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Kubernetes and the version.next(“cloud-native”) application space is rapidly evolving. Nowhere do we see these lines blurred more than within VMware Cloud on AWS. This is because the service realizes the promise of a real Hybrid cloud. It is enabling customers to achieve solutions that utilize a combination of traditional Enterprise Software (VMs) with Next-generation Cloud Native workloads and SaaS Services. Whilst empowering bi-directional mobility, freeing workloads to move in and out of any cloud as required. Delivering this capability requires constant innovation to keep the service up to date.

To that end, last September we quietly added the Kubernetes Container Storage Interface (CSI) for vSphere into VMware Cloud on AWS. While not yet integrated into the service, Kubernetes workloads have been supported under PKS Essentials since February 2019.

How does it work?

Fortunately, there is nothing to install or configure within the service to get this integration working. Simply deploy Kubernetes with the vSphere CSI driver. Production workloads must currently use PKS, but customers looking to take this integration out for a test drive can use ClusterAPI for vSphere (CAPV).

Once the workload cluster is up and running. A StorageClass assigns the desired VM Storage Policy within vSAN.

Which brings us to the only trick to getting this integration working. Since the service uses logical datastore support to share a common vSAN Cluster, the DatastoreURL parameter, while usually optional, is required within VMC on AWS.

When not included, the provider will discover any storage that is shared with every node in the workload cluster. The CNS server filters compatible datastores and then chooses the datastore with the highest available storage space. In VMConAWS this behavior causes the driver to randomly attempt to provision storage in the ManagementDatastore leading to an unexpected error:

Be sure to include the DatastoreURL to avoid any complication.  Secondary clusters with a single datastore can omit this parameter.

Summary

The VMware Cloud on AWS Service continues its tireless advancement of empowering customers to realize the promise of Hybrid Cloud. VMware is simultaneously pushing hard into the Kubernetes space to empower our customers to easily realize the promise of Cloud Native. Those two worlds are rapidly colliding within the VMC Service and I, for one, could not be more excited to see what the future will bring.

Availability

To view the latest status of features for VMware Cloud on AWS, visit https://cloud.vmware.com/vmc-aws/roadmap.

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