Azure Stack HCI
Microsoft Windows Server 2019
Azure Stack HCI is a hyper-converged Windows Server 2019 cluster that uses validated hardware to run virtualized workloads on-premises, optionally connecting to Azure services for cloud-based backup, site-recovery and more. Azure Stack HCI solutions use Microsoft-validated hardware to ensure optimal performance and reliability, and include support for technologies such as NVMe drives, persistent memory, and remote-direct memory access (RDMA) networking.
Azure Stack HCI is part of the Azure and Azure Stack family, using the same software-defined compute, storage, and networking software as Azure Stack. Here’s a quick summary of the different solutions:
- Azure – Use public cloud services
- Azure Stack – Operate cloud services on-premises
- Azure Stack HCI – Run virtualized apps on-premises, with optional connections to Azure
We’ve partnered with Dell EMC to provide Azure Stack HCI solutions that include Storage Spaces Direct Ready Nodes, 25 Gbit Networking options, Solution level support and deployment options to get the ultimate experience and results for this platform.
Why choose Microsoft for Hyper-Converged?
Windows Server 2019 (and even 2016 for those that aren’t quite ready to deploy 2019) provides an extremely easy to manage platform through Windows Admin Center that makes day-to-day operations much easier and less time consuming than any other platform out there.
The performance of Storage Spaces Direct as a Software Defined Storage solution is second to none. Of course, it’s not about the maximum speed (even though that’s nice to have), but application responsiveness and latencies measured in microseconds instead of milliseconds, that’s what it’s all about.
Enterprise grade resiliency and Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity built right into the platform with Storage Replica and Hyper-V Replication as well as the new Cluster Sets functionality in Windows 2019 that enables moving workloads between separate clusters are providing a rock-solid foundation for the most demanding workloads.
Pair that with industry leading support for both the hardware as well as the software layer, where one single support call results in solving any issue at hand and you have a winning combination.
On top of that, it’s a very cost-effective solution. All the features mentioned above are part of Windows Server Datacenter licensing that most customers use to license their virtual machines. So especially for those that already have those licenses, all you’re paying for is the hardware platform with the support and optional deployment.
Specific to the deployment options – for a fairly nominal fee (less than $300 per node) we will take care of the deployment of the hyper-converged infrastructure including the installation of Windows Server, building the Failover Cluster, configuring Storage Spaces Direct, Virtual Switches with Switch Embedded Teaming, RDMA settings and much more. Once the deployment is completed, you’ll have a pristine, best practices built Hyper-Converged infrastructure ready to create Virtual Machines or move existing Virtual Machines onto the new platform.
Ideal for Virtual Machines, upgrading older versions of SQL Server and Windows server that are (nearing) end of support, upgrade now to the latest versions with all new features, like deduplication for storage, analytics for SQL and much more.