See you at VMworld 2016

vmworld-2016-hero-usI’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.

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.

If you have any thoughts on what you would like to see covered during the session, please leave a comment. We’re still putting together the content, and we are wide open to suggestions.

Hope to see you at one of the sessions.

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.

Photon OS 1.0 Release is here

PHOTON_square140VMware has just officially announced Photon OS 1.0. This follows on from the RC (Release Candidate) announcement back in late April.  For those of you who are not familiar with Photon OS, this is a minimal Linux container host (in the form of a Virtual Machine), optimized to run on VMware products such as ESXi. It can run containers which adhere to  Docker, rkt, and the Pivotal Garden container specifications.

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Deploying Kubernetes using kube-up/down on Photon Controller

kubernetesIn some earlier post, I provided instructions on how one could deploy Kubernetes (K8S) on Photon Controller using the built-in photon controller CLI. In this next post, I want to show you how Kubernetes can be deployed natively, using kube-up and kube-down, on Photon Controller v0.9.

In this example I am using Photon OS, a minimal Linux container host, optimized to run on vSphere (and other VMware products). Now in order to deploy K8S, a number of additional tooling needs to be added to Photon OS. The requirements are highlighted in this earlier blog post. Once all the necessary components are in place, we are ready to deploy Kubernetes.

*** Please note that at the time of writing, Photon Controller is still not GA ***

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Docker Volume Driver for vSphere on Virtual SAN

dockerI took another opportunity this week to look at our new Docker Volume Driver for vSphere which is currently in tech preview. This time I wanted to see how it behaved on Virtual SAN (VSAN). What I wanted to do is query the layout of the VMDK storage object on VSAN, and how an administrator can query its layout from vCenter server, but also from RVC, the Ruby vSphere Console. There might be a situation where you need to to query this information.

My colleague, Wiliam Lam, has already added some information about how you can deploy volumes with different policies on VSAN in his excellent blog post here. As I said, I wanted to expand on this now, and see what is happening under the covers on VSAN.

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Docker Volume Driver for vSphere – short video

I created a short, 5 minute video to highlight the different parts of the docker volume driver for vSphere “tech preview” to accompany the blog post I created earlier.

It will show what is needed on the ESXi host, and on the VM running containers.

Hope you find it useful.

Kubernetes on Photon Controller

kubernetesAnother container framework that VMware customers can evaluate on Photon Controller is Kubernetes, developed by Google and now open-sourced. Kubernetes is another popular framework that allows customers to automate, manage and scale containers. Just like my previous article on Mesos and Docker Swarm, the Photon Controller and Kubernetes deployment steps are very similar. While I will show the additional steps required to get Kubernetes deployed, I wanted to focus once again on the “what do I do now?” question as this is pretty much the most common question from folks who have gone through the deployment of the Photon Controller and the creation of a container framework/cluster. For this post, I am going to show you how to use the “kubectl” CLI utility, and show how to get started with some K8S containers (K8S is short-hand for Kubernetes).

*** Please note that at the time of writing, Photon Controller is still not GA ***

*** The steps highlighted here may change in the GA version of the product ***

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