Introduction to VMware vSAN 8

Introduction to VMware vSAN 8

The newest hyperconverged infrastructure software from VMware is vSAN 8 with vSAN Express Storage Architecture! A ground-breaking release that will bring about improvements in performance and effectiveness to satisfy clients' business requirements today and tomorrow!

 With high-performance storage devices, vSAN 8 offers vSAN Express Storage ArchitectureTM (vSAN ESA), a new optional storage architecture that provides new levels of performance, scalability, resilience, and simplicity. 

With software you are currently familiar with, vSAN 8 will forge a brave new route to make your infrastructure future-proof.

Fig 1.1- VMware vSAN 8

By including optimization for high-performance, NVMe-based TLC flash devices with vSAN and building on the Original Storage Architecture of vSAN, vSAN ESA will unleash the potential of contemporary hardware (vSAN OSA). 

Since SATA/SAS devices were the most popular storage medium at the time, vSAN was initially intended to deliver highly-performant storage with them. With vSAN 8, our customers will have the opportunity to select the existing architecture (vSAN OSA or vSAN ESA) that best meets their needs.

vSAN Express Storage Architecture
This new architecture will demonstrate some cutting-edge data processing and storing techniques. A new log-structured file system (vSAN LFS), a new write-optimized log-structured object manager, and a new object format will all be included in vSAN 8 with ESA. 

All of these modifications will aid vSAN ESA in achieving performance close to that of a device and in the incredibly quick and effective storage of data and metadata.

With vSAN ESA, customers can anticipate RAID-5/6 to perform on par with RAID-1. The new architecture will give the highest levels of performance while providing the highest levels of space efficiency and durability. With the help of the new log-structured filesystem and object format, RAID-6 can handle all of this.

Storage traffic can be processed via the stack at almost device-level rates as a result of the increased levels of efficiency that vSAN ESA will deliver. I/O will move via the network at higher rates thanks to this faster rate of I/O processing. In cases of network contention, vSAN ESA will adaptively priorities vSAN-related network I/O to prevent clogging the network when running extremely resource-intensive workloads.

In order to reduce CPU costs and network traffic, compression has also been modified in vSAN ESA and will take place high in the storage stack. Instead of a cluster-based service, it may be toggled on a per-VM basis using a straightforward storage policy. 

It is enabled by default. When compared to the Original Storage Architecture, the new form of compression will allow for up to a 4x improvement in compression on each 4KB block. The new compression version can have a less performance impact and will be more CPU-efficient.

Encryption will also take place in the top layers of vSAN, similar to compression. Data that has to be encrypted has already been compressed, therefore since the encryption procedure only needs to be performed once, encrypted data is also transmitted between hosts. 

By eliminating the extra decryption and encryption stages that were previously required, this improvement will maximize CPU and network efficiency, freeing up more resources for virtual machines.

Innovative upgrades that deliver top performance and efficiency levels, increased resilience, streamlined operations, and simple management will be introduced with vSAN 8 and the vSAN Express Storage Architecture. 

In order to run the most demanding workloads with the highest levels of performance and efficiency, we believe the vSAN ESA can enable our customers take advantage of the advantages of the newest generation of hardware.

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