Microsoft SQL Solution Brief



  • Deploy production level, virtualized SQL database solutions with Always On Availability Groups (AOAG)
  • Support mixed SQL database workloads (OLTP/OLAP) with improved latency and higher performance
  • Simpler, VM-centric, database storage management with vDisks – no LUNs to manage
  • Cost effective capacity using commodity local flash and always on data reduction
  • Faster development alternatives with (VAAI) cloning and a common shared Datastore
  • Isolated host workloads and extensive VM level analytics improve monitoring and troubleshooting



With the latest Microsoft SQL Server versions, using features like AOAG to support production level databases has made Microsoft SQL Server an incredibly robust relational database platform for virtualization. However, with traditional LUN-based storage solutions, IT and database administrators still face challenges when virtualizing applications such as Microsoft SQL Server. Performance troubleshooting is a challenge as the application VM, ESX host and storage are typically managed separately, lacking VM awareness at the storage level and no simple workload isolation to the host or application VM. Data growth or consolidation of databases is often more problematic with LUN-based solutions that need to account for sizing, placement and performance considerations. Finally, scaling performance and ensuring application availability in a mixed workload environment is often unpredictable or hard to control.



The key components of a Datrium solution with Microsoft SQL Server will look something like Figure 1. Depending on your specific data center virtualization storage and data protection needs, you can deploy a single Datrium DVX Open Convergence platform solution for a local site configuration (as shown) or leverage a secondary Datrium DVX Open Converged platform as you scale. This solution leverages a single shared datastore across hosts and VMs while at the same time moving and servicing the bulk of the I/O workload onto the hypervisor hosts.



World class performance for Microsoft SQL

With the Datrium DVX solution, hypervisor I/O performance is accelerated and latency is reduced through the leverage of abundant and affordable local flash on the host. With DVX, IO processing and active data resources are server-based which means the solution gets faster as you add servers – adding more compute and local flash capability to the overall system. Your servers provide I/O processing resources and reads stay local on host flash for maximum speed. VM performance benefits from flash-resident transactions that now have 50%-80% lower latency and up to 5x faster SQL queries than traditional SAN based alternatives. The Datrium Open Convergence architecture provides ultimate flexibility for choice of server and flash placement for applications and performance improvements where needed. Easily consolidate virtualized SQL server OLTP (transactional) and OLAP (analytical) databases onto a single virtualized solution and never deal with LUN provisioning or LUN tuning again.


VM-centric management

The Datrium User Interface is integrated into vCenter. Here you can focus on your application VMs and can get real-time VM analytics. Manage your VMs and database applications instead of managing the storage. Datrium DVX Open Convergence platform is simpler at scale compared to LUN-base storage solutions. Host workloads are isolated from each other and allow for the application VMs on those hosts to take full advantage of the local resources. This means that you can consolidate any variety of diverse workloads across hosts without risking SLA compromises. Get more predictable performance and visibility with real-time VM analytics.


Built-in capacity efficiency – improved economics

With Datrium DVX, capacity efficiency is leveraged through always-on compression and deduplication for both local server-flash and the shared DVX Data Server. Datrium supports up to 16 TBs per host of raw flash capacity. This translates to 30-100 TBs of effective capacity after deduplication and compression and should be able to address the majority of your database applications on that host. In addition, a single DVX Data Server provides approximately 100 to 180 TB of effective persistent capacity. With this amount of capacity and host flexibility, you can easily scale out your databases or availability groups as your data grows. When configuring hosts to run virtualized Microsoft SQL Server, you can leverage your existing, under-utilized server infrastructure for compute and bring your own commodity flash or design the compute and flash performance into new servers of choice.


High availability and predictability

A Datrium DVX solution helps eliminate single points of failure for enterprise applications such as Microsoft SQL Server. When deployed with Always On Availability Groups, each host server will keep the same deduplicated and compressed data in its local flash through typical SQL Server Always On activities. If the primary host fails, the secondary host will pick up immediately and its local flash should be completely up to date to take over processing at the same level of performance and efficiency as the primary. Figure 2 shows a couple of SQL dual node clusters and the Datrium VM performance information associated with their current configuration.




With Datrium DVX Open Convergence platform along with Microsoft SQL Server Always On Availability Groups, IT and SQL Server administrators can be rest assured that they have the right mix of performance, availability, manageability and economics to meet the demanding database application needs of today’s modern virtualized data centers.


Microsoft SQL Solution Brief