Serversan Analysis (ii): Nutanix integration of storage and compute resources

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Nutanix is a distributed storage system that integrates storage and compute resources on physical nodes, but the logical compute Storage Fusion platform runs all of the storage logic in a pre-packaged virtual machine (Storage Control virtual machine) that runs on top of hypervisor, isolated from the business compute virtual machine, and provide high-performance storage services for business virtual machines.

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The expansion of the Nutanix Storage infrastructure (NX series Hyper-converged systems) is not limited by any hypervisor and can be extended to thousands of nodes, separating the storage logic from the virtualization platform, enabling compute and storage fault domain isolation. Independent fault domains make the platform more stable and more suitable for applications where IO-dense or high reliability is required.

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The storage virtual machine and compute virtual machine isolation mechanism enable Nutanix to support different virtualization platforms, such as VMware, KVM, and Hyper-V, unlike VMware Vsan, which can only support VMware virtualization platforms due to Vsan and vsphere depth inheritance.

Nutanix Each node contains a Storage control virtual machine CVM. CVM implements all of the storage logic and functionality, all local storage is suspended by RDM or pass-through to the local storage control virtual machine, and storage resources are provided to the business virtual machine via NFS, iSCSI.

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Nutanix cluster (Nutanix complete Cluster)

The core NDFs file system of the Nutanix cluster, located in the storage Control virtual machine, connects storage, compute, control VMS, and hypervisor, all of which comprise a pool of resources, create vdisk (standard iSCSI devices, The standard iSCSI initiator in the hypervisor is connected to the virtual machine as a logical datastore to the VM.

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Cluster Configuration Manager (Zeus)

Based on the zookeeper implementation, it runs on three nodes in the cluster, saving the configuration management information of the cluster.

Distributed meta-data Service (MEDUSA)

Nutanix's Distributed Metadata service Medusa enables the distribution of cluster metadata across the cluster for scalability, while replicating data to multiple nodes for fault tolerance.

Distributed Data Maintenance Service (curator)

Nutanix's Distributed Data Maintenance Service (curator) is a MapReduce-based framework cluster Manager for performing back-office data management operations in a massively parallel manner. These actions include:

    • Migrating unpopular data to a lower tier

    • Collect deleted junk data

    • Implementation of data consistency through program validation

    • Replicate data when a node or hard disk fails

    • Rebalance data when nodes are added or removed

    • When a virtual machine is moved from one node to another, the data is migrated to maximize local access

Nutanix Storage Software Features

Flashstore is a persistent, flash-based memory that is first written to Flashstore and then migrated to Diskstore (Diskstore is a large-capacity SATA storage layer spanning the entire cluster) after it becomes cold data. When the cold data becomes hot again, it is re-extracted to Flashstore.

Nutanix's hot technology integrates flashstore and diskstore to achieve higher performance and greater capacity at lower cost.

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Nutanix provides value-added features comparable to traditional SAN storage, including snapshot of virtual machine granularity, on-line compression, online deduplication, SSD optimization, MapReduce compression, MapReduce deduplication, performance data statistical analysis, cluster health check, remote data replication, hardware support diagnostics, and more.

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The Nutanix architecture is designed specifically for virtual machines, so it supports the full range of virtual machines supported by traditional networked storage architectures, including real-time virtual machine migrations and high-availability features.

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Nutanix Instant VDisk Motion incorporates a converged architecture with local storage that also supports live migration. The vdisk in the device is a fully moving logical entity (similar to storage vMotion). This is achieved through the Nutanix Instant vdiskmotion function, which, if necessary, can move the vdisk from one node to another quickly.

Nutanix's converged backup capabilities provide immediate backup and recovery capabilities for vdisk. In addition, Nutanix is fully compatible with VMware Vstorage API for Data Protection (VADP), which provides full-featured virtual machine backup and recovery capabilities for backup and recovery of storage-controlled virtual machines.

Simple summary:

    1. Nutanix system based on distributed, logical storage virtual machine and compute virtual machine separation architecture design, with good reliability, according to storage, computing business Independent on-demand expansion of the corresponding resources, more importantly, the implementation and hypervisor decoupling, can support more hypervisor.

    2. Can scale to thousands of nodes, in similar Serversan products (such as Vsan, Tintri, etc.) expansion capability is strong, distributed RAID technology to ensure system reliability, while increasing the number of nodes can also linearly increase performance.

    3. Nutanix provides rich storage features such as on-line deduplication compression, data replication, storage tiering and more, comparable to enterprise professional storage, but in contrast, deployment is more flexible and cost-competitive.


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This article from the "ICT Architects Technical Exchange" blog, declined to reprint!

Serversan Analysis (ii): Nutanix integration of storage and compute resources

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