5 Reasons to Use Windows 2012 Storage Spaces instead of Standard RAID
Reason #1: Storage area network (SAN) services
With Windows 2012 Storage Spaces you are able to promote your Windows 2012 server with SAN functionality. This enables enterprise iSCSI services, which you can use to add storage volumes to other physical or virtualized server clients that supports iSCSI block protocol. And it costs only a fraction compared to EMC, HP or IBM storages with same functionality.
Reason #2: Storage space efficiency
Windows 2012 Storage Spaces provides you with thin provisioning, which can help you to reduce data footprint, and help you to use your storage more efficiently. This feature allows you to “overprovision” disk resources in your virtualized environment without additional cost.
Storage Spaces also supports trim, automatically running the Storage Optimizer to help reduce the physical footprint of data by consolidating data. Also, you are not restricted to only one disk type, so you can combine SATA, SAS, SCSI and SSD.
Reason #3: Performance
Even if standard RAID can have slightly better performance in some scenarios, it does not offers you flexibility and performance tiers. In Windows 2012 Storage Spaces you can improve performance of any volume by using SSD and RAM as caching method. This gives you great advantage over standard RAID, because you can define per-volume performance tiers based on your needs.
Reason #4: Data resilience
Windows 2012 Storage Spaces allows similar data resilience compared to standard RAID like parity and mirroring, but it also enables per-pool support for disks that are reserved for replacing failed disks (hot spares), background scrubbing, and intelligent error correction allow continuous service availability despite storage component failures. In the event of a power failure or cluster failover, the integrity of data is preserved so that recovery happens quickly and does not result in data loss.
Reason #5: Scalability
Storage Spaces is fully integrated with failover clustering, which allows it to deliver continuously available service deployments. One or more pools can be clustered across multiple nodes within a single cluster. Storage spaces can then be instantiated on individual nodes, and the storage will seamlessly fail over to a different node when necessary (in response to failure conditions or due to load balancing). Integration with CSVs permits scale-out access to data.