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Virtualization briefs: iSCSI SANs certified for use with VMware

Don't have an expensive Fibre Channel storage to hold your VMware environment? VMware has given its stamp of approval to several Ethernet-based iSCSI storage products.

iSCSI players tout VMware integration

Two iSCSI vendors, SANRAD Inc. and EqualLogic Inc., announced this week that VMware has cleared their products for use in VMware Infrastructure 3 (VI3) environments.

The SANRAD V-Switch connects to VMware ESX hosts via Ethernet-based iSCSI and fronts Fibre Channel and SCSI-based storage resources. As such, it is an easy and economical way for IT shops to connect servers to underutilized Fibre Channel SAN storage, said Dave Dupont, SANRAD senior vice president of marketing and business development. "Seventy percent of SAN resources are underutilized, yet the typical Fibre Channel SAN connection costs between $6,000 and $7,000," he said.

In addition to iSCSI-to-Fibre Channel routing, the SANRAD V-Switch offers several storage services, namely storage pooling across multiple heterogeneous devices, storage management and monitoring, data migration and local and remote replication.

EqualLogic's PS arrays, meanwhile, are native iSCSI storage devices. According to the company, the PS Series is compatible with VI3 features such as VMware VMotion, VMware High Availability and VMware Distributed Resource Scheduler.

VMware supports iSCSI natively within ESX 3.0 and above.

Virtual Iron 3.0 now generally available

Lowell, Mass.-based Virtual Iron Software Inc. announced that its self-titled virtualization platform is now generally available and can be downloaded from the company's Web site.

Virtual Iron 3.0 is based on the Xen hypervisor but differs materially from other Xen hypervisors in that it can run unmodified, non-paravirtualized operating systems (see Xen startup Virtual Iron breaks ranks on paravirtualization). Currently, Virtual Iron supports Linux and Windows running on systems with either Intel Xeon 5000 or 7000 series processors or AMD Opteron 2200 or 8200 series.

Virtual Iron 3.0 is available in three configurations: The first is a free Professional Edition that supports partitioning and basic management of a single virtualized node with up to two processors. Consolidation Edition costs $800 per socket and supports basic partitioning and management. At $1,500 per socket, Enterprise Edition adds rapid provisioning, high availability, disaster recovery, workload management and policy-based automation features.

Microsoft Virtual PC 2007 beta adds Vista support

Users that want to check out Microsoft's desktop-oriented Virtual PC can now download the beta from Microsoft's Web site. The new version supports the latest virtualization-enhanced chips from Intel Corp. and AMD Inc., support for Windows Vista as either a host or guest operating system and 64-bit hosts.

Microsoft Virtual PC is aimed at easing transitions from legacy to contemporary desktop operating systems.

Fast, secure ISO file transfer for ESX servers

Veeam Software in St. Petersburg, Russia, announced a utility that allows IT administrators to securely and quickly transfer ISO files between an ESX host and a Windows system. Called FastSCP (Fast and Secure Copy), it can be used to create a backup image of a virtual machine or to migrate an existing system into a virtual machine.

Veeam claims that FastSCP transfers data six times faster than the standard SCP utility, and avoids security risks presented by using ftp for file transfers. The software runs on standard Windows operating systems, features a drag-and-drop GUI. It's a free download at Veeam.

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