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What is Hyperconverged Storage?

Hyperconverged storage is one facet of hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI), in which storage is bundled with compute and networking in a single virtualized system. With this software-defined approach, flexible pools of storage replace dedicated hardware. Each node includes a software layer that virtualizes the resources in the node and shares them across all the nodes in a cluster, creating one large storage pool. Software-defined networking (SDN) and load balancing determine which hardware to serve requests from. 

Hyperconverged storage makes it easier for administrators to manage resources and lower total cost of ownership for storage—securing better pricing on storage than from public cloud service providers in many situations.

Hyperconverged infrastructure is fast becoming one of the most deployed solutions in data centers.

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Converged Storage vs. Hyperconverged Storage

With converged storage, compute, networking, and storage are also packaged as a complete solution for enterprise corporations. But while these pre-built resources are combined in a single physical appliance, they are not virtualized and pooled together as with hyperconverged storage. Instead, the components are hardware based and independent of each other; they can be separated and used for different things.  

Hyperconverged storage is controlled with software and is more flexible than converged storage. With hyperconverged storage, the storage resources may be pooled or shared among several nodes. 


Companies typically purchase converged storage from vendors as a part of a hardware solution. Hyperconverged storage options may also be part of a converged system for a data center, or they may be purchased separately from public cloud providers.

Hyperconverged Storage: Pros and Cons

Hyperconverged storage delivers key advantages over traditional and legacy systems:

  • Greater flexibility for IT: IT gains greater agility through virtualization and highly-automated processes.
  • Reduced IT operation expense: IT operational expenses are reduced while time is freed up so that admins can focus on innovation by completely eliminating storage provisioning and accelerating time-to-completion for common storage tasks.
  • Cost savings on storage: Administrators can save on storage costs with hyperconverged infrastructure by architecting solutions that run on industry-standard hardware devices, delivering a lower cost for performance than traditional storage counterparts.


Potential Cons of Hyperconverged Storage:

  • Limited capabilities for scale: For storage-intensive applications with limited demand for computational resources, HCI’s scale-up capabilities are not as robust as traditional storage.
  • Organizational planning adds complexity: HCI typically requires a new organizational model for IT, collapsing compute and storage teams into a single HCI administration team, which requires additional organizational planning and adds implementation complexity as compared to “business as usual.”

Related Topics
Software-Defined Networking 
Software-Defined Storage
Storage Area Network

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