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vSAN 6.7 - Whats New

With each release of vSAN features just get better and better. There are enhancements to performance, adaptive placement, usability, improved health and optimizations. In my previous blog I explained why HCI is gathering market adoption, how it's so different from traditional.

There are many additions in 6.7 so I have listed some of the bigger additions.

With vSphere 6.7 comes the updated HTML5 client that now includes all workflows for vSAN, with a few more included than that of the web client. This is the release where a full switch over to using the HTML5 client can be the default.

vROPS - vCenter - vSAN integration from a monitoring perspective is now available with vROPS 6.7 (Nice that vSphere, vSAN and vROPS are all at the same 6.7). vROPS will embed dashboards into the vCenter server 6.7. For environments that don't have vROPS, there is a guided installation for a new instance of vROPS within vCenter 6.7. This will start a 60 day trial of vROPS. Once this is configured it will show the vROPS dashboards in vCenter. The great thing here is customers that don't have a vROPS license can apply their vSAN Advanced or Enterprise key into vROPS to continue using the dashboards. If a customer would then like to unlock the full vROPS functionality they can apply a license key and the capabilities will be unlocked without a re-deployment etc.

vSAN iSCSI support for WSFC has been introduced where iSCSI target service can now be used with Windows Server Failover Clusters. iSCSI initiators can be used to connect to the targets. With MPIO set to failover only Active/Standby vSAN will allow for the owner of the iSCSI LUN's to be moved to an alternative host in the cluster in the event of failure or maintenance mode etc. This is supported on both virtual and physical hosts. A good video demoing this capability is below

Resigned adaptive Re-Sync feature helps with better time to compliance. (if there is a object loss, this it the time it takes that component to be back in compliance with the applied policy). It dedicates bandwidth for the resynchronization. Minimum bandwidth is guaranteed for resync, the bandwidth will be dynamically increased if there is no contention from client I/O. If no resync is occurring the client can use the additional bandwidth.

Performance optimization has been improved, de-staging from the cache to persistent tier happens quicker, this in essence improves I/O and if there are any resynchronization tasks they will be performed quicker.

VM Swap objects now inherit the VM storage policy that includes thin provisioning, Previously VM Swap was always thick provisioned inheriting the default storage policy.

vSAN Encryption meets FIPS 140-2 validation to protect data with the benefit here being that you can run this on any drives/many form factors that are listed on the HCL. There is no requirement to have specialized hardware with vSAN encryption.

Enhancements to stretched clustering includes intelligent site continuity, so in the event of a partition between sites vSAN will figure out which site has the maximum data availability before forming quorum with the remote witness. This prevents VM's moving back to the preferred site where reads will not be local. The secondary site will operate as the active site until the preferred site has a copy of the data. Inter Site Re-Sync When a rebuild operation happens across a stretched cluster, normally all copies are sent over the link. In 6.7 one copy is sent and then that copy is used to to perform the resyncs from that copy.

Again this is just some of the many additions, the release notes can be found here