Just wanted to share the Virtually Speaking Podcast with you, this episode (32) is on the topic of VVol 2.0 and features Pete Flecha, Ben Meadowcroft (PM for VVol) and I. Make sure to listen to it, it has some good info on where VVol is today and where it may be going in the near future!
I just noticed the following in the vSphere Replication 6.5 release notes which I felt was worth sharing:
5-minute Recovery Point Objective (RPO) support for additional data store types – This version of vSphere Replication extends support for the 5 minute RPO setting to the following new data stores: VMFS 5, VMFS 6, NFS 4.1, NFS 3, VVOL and VSAN 6.5. This allows customers to replicate virtual machine workloads with an RPO setting as low as 5-minutes between these various data store options.
We have had this for vSAN in specific for a while now, but I hadn’t realized yet that we were enabling this for all sorts of datastores in this release. Definitely a great reason to move up to vSphere 6.5 and re-evaluate which VMs can do with a 5 minute RPO and use this great replication mechanism that just ships with vSphere for free! More info found in the release notes here.
If you like to know more about the 6.5 release visit this page with the links to all docs/downloads by William Lam.
Well I guess I can keep this one short, what is new for VVols? Replication. Yes, that is right… finally if you ask me. This is something I know many of my customers have been waiting for. I’ve seen various customers deploy VVols in production, but many were holding off because of the lack of support for Replication and with vSphere 6.5 that has just been introduced. Note that alongside with new VVol capabilities we have also introduced VASA 3.0. VASA 3.0 provides Policy Components in the SPBM UI which allows you to combine for instance a VVol policy with a VAIO Filter based solution like VMCrypt / Encryption or for instance Replication or Caching from a third party vendor.
When it comes to replication I think it is good to know that there will be Day 0 support from both Nimble and HPE 3PAR. More vendors can be expected soon. Not only is replication per object supported, but also replication groups. Replication groups can be viewed as consistency groups, but also a unit of granularity for failover. By default each VM will be in its own replication group, but if you need some form of consistency or would like a group of VMs always to failover at the same time then they can be lumped together through using the replication group option.
There is a full set of APIs available by the way, and I would expect most storage vendors to provide some tooling around their specific implementation. Note that through the API you will for instance be able to “failover” or do a “test failover” and even reverse replication if and when desired. Also, this release will come with a set of new PowerCLI cmdlets which will also allow you to failover and reverse replication, I can’t remember having seen the test failover cmdlet but as it is also possible through the API that should not be rocket science for those who need this functionality. Soon I will have some more stuff to share with regards to scripting DR scenarios…