As users of Azure VMware Solution, we most likely will come across a time where we need to add storage and not necessarily need more compute from an additional host. Lightbits is another option in the Azure Marketplace to add storage that will scale and run storage intensive apps.
What is Lightbits?
Lightbits is storage using NVMe/TCP meaning you deploy an L series cluster of VMs and use that storage to present to your application or in our case Azure VMware Solution (AVS). It's certified for VMware vSphere so you can use it with AVS. The storage responds in less than 500 microseconds on average. Each volume can perform up to 1 million IOPS, regardless of its allocated size. Meaning that the Lightbits storage cluster scales to millions of IOPS at low consistent latency.
Below is the overall architecture for how it works.
What it offers
Lightbits fully integrates with AVS as a managed application, meaning you don't have to maintain the cluster. You can have it set to auto-scale, it will automatically remediate any issues. You can deploy the cluster in a single zone or in multi-zone for availability zone redundancy.
Here I selected a region that supports availability zones (AZ) so it will deploy to all 3 AZs in my selected region.
The storage is based on the size of the VMs you pick for the cluster and how many instances. There are L series VMs to choose from. Just like most resources in Azure you can use Reserved Instances to save on cost.
Below are the options as of today.
The neat part of deploying the Lightbits Cloud Data Platform is it can create the Express Route Ultra Gateway for you if you already have an Azure VMware Solution deployed and want to connect right away. You just connect like you usually do by creating an ER key.
Sharing storage and migrating
What is really unique is it can be shared across multiple AVS SDDCs and non-AVS environments on Azure giving you multi-tenancy. You can also de-allocate it and remount it to another AVS environment if needed for any maintenance, disaster recovery, migration. The storage is persistent in your environment.
Once in your AVS SDDC, you can leverage it by storage vMotioning off the vSAN to the Lightbits datastores so there is no-downtime to provide higher throughput for your intensive workloads. This is the same fact with on-premises VMware environments.
Feel free to check it out yourself in the Azure Marketplace.
Thanks for reading and feel free to comment any questions below.