I sent an email out this morning to the team containing some NetApp & VMware updates, although I don’t write too much on my own site I do try and update the team with as much interesting stuff that is happening out in our little world as possible. This may be things I have picked up during the course of the week over twitter, other blog sites or fellow advocate program emails. Which tend to actually promote me into sending the info out?


Some news on ADP which was released with 8.3 and very much focused around the SMB market namely the FAS25** series controllers. Although ADP can be configured on All Flash FAS systems… the biggest thing or downside to them releasing 8.3 and ADP was that there was no path for existing customers on cDOT to leverage ADP Root-data Partitioning for HDDs in 8.3 was to back up all the data off an HA pair, wipe and reformat with ADP, or to scale out the cluster with additional HA pairs.  The effort, cost, and disruption simply felt like too much.

Well NetApp have corrected this and in a really fast manner… (Before GA of the 8.3 code)

There are two new procedures – one requiring downtime, the other non-disruptive – that have been developed.  The process requiring downtime can be found today in the document Upgrade Procedure to cDOT 8.3 with ADP which is found on Field Portal.  This is a fully supported process.

Thanks to @gdekhayser for providing the above information to me via the NetApp A Team DL.

Also again from the NetApp A Team DL here are some blog posts around the EF560 and E5600 releases and some other interesting NetApp blogs that are worth a read.

·         Trunking VLANs between the NetApp Simulator and GNS3

·         New! NetApp EF560 and E5600 Performance Arrays!

·         NetApp Releases the EF560 All Flash Array 1/27/15

·         NetApp EF560 and E5600 Link Roundup!

·         Connecting the NetApp Simulator to your Virtual and Physical Labs

·         NetApp From the Ground Up – A Beginner’s Guide Part 9: SnapRestore, SnapManager, Snap Creator, SnapProtect

·         Two Game-Changing (and Underrated) New Technologies, Part 2: MetroCluster in ONTAP 8.3

·         (Part 1: Advanced Disk Partitioning was published earlier)

·         VMware NFS Datastore creation failure w/ ONTAP 8.3 (aka NIS needs to die!)

·         http://up2v.nl/2014/12/06/an-overview-of-netapp-dataprotection-tools/


VMware have an online launch event on the 3/2/2014 at 9am. Where we are pretty much certain to hear about the latest version of vSphere being released, most likely to be named vSphere 6 but I have also heard of vSphere 2015. From a storage point of view this gives us VVOLs (link below) we are also expected to see the desktop vSphere client back after the removal of a lot of features in version 5.5 and the movement of this to a web page based management. This doesn’t mean the web client is going away it just means for the people that cant and wont embrace the future, will have a supported way of managing their vSphere environment.

On the web client there is talk of this being HTML5 which will improve the performance, which in turn might make people embrace the web client.

For those of you that have done anything with vSphere you would of heard the dreaded term SSO (Single Sign On) a massive pain to configure with very little gain but had to be implemented. Well this is also getting an overhaul to a new service called “Platform Services Controller” SSO in previous versions was part of vcenter which brought some update issues with it, now the new PSC will be independent and can be updated independently. It will provide the same Single Sign On features as it did previously along with new features, License Services, certificate store services and others…..

They are also apparently beefing up the Linux Appliance, I have been a fan of the appliance in the last couple of releases. Simply because prior to this becoming available you had to build 2 x Windows Servers, one would be the vcenter server and then because you had no way of creating a template you then had to build the second and utilise the newly created vcenter. With the appliance you can import the appliance be up and running in less than 30 mins and then you build your one Windows Server gold image. From the template build your vcentre, trash appliance or leave there for a just in case moment. But it saves the patching of two windows servers basically. Anyway when I say beefing up I mean they are increasing the maxiumums to match the Windows Server version. 1,000 managed ESXi servers, 10,000 powered-on VMs, 64 hosts per cluster, 6,000 VMs per cluster, and 10 vCenter servers connected with linked mode. The one gotcha to the above that sounds great for new installs but there is no migration utility to migrate data from your Windows vCenter Server to the Linux appliance. This maybe shoe horned into this new release but could be later 2015….

What is VSAN and why it matters to us…

VSAN can aggregate server attached disk, resulting into a single pool of storage. This can include spinning disk complemented by flash of some flavour. This is fundamentally the backbone for EVO:RAIL straight after the simplicity. VSAN allows the customer to provision shared storage to the infrastructure instead of purchasing a NAS/SAN solution.  As I have said before the HyperConverged or HyperScale market is growing but not at the rate the market leaders probably make out in there press releases. VMware only claimed to have around 300-350 customers using VSAN back in October.

VSAN 2.0 – As per above but with this new features.

·         Can use an All Flash but has to be SSD

·         Inclusion of Virtso code (enables speedier write access to virtual machine by turning them to sequential rather than random)

·         Possible snapshots

·         Possible clones

VVOLs – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=caXlscYaWhU (A NetApp demo on VVOLs) http://community.netapp.com/t5/Tech-OnTap-Articles/NetApp-Unlocks-the-Power-of-VMware-VVOLs/ta-p/86939

Other features worth mentioning.

·         VMs will scale to 128 vCPUs and 4TB vRAM;

·         Support for hosts running 480 physical CPUs, 12TB RAM and 64TB of storage;

·         Service level management for storage I/O, with controls for each VM, and the same for Network I/O thanks to distributed vSwitch bandwidth reservations;

·         VMs with up to 4 vCPUs gain continuous availability protection under vSphere Fault Tolerance;

·         vMotion over 100ms round trips, which means vMotion over mobile broadband, a handy DR option.

If interested in more I would also check out this blog by @marcelvandenber  – http://up2v.nl/2014/08/27/what-is-new-in-vsphere-6-0

VMware Launch Event – http://www.vmware.com/now The topics and text outlined above are purely speculation based on articles and are in no way the exact or close to the possible releases from VMware.

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