Tintri, Hyper-V, Veeam and the Reddit Thread

Update – Here are the links to the youtube videos showing Hyper-V backup using both Commvault and Veeam.

Commvault

Veeam

Original Post

Few weeks back there was a comment posted on Reddit by a Tintri customer regarding Tintri, Hyper-V and Veeam.

https://www.reddit.com/r/sysadmin/comments/41uje6/tintri_veeam_hyperv_scvmm_and_woe/

The comment went something like this –

For all the love they show each other about compatability, Hyper-V is not supported by Veeam on Tintri VM Stores. This is due to Tintri not having a hardware VSS provider. Lots of finger pointing to find the answer.

Also, Tintri’s SMB3 implementation has a few major gaps. Folder inheritence isn’t a thing right now (slated for bugfix in 4.2), which means if you add hosts to a cluster, you have to fix permissions on all existing subfolders.

On top of all that, SCVMM can create shares using SMI-S, but cannot delete them. You have to delete the share on the VM Store and then rescan the storage provider.

Edit: I forgot to mention their powershell modules have no consistency between them. One uses Verb-TTNoun, the other uses Verb-TintriNoun.

There were a lot of comments and sub-comments on the thread. Some were accurate and others were not. We tried to post a response to the thread but because of Reddit’s strict policies, none of the comments ever showed up. As a result, the thread has caused some confusion amongst some of our customers and prospects.

So I wanted to take this opportunity to respond to the thread, clarify a few things and update everyone on the current status.

  • Backing up using a backup application through Remote VSS

The Tintri VMstore’s Microsoft VSS integration did lack some functionality needed for remote VSS based backups for Hyper-V (for using backup apps such as Veeam, Commvault). It will be fully supported in an upcoming release that is in QA and will be available to customers soon.

  • Folder inheritance over SMB

Folder inheritance over SMB has been supported since Tintri OS 3.1.1 in the context of storage for virtual machines. There is a specific case where this wasn’t handled correctly and as the customer pointed out, is rectified in the same upcoming Tintri OS update as above.

  • Removing SMB share using SCVMM

There is an issue removing SMB shares via SCVMM (SMI-S) and that has also been fixed in the update mentioned above. As the customer pointed out, it is still possible to remove the SMB share through the VMstore UI.

  • Inconsistency in the naming of Powershell cmdlets

To clarify, there is no inconsistency here and this is as per design. The Verb-TintriNoun PowerShell cmdlets represent the Tintri Automation Toolkit (free download from our support site) and is used for customer automation around Tintri products.

The Verb-TTNoun cmdlets are a collection of cmdlets for validating certain Microsoft environmental factors, not specific to Tintri, that can impact Hyper-V functionality. The latter is primarily used by Tintri field and support technicians and some automation. The separate ‘TT’ namespace is to avoid confusion or overlap with other modules.

As always, Tintri is committed to its multi-hypervisor story including Hyper-V and we have several large customers who have successfully deployed Tintri with Hyper-V and are enjoying the benefits of Tintri’s VM-Aware functionality in their environments. We apologize for the inconvenience caused to our customers because of this. We have ensured that all of these issues are ironed out as part of the upcoming Tintri OS release.

PS: Although the customer didn’t mention anything about his company, we believe the customer contacted support and received an update directly from the support team

@storarch

 

Choosing analytics: built-in, on-premises, or cloud-based

With the announcement of Tintri Analytics, we delivered on our vision: providing comprehensive, application-centric real-time analytics (using fully integrated on-prem and cloud-based solutions) that provide predictive, actionable insights based on historical system data (of up to 3 years).

Customers can now automatically (or manually) group VMs based on applications to analyze application profiles, run what-if scenarios, and model workload growth in terms of performance, capacity and flash working sets.Analytics

When you consider a storage solution refresh, analytics probably tops your list of needed features. It simplifies IT’s job, makes IT more productive and helps organizations save time and money.

The question is, what type of analytics should an organization look to have—built-in, on-premises or cloud-based? If you are just getting started, any sort of analytics would be great! Most storage vendors have an on-premises and/or a cloud-based solution. But an ideal storage product should have all three, as each of them has its own irreplaceable use case. Let’s take a look at each one.

Built-in analytics for auto-tuning

Built-in analytics that the system uses for self-tuning are uncommon in the industry. Tintri’s unique auto-QoS capability is a great example that uses built-in analytics, available at a vDisk level, to logically divide up all the storage resources and allocate the right amount of shares of the right type of resource (flash, CPU, network buffers etc.) to each vDisk. By doing this, a Tintri VMstore ensures that each vDisk is isolated from the other, without noisy neighbors.

Operationally, this simplifies architecture, as the IT team doesn’t have to figure out the number of its LUNs/volumes, the size of its LUNs/volumes, which workloads would work well together and so on. It can focus on just adding VMs to a datastore/storage repository as long as it has capacity and performance headroom available (as shown by the Tintri dashboard).

On-premises real-time analytics

On-prem analytics are extracted from a storage system by a built-in or external application deployed within the environment. Admins can consult these real-time analytics to help troubleshoot a live problem or store them for historical information. Admins can further use these analytics to help their storage solution deliver a prescriptive approach to placing workloads, and provide short-term historical data for trending, reporting and chargeback.

Tintri VMstore takes advantage of its built-in analytics to deliver an on-prem solution for analytics through both the VMstore GUI and Tintri Global Center. Up to a month of history can be imported into software like vRealize Operations, Nagios, Solarwinds and more.

Of course, customers don’t have to wait before they can see these analytics—unlike with cloud-based analytics, they can monitor systems in real-time.

Cloud-based predictive analytics

Cloud-based analytics help customers with long-term trending, what-if scenarios, predictive and comparative analytics. But not all cloud-based analytics are created equal. Some just show the metrics, while others let you trend storage capacity and performance. But the majority of them can’t go application-granular across multiple hypervisors, especially in a virtual environment. They’re just statistical guesswork based on LUN/volume data.

And that’s where Tintri Analytics separate themselves from the pack. With a VM-Aware approach, we understand applications, group them automatically and provide great insights across customers data.

Your IT team wants to be proactive, working on solving business problems instead of doing day-to-day mundane tasks. That’s why each of these three categories of analytics are must-haves. With Tintri Analytics, Tintri’s committed to reducing the pressure on storage and system admins, and helping to grow, not stall, your organization.

Cheers..

@storarch

What’s New in All-Flash?

Today, Tintri announced the Tintri VMstore T5000 All-Flash series—the world’s first all-flash storage system that lets you work at the VM level—leading a launch that includes Tintri OS 4.0, Tintri Global Center 2.1 and VMstack, Tintri’s partner-led converged stack. Since its inception in 2008, Tintri has delivered differentiated and innovative features and products for next-generation virtualized datacenters. And we’re continuing the trend with the game-changing All-Flash VM-Aware Storage (VAS).

Other all-flash vendors claim all-flash can be a solution for all workloads—a case of “if all you have is a hammer then everything looks like a nail.” Or, they’ll argue that all-flash can augment hybrid deployments, with the ability to pin or move entire LUNs and volumes.

launchtimeline_tintri

But not all workloads in a LUN or volume may have the same needs for flash, performance and latency. So just as we’ve reinvented storage over the past four years, Tintri’s ready to reinvent all-flash. Here’s how:

  • No LUNs. Continuing the Tintri tradition, the T5000 series eliminates LUNs and volumes, letting you focus on applications. We’re welcoming VMs to the all-flash space across multiple hypervisors.
  • Unified management. Aside from standalone installations, the T5000 series can also augment the T800, and vice-versa. Admins can now manage VMs across hybrid-flash and all-flash platforms in a single pool through Tintri Global Center (TGC), with full integration.
  • Fully automated policy-based infrastructure through TGC, with support from vDisk-granular analytics and VM-granular self-managed service groups.

With access to vDisk-granular historical performance data, SLAs and detailed latency information, customers can decide which workloads can benefit from all-flash vs hybrid-flash—especially when our hybrid-flash delivers 99-100% from flash.

But we hear you, storage admins: you want to go into the weeds. Surprise—we’re happy to help. Here’s what else the T5000 series can offer you:

  • Space savings from inline dedupe, compression, cloning and thin provisioning.
  • NVDIMMs, NTB, 10G and more of the latest hardware advancements.
  • Enterprise reliability exceeding 99.999% uptime.
  • Scale of up to 112,000 VMs, 2.3PB and up to 5.4M IOPs (random 60:40 R:W, 8K) in a single TGC implementation.  (These are real-life numbers, not 100% read numbers.)
  • VM-granular snapshots, cloning and replication.
  • vDisk-level Dynamic QoS to eliminate noisy neighbors and ensure peak performance.
  • VM-level Manual QoS to setup performance SLAs through Min and Max IOPs.
  • vDisk (VMDKs, VHDs)-level data synchronization across VMs for test and dev or any operations requiring periodic copying of data.
  • VM-level replication, backup and transfer between Hybrid Flash and All-Flash systems.
  • VM-granular performance analytics with end-to-end latency visualization that includes host, network, storage, contention and throttle latency.

Today, Tintri continues our solid roadmap of business-relevant innovations in storage for modern workloads. We changed the game for hybrid-flash—and we’re doing it again for all-flash.

Cheers,
@storarch

Is VVol the solution to VM awareness ??

VVols is ‘THE’ solution to VM awareness for many.

Yes, we have been waiting for it for a long time now and we are still unsure about its whereabouts.

For those of you who want to understand why there is a need for VM awareness, there are a lot of blogs on this topic by some of the best in the industry. Stephen Foskett covered it in three parts – Part1, Part2, Part 3. Tintri has a great infographic explaining it on a page here and in a blog post here .

VVols is bringing in a new type of model which basically helps one define policies and data services at a VM level, getting granular than the current model used by traditional storage devices, which is at a Volume/LUN level and at the same time preventing the IO Blender situation to an extent.

In my opinion, adding VVols to vSphere is a great step by VMware but it is definitely only a small part of the solution. In fact, I think it is just an enabler and there is a lot that is needed at the underlying storage level to make it an ideal VM aware storage. Let’s dig more into this.

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The Dilemma of Evaluating Storage for VMware

As a Consulting Systems Engineer focused on Virtualization, I get to meet a lot of Customers and Prospects that are evaluating storage solution for Virtualization, Cloud, Business Critical Applications etc. A lot of times, with so many options available in the Storage Industry with confusingly similar messages, this is how a Technology Evaluator looks at things.

Is this how you see it too? Believe it or not, this is the situation that some vendors work towards!

As we know, the devil is in the details. When a Technical Evaluator finds himself in this situation, there are specific questions that he/she can ask each vendor to get a clearer picture. I have tried to put a list below without a specific order.

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