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VMware Virtual SAN 6.6 what’s new

VMware Virtual SAN 6.6 what’s new


vSAN 6.6 it’s 6th generation of the product and there are more than 20+ new features and enhancements in this release, such as:

  • Native encryption for data-at-rest
  • Compliance certifications
  • Resilient management independent of vCenter
  • Degraded Disk Handling v2.0 (DDHv2)
  • Smart repairs and enhanced rebalancing
  • Intelligent rebuilds using partial repairs
  • Certified file service & data protection solutions
  • Stretched clusters with local failure protection
  • Site affinity for stretched clusters
  • 1-click witness change for Stretched Cluster
  • vSAN Management Pack for vRealize
  • Enhanced vSAN SDK and PowerCLI
  • Simple networking with Unicast
  • vSAN Cloud Analytics with real-time support notification and recommendations
  • vSAN Config Assist with 1-click hardware lifecycle management
  • Extended vSAN Health Services
  • vSAN Easy Install with 1-click fixes
  • Up to 50% greater IOPS for all-flash with optimized checksum and dedupe
  • Support for new next-gen workloads
  • vSAN for Photon in Photon Platform 1.1
  • Day 0 support for latest flash technologies
  • Expanded caching tier choice
  • Docker Volume Driver 1.1


… ok now lets review main enhancements:

vSAN 6.6 introduces the industry’s first native HCI security solution. vSAN will now offer data-at-rest encryption that is completely hardware-agnostic. No more concern about someone walking off with a drive or breaking in to a less-secure, edge IT location and stealing hardware. Encryption is applied at the cluster level, and any data written to a vSAN storage device, both at the cache layer and persistent layer can now be fully encrypted.  And vSAN 6.6 supports 2-factor authentication, including SecurID and CAC.


Certified file services and data protection solutions are available from 3rd party partners in the VMware Ready for vSAN Program to enable customers to extend and complement their vSAN environment with proven, industry-leading solutions. These solutions provide customers with detailed guidance on how to complement vSAN. (EMC NetWorker is avaialble today with new solutions coming on soon)


vSAN stretched cluster was released in Q3’15 to provide an Active-Active solution. vSAN 6.6 adds a major new capability that will deliver a highly-available stretched cluster that addresses the highest resiliency requirements of data centers. vSAN 6.6 adds support for local failure protection that can provide resiliency against both site failures and local component failures.


PowerCLI Updates: Full featured vSAN PowerCLI cmdlets enable full automation that includes all the latest features. SDK/API updates also enable enterprise-class automation that brings cloud management flexibility to storage by supporting REST APIs.

VMware vRealize Operations Management Pack for vSAN released recently, provides customers with native integration for simplified management and monitoring. The vSAN management pack is specifically designed to accelerate time to production with vSAN, optimize application performance for workloads running on vSAN and provide unified management for the Software Defined Datacenter (SDDC). It provides additional options for monitoring, managing and troubleshooting vSAN along with the end-to-end infrastructure solutions.


Finally, vSAN 6.6 is well suited for next-generation applications. Performance improvements, especially when combined with new flash technologies for write-intensive applications, enable vSAN to address more emerging applications like Big Data. The vSAN team has also tested and released numerous reference architectures for these types of solutions, including Big Data, Splunk and InterSystems Cache.


  • Splunk Reference Architecture:
  • Citrix XenDestkop/XenApp Blog:
  • vSAN, VxRail and Pivotal Cloud Foundry RA:
  • vSAN and InterSystems Blog:
  • Intel, vSAN and Big Data Hadoop:



What’s New in vSphere 6.5 – ProactiveHA

What’s New in vSphere 6.5 – ProactiveHA

Proactive HA is a new feature Available in vSphere 6.5 released recently. It’s a kind of feature which will even better help you to protect you environment in case of hardware failure.

Currently all of the hardware components are redundant including power supplies, fans, network cards etc. However the most possible cause of whole server failure occurs while one of these theoretically redundant components fails. To better imagine that let’s think about power supply fail. There is still the second one but during there is only one it is much more loaded. (Similar things you can observe with hard disks in a RAID group – the biggest possibility of a disk fail is during RAID re-building).

ProactiveHA will help you protect the environment in such situations. It will detect hardware conditions of a host and allow you to evacuate the VMs before the trivial issue causes the serious outage.  For this feature to function, the hardware vendor must participate.  Their hardware monitoring solution will advertise the health of the hardware, and vCenter will query that system to get a status of the hardware components such as the fans, memory, and power supplies.  vSphere can then be configured to respond according to the failure.


To let it functions there is a new ESXi host state in vSphere 6.5 – Quarantine mode. It’s similar to maintenance mode but it is not as severe as maintenance mode. It’s mean that DRS will attempt to evacuate all VMs from the host, but only if:

  • No performance impact on any virtual machine in the cluster
  • None of the business rules is disregarded
  • Additionally, any soft affinity or-anti-affinity rules will not be overridden by the evacuation. However, DRS will seek to avoid placing any new VMs.

To set the Proactive HA features, find the Partial Failures and Responses section and set how vSphere should respond to partial failures.  The options are to place a degraded host into Quarantine Mode, Maintenance Mode, or Mixed Mode.

Mixed mode means that for moderate degradation, the host will be placed into Quarantine Mode.  For Severe failures, it will be placed into Maintenance Mode.


For the moment of writing and availibility of vSphere 6.5 GA the supported failure condition types are:

  • Memory
  • Power
  • Fan
  • Network
  • Storage