Use Drobo S as VM Storage - Hyper-V

Hey Guys,

I need to build out a Hyper-V Development environment for a small business. The budget for this is fairly tight, so much for the “best practises” approach…

Basically we’ve converted one of our development boxes into a Hyper-V server (Windows 2008 R2 DataCenter full installation with Hyper-V role enabled). We’ve been pretty happy with the performance and RAM, just running into space issues. I’d like to add more space to the computer using a Drobo S to store the VMs as this box as an eSATA port on it.

I know there is a lot of literature out there about using a DroboPro for this sort of thing, but it’s just a matter of $$$. Has anyone has any luck trying to use a Drobo S for VM storage?

My main concern would be performance - none of the drobo’s (ive never owned an elite - only v1, v2, FS and Pro) are particularly great performers. The situation gets MUCH MUCH worse when you are trying to simultaneously read and write- and i suspect would be going on if you had VMs on there. Sustained reads OR sustained writes are alright - but do both and performance really goes down the toilet.

Hey Docchris, I thought that Drobo has been boasting that this can be used as storage for VMs for VMware? Or is there a significant difference between Drobo S and Drobo Pro in this regard?

i think it may be more to do with it having the correct certifications, and i think the pro is still faster than the S (but i’m not 100% on that).

if you did want to do it this way - i’d advise getting it from somewhere that has a 30 day refund policy or similar so you can test it a bit first and see if its suitable.

personally i’ve got a drobo FS - which chugs away at about 26MB/sec, and another well known brand of NAS which completely saturates my GbE connection to it and has peaked as high as 118MB/sec according to my network meter - but can easily sustain 100MB+/sec

My drobopro hovered around 60MB/sec for reference - and that is just on sequential reads or writes

for a similar price, i know which i would choose

I suppose you’re right. The thing that sucks is that I’m in the Caribbean, that in laymen terms means “you buy it, you keep it”. :confused:

If anyone runs across this, or was able can you please post here. If not for my benefit, for the benefit of others wondering the same.

Thanks for your posts Docchris!

Drobo storage devices have not been certified for Microsoft’s Hyper-V virtualization software. However, we do have customers who have been successful in using our products in this environment. One area that we know is not compatible is clustering, due to the lack SCSI-3 persistent reservations support. Please note that our ability to support this environment is limited and we have not thoroughly tested our products with Hyper-V.

The only models that have been certified to work in virtualized environments of any type are the DroboElite/B800i and B1200i.