Mastering Virtualization with Proxmox: Proxmox Storage Types and Their Benefits

Part 4: Proxmox Storage Types and Their Benefits

If you’re accustomed to drive letters and NTFS configurations, Proxmox’s variety of storage types may seem like a new frontier. However, the flexibility and robustness they offer make them worth understanding. Let’s dive into some of these options.

Broadening Horizons: Beyond NTFS

While you may be familiar with NTFS and its features, Proxmox offers different storage options like LVM, ZFS, Ceph, and NFS. These systems provide more flexibility in how you manage and allocate storage, making it easier to adapt to changing needs.

Exploring Proxmox Storage Types

Proxmox offers multiple storage types, including local storage options like Directory, LVM, and ZFS, as well as network storage through NFS, CIFS, and iSCSI. Each type has its pros and cons, affecting performance, flexibility, and ease of use. Notably, with certain underlying filesystems, virtual machines can be stored as block devices, enhancing performance and storage efficiency.

ZFS: Snapshots, Deduplication, and More

ZFS is a filesystem that offers more than just storage. Its built-in features like pooling, snapshots, deduplication, and compression provide a multifaceted approach to managing your data. Additionally, it’s common practice to install Proxmox on a ZFS mirror comprised of two small NVMe disks. This setup offers improved resiliency and performance. Snapshots at the filesystem level enable straightforward backups and restores.

Proxmox Backup Server: Beyond Basic Backups

Proxmox Backup Server (PBS) is not merely a tool for creating backup copies; it offers robustness through features like namespaces for backup version differentiation and remote backup synchronization. What makes PBS particularly compelling is its versatility. PBS storages can be shared across local or remote clusters, providing a network-wide backup solution. Moreover, a PBS storage isn’t tied exclusively to one Proxmox Backup Server instance. If there’s an issue, you can seamlessly switch to a newly spun PBS, whether it’s deployed on bare-metal or as a VM.

Seamless Migration Opportunities

If a migration is on the horizon, Proxmox can import various virtual disk file types, including VMDK and VHD. This makes the transition smoother and less disruptive.

What’s Next?

In the upcoming post, we will dive into the intricate benefits and limitations of storing VMs as block devices, compare them with other storage methods, and discuss when it’s most effective to choose block storage.

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