GridStore has announced early access to version 3.0 of its storage product. So what?
It's complicated but worth the study: Gridstore v3.0 allows servers to run Hyper-V virtual machines much more efficiently by tuning networked storage access to the individual needs of each VM. How it does that is the complex bit.
The virtual machines' I/O requests are analysed, optimised and channeled to backend storage arrays, which are made up of nodes in a virtualised pool. Write I/Os are striped across them for performance and protection, and are also striped across parallel network connections.
To increase the pool's capacity and performance you add nodes; it's a scale-out design. GridStore calls this pay-as-you-scale. Each VM gets its own storage quality-of-service (TrueQoS) guarantee.
The aim is to increase storage array efficiency by avoiding a random mix of I/O access types from servers running dozens of VMs, each with their own storage QoS needs.
Gridstore says its hardware and software fits naturally into the Windows environment, presenting what looks like local hard drives to the OS. So admin staff "manage the storage with the tools they are used to and in a manner they do today" and "existing scripts continue to work".