Published on Microsoft IT Showcase web site on April 11, 2019, Microsoft talks about the IT story of Microsoft retail shops to move to the hybrid cloud.

The full Story

A cool story started at the beginning by a dozen of VM tucked away in a backroom at each Microsoft Store location running on blade servers and SAN storage, all installed about five years ago. So, it was time to modernize 😊

Microsoft_Store_on_S2D_HCIIn January, the Retail Store IT team began deploying a HCI solution powered by Windows Server 2019. The key ingredient the team added to the mix of the global solution was Storage Spaces Direct, the foundational storage technology inside Microsoft Azure Stack and Azure Stack HCI. With Storage Spaces Direct, small retail stores can use industry-standard servers with local-attached drives to create highly available and highly scalable software-defined storage. So, SAN storage is no longer necessary.

Because all HCI components are included in Windows Server, with only two or 3 or more servers, some in-server drives, and Storage Spaces Direct, the team was able to create a SAN-less redundant Windows Server Failover Cluster to host all VMs. Of course, It’s a very inexpensive solution compared to traditional storage based on SAN, especially concerning 2 or 3 node clusters.

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Windows Server 2019 and All-in-the-box SDDC components 

With the HCI approach on the On-premise side, we can see that Windows Server Hyper Converged Infrastructure is a right-size solution to help any small to medium sized business to build a powerful hybrid cloud with Azure!

On-Premise infrastructure is not dead!

Windows Server 2019 and Azure Stack HCI are complementary to Azure! With this Hybrid Cloud architecture, you can do more and manage operations more efficiently because more services are available On-Premise in-the-Windows-Server-box and, of course, on Azure.

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Listed below, cool links to undersand theses Windows Server SDDC components:

  • Hyper-V: The foundational hypervisor technology of Azure.
  • Storage Spaces Direct: The wonderful built-in software-defined storage technology to use locally attached flash and hard drives, and ensure fault tolerance with distributed software resiliency. Unlock unprecedented performance with built-in read/write caching and support for the latest NVMe and persistent memory, and save space with deduplication, compression, and intelligent storage tiering.So great!
  • Software-defined networking: Virtualize your network and speed up your hyperconverged infrastructure with remote direct memory access (RDMA) data plane optimized for 100 Gb/s and beyond. Prevent security vulnerabilities from spreading with micro-segmentation, access-control lists, and encrypted networks
  • Windows Admin Center: Manage your hyperconverged infrastructure with the browser-based Windows Admin Center app. Provision VM and storage, configure networking, monitor health and performance, and install updates with just a few clicks. It comes ready to use in production.

About hyperconverged solutions from Microsoft with Windows Server & Azure Stack HCI

As organizations are going to digitally transform, many are finding they can move faster by using public cloud services to use modern architectures and refresh legacy apps. However, many workloads must remain on-premises. 

With Windows Server and the Azure Stack family, it is now possible to build your own strategy based on public, private, or hybrid cloud.

Of course, the right hybrid cloud strategy must be capable to provide What you need Where you need it, delivering cloud innovation for workloads wherever they reside.

So, because of all of this, Azure Stack HCI is a really good news as presented below !

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So, to learn more on Windows Server 2019, Azure Stack HCI and this cool story at Microsoft, you can read this case study here.

Thanks for reading and thanks to Cosmos Darwin who posted this cool news on Twitter!