Watch the Windows Server Summit on demand

I'm not the type of person who sets an alarm at an unappealing time of the morning to watch an online event, especially knowing that I can watch the replay short afterwards. No, I'm not talking about the World Cup, I'm talking about the Windows Server Summit. I'm still working my way through the sessions that are most important to me, and over on the Storage at Microsoft blog, Cosmos Darwin has posted the five big announcements for Storage Spaces Direct (S2D) and Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI). Note that Cosmos is focused on storage, so his top 5 list could be quite different to yours or mine. Once we've got an understanding of the SKU lineup inclusions I'll put something similar together for features that are in the Standard edition.

Cosmos' top 5 listing is...

Go bigger, up to 4PB

The new maximum size per storage pool is 4 petabytes (PB), or 4,000 terabytes. All related capacity guidelines and/or limits are increasing as well: for example, Storage Spaces Direct in Windows Server 2019 supports twice as many volumes (64 instead of 32), each twice as large as before (64 TB instead of 32 TB).

True two-node at the edge

Need to set up a two-node cluster in a branch or disconnected location? Want to use the USB drive capability of your router to act as the witness? Well, provided your router supports SMB2 (no, not SMB1) this is something that can now be done. New documentation is coming that lists the compatible hardware, and it might be a gentle reminder to those with older routers that haven't received security updates for a while that it might be time to get them up to date or to replace them.

Drive latency outlier detection

Drives with abnormal behavior, whether it’s their average or 99th percentile latency that stands out, are automatically detected and marked in PowerShell and Windows Admin Center as “Abnormal Latency” status. This gives Storage Spaces Direct administrators the most robust set of defenses against drive latency available on any major hyper-converged infrastructure platform.

Faster mirror-accelerated parity

In Windows Server 2019, the performance of mirror-accelerated parity has more than doubled relative to Windows Server 2016! Mirror continues to offer the best absolute performance, but these improvements bring mirror-accelerated parity surprisingly close, unlocking the capacity savings of parity for more use cases.

Greater hardware choice

Since Ignite 2017, the number of available hardware SKUs has nearly doubled, to 33. To deploy Storage Spaces Direct in production, Microsoft recommends Windows Server Software-Defined hardware/software offers from our partners, which include deployment tools and procedures. They are designed, assembled, and validated against our reference architecture to ensure compatibility and reliability, so you get up and running quickly.

Head on over to read to read the full post.

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