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Storage Spaces is a new feature in Windows 8 that allows you to pool together multiple hard drives into one larger drive or to mirror two different drives so that your data is protected against a drive failing. Simple striping, otherwise known as Raid-0, takes multiple drives and combines them into one virtual drive seen by Windows. The parity storage space, or Raid-5, allows you to take 3 or more drives and combine all but the last one into one large virtual drive. If you tend to have a lot of spare drives, then using these extra drives as storage spaces can help to protect your data in the event of drive failure.
Note: In order to use Storage Spaces you will need at least one or more extra hard drives installed in your computer.
Now click on the option labeled Storage Spaces and you will be brought to the Storage Spaces control panel. Put a check mark next to each drive you wish to use for the new pool and then click on the Create pool button. Warning: This type of storage space should be avoided for critical data due to its lack of fault tolerance and increased risk of drive failure. Below is an example of taking two 5 GB drives and combining them into a Simple storage space. Tip: It is suggest that you do not create a Simple storage space that is greater than the total pool capacity. When you are ready, simply click on the Create Storage Space button and it will be created. As you can see from the above picture, we have create a Simple storage space of 8.50 GB from two 5 GB drives.
If you are using a Simple storage space and run out of room on the drive, you can add a new drive to the pool in order to increase amount of space available on the drive letter. Now you need to modify the storage space so that it using all of the space that was just added.
In the field labeled Storage space size change the amount to the number reflected in the Total pool capacity row. Your Simple storage space will now be using all of the space available on all the drives in the pool.
A two-way mirror, or Raid-1, storage space is when you use two drives and data is written to both of them at the same time. Please note that since each drive is a mirror of the other, you will only have access to half the space allocated to the storage pool. A Parity, or Raid-5, storage space is useful if you want to combine two or more drives together to make one large drive, while still protecting your data in the event that one of the drives has a hardware failure. When you are ready, click on the Create storage space button and the new parity storage space will be created as shown below.
Notice how the total pool capacity is 17GB (4 x 5GB minus some overhead), but the maximum size is 11.5 (3 x 5 GB with some space taken out for overhead). If you are using a Parity storage space and one of the drives dies, your data will still be accessible and the storage space will continue to work.
When a drive fails, Windows will issue an alert stating that there is a problem as shown below. Click on the alert and you will be brought to the storage spaces control panel where you can determine which drive is having a problem. Notice in the image above how Storage Spaces is telling us the particular drive that is failed. Once the new drive is added to the pool, click on the Remove option next to the drive that has failed. To delete a storage space, you just need to click on the Delete option next to the particular one that you wish to delete.
Once you delete a storage, all of your data will be lost, so be sure to make a backup of anything that you need to save.
Before you can delete a storage pool, you first need to delete any storage spaces currently using it. Once you find the storage pool you wish to delete, simply click on the Delete button to delete it.
Question:I ran out of space on one of my storage spaces and now Windows will not allow me to access the drive. For some reason, Microsoft decided to disable access to the drive when it runs out of space instead of just reporting it full. Question: I noticed it was possible to add multiple storage spaces to the same storage pool, with each using up all the space in the pool, and each one will have its own drive letter. To be honest, we are not sure what the logic behind this was, but we suggest you avoid doing that. If due to tightened security you do not want a user to be able to use the Windows Store, you can disable it via a policy in the Group Policy Editor or via a Registry key.
Windows 8 allows you to customize the background and text color of the Start screen so that it is to your preferences. The Startup Settings boot menu allows you to change various settings that affect how Windows 8 starts up as well as providing a launching point into Windows 8 Safe Mode.
The Advanced startup options menu allows you to specify various options for how you would like Windows 8 to start or to provide access to repair and diagnostic tools in the event that Windows is unable to start. Figure 2 shows the Physical and Logical view of how Storage Spaces works and how we will set it up in the beginning of the video.
Figure 9 shows the Physical and Logical view of how Storage Spaces works and how it will be set up after I add a fourth Seagate ST3000DM001 to the Pool. While adding a physical drive to the Pool does increase the available Pool size supporting the virtual disks in Storage Spaces it did not seem to do anything to improve the performance of any of the three virtual dives being tested. Please join us in the HSS Forums or in the thread related to this blog posting with comments or questions. Support this podcast by shopping via affiliate links If you shop the app store consider starting here first!
The performance of a storage solution is important when evaluating its cost efficiency and usefulness. Microsoft Exchange, or virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), determine how the storage can be optimally configured. Simple spaces are not resilient to disk failures and should thus be used only for temporary data and data that can easily be recreated, for example intermediary video rendering files or caches.
From a performance standpoint, simple spaces provide the best overall performance when considering reads and writes. Mirroring refers to creating two or more copies of data and storing them in separate places, so that if one copy gets lost the other is still available.
Reads on mirror spaces are very fast, since the mirror not only benefits from the stripe, but also from having 2 copies of data.
1 and 3 are busy servicing another request, the needed data can be read from disks 2 and 4. Mirrors, while being fast on reads and resilient to a single disk failure (in a two-way mirror), have to complete two write operations for every bit of data that is written. In the diagram below, a 768 KB stripe of data is written across disks 1 through 3 (A1, A2, A3), while the corresponding parity bit (AP) is placed on disk 4.
The sequential write performance of parity spaces can be improved by using dedicated journals. In other words, ensure that dedicated journal disks are very fast and scale the number of journal disks with the number of parity spaces on the pool. The type of disk that is used for a given workload is important, as there are significant performance and capacity differences between them.
HDD – 7,200 RPM These disks usually provide the greatest single-disk capacity, and adequate performance, depending on the workload.
SLC-type: Typically capable of higher write speeds than MLC-type, and can typically sustain a higher amount of full disk re-writes and stress over the course of the lifetime of the disk. RPM disks might be deployed to house databases or other data that needs to be accessed and manipulated relatively quickly. SATA disks attached via a “just a bunch of disks” (JBOD) enclosure typically incur a slight performance penalty when compared to SAS. Storage Spaces takes full advantage of the performance capabilities of the underlying storage.
At TechEd North America 2012, as well as TechEd Europe 2012, Microsoft presented a three-node cluster system backed by 24 enterprise-level SSDs and Storage Spaces.
Storage Tiering, the practice of moving frequently accessed data to very fast storage, while maintaining infrequently accessed data on moderate or slow storage is supported with Storage Spaces starting in Windows Server 2012 R2.
Frequency of access (heat) on files is measured by the file system and fed into a tiering engine that instructs Spaces to move often used files to flash-based storage devices, while retaining cold data on large-capacity, slow storage. Two parameters that are important in any workload are block size and interleave (stripe size). Many database-style applications such as Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Exchange use relatively small blocks (8KB – 32KB), though other applications may use larger blocks.
The number of columns specifies how many physical disk data is striped across and has an impact on performance regardless of stripe and block size. The following table provides real-world performance numbers comparing two simple spaces with different numbers of columns.
The following example describes this trade-off: A typical hard disk is saturated writing a large number of 1MB files or block data in a sequential fashion. There are a few more points to consider and adjust when maximizing the performance of Storage Spaces. Power Protected Mode: Storage Spaces allows administrators to enable “power protected mode”, which assumes that disk caches have batteries or are otherwise resilient to power failures. Unless your workload has very specific needs and is unlikely to grow significantly, utilize the default column count chose by Spaces at creation time. 2012 R2) Do not use simple spaces unless resiliency is provided by the application or is unnecessary.
The following example describes how to deploy Storage Spaces in a standalone Microsoft SQL Server instance. To build a resilient system it is important to have redundant paths from the server to the storage. The typical workload of an actively used SQL database is random in nature with relatively small block sizes (8KB – 32KB). This will allow for fast access times to the data and 7.2 TB of total capacity for the database tables. This provisioning scheme yields a total database capacity of ~7.2 TB, log capacity of ~584 GB, and ~8 TB of backup capacity while being highly focused on resiliency to component failure.
This cluster deployment element is designed to provide extremely high levels of performance at a low price point. Microsoft has since released a Word document that outlines the various components and settings used to achieve the above 1M IOPS. This rotating bookcase from PB Teen looks like a great way to save space in a small bedroom.
The Display-It Storage Mirror is 69"H and the spinning obviously makes it a better choice for older kids and teens rather than toddlers. The technology itself reached maturity, but you have to take care about few things when you deploy it. When you create the Storage Spaces they will try to create such a layout to achieve maximum performance by default. Since we definitely need resiliency for the production workload, besides the stripping we will combine it with the mirroring. With 6 physical disks to achieve the maximum performance we will use 3 columns in two-way mirror. Storage tiers allow us to create the Storage Spaces on top of the pool which combines SSDs and HDDs. The maximum number of columns we can have is determined by the number of disks in fewer tier. This is a feature that automatically rebuilds a Storage Spaces from the storage pool free space when a physical disk fails. There is no magic layout that fits all. Below are a few guidelines, which you may or may not choose to follow.
DisclaimerAll posts on this blog are provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confer no rights. The information contained in this blog represent my views on the issues discussed at the time of publishing.
This allows you to take different drives of different sizes and combine them into a new drive that uses all of the space on each drive. This type of storage space provides hardware protection because if one drive fails the data is still safely stored on the other drive. This storage process provides hardware protection in the event that two drives fail at the same time. The last drive is then used as the parity drive that protects you in the event that one drive fails. This will open up a new screen where you can select the drives that you wish to add to a storage pool. The new storage pool will be created and you will be brought to a new screen where you can create a new storage space that is associated with that pool.
This type of storage space allows you to take multiple drives and configure them as one virtual drive that has free space of all the combined drives. This is because data is written to both drives and if one of the drives has a hardware failure, you lose access to all of your data on that virtual drive.
Please note, that there is some overhead associated with this and you do not get the total physical space of the drive as usable space. In the future, if you need to add more usable space to the Simple storage space, you can add another hard drive, which is outlined in the next section.
This synchronization allows your data to be backed up to both drives and if one drive fails, you do not lose any of your your data. For example, if you have two 1.5 terabyte drives added to a storage pool, the storage pool will have a total capacity of 3 terabytes. When you are ready, click on the Create storage space button and the new mirror will be created as shown below. When creating this type of storage space, your total usable drive space will be the total disk space of all the drives minus one of them.
With the drive failed, though, you will no longer be fault tolerant, which means that if another drive fails you will lose all of your data. If you cannot fix the drive, you need to purchase and install a new hard drive in your computer. If you remove the failed one before you add a new drive to the storage pool, you will lose all of your data.
You can then use the storage pool to create another storage space or continue to deleting the storage pool. Once all the storage spaces are deleted, you can then continue with deleting a storage pool.
If you try and bring it back online, it will state that you need to install further drives into the storage pool in order to access it again. It's perfectly fine to use the same pool for multiple storage spaces, but please make sure you do not allocate space to both of them so that they overlap. When ISO images burned onto a CD or DVD it creates an exact replica of the media that the ISO was created from.
To change the Windows 8 Start screen background you should go to the 8 Start screen and type start screen.
To access the Startup Settings boot menu in Windows 8, you need to do so via the Advanced Startup options menu. In previous versions of Windows you were able to access the advanced startup options menu by clicking on the F8 key when Windows started. DIYTrade accepts no responsibility whatsoever in respect of such content.To report fraudulent or illegal content, please click here. Click Sign In to add the tip, solution, correction or comment that will help other users.Report inappropriate content using these instructions. You can choose the resiliency type of a storage space based on business needs, with choices of Simple (no resiliency), Mirror, and Parity. Striping refers to the idea of writing data across multiple disks to reduce access and response times. Using the example of a simple space, you can see that 256 KB are allocated on each of the four disks to write a total of 1 MB of data.
They provide the cumulative performance of multiple disks, depending on how many disks are in the storage pool.
If a new physical disk is added or a hot-spare is present, the mirror regenerates its resiliency. Since parity is striping across all but one disk in the storage space it has good read performance while still providing resiliency to a single disk failure. Parity spaces are an excellent choice for workloads that are almost exclusively read-based, highly sequential, and require resiliency, or workloads that write data in large sequential append blocks (such as bulk backups).
Note that the throughput of the journal disks will now be the overall throughput limit to all parity spaces created on this specific storage pool and you might trade extra capacity for performance. HDD – 5,400 RPM and Variable RPM “Green” Drives These disks run at either 5400 RPM or a variable RPM rate, and while they usually match 7,200 RPM disks in capacity, they provide reduced performance in exchange for decreased power usage. If your workload involves random small block reads and writes, and your budget allows, SSDs are an excellent choice.
Usually these disks are priced higher than standard MLC and the implementation is vendor specific.
This means that a few high capacity 7,200 RPM disks are available for storing backups, or data that is not accessed very often. SATA SSDs further exacerbate the problem by having an order of magnitude larger CPU overhead.
More details about this system can be found in the Sample Deployments section of this paper.
The more columns a storage space is assigned, the more disks can be striped across and the higher performance. Random workloads do not experience as significant a performance increase, exhibiting more uniform performance across different column counts. For high performance systems it is typically best to have one cable per HBA, two if MPIO is used for path redundancy.
If SSDs are deployed, it is possible for the CPUs of the server node to become the performance bottleneck. At the same time, load balancing can provide optimized performance by utilizing the capabilities of multiple SAS cables. Note that enabling power protected mode without battery-backed caches or resilience to power failure puts your data at risk of loss or corruption. As a result of these characteristics, it is advisable to utilize fast disks (10,000 RPM or faster) and keep the storage space stripe size relatively small to accommodate the blocks read and written by the database. If this degree of resiliency is not required, then the provisioning can change to provide more performance or capacity. The use of commodity hardware makes Storage Spaces deployments flexible, easily expandable, and cost-efficient. In this post I’ll try to explain what is the Storage Spaces Stripping and Mirroring and how is affecting the above mentioned issues. Minimum number of disks you need is 2 * NumberOfColumns, because after the stripping we need the same size of disk set to write the copy of data – you remember.
Data is moved on the subfile level between the two tiers, based on how frequently the data is accessed. In this example the SSD tier has 4 disks and the maximum number of columns for two-way mirror is 2.
Marketing says that you don’t need an extra disk for Hot spare, which is true, but you need to reserve the free space in the pool.
Mixing Simple, Mirror, Parity or Dual Parity in the same Storage Pool is only for non-demanding workloads and the layout is hard to track. These pools are then divided into storage spaces, or virtual drives, that can be accessed via a drive letter in Windows. This allows you to quickly add more storage to a storage space that is running low by adding a new physical drive to the pool. Please note, that when you use this type of storage space you will only be able to use the space of the smallest drive. If second drive fails before you replace the first failed one, you will lose all of your data. So for example, if you have three 1 terabyte drives and you use them to make a Simple storage space the new virtual drive would have a total storage of 3 terabytes. Therefore, this type of storage space should only be used for data that you do not care if you lose or can easily be recreated, such as backup volumes or temporary storage. Then click on the Add drives option to open a dialog box where you can add another drive to the storage pool. All you have to do is remove the failed drive, install a new drive, and then add it to the pool.
If we now use that storage pool to create a two-way mirror, the drive letter that is created will only have 1.5 terabyte of usable space because half of the space is used as accessible storage and the other half is the mirror. We will not be discussing how to create this type of mirror as it uses the same steps as above.
Therefore, if you have four 120 gigabyte drives and create a parity storage space, the total usable space will be 360 gigabytes (3 * 160GB) with the fourth drive being used as a backup in the event that one of the drives fails.
You should then click on the Add drives option for this storage pool and add the new drive into the pool. Another method is to change the storage space and make it slightly larger and then try to bring it online again. For example, if you wish to take a pool and split it into two separate storage space mirrors, that is fine. Due to this ISOs are a common way for companies and organizations to distribute copies of their CDs and DVDs online. Unprovisioned space size has to be the same or larger than a size of a single disk for this feature to work. This applies to the both tiers considering the size of disks in each tier. In the example below which is 2-columns 2-way mirror tiered Storage Space, you will need minimum of 4 SSDs or 4 HDDs to expand the each tier. This type of storage space is not recommended for critical or irreplaceable data because if one of these drives fails, you lose all of the data on all of the drives.
This type of storage space allows you to easily add more storage to a drive as it becomes necessary.
Windows will then synchronize all the data from the old disk to the new one so that they are mirrored again. When it has finished repairing the storage space, this warning message will disappear, and your parity drive will be fully functional and protecting your computer.
As long as you do not try to write anything further to the disk, you should be able to delete any files you need to in order to clear up some space.
It is not suggested, though, that you take one storage pool and split it up into two mirrors that both use 100% of the space of the storage pool. If you have never worked with the technology I suggest you first visit the Storage Spaces Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ). Storage Spaces will stripe the data to two physical disks and then it will write another copy of data on the other two disks. In HDD tier we have 6 HDDs, but the data will also be stripped to two disks and then copied to another two disks. For the layout shown on figure 4 only two disks in each layout are sufficient for the expansion.
This is very similar to RAID 0+1, but depending on the number of disks in the pool and the number of spaces created, it will use 4 disks, but not the way RAID controllers usually do. HDD tier could perform better with the higher number of columns, but it has to follow the SSD tier layout. Main advantage is rebuilding the data from the failed disk to multiple physical disks in the pool instead to a single hot spare.
There is also a third so called resiliency Simple, but it’s not resilient to disk failures at all.
Full resiliency is achieved in a shorter time, while rebuilding a single large disk can be time consuming.
Here I will discuss only Mirror resiliency, since it is the resiliency you would use for production workloads like Hyper-V or SQL. First one creates one more copy of your data, while the other creates two more copies of your data.
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