Archive for the ‘Windows Server 2012’ Category

#Windows server 2012 Storage Spaces – using PowerShell – via LazyWinAdmin

November 12, 2013 Leave a comment

Very good work on this blog post about Windows Storage Spaces!

WS2012 Storage – Creating a Storage Pool and a Storage Space (aka Virtual Disk) using PowerShell


In my previous posts I talked about how to use NFS and iSCSI technologies hosted on Windows Server 2012 and how to deploy those to my Home Lab ESXi servers.

One point I did not covered was: How to do the Initial setup with the physical disk, Storage pooling and the creating the Virtual Disk(s) ?

The cost to acquire and manage highly available and reliable storage can represent a significant part of the IT budget. Windows Server 2012 addresses this issue by delivering a sophisticated virtualized storage feature called Storage Spaces as part of the WS2012 Storage platform. This provides an alternative option for companies that require advanced storage capabilities at lower price point.


  • Terminology
  • Storage Virtualization Concept
  • Deployment Model of a Storage Space
  • Quick look at Storage Management under Windows Server 2012Identifying the physical disk(s)
    • Server Manager – Volumes
    • PowerShell – Module Storage
  • Creating the Storage Pool
  • Creating the Virtual Disk
  • Initializing the Virtual Disk
  • Partitioning and Formating


Storage Pool: Abstraction of multiple physical disks into a logical construct with specified capacity
Group of physical disks into a container, the so-called storage pool, such that the total capacity collectively presented by those associated physical disks can appear and become manageable as a single and seemingly continuous space.

There are two primary types of pools which are used in conjunction with Storage Spaces, as well as the management API in Windows Server 2012: Primordial Pool and Concrete Pool.

Primordial Pool: The Primordial pool represents all of the disks that Storage Spaces is able to enumerate, regardless of whether they are currently being used for a concrete pool. Physical Disks in the Primordial pool have a property named CanPool equal to “True” when they meet the requirements to create a concrete pool.


Concrete Pool: A Concrete pool is a specific collection of Physical Disks that was formed by the user to allow creating Storage Spaces (aka Virtual Disks).

#Microsoft Desktop Hosting Reference Architecture Guides

October 28, 2013 Leave a comment

Wow, these are some compelling guides that Microsoft delivered!! Have a look at them! But of course there’s always something more U want! Let Service Providers provide DaaS services based on client OS’s as well!!!

Microsoft has released two papers related to Desktop Hosting. The first is called: “Desktop Hosting Reference Architecture Guide” and the second is called: “Windows Azure Desktop Hosting Reference Architecture Guide“. Both documents provide a blueprint for creating secure, scalable, multi-tenant desktop hosting solutions using Windows Server 2012 and System Center 2012 SP1 Virtual Machine Manager or using Windows Azure Infrastructure Services.

The documents are targeted to hosting providers which deliver desktop hosting via the Microsoft Service Provider Licensing Agreement (SPLA). Desktop hosting in this case is based on Windows Server with the Windows Desktop Experience feature enabled, and not Microsoft’s client Operating Systems like Windows 7 or Windows 8.

For some reason, Microsoft still doesn’t want service providers to provide Desktops as a Service (DaaS) running on top of a Microsoft Client OS, as outlined in the “Decoding Microsoft’s VDI Licensing Arcanum” paper which covered in September this year.

The Desktop Hosting Reference Architecture Guide provides the following sections:

  • Desktop Hosting Service Logical Architecture
  • Service Layer
    • Tenant Environment
    • Provider Management and Perimeter Environments
  • Virtualization Layer
    • Hyper-V and Virtual Machine Manager
    • Scale-Out File Server
  • Physical Layer
    • Servers
    • Network
  • Tenant On-Premises Components
    • Clients
    • Active Directory Domain Services


The Windows Azure Desktop Hosting Reference Architecture covers the following topics:

Solving the Compute and Storage scalability dilemma – #Nutanix, via @josh_odgers

October 24, 2013 Leave a comment

The topic of Compute, Network and STORAGE is a hot topic as I’ve written in blog posts before this one (How to pick virtualization (HW, NW, Storage) solution for your #VDI environment? – #Nutanix, @StevenPoitras) … and still a lot of colleagues and customers are struggling with finding better solutions and architecture.

How can we ensure that we get the same or better performance of our new architecture? How can we scale in a more simple and linear manner? How can we ensure that we don’t have a single point of failure for all of our VM’s etc..? How are others scaling and doing this in a better way?

I’m not a storage expert, but I do know and read that many companies out there are working on finding the optimal solution for Compute and Storage, and how they can get the cost down and be left with a more simple architecture to manage…

This is a topic that most need to address as well now when more and more organisations are starting to build their private clouds, because how are you going to scale it and how can you get closer to the delivery that the big players provide? Gartner even had Software-Defined-Storage (SDS) as the number 2 trend going forward: #Gartner Outlines 10 IT Trends To Watch – via @MichealRoth, #Nutanix, #VMWare

Right now I see Nutanix as the leader here! They rock! Just have a look at this linear scalability:

If you want to learn more how Nutanix can bring great value please contact us at EnvokeIT!

For an intro of Nutanix in 2 minutes have a look at these videos:


Read more…

Today is the RTM for #Windows Server 2012 R2! – #Microsoft

Microsoft blog post about the RTM release of Windows Server 2012 R2:

As noted in my earlier post about the availability dates for the 2012 R2 wave, we are counting the days until our partners and customers can start using these products. Today I am proud to announce a big milestone: Windows Server 2012 R2 has been released to manufacturing!

This means that we are handing the software over to our hardware partners for them to complete their final system validations; this is the final step before putting the next generation of Windows Server in your hands. 

While every release milestone provides ample reason to celebrate (and trust me, there’s going to be a party here in Redmond), we are all particularly excited this time around because we’ve delivered so much in such a short amount of time. The amazing new features in this release cover virtualization, storage, networking, management, access, information protection, and much more.

By any measure, this is a lot more than just one year’s worth of innovation since the release of Windows Server 2012!

As many readers have noticed, this release is being handled a bit differently than in years past. With previous releases, shortly after the RTM Microsoft provided access to software through our MSDN and TechNet subscriptions.  Because this release was built and delivered at a much faster pace than past products, and because we want to ensure that you get the very highest quality product, we made the decision to complete the final validation phases prior to distributing the release.  It is enormously important to all of us here that you have the best possible experience using R2 to build your private and hybrid cloud infrastructure.

We are all incredibly proud of this release and, on behalf of the Windows Server engineering team, we are honored to share this release with you.  The opportunity to deliver such a wide range of powerful, interoperable R2 products is a powerful example of the Common Engineering Criteria that I’ve written about before.

Also of note: The next update to Windows Intune will be available at the time of GA, and we are also on track to deliver System Center 2012 R2.

Thank you to everyone who provided feedback during….

Continue reading here!


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