What's New with vSAN 6.7 Update 1 Lightning Lab
Welcome to the What's New with vSAN 6.7 Update 1 Lightning Lab.
We have developed Lightning Labs to help you learn about VMware products in small segments of time.
In this Lab, you will get an overview of the key features that have been introduced with vSAN 6.7 Update 1.
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VMware vSAN 6.7 U1 makes it even easier to adopt Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) and build a Digital Foundation.
vSAN 6.7 U1 simplifies operations by streamlining the deployment process, improving lifecycle management, reducing disruptions during maintenance operations, and improving capacity reporting. These updates help administrators more quickly and easily deploy and extend infrastructure while minimizing disruptions while keeping the environment up to date.
In this lesson, we will:
We will use our Module Switcher PowerCLI Application to prepare the environment.
This Startup Routine can take a few minutes to complete - thank you for your patience !
Monitor Progress until Complete.
Your Lab has been successfully prepared!
1. Click Close [X] to safely close the Module Switcher
In vSAN 6.7 U1, we tackled the task of making the initial setup, as well as ongoing expansion of a cluster as intuitive as possible. vSAN 6.7 U1 introduces a new “Quickstart” guided cluster creation and extension wizard in vCenter that guides the user through the deployment process for vSAN and non-vSAN clusters.
** Did you turn on the Module Switcher (HOL-2008-Lightning) on page 5?
You might need to scroll to see - not shown
Note: The 'Existing hosts (0 from 8)' description will update to reflect the number of selected hosts
A vSphere Distributed Switch (vDS) has already been pre-configured in the Lab environment, therefore:
Note: These disks will form a single Disk Group per Host.
Now that the vSAN Datastore has been enabled, let's examine the Health of the vSAN Environment:
vSAN has over 50 Health Checks Out of Box and the ability to leverage additional Online Health Checks.
Note: Hardware compatibility and Online health warnings are expected given the nested nature of the Lab and lack of external Internet access for online health checks.
You have successfully enabled vSAN via the new vSphere 6.7 U1 Cluster Quickstart Wizard. This same wizard can be utilized to modify the Cluster in the future (e.g. Adding additional Hosts as one example).
Capacity utilization is a top of mind concern to those responsible for day-to-day administration of an environment. vSAN 6.7 U1 introduces two new features to help administrators better understand the capacity usage of a vSAN cluster.
Note: We currently only have the Default vSAN (RAID1) policy in our lab; however, if there were additional policies like RAID5, for example, you could see the free space savings prior to actually switching to that policy.
These improvements to vSAN will provide better visibility and comprehension of storage utilization for smarter decision making.
The follow lesson reviews the improvements to Health Check and Recommendations.
The health check feature of vSAN continues to play a prominent role in its ability to ensure that an environment meets hardware and software configuration requirements. vSAN 6.7 U1 extends this feature even more, with a more robust way of handling multiple approved firmware levels for storage controllers. A new Unicast network performance health check and test ensures that proper continuity is achieved between vSAN hosts, and will report network bandwidth results for the tests.
vSAN 6.7 U1 also introduces functionality that is now accessible in the UI. Health checks can be silenced granularly, directly in the UI, as well as being able to purge inaccessible swap objects that are no longer needed.
These improvements improve the effectiveness of vSAN’s ability to not only recognize issues, but remediate them.
This lesson reviews improvements in space efficiency.
Modern guest operating systems have the ability to reclaim no longer used space once data is deleted inside of a guest operating system. Using commands known as TRIM/UNMAP for the respective ATA and SCSI protocols, this helps the guest operating systems be more efficient with storage space usage. vSAN 6.7 U1 now has full awareness of TRIM/UNMAP commands sent from the guest OS, and can reclaim the previously allocated storage as free space.
We are unable to show you this feature in action in our nested virtualized lab; however, we thought it was important to make you aware of this new capability. This is an opportunistic space efficiency feature that can deliver much better storage capacity utilization in vSAN environments. Administrators may find in some cases, dramatic space savings in their production vSAN environments.
The following lesson reviews PowerCLI improvements.
A robust command line interface is important for not only automation at scale, it provides programmatic consistency across any size of an environment. With PowerCLI version 11, vSAN customers will see improvements to new PowerCLI cmdlets that are intended to replace Ruby vSphere Console commands.
2. Press any key to complete list (not shown)
Note: These cmdlets can be used to not only check the health of vSAN but also work towards automating tasks that you would otherwise perform manually via vCenter. There are many references online for additional information.
Get-VsanEvacuationPlan -entity esx-01a.corp.local
This new cmdlet simulates how host failures impact vSAN resource usage. This is just one example of the many other new cmdlets that there are to explore.
PowerCLI has proven to be a flexible way to interface with vSAN, and expanding its capabilities will improve efficiencies in administration of a vSAN environment. The ongoing PowerCLI improvements in vSAN 6.7 U1 make vSAN even easier to administer using the wildly popular PowerCLI interface.
Improving time to resolution is a win for both the customer, and VMware. VMware has made great advances in improving the customer support experience with recent editions of vSAN. vSAN 6.6.1 introduced “vSAN Support Insight” which is VMware’s method of automatically collecting vital infrastructure telemetry data about an environment for the VMware technical support engineers in our global support services group. vSAN 6.7 U1 continues with these improvements, introducing fine grained, deep level performance graphs for the explicit purpose of issue resolution.
NOTE: The VMware support diagnostics is a built-in tool to assist GSS in their troubleshooting efforts. This is designed to replace, a deprecated, external tool known as vSAN Observer. The tool is built-in to the UI and does not require anything to be enabled or disabled.
These advances help reduce the need to request log support bundles from the hosts, and when they are absolutely necessary, will contain even more critical data for better root cause analysis.
Since each vSAN host in a cluster contributes to the cluster storage capacity, entering a host into maintenance mode takes on an additional set of tasks when compared to a traditional architecture. vSAN 6.7 U1 has improved the safeguards when performing maintenance and decommissioning activities on vSAN hosts. vSAN will now perform a full simulation of data movement to determine if the Enter Maintenance Mode (EMM) action will succeed for fail before it even starts. This will prevent unnecessary data movement, and provide a result more quickly to the administrator.
All of these improvements are added to enhance the overall experience and predictability of host decommissioning activities like entering a host into maintenance mode.
Thank you for completing the What's New with vSAN 6.7 Update 1 Lightning Lab!
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The Table of Contents can be accessed in the upper right-hand corner of the Lab Manual.
Lab Module List:
During this module, you will input text into the Main Console. Besides directly typing it in, there are two very helpful methods of entering data which make it easier to enter complex data.
You can also click and drag text and Command Line Interface (CLI) commands directly from the Lab Manual into the active window in the Main Console.
You can also use the Online International Keyboard found in the Main Console.
In this example, you will use the Online Keyboard to enter the "@" sign used in email addresses. The "@" sign is Shift-2 on US keyboard layouts.
Notice the @ sign entered in the active console window.
When you first start your lab, you may notice a watermark on the desktop indicating that Windows is not activated.
One of the major benefits of virtualization is that virtual machines can be moved and run on any platform. The Hands-on Labs utilizes this benefit and we are able to run the labs out of multiple datacenters. However, these datacenters may not have identical processors, which triggers a Microsoft activation check through the Internet.
Rest assured, VMware and the Hands-on Labs are in full compliance with Microsoft licensing requirements. The lab that you are using is a self-contained pod and does not have full access to the Internet, which is required for Windows to verify the activation. Without full access to the Internet, this automated process fails and you see this watermark.
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Lab SKU: HOL-2008-91-HCI