VMware Cloud Foundation is based on a modern hyper-converged architecture that extensively leverages VMware vSAN – a vSphere-native software-defined storage platform that delivers flash-optimized storage for the software-defined data center (SDDC). While vSAN is the primary storage platform for Cloud Foundation, that’s not to say it’s your only storage option.
There are a number of reasons why you may want to supplement vSAN with additional external IP-based storage. One example is to facilitate the migration of existing VMs running on legacy iSCSI or NFS arrays over to a new Cloud Foundation workload domain. Another example is to provide a lower tier of storage that can be used to store large data files that don’t require the optimized performance and security provided by vSAN. Things like test and dev VMs, storage templates, ISO files, and backup files for example.
Whatever the reason, if you choose to leverage traditional IP-based storage alongside vSAN in your cloud foundation environment, this can easily be done. Simply present the IP-based storage to your deployed workload domains and use the vSphere Web Client to configure access. As the steps to accomplish this are not currently automated with the VMware SDDC Manager, Jason Shaw (from the VMware Product Marketing team) has created a white paper to provide guidance on how this can be done. You can access the paper from the VMware Cloud Foundation page in the VMware Communities. Please check it out and feel free to provide feedback.