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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Testing Storage Tiering on Windows Server 2012 R2


Just get my lab ready on Storage Tiering using Windows Server 2012 R2 for next week Microsoft Cloud OS Day @Singapore. My demo environment consist of the following setup

Demo 1

a) 1 unit of SATA Disk – 1TB , 1 unit of 240 GB SATA Disk

Storage Spaces created without storage tiering

Virtual Disk created with thin provisioning 100 GB on SATA Disk (mirror)


Without SSD, you cannot do storage tiering and the option is dimmed. Sad smile

Demo 2

b) 1 unit of SSD Disk – 240 GB, 1 unit of 1 TB SATA Disk

Storage Spaces created with storage tiering.

Virtual Disk created with fixed provisioning

-50 GB – SSD & 50 GB on SATA (simple)


With SSD Disk, you will be able to tick “Create Storage Tiers on this virtual disk”. Smile

On Storage tiering, you can specify the resilient of Mirror or Simple (No redundancy) . Storage Tiering only allow Fixed Provisioning Type.


Then the next step is put these two demo set into production by putting some virtual machine. So how to test which is better?

Here is my test result by using

a) Iometer

Without Storage Tiering : around 4957 IOps


With Storage Tiering : around 7742 IOps (Great Performance)



Without storage Tiering:-

  • IOs/sec : 1122
  • MB/sec : 70.12


With Storage tiering:-

  • IOs/sec : 4082 (Great Performance)
  • MB/sec : 255.15


So conclusion, Storage Tiering with write back cache feature on Windows Server 2012 R2 provide a faster and great performance compare to storage spaces without tiering.

Note:- The figure taken from Iometer and SQLIo is just an example. The result may be varies depend on storage and configuration setup.