By Duncan Epping, Principal Architect, VMware

When discussing vSphere 5.0 internally someone came up with the idea to list all new features that vSphere brings. Let me warn you that this is a long list, and the list could even be longer if we would have included all API changes and back-end changes.

Now before we will give you the full list we want to challenge you… Who will be the first one to show 50 of the below listed features in an article? We will give a "vSphere 5.0 Clustering Technical Deepdive" book signed by both authors to the first 5 people who manage to write a single article detailing 50 of the below features with short paragraph about what this feature brings including a screenshot. It's up to you to pick which features you want to show… Post a link in a comment and make sure you fill out a valid email address!

Here we go:

  1. Storage DRS
  2. Storage I/O Control for NFS
  3. VMFS-5
  4. ESXi Firewall
  5. VMFS Scalability and Performance enhancements
  6. 2TB+ pass-through RDM support
  7. vCenter inventory extensibility
  8. Storage APIs — VAAI T10 Compliancy
  9. Storage APIs — VAAI Offloads for NAS
  10. Storage APIs — VAAI Thin Provisioning
  11. Storage APIs — Storage Awareness/Discovery
  12. Storage APIs — Data Protection compatible with MN
  13. APD, Permanent APD Survivability Enablement
  14. Snapshot enhancements
  15. Storage vMotion scalability improvements
  16. iSCSI Enablement: iSCSI UI Support
  17. iSCSI Enablement: Stateless Support
  18. Multi-queue Storage IO adapters
  19. Increase NFSv3 Max Share Count to 256
  20. SATA 3.0
  21. Software FCoE initiator support
  22. Enhanced logging support
  23. Enhanced Storage metrics
  24. Profile-Driven Storage
  25. Storage vMotion support for snapshots
  26. vSphere Storage Appliance (VSA)
  27. SSD Detection and Enablement
  28. vSphere Replication
  29. vSphere Data Recovery 2.0
  30. VADP enhancements
  31. vCenter Orchestrator (vCO) Enhancements
  32. vCO — Library extension and consolidation
  33. vCO — Scalability
  34. Network I/O Control (NIOC) Phase 2
  35. NIOC — User Defined Resource Pools
  36. NIOC — HBR traffic type
  37. NIOC — 802.1p tagging
  38. Network Traffic Stats for iOPS
  39. Improvement to UDP and Multicast traffic types
  40. New networking drivers for server enablement
  41. vDS support for Port mirror, LLDP and NetFlow V5
  42. vDS Manage Port Group UI enhancement
  43. Hot-Insert/Remove of Filters
  44. Enhanced vMotion Compatibility
  45. Storage vMotion support for Linked Clones
  46. vMotion scalability (dual-NIC & longer latency support)
  47. vNetwork API enhancements
  48. vNetwork Opaque Channel
  49. Support for 8 10GbE Physical NIC ports per host
  50. Add Host Resources MIB to SNMP offering
  51. Metro vMotion
  52. Host Profile for DRS to support Stateless ESX
  53. HA interop with agent VMs
  54. DRS/DPM interop with agent VMs
  55. DRS enhancements for Maintenance Mode
  56. Enhanced processor support for FT
  57. vSphere 5.0 HA aka "FDM / Fault Domain Manager"
  58. vSphere HA – Heartbeat Datastores
  59. vSphere HA – Support for partitions of management network
  60. vSphere HA – Default isolation response changed
  61. vSphere HA – New Status information in UI
  62. vSphere HA – IPv6 support
  63. vSphere HA – Application Awareness API publicly available
  64. Extensions to create special icons for VMs
  65. ESX Agent Management
  66. Solution Management Plugin
  67. Next-Gen vSphere Client
  68. Host Profiles Enhancements
  69. vCenter enhancements for stateless ESXi
  70. vCenter Server Appliance
  71. vCenter: Support for FileManager and VirtualDiskManager APIs
  72. Virtual Hardware – Smartcard support for vSphere
  73. Virtual Hardware Version 8
  74. Virtual HW v8 — 1TB VM RAM
  75. Virtual HW v8 — 32-way Virtual SMP
  76. Virtual Hw v8 — Client-Connected USB Devices
  77. Virtual HW v8 — EFI Virtual BIOS
  78. Virtual HW v8 — HD Audio
  79. Virtual Hw v8 — Multi-core Virtual CPU Support UI
  80. Virtual HW v8 — New virtual E1000 NIC
  81. Virtual HW v8 — UI and other support
  82. Virtual HW v8 — USB 3.0 device support
  83. Virtual HW v8 — VMCI device enhancements
  84. Virtual HW v8 — xHCI
  85. Support SMP for Mac OS X guest OS
  86. Universal Passthrough (VMdirect path with vMotion support)
  87. Guest Management Operations (VIX API)
  88. Guest OS Support — Mac OS X Server
  89. VM Serial Port to Host Serial Port Redirection (Serial Port Pass-Through)
  90. VMware Tools Portability
  91. VMRC Concurrent Connections enhancements
  92. Scalability: 512 VMs per host
  93. ESXCLI enhancements
  94. Support SAN and hw-iSCSI boot
  95. Hardware — Interlagos Processor Enablement
  96. Hardware — SandyBridge-DT Processor Enablement
  97. Hardware — SandyBridge-EN Processor Enablement
  98. Hardware — SandyBridge-EP Processor Enablement
  99. Hardware — Valencia Processor Enablement
  100. Hardware — Westmere-EX Processor Enablement
  101. Platform — CIM Enhancements
  102. Platform — ESX i18n support
  103. Host Power Management Enhancements
  104. vCenter Web Client
  105. Improved CPU scheduler
  106. Improved scalability of CPU (NUMA) scheduler
  107. Memory scheduler improvements to support 32-way VCPU's
  108. Swap to host cache
  109. API enhancements to configure VM boot order
  110. VMX swap
  111. Support for ESXi On Apple XServe
  112. Redirect DCUI to host serial port for remote monitoring and management
  113. UEFI BIOS Boot for ESXi hosts
  114. Scalability — 160 CPU Threads (logical PCPUs) per host
  115. Scalability — 2 TB RAM per host
  116. Scalability — 2048 VCPUs per host
  117. Scalability — 2048 virtual disks per host
  118. Scalability — 2048 VMs per VMFS volume
  119. Scalability — 512 VMs per host
  120. Stateless — Host Profile Engine and Host Profile Completeness
  121. Stateless — Image Builder
  122. Stateless — Auto Deploy
  123. Stateless — Networking Host Profile Plugin
  124. Stateless — VIB Packaging Enhancement
  125. Stateless — VMkernel network core dump
  126. Host profiles enhancements for storage configuration
  127. Enhanced driver support for ESXi
  128. Intel TXT Support
  129. Memsched policy enhancements w.r.t. Java balloon
  130. Native Driver Autoload support
  131. Root password entry screen in interactive installer
  132. vCenter Dump Collector
  133. vCenter Syslog Collector
  134. VMware Update Manager (VUM) enhancements
  135. VUM — Virtual Appliance enhancements
  136. VUM — vApp Support
  137. VUM — Depot management enhancements
  138. vCLI enhancements
  139. PowerCLI enhancements
  140. VProbes — ESX Platform Observability


I warned you about it, it is a long list. Remember, first 5 who post a link to an article showing 50 of these new features and detailing what they do get a signed copy of vSphere 5 Clustering Tech Deepdive!

About the Author

Duncan Epping

Duncan is a Chief Technologist working in the Storage and Availability Business Unit at VMware, serving as a partner and truster adviser to EMEA customers. He is the co-author of several books, including the vSphere Clustering Deepdive series and Essential Virtual SAN. He is the owner and main author of virtualization blog