StarWind V8 Release Candidate Is Available Now!

StarWind Software released the Release Candidate of  StarWind V8. The functionality and architecture of this software is similar to VMware VSAN. It can be installed on both Hyper-V and ESXi and converts local storage to a distributed shared storage.

General availability is expected in Q2 2014


Download the RC here.

It offers three products that share a common engine:

  • StarWind SAN – a unique system that allows you to create a high-performance and fault-tolerant shared storage on commodity hardware, saving $$$.
  • StarWind VSAN – a virtual SAN sharing a server with Hyper-V on parent partition. Convenient and as easy to manage as any Windows software.
  • StarWind VSA – a virtual storage appliance that merges with VMware and runs in a VM, making your system more efficient and convenient to use.

It is scalable to an unlimited number of nodes, optimized for flash as the primary storage, with its own LSFS and upgraded asynchronous replication.

StarWind SAN, the flagship product, runs on commodity servers’ hardware and converts them into high-performance, fault-tolerant SAN at a fraction of the cost and complexity associated with traditional SAN-based storage infrastructures. With its integrated VSA builder and scale-out architecture, StarWind SAN became the first solution running on Windows that creates clusters of multiple hypervisor hosts without separate physical shared storage (unlike SAS (JBOD), FC or iSCSI). With this release, StarWind supports the latest versions of both VMware and Microsoft platforms.

StarWind virtual SAN (VSAN) is a leading software defined storage for Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 and Microsoft Hyper-V 3.0. The functionality and architecture of this software is similar to VMware VSAN. It runs inside parent partitions of hypervisor hosts and turns their directly attached storage (DAS) into fault-tolerant SAN. StarWind VSA follows the VMware VSA concept also, and operates inside a VM on the ESXi host, creating a fault-tolerant shared storage of the hypervisor resources.

StarWind V8 RC presents high-performance caching that allows affordable MLC SSDs to be used as level-2 flash cache and fast RAM to be used as level-1 cache. StarWind utilizes solid-state disks / flash cards as the primary storage with a dedicated flash-aware Log-Structured File System (LSFS).

Another major advantage over multiple virtual storage solutions is built-in asynchronous WAN-replication, which ensures effective disaster recovery. StarWind’s support of WAN-acceleration technologies also enables data replication over slow and cheap connections.

StarWind V8 RC includes a set of powerful experimental features including: LSFS, which eliminates the I/O blender effect; synchronous replication for clustered LSFS devices; and in-memory operation, which creates a HA cluster with one node running on RAM-disk.

StarWind SAN V8 Beta 3 is available

StarWind software released StarWind SAN V8 Beta 3.

The software products uses local storage on servers running Windows Server to provide SAN features. It supports features like VMware HA, vMotion, Hyper-V Live Migration etc. It also does replication and deduplication and much more.

This is an interesting storage solution for small and midsized organisaties who do not have the budget for expensive SAN solutions.

This will be the last beta release. A release candidate is expected soon. The final release will probably made available second half of February 2014.

If you are using SAN V8 Beta 1 or Beta 2 you can update by installing Beta 3 over the existing installation.

New in this third beta:

LSFS device:
• Correct processing of device size parameters and usage of available storage of underlying disk.
• Fixed he issue which led to disk write errors (when certain amount of data was written on the device and device files multiplied).

Synchronous replication for LSFS device:
• Fixed snapshot management functionality: creation and deletion of snapshots now works correctly.
• Fixed the issue, where the state of HA node changed to “unsynchronized ” without any reason.

VSS providers:
• Hardware VSS provider is now available for LSF S devices and LSFS devices with synchronous replication.
• Software VSS Provider is now available for LSFS devices.

Asynchronous replication:
• Replication on very slow channels is now possible.
• Mounting of snapshot fixed.
• Replication algorithm fixed.
Minor fixes to the VAAI commands processing implemented.

Release notes are here.

Download the software here

StarWind Runner-Up in Storage, Virtualization, and Cloud Computing (SVC) Awards 2013

 StarWind Software Inc., a leading provider of software-defined storage solutions for Microsoft Windows Server 2012 R2 and Microsoft Hyper-V 2012 R2, today announced that the company has been named the first runner-up in two categories: Virtualization Management Product of the Year and Storage Virtualization Product of the Year at the SVC Awards 2013, the world’s most important IT awards. Recognized for its storage virtualization solution, StarWind iSCSI SAN & NAS, the company demonstrates strong competitive advantages, proven technology, uniqueness and effectiveness in the virtualization and storage fields.

Since 2003, StarWind has pioneered the iSCSI SAN software industry and is the solution of choice for over 30,000 customers worldwide in more than 100 countries and from small and midsize companies to governments and Fortune 1000 companies.

For more information on StarWind Software Inc., visit:

StarWind Software offers a 30% discount if you buy  any StarWind iSCSI SAN & NAS edition orStarWind Native SAN for Hyper-V edition by the end of the year and get BIG discounts off list price!*

30% Discount Countdown to 2014!
Upgrade now!   Contact us and take advantage of our special offer now!

* The promo discount cannot be summarized with any other special offers and promotions. The promotional discounts do not apply to renewals, upgrades or Support Plans. Your discount will be that corresponding to the week you send us a Purchase Order. Countries that do NOT qualify for the promotion are: Russian Federation, Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

StarWind V8 Beta available

StarWind Software presents the new version of its main storage virtualization solution – StarWind iSCSI SAN 8.0 (beta version) – now improved with new Log-Structured File System (LSFS), which delivers high performance for random write access patterns, eliminating I/O blender effect in virtualized environments; Flash Cache, which ensures 10x faster performance; and super simple and clean user interface.

Jake Rutski did some testing of the V8. See his blogpost here.

New Features and Improvements in Beta-1

  • New Log-structured File System container:
    LSFS container implements thin-provisioning, snapshots and optional online deduplication features.  Synchronous replication for high availability can be configured for a LSFS device. Snapshots are replicated too.
    LSFS device is flash-friendly. It eliminates multiple rewrites of same data blocks.
    LSFS provides high performance for random write access patterns, eliminating I/O blender effect in virtualized environments.
  • Flash cache:
    L2 cache can be used with LSFS or flat storage devices for acceleration.
  • Management console:
    User interface has been reworked to provide super simple and clean user experience.
  • Default storage pool path can be set up for the server. This path will be used for all new devices.
  • New simple device creation wizard allows create virtual device with target in three steps.
    High availability device can be created from any existing device by adding replication partner through replication manager.
    Network settings for replication can be changed on fly without rebuilding replication partners.

Beta 2 will have the following new features added:

  • Massive scale-out up to unlimited number of nodes
  • Virtual tape library (VTL)
  • Asynchronous replication

Installation notes

Installation: Previous versions can be updated by installing this version over the existing installation.
Warning: Mirror, IBV and Deduplication devices of version 6.x and earlier versions have limited support in v8.0! Data from existing Mirror, IBV and Deduplication devices must be migrated to new ImageFile or LSFS devices after installation.
Use replication manager to add synchronous replication functionality for your device. Use LSFS virtual device type when thin-provisioning and snapshots features are needed.
Please, take the following steps to update the existing HA devices:
1. To prevent data loss, disconnect clients from HA (if it is possible).
2. Update StarWind service on the first HA node. Wait until the service starts. At this step the HA node is unable to synchronize its HA devices and is not accepting the client connections. Client requests are processed by the second HA node. The next step will disconnect the existing client connections.
3. Update the StarWind service on the second HA node. Wait until the service starts.
4. Start synchronization on the first HA node. The second node changes its state to “ready” and starts processing client connections. Now, you can safely connect to the HA device.
5. Wait for synchronization to finish. Now the first HA node can process the client connections too.

StarWind 8.0 beta is ready for download from the following link:

and its license key: … _beta8.swk

SMI-S Provider (compatible with Windows 2012R2 + SCVMM 2012 only): … 3_beta.exe

and configuration guide … -SMI-S.pdf

StarWind offers massive discount countdown on HA products


StarWind Software offers a great discount during the month of March. Discount starts at 31 % at March 1 and will go down to 1 % on March 31.

StarWind makes software which delivers functionality of SAN without the associated high costs of a SAN. Basically local storage of servers is presented to virtual machines in such way features like High Availability and Live Migration are available. StarWind solutions are targeted at the small and medium businesses (SMB).

To claim the discount, use  promo code:STARMARCH312013_MB18 when registering for a quote.
Everybody who buys any StarWind HA product till the end of March using this promo code, will get not only a discount but the 2nd year ASM (Annual Software Maintenance) for free.

More information on the discount deal here.

The discount is given on two products:

StarWind iSCSI SAN & NAS is the storage hypervisor that creates fault-tolerant and high performance storage within minutes. This is a truly hardware-agnostic solution that can be installed on any commodity server. This robust software is a perfect fit for SMBs that need to create highly available shared storage without large investments.

StarWind Native SAN for Hyper-V is the best option for you if you want to take full advantage of Live Migration and High Availability but don’t want to spend money on expensive hardware SAN.  StarWind Native SAN for Hyper-V allows building a reliable, fast and easy-to-manage shared storage in the existing infrastructure, which makes this solution affordable for the small and midsize business.

The image below shows a setup of StarWind iSCSI SAN.


The chart below shows the given discount.


StarWind Software introduces 3 new releases including free versions of storage virtualization software

StarWind Software has released three new releases of software in November,

Firstly they announced at November 25 the release of the VMware Backup Plug-in, a powerful backup solution for small and medium-sized businesses with growing data storage, backup, and recovery needs.
VMware Backup Plug-in is an agentless backup solution for easy and fast VM backup and recovery, developed specifically for VMware-based environments. It fully supports VMware vSphere 5.1, making StarWind one of the first vendors to support this new hypervisor platform.
Read more about this here.

StarWind also announced  the release of the new StarWind Native SAN for Hyper-V V6 and improved Hyper-V Backup Plug-in.
The new version of StarWind Native SAN for Hyper-V is enhanced with the three-node synchronous mirroring of HA storage cluster. The system provides real-time replication and simultaneously updates the three distributed copies of data. The new HA architecture ensures 99.9999% uptime, provides at least 50% higher performance compared to the 2-node configuration, intensifies redundancy, makes the storage resilient against failures, and greatly simplifies the maintenance. Henceforth, you can add high availability to StarWind virtual devices. It is possible to add high availability to the CDP-device, or export the entire physical disk as the HA device. Read more here.

Also released is the StarWind iSCSI SAN Free edition and StarWind Native SAN for Hyper-V Free edition with the entire functionality of High Availability (HA).

The free editions of storage virtualization software offer an unlimited number of concurrent iSCSI connections and unlimited storage capacity for single-node device. The StarWind free editions with an HA device permit installation on two servers, but are limited in storage capacity to 128 GB. Hence, StarWind allows IT admins to simplify their life by enabling them to save the time and money of their respective organizations, as well as any customer to evaluate this advanced technology in testing labs, for personal use or education.

StarWind free editions offers a unique set of features, including Active-Active High Availability, Data Deduplication, CDP and Snapshots, Thin provisioning and high speed caching, etc. Such features as Asynchronous WAN-replication, SPTI and SAN/NAS cluster file share sharing are offered as paid upgrade options.

“Currently, StarWind is the only vendor offering iSCSI SAN software with the full set of advanced features at no cost,” said Artem Berman, Chief Executive Officer of StarWind Software. “We are making history in the storage industry, since every customer can now deploy StarWind free HA solutions designed for major hypervisor platforms without any hidden costs in order to evaluate the technology and view its benefits in operation.”

If you need a SAN with more storage capacity and extended functionality, you can easily upgrade the free editions to paid versions while preserving the settings and avoiding downtime simply by activating a purchased license key.

read more here


StarWind Software Solution Receives U.S. Army Certificate of Networthiness (CoN)

Sponsored post.

StarWind iSCSI SAN Is Certified for Use in the Army Enterprise Infrastructure Network


Burlington, MA – June 6, 2012StarWind Software Inc., an innovative provider of iSCSI SAN software and VM backup technology, today announced that its best-in-breed solution for virtualized IT environments and cloud computing, StarWind iSCSI SAN, has been awarded the Certificate of Networthiness (CoN #201210198) by the U.S. Army Network Enterprise Technology Command (NETCOM).
The CoN accreditation ensures that StarWind iSCSI SAN meets the strict U.S. Army and Department of Defense (DoD) standards for security, compatibility, supportability, and sustainability. This enables government departments to improve the capacity, efficiency, and performance of storage area network (SAN) environments while remaining compliant with U.S. military IT standards.
The award is a requirement for all enterprise software products functioning within the U.S. Army Enterprise Infrastructure Network and applies to all Army Reserve, National Guard, and DoD organizations that use this network.

Download Press Release
“The Certificate of Networthiness is recognized as a benchmark for security, compatibility, and sustainability validation,” said Artem Berman, Chief Executive Officer of StarWind Software. “We are extremely proud to add this award to our list of achievements, as it demonstrates how committed we are to delivering the best and most secure software to our Department of Defense customers. This certification will increase our level of trust with the U.S. Army and further develop a deeper relationship with both government agencies and private sector enterprises.”

About StarWind Software Inc. StarWind Software is a global leader in storage management and SAN software for small and midsize companies. StarWind’s flagship product is SAN software that turns any industry-standard Windows Server into a fault-tolerant, fail-safe iSCSI SAN. StarWind iSCSI SAN is qualified for use with VMware, Hyper-V, XenServer and Linux and Unix environments. StarWind Software focuses on providing small and midsize companies with affordable, highly availability storage technology which previously was only available in high-end storage hardware. Advanced enterprise-class features in StarWind include Automated HA Storage Node Failover and Failback (High Availability), Replication across a WAN, CDP and Snapshots, Thin Provisioning and Virtual Tape management.
Since 2003, StarWind has pioneered the iSCSI SAN software industry and is the solution of choice for over 30,000 customers worldwide in more than 100 countries and from small and midsize companies to governments and Fortune 1000 companies.
For more information on StarWind Software Inc., visit:

New StarWind V5.8 – Storage & Hyper-V VM Backup from one vendor!

StarWind iSCSI SAN V5.8 introduces a new powerful backup technology designed specifically for Hyper-V-based environments to provide fast backup and restore for virtual machines.

The key to protection of your virtualization investments is one solution with a rich feature set developed to help you achieve your IT goals easily. It is ONE ultimate answer to all your storage and data managing needs.

StarWind iSCSI SAN 5.8 provides:

Hyper-V Backup Plug-in

·         Agentless Architecture
·         Backups stored in VHD format
·         Global Deduplication
·         Single-click Backup

iSCSI Storage

·       100% stability and uptime
·       High Availability / Automatic Failover
·       Network Centralized Management
·       Synchronous Replication

StarWind will have a free webinar on this solution:
Tuesday, January 10, 2012 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM GMT ( 11:00 AM EST)

Register now to learn more!


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