VMworld Monday Announcements Recap

Welp, Monday has come and gone at VMworld US 2015.  There have been a bunch of announcements both from the General session as well as from the various product divisions of VMware.  I will dive into each of these a bit deeper later in the week as i get more information.

First off here are the General Session announcements;

vCloud Air Hybrid Networking

This announcement was one of the larger “ooh ahh” moments.  The demo was migrating a live VM from on On-Prem environment to the vCloud Air Cloud using vMotion.  While a lot of people were saying “is it 2010?”, the feature is actually quite nice and has a lot going on under the covers.  The underlying network is using NSX technology.  It used the VXLAN extensions, WAN acceleration, encryption, etc and does so with a direct connection.  There is no separate app or plugin, its just there and works natively. Previously this process was available, however it was a copy of the VM being sent to the cloud.  This is now a native move.  Much more to come on this one.

EVO:SDDC (Formerly known as EVO:RACK)

True to VMware’s habits, names have changed again.  That being said “EVO:Rack” is no longer a thing.  The solution is now called EVO:SDDC.  Now not all the details of SDDC were mentioned yesterday, however one cool feature was, EVO SDDC Manager.  SDDC manager is a solution and tool that contains the VMware vRealize Suite, vSphere 6 with VSAN 6.1 and NSX 6.2.  The solution is designed to be deployed quickly and simply.  It is also designed to scale as needed in single host increments.   Today the minimum number of servers is 8, which is not a lot for today’s deployments.  The starting eight hosts support 1,000 server VMs or 2,000 VDI VMs.  The manager allows the user to create workload domains, a vRack per say. (not their terminology)  This allows the admin to group workloads together to do things like patching or upgrades in mass, while not disrupting your workloads, when setup correctly.  The initial partners of EVO:SDDC are Dell, VCE (EMC) and Quanta.  The expected GA is the first half of 2016.

vSphere Integrated Containers

The next announcement and last one i’d call major from yesterday is “vSphere Integrated Containers”.  This feature allows an user to manager and deploy containers, such as Docker, just like VMs.  Today, customers deploy VMs that then hold all the various containers.  The issue some customers have is the admins are responsible for the whole environment, however they have no visibility into anything other then the high-level VM and nothing into the containers which are actually running the workloads.  This allows you to manage your containers through the vSphere Web Client, you can power them on, view their consoles, make modifications as well.  In order to do this VMware introduced Photon OS, a lightweight linux environment that is now embedded into vSphere.  They are calling the container engine and Photon, jeVM (Just Enough Virtual Machine)  Expect a lot more around this as i find this pretty cool.

Other announcements

  • VSAN 6.1
    • SRM support with vSphere Replication creating very small RPOs possible.
    • Support for UDIMM SSDs and NVMe drives
    • Support for two node VSAN clusters
      • Uses a witness VM as the tie-breaker
    • Support for Oracle RAC and Windows SFC
    • Ops Manager Support
  • SRM 6.1
    • Integration with NSX.
    • Full support for Stretched Clusters
      • This allows for things like VPLEX, VSP, etc to actually work natively and not have to have a single cluster and move VMs around in a pseudo-hack to get it to work
  • NSX 6.2
  • There are a LOT of enhancements here.  I will be going into this much much more in a separate article.
    • Deployment across vCenters.
      • Allows switches, routers, firewalls to span multiple vCenters
    • Better Ping support
      • Allows packet size and do-no-fragment

Stay turned to more articles from VMworld 2015.

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