Feeds

I, for one, welcome our VMware VSAN overlord

Though I wish it would open up a bit...

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Storagebod So VSAN is finally here in a released form. On paper, it looks very impressive.

I spend an awful lot of time looking at scale-out storage systems – looking at ways to do them faster, cheaper and better. And although I welcome VMware and VSAN to the party, I don’t think I’m really the target market: the product’s not really ready or appropriate for media and entertainment or anyone interested in hyperScale.

But even so, I’ve got thoughts that I’d like to share.

Is VSAN better because it runs in the VMware kernel? This seems logical but this has tied VSAN to VMware in a way that some of the competing products have not. For example, if I want to run a Gluster Cluster – which encompasses not just VMware but also XEN, bare metal and anything else – I could. And there might be some excellent reasons why I would want to do so. Perhaps I’d transcode on bare-metal machines but might present out on VM-ed application servers, for example. Of course, it is not only the media and entertainment industry which has such requirements – there are plenty of other places where heavy lifting would be better done on the bare metal.

Open house party?

I think that VMware needs to be much more open about allowing third-party access to the kernel interfaces. It should allow more pluggable options so I could run GPFS, ScaleIO, Gluster, Stornext within the VMWare kernel.

VSAN limits itself by tying itself so closely to the VMware stack; its scalability is limited by the current cluster size. There are plenty of good architectural reasons for doing so, but some of these are enforced by a VMware-only mindset.

And why limit yourself to only 35 disks per server? An HP ProLiant SL4540 takes 60 disks and there are SuperMicro chassis that take 72 disks. Increasing the spindle count not only increases the maximum capacity but the RAW IOps of the solution. Of course, there might be some saturation issues with regards to the inter-server communication.

Yet, I do think it is interesting how the converged IT stacks are progressing. VMware itself is pretty much a converged stack now but it is a software converged stack; VCE and Nutanix, on the other hand, converge onto hardware as well. And yes, VMware is currently the core of all of this.

I actually prefer the VMware-only approach in many ways as I think I could scale computer and storage separately within some boundaries. Additionally, I’m not sure what the impact of having unbalanced clusters will be on VSAN. Would make sense to have some Big Flipping Dense VSAN appliances rather than distributing the storage equally across the nodes?

VSAN is certainly welcome in the market: it certainly validates the approaches being taken by a number of other companies – I just wish it were more flexible and open. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Azure TITSUP caused by INFINITE LOOP
Fat fingered geo-block kept Aussies in the dark
NASA launches new climate model at SC14
75 days of supercomputing later ...
Yahoo! blames! MONSTER! email! OUTAGE! on! CUT! CABLE! bungle!
Weekend woe for BT as telco struggles to restore service
You think the CLOUD's insecure? It's BETTER than UK.GOV's DATA CENTRES
We don't even know where some of them ARE – Maude
Cloud unicorns are extinct so DiData cloud mess was YOUR fault
Applications need to be built to handle TITSUP incidents
BOFH: WHERE did this 'fax-enabled' printer UPGRADE come from?
Don't worry about that cable, it's part of the config
Stop the IoT revolution! We need to figure out packet sizes first
Researchers test 802.15.4 and find we know nuh-think! about large scale sensor network ops
DEATH by COMMENTS: WordPress XSS vuln is BIGGEST for YEARS
Trio of XSS turns attackers into admins
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
How to determine if cloud backup is right for your servers
Two key factors, technical feasibility and TCO economics, that backup and IT operations managers should consider when assessing cloud backup.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?