A closer look at SolidFire

All Flash Arrays continue to make the news. Whether it is EMC’s XtremIO launch or Violin Memory’s current market woes, there is no doubt that AFAs continue to generate a lot of interest. Those of you interested in flash storage will not need an introduction to SolidFire. These guys were founded by Dave Wright (ex-RackSpace) and have been around since 2009. I have been trying to catch up with SolidFire for sometime as I’d heard their pitch around Quality of Service on a per volume basis and wanted to learn more, especially how it integrated with vSphere features. Recently I…

vSphere 5.5 Storage Enhancements Part 5: VR/ SvMotion/SDRS Interop

I wrote about this issue on the vSphere blog some time back. Essentially, the issue described in that post was if a VM that was being replicated via vSphere Replication was migrated to another datastore, it triggered a full resync because the persistent state files (psf) which tracks the changes were deleted. All of the disks contents are then reread and check-summed on each side. This can have a significant impact on vSphere Replication’s RPO (Recovery Point Objective).

Storage I/O Control – Workload Injector Behaviour

You may remember an enhancement which we made to Storage I/O Control (SIOC) in the 5.1 vSphere release whereby SIOC can now automatically determine the characteristics and thus the latency threshold of a datastore. Prior to this change, SIOC used either a default value or had customers manually set it. Neither of these were ideal, so we introduced this automatic method. However, there was little detail on how often this latency threshold was calculated. In other words, did the calculation take place when SIOC was first enabled, or is there regular on-going calculations?

Heads Up! Storage DRS scheduler removes rules

One of my friends over in VMware support just gave me a heads-up on this issue. It affects virtual machines with anti-affinity VMDK rules defined (for keeping virtual machine disks on different datastores in a datastore cluster) when changing the Storage DRS automation level via scheduled tasks. The rule will be removed if you use the Storage DRS scheduler to change Storage DRS automation level from automatic to manual and then back to automatic. The result is that a VM which had an anti-affinity rule and has its VMDKs on different datastores could end up with its VMDKs on the…

vCenter Server 5.1.0b Released

This is a follow-up to my previous post on the 5.0U2. At the same time, VMware also released vCenter 5.1.0b. This post will look at the storage items which were addressed in that update, although the issues that are addressed in the storage space are relatively minor compared to the enhancements made in other areas. Note that this update is for vCenter only – there is no ESXi 5.1 update.

vCenter 5.0U2 and ESXi 5.0U2 Released

Hi all, Prior to the holidays, VMware released new versions of vCenter & ESXi on December 20th. There were new releases for both vSphere 5.0 & 5.1. In this post, I want to discuss release 5.0 Update 2. There were a number of notable fixes specific to storage which I wanted to highlight. I will follow-up with a look at storage enhancements in the new 5.1 release in a future post.