Web extra: iSCSI: Beyond Windows

The vast majority of Internet SCSI (iSCSI) deployments involve servers running Microsoft Windows software, but other platforms support the technology, too.

Industry executives estimated that 85 percent to 90 percent of iSCSI storage-area network deployments occur in Windows environments. The reason: Microsoft’s early development of an iSCSI initiator, the software that allows a server to participate in an iSCSI data exchange with storage devices.

“Microsoft has put such a thrust around iSCSI initiators,” said Bill Chambers, co-founder and chief executive officer at LeftHand Networks.

Other operating systems haven’t been as quick to support iSCSI, however.

Dave Dale, industry evangelist at Network Appliance, said Linux has been slower than Microsoft to include iSCSI initiators and input/output multipath drivers in the operating system. A multipath driver ensures that if a connection fails, the host operating system’s commands to storage get through on an alternate path, he said.

Dale added that he expects to see more Linux iSCSI deployments, particularly once multipathing for Linux becomes available in the next six months.

Currently, iSCSI initiators are built into Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Novell’s SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 9. The next version of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server, due later this year, will include an iSCSI initiator and targets, software that will allow storage devices to handle iSCSI traffic, according to a Novell spokesman.

In the Unix world, iSCSI initiators have been built into operating systems such as IBM’s AIX, Sun Microsystems’ Solaris and Hewlett-Packard’s HP-UX, Dale said.

In addition, Novell’s NetWare 6.5 includes an iSCSI initiator and target. An iSCSI initiator is available via download for NetWare 6.0 and NetWare 5.1.


  • Congress
    U.S. Capitol (Photo by M DOGAN / Shutterstock)

    Funding bill clears Congress, heads for president's desk

    The $1.3 trillion spending package passed the House of Representatives on March 22 and the Senate in the early hours of March 23. President Trump is expected to sign the bill, securing government funding for the remainder of fiscal year 2018.

  • 2018 Fed 100

    The 2018 Federal 100

    This year's Fed 100 winners show just how much committed and talented individuals can accomplish in federal IT. Read their profiles to learn more!

  • Census
    How tech can save money for 2020 census

    Trump campaign taps census question as a fund-raising tool

    A fundraising email for the Trump-Pence reelection campaign is trying to get supporters behind a controversial change to the census -- asking respondents whether or not they are U.S. citizens.

Stay Connected

FCW Update

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.