With Tintri you can reduce the number of Storage Best Practices to be followed for your Applications by 99%. Don’t believe me? Refer our Citrix XenDesktop Best practices documents as an example. There are five papers written by Rob Girard, an ex-Tintri customer who jumped over to Tintri to be a Tintri TME. He knows exactly what it means to be on both sides of the fence (give him a shout on Twitter).
- XenDesktop 7.1 Quick Start Guide – Covers all the perquisite tasks required to get a XenDesktop environment up and running on Tintri storage.
- XenDesktop 7.1 Provisioning Services (PVS) Deep Dive – A continuation in the XenDesktop Deep Dive Series – this paper focuses on PVS for provisioning virtual desktops.
- XenDesktop 7.1 Machine Creation Services (MCS) Deep Dive – A continuation in the XenDesktop Deep Dive Series – this paper focuses on MCS for provisioning virtual desktops
- XenDesktop 7.1 Tintri Native Clones Deep Dive – A continuation in the XenDesktop Deep Dive Series – this paper focuses on using Tintri Native Clones for provisioning virtual desktops.
- XenDesktop 7.1 Provisioning & Machine Creation Deep Dive – The main provisioning deep dive paper and contains information that applies to all XenDesktop provisioning methods, and compares the method discussed in this paper to alternative methods.
Three things that standout in the papers are that –
- It is not setup as a typical Best Practices paper from various vendors. The sections include – The good, the bad and the ugly, the Big Bang Theory, Important Considerations and Housekeeping
- It is very low on storage configuration details but high on analysis (because Infrastructure Insight that one can get with Tintri)
- It is very high on Citrix details, typical gotchas, pros and cons. Rob also outlines some of the challenges he faced and how he came out of them.
Now you may ask – Why in the world would you have storage best practice paper on a subject without having any details on storage? The answer is that the customers see the Best practices documents as one of the proof point that a Product works with a particular application. And the good thing with Tintri is that one doesn’t need to spend time in configuring and managing Storage infrastructure layer. It just Sees, Learns and Adapts. Here is what Rob says in the Quick Start Guide–
“What differentiates this guide from similar guides available from other storage providers is what you won’t find in this guide. The lack of configuration details for the underlying storage is not an oversight and this guide contains everything that you need to deploy a successful VDI environment.”
I highly recommend reading it to anyone who plans to deploy Citrix XenDesktop Infrastructure even if you are not planning to use Tintri.
The documents go into each step of getting the environment up and running, the behind the scenes of provisioning methods, Pros and Cons of each deployment method, the gotchas within each deployment method, housekeeping, how you should keep the base image healthy, the IO characteristics, the infrastructure behavior during various stages (remember your Tintri storage can see across the infrastructure), how to keep the environment fast and predictable, how one can keep storage efficiency high all the time and the best part – Tips & Tricks.
What is my favorite part? My favorite part is the kind of insight you can get because of Tintri’s ability to see across Host, Network and Storage. I’ll give you one example and you can find more in the whitepapers. Below you see two screenshots from the white paper. The screenshots are from the Tintri GUI showing 1 day of activity. One of the cool functionalities that Tintri GUI has is that it tells you the top 10 contributors at every point that you click on the graph (you can go 7 days back on VMstore GUI and 30 days back on Tintri Global Centre today). The graphs show the IOPs (read Vs write) and latency details (host, storage, network) at boot up and then explains what happened after a day had passed on a setup where no one logged in.
You can find many such details in whitepapers along with a lot of stuff I mentioned above.
The ability to go almost Zero on configuration details and Tintri’s ability to see across the infrastructure allows us to include lot of these things. From best practices standpoint, there are no complex details to remember or follow (RDMs, separate partitions for DB/logs, tuning parameters, block sizes, yada yada…). Just map your Tintri Datastore to your servers, start adding your VMs and watch your Tintri storage See, Learn and Adapt to the application.