Using Encapsulation to Manage Virtual Hard Disk Data
May 24, 2010
Encapsulating the thousands of Windows operating system files into a single virtual disk file offers many benefits to an organization. As mentioned in this Tech Target report, managing a single file is substantially easier. With 10 VMs, for example, you have only 10 or so virtual disk files to manage.
"Additionally, managing a single file is substantially easier. With 10 VMs, for example, you have only 10 or so virtual disk files to manage. As a result, storing these files in a single location on your storage area network (SAN) allows multiple hosts to access them. This multiple-host configuration allows advanced technologies, such as Hyper-V's Live Migration, to function. Even without Live Migration, relocating a disk file from one host to another involves copying only one file rather than the thousands that make up an OS instance.
"Also, storing a single file is easy. A thin-provisioning configuration, for example, requires only as much storage as the file needs. Because the dollars-per-gigabyte cost of today's SANs are more expensive than traditional storage, thin provisioning on SANs and within Virtual Hard Disk files is the most efficient use of your available space."