VSAN Roadshow – South Africa – October 2016

rsaA short post to let you know that I will be participating in a VSAN Roadshow event in South Africa next month. If you are in the Johannesburg or Cape Town area on October 25th and 27th respectively, and want to learn more about VMware’s Virtual SAN, you should definitely come along. I have lots to talk about, and hopefully some cool new VSAN updates from VMworld EMEA. I will also be providing an update on the various VMware projects in the Cloud Native Apps space (e.g. Photon Platform, vSphere Integrated Containers), especially around container persistence, so this may also be of interest as new use cases for Virtual SAN. The location and the agenda is as follows, with the actual registration further down the post.

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My VMworld Presentations on VSAN are now available

vmworld2016What a VMworld this has been for VSAN. The building momentum of this product is awesome to see, especially for those of us who have been evangelizing it from the beginning. The conversations have changed significantly this year. Previously it was all about “Why should I use VSAN?”. Now that the benefits of VSAN are obvious, the conversations this year were more technical and more around enablement, e.g. “How would I achieve X with VSAN, what are the points I need to consider when I use VSAN for Y, etc?”.

As I mentioned in a previous post, this year I presented two technical sessions at VMworld 2016 in Las Vegas with my buddy, Paudie O’Riordan. Both recordings are now available, even to those folks who were not registered for VMworld. The first session was VSAN Day 2 Operations, covering monitoring, upgrading and troubleshooting. The second session was Conducting a successful VSAN Proof of Concept, which I’d delivered at previous VMworlds, but which has been updated for VSAN 6.2.

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Some highlights from VMworld 2016

vmworld2016With Virtual SAN gaining huge momentum, I had a pretty busy VMworld 2016 in Las Vegas, and I didn’t have too much free time this year to immerse myself in the Solutions Exchange. However there were a few folks that I did want to catch up with as I had heard that they have some cool new features added to their product sets. So I made a bee-line to check them out. Let me know if you found anything else interesting. I might have a little more time in VMworld Barcelona to check out the solutions exchange and see what else is going on.

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Container Volumes in VIC v0.4.0

I mentioned yesterday that VMware made vSphere Integrated Containers (VIC) v0.4.0 available. Included in this version is support for container volumes. Now, as mentioned yesterday, VIC is still a work in progress, and not everything has yet been implemented. In this post I want to step you through some of the enhancements that we have made around docker volume support in VIC. This will hopefully provide you with enough information so that you can try this out for yourself.

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See you at VMworld 2016

vmworld2016I’m thrilled to have had a session accepted at this year’s VMworld. I’m also going to be a co-speaker on another session. As you might have guessed, both presentations are on Virtual SAN (VSAN), and I am co-presenting both sessions with my buddy Paudie O’Riordan.

In the first session, we will be talking about how to conduct a successful proof of concept (PoC) on VSAN, which will cover how to prepare, how to test, and what gotchas you need to be aware of when going through a PoC with VSAN. This session, STO7535, will take place on Wednesday, September 1st at 08:30am in Mandalay L, Level 2.

In the other session, which covers day #2 operations, we will cover items like upgrades, troubleshooting, remediation, and monitoring of VSAN, and all those other things that you need to care about when you have VSAN in production. This session, STO7534, will take place on Tuesday, August 31st at 11:30am in Islander G, Level 1.

[Update] I will also be spending some time at the VMware {code} booth on Wednesday afternoon. Alan Renouf has asked me to pop along and talk about some of VMware’s Cloud Native Application products that I have been working on over the past few months, so if you are interested in learning more about our docker volume driver for vSphere, vSphere Integrated Containers, Photon Platform or Project Harbor I’ll be at the booth at 2pm and again at 3.30pm on Wednesday.

Joint Virtual SAN/Rubrik White Paper

Logo_Rubrik_400x400I’m delighted to announce the availability of a joint Rubrik and VMware Virtual SAN (VSAN) white paper. Both Rubrik and Virtual SAN epitomize many of the features and characteristics of Software Defined Storage, in particular simplifying storage and backup/restore for vSphere Administrators. Other features include abstracting the underlying storage into one large pool, and consuming/utilizing that underlying storage through policies, whether these are for virtual machine deployment or backup. If you are completely new to VSAN and/or Rubrik, this paper gives a good explanation of both technologies. The paper also explains how Rubrik and VSAN work seamlessly together to back up and restore virtual machines deployed on VSAN.

I should also mention that my co-author was none other than the one and only Chris Wahl, and as always, it was a pleasure to work with him on this paper.

I’d like to thank Chris, Julia and Sara of Rubrik for their attention to detail on this paper. I think it has turned out extremely well, and we hope you get a lot of good information from it.

You can get the paper by clicking here.

Docker Volume Driver for vSphere

dockerThis is a really cool development. There is now a docker volume driver for vSphere which we just made public last night, and is now available for tech preview. This will allow customers to address persistent storage requirements for Docker containers in vSphere environments. Basically, it allows you to create a VMDK, and use this VMDK as a persistent storage volume for containers. In the following posts, I will outline the steps involved in getting started with Docker Volume Driver for vSphere. In essence, there are 4 steps:

  1. Install the docker volume plugin on ESXi host. I was running ESXi 6.0U2.
  2. Deploy Photon OS VM (although you can also use Ubuntu)
  3. Install the docker VMDK plugin on VM
  4. Create docker volume and run container to consume it

All the pieces to get you started are available on github here.

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