When it comes to storage interconnects for VMware deployments I’m rather biased; unified multi-protocol storage platforms like NetApp FAS should be the ONLY consideration for any sizable installation. Unified multi-protocol platforms allow for customers to receive the benefits of both NAS (NFS) and SAN (FC, FCoE, iSCSI) based connectivity from a single array. Once one collapses their FC & Ethernet networks into a unified storage fabric (ala Cisco 10GbE) i would seem rather odd to not consider deploying unified array platforms.
As a means to help validate some of the points shared around the usage of NFS I’d like to introduce you to a recent post from Martin Glassborow, aka the StorageBod, entitled, “NFS, VMware, and Unintended Consequences!” Martin is a serious data center architect and storage expert who knows his stuff.
Check out his short post and comments section on running Vmware on NFS and the unexpected results it delivers for Martin. BTW – I love this quote from the post, “(NFS) moved VMWare firmly and squarely into NetApp’s sweet spot.”