Storage Virtualization is a term used in computer architectures which has a broad significance and use from the standpoint of storage utilization. A storage system is typically referred to the disk arrays, disk drives and other flash drives devices. These systems take the help of special hardwares and softwares to provide an environment for fast access, retrieval and processing of data in a secured and reliable way. Physical storage is not sufficient to create the whole efficient environment for data processing and access mechanisms. The storage Virtualization concept is an effective method of creating virtual storage locations for the users. Although the data are ultimately stored in the physical storage system, however, the virtual storage facilities help in effective use of the storage by the users.
There are basically two basic Storage Virtualization procedures e.g. Block Virtualization and file Virtualization. Block Virtualization creates two different storage systems e.g. logical storage and physical storage. The user operates in the logical storage mode and the computer operates in the physical storage modes. There are mapping procedures embedded between these two storage mechanisms those coalesce the two differing storage mechanisms. In block virtualization, the user never knows the actual physical location of the data in the storage system. Thus the language difference between the computer and the human is decreased using the block virtualization mechanism. File Virtualization is a method that eradicates the dependencies in file access requests and their physical presence. One needs to go to the root of the file to access the file, and if the physical location of the file is not found, data access becomes impossible. By eliminating this dependency in managing the physical location of a file to access it, file virtualization helps in uninterrupted file migration.
The key benefit of adopting Storage Virtualization mechanism is non-disrupted data transfer. Since the host is in the knowledge of the physical storage, any migration of data from one physical location to another is only guided by the host without creating any disruption to the client programs. The data thus moved or copied to a new physical location is pointed as the present address of the data, whereas the old location is allocated to a new data. This mechanism also helps in advanced utilization of storage media. Also there are fewer scopes of storage management.
There are also a number of risks associated with the storage Virtualization mechanism. The most major risk is complexity and overheads. Since a module is required to manage the virtual storage system, the overhead of the processor increases, which also affects the performance and scalability of the computer. Memory management and metadata management mechanism is also complicated in this mechanism.
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The Concept of Storage Virtualization Helps in Advanced Util