Q: Can I use shared VHDX on local storage in Windows Server 2012 R2?

A: No. The Shared VHDX functionality that allows a VHDX file to be accessed by multiple virtual machines (VMs) enabling shared storage in guest-clustering scenarios requires the VHDX file that is shared to be stored either on

  • a Cluster Shared Volume (CSV)
  • a Windows Server 2012 R2 SMB 3 Scale-out File Server (SoFS), which means the back-end storage of the SMB share is a CSV. This means a non-SoFS SMB 3 share can't be used nor can a Windows Server 2012 hosted SMB 3 SoFS.

The reason CSV is required is that the code to enable the sharing of a VHDX file and arbitrating the access to the shared blocks is implemented as part of the Windows Server 2012 R2 CSV  layer.