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TaoZhang-0314 avatar image
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TaoZhang-0314 asked TaoZhang-0314 answered

How to share a virtual harddisk to multiple virtual machines (win10 and win2019(

Hi,

It is very confusing now to post questions to the correct forum. Please redirect me if it is the wrong place to ask this question.

But my setup is: I have a failover cluster with 3 nodes and Cluster shared volume based on a physically direct attached Storage box. Now I wish to deploy VDI, where users are working on data stored on several logical disks that are currently directly attached to a virtual server. since my application requires fast disk access, I am wondering: is it possible to let multiple virtual machines to access the same virtual disks directly? that is, is it possible to attach the same virtual disks to different virtual machines?

I read from windows 2012 R2, it is possible to create shared virtual harddisk VHDx or VHD set (from win2016). But this is for the purpose of clustering of guest system (my understanding is that the guest systems are running clustering, with shared VHDx or VHD set as the cluster shared volume). is it a way to let VDI to access centrally stored data disk, without sharing through network or iscsi?

The concern for me is that the read/write speed of iscsi or network disk sharing is inferior to that of directly attached virtual disk. so for the workgroups that work on the centrally stored data, one way is to set up one Remote Desktop Session Host and attach the data virtual disks to this server, and let users logon to this one server via RDP. But if I wish to deploy VDI and let each user to have a (persistent) virtual desktop, is there any way that I can attach data disks directly to users virtual desktop?

I hope I have made my question understandable, and appreciate very much any help and advice.

Best regards

windows-server-hyper-vwindows-server-clustering
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XiaoweiHe-MSFT avatar image
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XiaoweiHe-MSFT answered XiaoweiHe-MSFT commented

Hi,

I test in my lab, shared virtual disk connect to VM1 and VM2 can't realize your requirements.

I created shared disk storing in CSV, after connecting the shared disk to clustered VM1 and cluster VM2, when we create a file in VM1 on the disk, we are unable to see the file on VM2.

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20443-share33.png

As Tim explained, sharing disks requires coordinate to manage I/O on the disk, shared disk can't do it.


If the reply could be of help, please help to accept it as an answer, thanks for your cooperation!
Thanks for your time!
Best Regards,
Anne



share11.png (78.7 KiB)
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share33.png (182.0 KiB)
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Hi,

I am writing to check if the reply could be of help? If yes, please accept it as an answer, if you have any other concerns or questions, please feel free to feedback.

Best Regards,
Anne

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XiaoweiHe-MSFT avatar image
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XiaoweiHe-MSFT answered

Hi,

Based on my understanding, you would like to connect VHD set to different clustered VMs to improve shared files access speed. If there's any misunderstanding, please feel free to let me know.

I am doing test in my lab, try to add VHD set to different VMs and check the result. Since doing test need some time, it hasn't finished testing, if I get any progress, I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Thanks for your understanding!

Best Regards,
Anne

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TimCerling-5039 avatar image
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TimCerling-5039 answered

Sharing disks directly requires a file system driver that coordinates the access of all sharing hosts to prevent any form of data corruption. That is provided by the failover clustering software. Nothing in the Windows Server operating system, without the failover clustering software, provides such controlled access. The solution is to set up a file share which has a single node controlling the access. Or, set up a file share in a fail over cluster which can then use the shared access capability of the cluster to enhance the performance to the shared storage.

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TaoZhang-0314 avatar image
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TaoZhang-0314 answered

Dear Anne and Tim,
Thank you very much for answering and following my post. I sincerely apologize for not responding sooner.

Thank you very much Anne to do a test for my question. I understand the logic of controlling the disk I/O on disk level. I just wish that on file level sharing, there would be a fast route from the server that shares the files, to the node that requests the access, without heavy investment. I learned that a properly configured iSCSI with 10Gb net speed would provide comparable speed in read/write like SSD. but that requires investment. there is always a consideration of cost and benefit.

Thank you again and best regards

tao

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