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Introducing VMware vSphere Remote Office Branch Office Editions

At VMworld 2014 in San Francisco, we introduced VMware vSphere Remote Office Branch Office Standard and Advanced editions. These exciting offerings will allow us to provide new and existing customers of all sizes with enhanced service level, standardization and availability capabilities for remote and branch office locations.

Customers can expect vSphere Remote Office Branch Office to deliver:

  • Faster provisioning of servers through virtualization
  • Enforcement of configuration standards
  • High availability of IT infrastructure at remote sites via vSphere’s business continuity features such as vMotion, Storage vMotion, Replication and Data Protection

These new offerings feature a per virtual machine licensing metric that offers customers the flexibility to deploy only the number of workloads required at each remote site. vSphere Remote Office Branch Office Standard and Advanced is expected to be available in Q3 2014. They will be available in packs of 25 virtual machines priced at $3,000 for the Standard edition and $4,500 for the Advanced edition. These packs can be distributed across multiple remote sites.  These new offerings will replace existing vSphere Essentials and Essentials Plus Kits for Retail and Branch Offices.

Note that the regular non-Retail/Branch Office Essentials and Essentials Plus Kits (that come in 6 CPU packs with 1 vCenter Server Essentials) will continue to be available.

For more info, go to:  http://www.vmware.com/products/vsphere/compare.html

If you’re at VMworld this week, you can learn more about using vSphere in Remote Office and Branch Office environments in the following session:

INF1212 – “Best Practices in Virtualizing Remote Offices and Branch Offices with VMware”

  • Tuesday, Aug 26, 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT
  • Wednesday, Aug 27, 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM PT

Coming soon: vSphere 5.5 Update 2

We’re also announcing vSphere 5.5 Update 2. The new release offers support for new chipsets, guest operating systems, business critical application and 6TB hosts. It is expected to be available in Q3 2014.

Get details on the pending release at the following session:

INF1502 – “What’s New in vSphere?”

  • Wednesday, Aug 27, 8:00 AM – 9:00 AM PT
  • Thursday, Aug 28, 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM PT

vSphere Beta Program Continues

On June 30, we opened up the vSphere Beta Program for everyone to enroll and to help us define the direction of world’s most robust virtualization platform. Over the last couple of months, beta participants have offered up heaps of feedback on product functionality, configurability, usability, and performance in the private beta community. Additionally, they have had the chance to learn more about vSphere through weekly webcasts and interaction with our product teams.

We’re committed to make the next release the strongest possible with your help. The beta program remains open, and we’re still seeking participants. It’s not too late to download, install, and evaluate the vSphere beta software in your environment today.

Join the vSphere Beta Program today at: https://communities.vmware.com/community/vmtn/vsphere-beta

There will be a technical previews pod in the VMware booth (1229) showcasing some of the features in this vSphere Beta.  Please stop on by to learn more.

Virtualized Exchange 2013 IO performance validation with All Flash Arrays

Microsoft Exchange is a very common critical application managed by enterprises.  Exchange 2013 has brought forth many changes to the performance and IO profile of its infrastructure.

Exchange Server 2013 is an even greater candidate for virtualization than its predecessors. Architectural changes and improvements to the core of Exchange Server, along with advancements in server hardware, make vSphere the default choice for Exchange 2013.

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What’s New with vSphere Data Protection 5.8 and vSphere Replication 5.8

Along with all of the announcements at VMworld 2014, I am happy to report on the latest versions of vSphere Data Protection (VDP) and vSphere Replication. As most of you may already know, there are two editions of VDP: VDP, which is included with vSphere Essentials Plus Kit and higher editions, and VDP Advanced, which is purchased separately. vSphere Replication is included with vSphere Essentials Plus Kit and higher editions. This article highlights the most prominent new features and updates in VDP Advanced and vSphere Replication.

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Learn How to Get Integrated Storage Policy-Based Management with vCloud Automation Center 6 This Thursday

Software Defined Storage is a key pillar of the Software Defined Data Center (SDDC). It ensures agility, responsiveness and efficiency to enterprise storage while maintaining data integrity and redundancy. It is a critical part of any Software Defined Data Center. That’s why we’re improving it.

Join Chen Wei, Solution Engineer and Strategic Solutions Development at VMware, and Rawlinson Rivera, Senior Technical Marketing Architect at VMware, in the VMworld session MGT1923, as they describe how you can integrate the vSphere Storage Policy-based Management framework into the vCloud Automation Center service catalog. With this advancement, end users can take advantage of on demand storage capabilities for software defined storage technologies like Virtual SAN, Virtual Volumes, Core Storage and future storage solutions.

Chen and Rawlinson will be discussing how to get Storage Policy-Based Management to work within vCloud Automation Center on Thursday, August 28, from Noon to 1:00 p.m. at Moscone West, Room 3014.

For more session details, click here. This is a session you won’t want to miss out on!

VMware Unveils New Disaster Recovery and Backup Product Releases; Virtual SAN and Virtual Volumes Featured at VMworld 2014

By Alberto Farronato, director of product marketing, Storage and Availability, VMware

VMworld 2014 will deliver plenty of news, customer testimonials, panels, sessions, demos and more on VMware’s software-defined storage and business continuity products and initiatives. Following are a few show highlights.

Increased DR Capabilities

We’re excited to announce vCenter Site Recovery Manager (SRM) 5.8 today at VMworld 2014. This new release of SRM delivers next-generation disaster recovery capabilities for vSphere environments.  New capabilities include:

  • 5x the scale of protection – IT organizations can set up recovery plans scalable up to 5,000 virtual machines per vCenter Server using array-based replication to enable enterprise-level protection–five times larger than with previous limits.
  • Enhanced self-service – New integrations will offer customers self-service access to provision predefined disaster recovery protection tiers to new VMs via blueprints in vCloud Automation Center when using array-based replication.

To learn more about vCenter SRM 5.8, don’t miss the following VMworld session:

BCO2394 – “Site Recovery Manager 101: What’s New and Customer Case Study”

Monday, Aug 25, 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM PT

New: vSphere Data Protection Advanced 5.8

We’re also happy to introduce vSphere Data Protection Advanced 5.8. Powered by EMC Avamar technology, vSphere Data Protection Advanced offers simple, efficient, and robust backup capabilities for vSphere environments. The new release delivers:

  • Enhanced support for business-critical apps – customers can now perform backups for Microsoft SQL Server clusters as well as Microsoft Exchange DAGs (Database Availability Groups).
  • Customizable Proxies and Backup Work Streams – customers now have the flexibility of choosing the number of parallel backup workstreams to satisfy Service Level Agreements (SLAs) helping them to increase backup scalability and performance.
  • Enhanced Replication – customers can now restore replicated backups at either primary or disaster recovery site.

Get the details on vSphere Data Protection Advanced 5.8 at the following sessions:

BCO2410 – “BC/DR: Implementing a Holistic Strategy with VMware Solutions – Part 1 Business Overview”

Monday, Aug 25, 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM

BCO2172 – “BC/DR: Implementing a Holistic Strategy with VMware Solutions – Part 2 Technical”

Wednesday, Aug 27, 8:30 AM – 9:30 AM

Virtual Volumes Technology Preview

Virtual Volumes (aka VVOLs) was unveiled at VMworld 2012 San Francisco as a technology preview. The technology extends VMware’s software-defined storage model to external storage.  VVOLs transforms SAN/NAS into VM-centric devices by making the virtual disk a native representation of the VM at the array level, and enables app-centric, policy-based automation of SAN and NAS based services.

VVOLs has drawn strong interest from our storage partners. Their interest will be readily apparent at this year’s VMworld if you attend sessions or walk the show floor. To learn more about their VVOLs efforts, drop by the following booths:

Dell Booth 1417

 

Nimble Booth 1521

 

EMC Booth 1405

 

Tintri Booth 921

 

HP Booth 1005

 

SolidFire Booth 1629

 

Hitachi Data Systems Booth 905

 

Symantec Booth 1635

 

IBM Booth 913

 

 

 

Check out the following sessions to get smart on VVOLs:

STO1963 – “Virtual Volumes Business Overview”

Tuesday, Aug 26, 11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

STO1965 – “Virtual Volumes Technical Deep Dive”

Tuesday, Aug 26, 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM & Wednesday, Aug 27, 12:30 PM – 1:30 PM

 

What’s New with Virtual SAN

In 2013, VMware Virtual SAN was unveiled and was being readied for a lengthy public beta. Today, Virtual SAN is generally available with more than 300 customers.

Virtual SAN Ready Nodes have helped to jump start Virtual SAN deployments.  Virtual SAN Ready Nodes are pre-validated configurations of servers ready to run Virtual SAN. Today, 40 Virtual SAN Ready Nodes are available for purchase directly from our system vendor partners (view list of Ready Nodes). Hitachi and Huawei are the latest partners to introduce new Virtual SAN Ready Nodes joining Cisco, Dell, Fujitsu, HP, IBM and Supermicro.

Additionally, VMware EVO: RAIL was introduced today. It is a hyper-converged infrastructure appliance that streamlines the deployment and scale out of modern IT infrastructure. Virtual SAN is part of the 100 percent VMware software stack included in EVO: RAIL. It offers customers another option to get started with Virtual SAN. Customers can now get started with Virtual SAN by selecting components from the Hardware Compatibility List, relying on pre-configured Ready Node servers or purchasing EVO: RAIL – an all-in-one appliance.

Learn how customers are using Virtual SAN at the following panel and session:

STO2462 – “Virtual SAN – Customer Panel”

Wednesday, Aug 27, 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

STO1424 – “Massively Scaling Virtual SAN Implementations”

Thursday, Aug 28, 10:30 AM – 11:30 AM

We want to thank our customers and partners for making 2014 a momentous year for VMware Storage and Availability. We wish you a great show and time in San Francisco.

 

SDDC Reference Architecture

I’m pleased to announce the first in a series of reference architectures is now available.

This reference architecture showcases the integrations between VMware vCloud® Suite Enterprise, VMware NSX for vSphere®, and VMware vCenter Log Insight to create an on-demand infrastructure with a secure networking environment. It is based on real-world scenarios, user workloads, and infrastructure system configurations. It uses industry-standard servers, IP-based storage, and 10-Gigabit Ethernet (10GbE) networking to support a scalable and redundant architecture based on vCloud Suite Enterprise version 5.5.

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SDS Challenge: Ready to play?

In a previous blog, Rawlinson Rivera highlighted the key events, sessions, group discussions and HOLs from the Software-Defined Storage and Business Continuity teams.

On top of all that, there is one more thing you can do to get the most out of VMworld 2014: You can play CloudCred!

Take your VMworld experience to the next level and play CloudCred – an online gaming platform that allows users to test their cloud knowledge. For VMworld, we’ve built a special contest in CloudCred – the VMworld SDS Challenge.  Attend selected sessions on Virtual Volumes, Virtual SAN, vDPA and Site Recovery Manager, complete labs, and visit product demos at the Solutions Exchange to earn points. Points lead to badges, and every badge earned enters you into a raffle for a Jambox Mini.

The Cloud Cred VMworld SDS Challenge contest badges include:

  • Lab Badge
  • Virtual Volumes Badge
  • Virtual SAN Badge
  • vDPA Badge
  • SRM Badge

Contest starts at 4pm Sunday and runs through 4pm Wednesday. Log on to CloudCred today to set up your account and get ready to play.

We look forward to seeing you at VMworld this year!

Stay tuned to the vSphere blog for the latest information. You can also follow us on Twitter at @VMwareVSAN for more updates. See you in San Francisco!

VMware Virtual SAN Sizing Tool

Oh yeah!!!!!! It’s official, the Virtual SAN Sizing Tool is now live and available to the general public.

All Virtual SAN customers and enthusiasts can easy get sizing ideas and estimations on the amount hardware resources necessary to support a particular Virtual SAN design. All you will need  to do is provide a few virtual machine inputs based on capacity, performance, and availability requirements.

http://virtualsansizing.vmware.com

VMware Virtual SAN Sizing Tool

The purpose of this tool is to help determine the hardware specifications for hosts in a Virtual SAN cluster required to run a set of virtual machines defined by a set of input characteristics. These important assumptions should be understood before using this tool:

  • All hosts in the cluster are assumed to have an identical hardware profile, i.e. numbers of hard drives and flash devices, amount of physical RAM, and number of CPU cores
  • All virtual machines are assumed to be identical in storage characteristics, i.e. number of VMDKs, size of VMDKs (assumed identical for all disks), number of snapshots, and virtual memory size
  • All virtual machines are assumed to have the same Virtual SAN policy, i.e. number of failures to tolerate and number of disk stripes per object

The tool is designed so that you can easily vary inputs to see the impact on the sizing output, thus allowing you to iterate manually for more sophisticated analyses.

Feel free to provide feedback and let us know what your thoughts are about the tool and help us improve it.

See you all at VMworld!!!!

- Enjoy

For future updates on Virtual SAN (VSAN), Virtual Volumes (VVols), and other Software-defined Storage technologies as well as vSphere + OpenStack be sure to follow me on Twitter: @PunchingClouds

Software-Defined Storage and Business Continuity Guide for VMworld 2014

With VMworld being a few days way, the amount of excitement is palpable. The number of amazing announcements, news, and events that will take place during the week of August 24th is going to be awesome.

The Software-Defined Storage and Business Continuity teams want to make sure everyone attending the conference is precisely aware of all events, sessions, group discussions, and Hands-On-Labs that will be available during the week. We have put together a guide that can be easily accessed through our blog as well as a Software Defined Storage and Business Continuity Guide pdf version to bring along for easy access.

Software-Defined Storage and Business Continuity Guide for VMworld 2014 US

SDS-Guide VMworld

See you all at VMworld!!!!

- Enjoy

For future updates on Virtual SAN (VSAN), Virtual Volumes (VVols), and other Software-defined Storage technologies as well as vSphere + OpenStack be sure to follow me on Twitter: @PunchingClouds

Monitoring VMware Virtual SAN with Virtual SAN Observer White Paper

Virtual SAN ObserverAs customers continue to implement VMware Virtual SAN in their environments, it is critical for them to have the ability to properly monitor and troubleshoot the performance of the system. Having access to the adequate tools and knowing how to use them and knowing how to interpret the data being presented is crucial for all customers.

This new paper Monitoring VMware Virtual SAN with Virtual SAN Observer focuses on the Virtual SAN Observer tool, and it is intended to provide Virtual SAN customers with more than just a how-to experience. It also helps to understand the data output and values presented by the Virtual SAN Observer when monitoring and troubleshooting their VMware Virtual SAN implementations.  This paper is a special release because it coincides with a hands-on lab being presented at VMworld this year that will give customers access to a first hand learning experience.

While at VMworld look for the VMware HOL lab listed below:

ELW-SDC-1408 – VMware Virtual Storage Workshop

This Expert Led Workshop focused on VMware Virtual SAN, participants will gain hands-on experience deploying, configuring and managing VMware’s latest hypervisor-converged storage solution.  In this Workshop, you will have access to the Product Experts and is your opportunity to ask questions relevant to your environment.  The Self-Paced version of this lab, SPL-SDC-1408, will available anytime the Hands-on Labs are open.

See you all at VMworld!!!!

- Enjoy

For future updates on Virtual SAN (VSAN), Virtual Volumes (VVols), and other Software-defined Storage technologies as well as vSphere + OpenStack be sure to follow me on Twitter: @PunchingClouds