Because of the design choice to keep compute and storage fully separated, the storage is served from the storage node cluster to the compute node cluster through the iSCSI storage protocol. In effect no solution components, eg. virtual storage controllers, need to be deployed on top of the compute nodes.
Kernel Integrated, Virtual Controller and VIB are each distributed architectures, having one active component per virtualization host that work together as a group. All three architectures are capable of delivering a complete set of storage services and good performance. Kernel Integrated solutions reside within the protected lower layer, VIBs reside just above the protected kernel layer, and Virtual Controller solutions reside in the upper user layer. This makes Virtual Controller solutions somewhat more prone to external actions (eg. most VSCs do not like snapshots). On the other hand Kernel Integrated solutions are less flexible because a new version requires the upgrade of the entire hypervisor platform. VIBs have the middle-ground, as they provide more flexibility than kernel integrated solutions and remain relatively shielded from the user level.
NetApp, NetApp HCI [HCI]/1.8, x86
Hypervisor Deployment, Virtualization, Workload Support