Which storage array vendors support VMware VAAI today

I’ve been waiting for someone to put something like this together for awhile now. If you wanted to know which Storage vendors are supporting VMware VAAI today or when they will be this list should help out. For myself it was clear that EMC and Equalogic had plugins out but only heard that others were coming soon. I would like to give big thanks to Tomi Hakala for pulling this list together. Watch his blog v-reality.info for updates.

I have to say that I’m a bit skeptical of the HP release dates for VAAI support. I have inquired about this internally with Product Managers and all I could get was sometime in calendar year 2011. That makes me think that it wont be Q1. I guess time will tell.

Update 12/22/2010 – I have been hearing the VAAI support for HP EVA and XP series will be in second half of 2011. Looks like they are saying that next major release of vSphere will be supporting a SCSI T10 standards based support for VAAI functions and they are waiting on this to release support. They will develop based on the standards support vs proprietary support.

Array When Good Firmware
3PAR Now 2.3.1 MU2
Compellent Q4/2010
EMC CLARiiON CX4 Now 30.5
EMC Symmetrix V-Max Q4/2010
EMC VPLEX Q1/2011
EqualLogic Now 5.0.2
HDS AMS 2000 Now 0893/E
HDS USP & VSP Q3 or Q4/2011
HP Lefthand P4000 Q4/2010
HP StorageWorks EVA Unknown
HP StorageWorks P9000 Q1/2011
HP StorageWorks XP Q3 or Q4/2011
IBM SVC Code 6.2
IBM XIV Code 10.2.4a
NetApp Q4/2010 8.0.1

About Brian Suhr

Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design

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VMware Lab Manager Network Templates and Virtual Networks explained

If you are familiar with VMware Lab Manager then this won’t be breaking news for you, but if your just getting started or looking for more details. Then I hope this post will help clear up how Network Templates and Virtual Networks work inside of Lab Manager. The ability to create Virtual Networks can be very helpful if you are looking to keep your Lab Manager Workspace separate from others.

There are of course other ways to separate virtual machines within Lab Manager. The most talked about method would be to use network Fencing that is a feature on Lab Manager Physical networks. When using fencing you can hide your configuration behind a virtual router and have the option to allow no in/out bound connection. This works great but can confuse some of your lesser experienced users.

If you don’t have the need to communicate with any servers outside of your configuration then using a Lab Manager Network Template might be easier. If setup properly the Virtual Networks within VMware Lab Manager can make your life easier and allow the IT customers to perform their work without any hand holding. By definition the Network Templates are separate Virtual Networks that can only talk with Virtual Machines within the same configuration. It does not matter if you choose the same Network Template with matching IP scheme on a different configuration the VMs will not communicate to the other workspaces. This is by design and is a good and simple way to create a Sand Box to test in.

If you choose to use IP Static – Pool selection for your Network Template you will assign a block of IP’s and Lab Manager will hand them out to the virtual machines as they are deployed. The IP pool will start over for each different configuration that you deploy so if you have 10 workspaces with 5 VMs each you don’t need 50 IP’s all you really need is 5. Since each Workspace or Configuration starts over at the first address in the pool. This is normal since they are not able to communicate with the other workspaces.

Here is a sample definition of the Lab Managers User guide to sum up Virtual Networks.

Virtual networks are configuration local networks. They exist inside configurations and do not span configurations. Virtual machines connected to a virtual network cannot communicate with virtual machines connected to a different virtual network. Each virtual network that Lab Manager creates is unique and isolated from other virtual networks, even if the networks are based on the same network template.

About Brian Suhr

Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design

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Lab Manager configurations are only deploying to one datastore

So I have to admit this is not something that I paid much attention to in the past. But I’m currently working on creating documentation for a customer and putting together a Run Book for them to use with Lab Manager 4. During this process of running through things in the end user mind set I noticed this limit and just wanted to write something down for future reference.

Hopefully you are fairly familiar with how VMware Lab Manager works and I don’t loose you. The limit that I will cover here is when you are creating a New Configuration in a Workspace within Lab Manager when you select a VM Template to use by default the Datastore that it will be created on is locked. The Datastore that it is locked onto is the one that the VM Template is sitting on. This is done for a reason, since by default when creating these new configurations the new VMs created form the Template will be a Linked Clone of the original. For a Linked Clone to work it must reside on the same Datastore as the master VM image.

As you are probably aware that use Linked Clones will save you a lot of disk space on your Datastores so if you do not have a valid reason to not use them I would suggest to leave it this way. Now the only thing that I see is depending on the size of your VMs and your Datastore you could eventually run out of space for this Template on a particular Datastore. To solve that issue you could expand the Datastore or Clone your Template to another Datastore and start creating Linked Clones from that one. If anyone else has run into this issue and has a better idea drop something in the comments.

I have pasted a couple of screen shots below showing what the screens will look like with the default Linked Clone method. And then the option to do a Full Clone which will copy the entire template to the new VM and end up using all of the space.

Here is a note that I found in a VMware KB article to help explain this behavior also.

In vCenter Lab Manager, the configuration files will only be accessible from the same host or datastore as the base template. For example, if you have a Virtual Machine 1 on DataStore1, all the configurations you create from Virtual Machine 1 will be created on DataStore1.

Default option using Linked Clones in Lab manager

Full Clone option in Lab Manager

About Brian Suhr

Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design

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More VMware iPad app goodness at VMworld Copenhagen 2010

Some people were hoping to hear that the VMware iPad app for vSphere Management would be released at VMworld Copenhagen but that was not the case. We did get another look at the applications and a glimpse at a new VMware product that works nicely with the iPad also.

In the first section of the video we get another peek at the VMware vSphere management iPad app. There are some improvements that were made since we first say it at VMworld San Francisco. In the video he mentions that they hope to release a Beta version in a few weeks and then the final version late 2010 as a VMware Labs Fling. We get to see how you can now power cycle or restart a VM, get a look at home much CPU and Memory it’s consuming and some other details.

The next part of the video shows us the VMware View Client for iPad. We see a demo of it logging into the View portal at VMware corporate and connecting to a Windows 7 VDI machine. He then showcases the virtual Touch Pad that we had heard about in the last video from San Fran. The improvements that were made to the virtual keyboard are pretty cool. I like how they have added the Windows function keys and other standard keys that will make using a Windows VDI on an Apple iPad easier. VMware is definitely stepping up the level for portable VDI with this application.

In the final part of the video we get to see the web interface for the newly announced vCloud Request Manager from the iPad. This allows for requests to be made inside of vCloud Director that will require a managers approval. You are able to view all of your prior requests and see what is pending, approved or denied. This looks really cool and will go a long way for improving the mobility for people working with VMware and vCloud.

About Brian Suhr

Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design

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The difference of the Virtual Machine power and reset buttons

This is something that I did not pay much attention to but it’s one of those wacky things that you will notice at 4 AM while working a Disaster Recovery Drill. Anyways it struck me weird that the power controls and reset buttons available in the VM console are different than the ones available by right click the VM in the inventory list. The ones from the VM console require VMware tools to be installed and the ones from the tree list do not.

I really came to this conclusion while working on a DR drill this week for a client and we are using vSphere 4.1 for the drill. I had never ran into this with previous versions of vCenter server so I’ll have to take another look and see if this is something new to 4.1.

About Brian Suhr

Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design

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VMware vSphere and security scan false positives on OpenSSH vulnerabilities

This is something that we get on a regular basis from the security team. When doing their regular security scans for compliance and vulnerabilities I always get a long list of ESX hosts. The scans normally come back and complain about an OpenSSH x11 vulnerability or an OpenSSH Memory and Buffer Overflow.

These seem to be False positives from the tool being used to scan the hosts. We always make sure that we have installed the necessary updates related to OpenSSH as VMware releases them. But the tool always comes back with these issues. It seems to stem from the fact that the tool looks at OpenSSH in generic terms and assumes that all vendors implement it in the same way. From the documents listed below VMware indicates that since ESX 3.x VMware no longer included the x11 packages with their products. I would recommend that you make sure you are up to date on your patches and if the scans still come back dirty that you should discuss this results with the Application vendor that created the scanning tool. You might find out that this is common and they are just false positives.

Links:

VMware ESX Server and Security Issues in OpenSSH

Security Response: SSH Version Installed with ESX Server May Be Vulnerable

About Brian Suhr

Brian is a VCDX5-DCV and a Sr. Tech Marketing Engineer at Nutanix and owner of this website. He is active in the VMware community and helps lead the Chicago VMUG group. Specializing in VDI and Cloud project designs. Awarded VMware vExpert status 6 years for 2016 - 2011. VCP3, VCP5, VCP5-Iaas, VCP-Cloud, VCAP-DTD, VCAP5-DCD, VCAP5-DCA, VCA-DT, VCP5-DT, Cisco UCS Design

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