VMware Virtual SAN is a radically simple, enterprise-class shared storage solution for hyperconverged infrastructure optimized for vSphere virtual machines.
VMware Virtual SAN Advanced (v. 6) - license - 1 processor is rated 4.1 out of 5 by 32.
Rated 4 out of 5 by Eric Garrison from Enables us to scale out nodes independently and flexibly - we can put almost any type of server in themWhat is our primary use case?We use vSAN primarily as an R&D tool to test our products and see how they work on it, and it is absolutely phenomenal. It is one of the best hyperconverged solutions I've been able to get my hands on.How has it helped my organization?vSAN has improved our organization by allowing us to perform faster workflows, get better overall performance, and create some really new solutions.What is most valuable?The most valuable features for us are the ability to scale out the nodes independently, and the flexibility of the nodes. We can put almost any type of server in there with our connectivity and everything works great.What needs improvement?The biggest room for improvement I see in vSAN is the lack of SAN connectivity. I've kind of joked around that there is no "SAN" in vSAN. And it's something that we've worked to try and introduce some options for, and we're going to continue to work towards that. But it looks like the door is starting to open and there may be some options, with some of the announcements that came out of VMworld 2018.What do I think about the stability of the solution?vSAN has been very stable for us. Once we get it up and settled in and the workflows going, usually we don't have to intervene at all. Things just keep working. Stability is important for us with vSAN because it becomes the rock that we depend on. When we need an application to stay up and maintain that ability to bounce between hosts, to work in a true hyperconverged manner, it's the only choice for us.What do I think about the scalability of the solution?Scalability in vSAN has been really good. It's very easy to add nodes in, to automatically generate the drives and the disk groups. It has been a piece of cake, surprisingly so.How is customer service and technical support?We have not needed to use vSAN tech support, believe it or not. We have not had any kind of an instance where we couldn't resolve it on our own, or it didn't fix itself.Which solutions did we use previously?We had no hyperconverged solution beforehand. We knew that we needed to do some testing with them. It started off as a compatibility (test) and just kept ballooning from there until we went and implemented it.When choosing a vendor, our most important criteria are reputation and stability. You can't go into something without understanding just how good it is, and if you roll the dice, sometimes you get burned. We're a risk-averse company.How was the initial setup?I was involved in the initial vSAN setup. The experience was really wonderful, it was really easy, it was very intuitive. There were some learning curves for us because we had never done it before but, overall, the wizard and the experience with the online tutorials that we were able to find solved every concern or question that we had, very quickly.What was our ROI?ROI for us comes in uptime, keeping applications up and running. That's important to us because that's directly attributable to our revenue stream.What other advice do I have?Do your research, dig, find out what your particular needs are, what would the overall cost be to - sometimes it's a forklift, sometimes it's a migration. But look at all the factors, look at the requirements of vSAN, look at the requirements of other hyperconverged solutions, and then make the decision.I would rate vSAN as a solid nine. To get it to a ten it would need: the ability to support a SAN and a little bit of a larger scale. Those would be the two things that I would request.Disclaimer: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor. The reviewer's company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:Partner.
Date published: 2018-11-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by PankajTambe from Since the storage space is local to the hosts, it reduces the overall response time and improves the performancePrimary Use CaseVirtual desktop infrastructure (VDI ( /categories/virtual-desktop )) implementation on vSAN ( /products/vmware-vsan ) with an environment of about 2000 desktops and 1000 servers.Improvements to My OrganizationTeams required to manage the storage for the entire VDI ( /categories/virtual-desktop ) infrastructure were not required after implementing the vSAN ( /products/vmware-vsan ) solution. Any seasoned VMware engineer can easily manage the whole vSAN without any issues.It is simple to manage, very easy to implement and troubleshoot in case of any failures.Valuable Features* Hot add* Upgrades* Ease of managementAny VMware engineer can easily manage vSAN, troubleshoot issues, and perform an upgrade on the vSAN without any downtime. Since the storage space is local to the hosts, it reduces the overall response time and improves the performance.Room for ImprovementSome storage tiering options can be included, like other mature storage systems. Some intelligence can be added to the newest version to provide more flexibility between storage tiers, like Nutanix ( /products/nutanix ), to make this product a true software defined storage product.Use of SolutionMore than five years.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2018-01-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by Elvar B varsson from We gained fantastic performance with the benefit of simplifying the whole hardware stackPrimary Use CaseFor a new full site, vSAN was used instead of going with the usual fibre SAN. Since vSAN requires SSD ( /categories/ssd )s, it was a great way to introduce that tech to the company. If we would have gone with a traditional SAN SSD ( /categories/ssd ), it would have been an option, so a debatable feature.Improvements to My OrganizationWe gained fantastic performance with the benefit of simplifying the whole hardware stack requiring less sum of knowledge to run and maintain.Valuable FeaturesThe simplicity of everything, even though it was a new technology at the time with some quirks. The lower skill cost of maintaining it meant that we could do more with the people that we had.Room for ImprovementWhen it was implemented, we were one of the first to jump into using vSAN for production use. The main problem we had was hardware compatibility, finding the right hardware that was certified. This caused further problems because the hardware reseller had little knowledge of the requirements and we even had issues with firmware from the hardware vendor. This delayed the implementation time by a few months. This should not be a issue today, but still be cautious when choosing the hardware.Use of SolutionOne to three years.Previous SolutionsStandard fibre SAN infrastructure. We switched due to fibre switches, fibre cards, and fibre SAN.Initial SetupThe setup was very easy if you have the correct hardware and firmware.Pricing, Setup Cost and LicensingFactor in operational costs.Other Solutions ConsideredCompared it to a similar sized fibre SAN.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2018-01-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by David Dunaway from It integrates with other commonly-used VMware tools, but it lacks deduplication and wastes a lot of mass when striping across multiple nodes and vSphere hosts.Valuable FeaturesSimple to set up, manage, and integrate it with tools you’re already familiar (vCenter, vClient) with.It also gives us a policy-based storage on a per-VM level.Also if you can apply redundancies to machines, they’re all different.Improvements to My Organization* All built within hypervisor* Easily stood up with hardware you already have* Truly virtualized storage* Get rid of all hardware, and you get a much smaller footprint* Nodes can be in different datacenter, and so can stretch clusterRoom for Improvement* Good job integrating with vRealize, vCOPS, etc.* Needs complete integration with vRealize for GUI for drill down analysis* Would be nice to see features like dedupe because it wastes a lot of mass when striping across multiple nodes and vSphere hosts.Stability IssuesSome difficulty finding compatible hardware, but if you follow the HCL provided by VMware. and make sure you're buying the correct nodes, storage devices, and SSD’s that are all supported, then it’s a stable product. Even if you have problems, it's still only one phonecall.Scalability IssuesIt supports up to 64 nodes so huge scalability.Customer Service and Technical SupportAs a VMware customer for many years, sometimes it takes a few calls, but they have some brilliant people who can solve difficult technical problems.Initial Setup* Setup just a few clicks after hardware all connected, “pretty stupid easy”.* Customers can test and validate without going out and buying vSAN ready nodes.Other AdviceIt loses points because it lacks lots of performance and deduplication abilities that competitors have.Disclaimer: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:We're a partner.
Date published: 2017-11-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by Aashish from It can handle all infra tasks and due to policy based storage we can manage the I/O performance also.Valuable Features:If we are looking for a valuable prospective, then we can go with the All-Flash vSAN cluster which will provide data compression and deduplication (i.e. actual used storage 30TB; in that case deduplication will be stored in 10TB and save 20TB storage).Improvements to My Organization:Firstly, I want to offer an example in terms of the deployment process and manageability of the vSAN storage environment. vSphere admins can handle all infra tasks and, due to policy based storage, we can manage the I/O performance as well.Room for Improvement:vSAN health monitoring has room for improvement because they have many known and unknown bugs which may be resolved in a future release version.Use of Solution:We are using it for the last two and a half years, and started working with vSAN 5.5 and drives file system 1 and in the last six months it has been upgraded to vSAN version 6.2 and drive file system 3.Stability Issues:Yes, in some of cases after I have built a big vSAN cluster of 64 nodes, all hosts start showing different network partition groups. In that case, without correction, you can’t go further on next level.Scalability Issues:In scalability I didn’t face any issues.Technical Support:I can give them an 8 out of ten because it is a game-changing technology so we need to add more vSAN engineers to our team.Previous Solutions:In my past experience, I didn’t use policy based storage; I always worked with standard storage.Initial Setup:Initial setup is straightforward but somehow we need to understand the high level topology and way of working with it.Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing:In terms of pricing and licensing, we need to understand the requirements of the project and the cost model as well, because that has a very important effect on our project delivery.Other Solutions Considered:Nutanix and VxRail because these also serve the same function.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-09-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by ThiagoSouza from In a production environment, it increases provisioning, security and provides faster deployment.Valuable Features:The most valuable features are:* Automation* RecoverPoint for VMware* Self-healing capabilityIn a production environment, these features ramp up the provisioning, security and provides faster deployment.Room for Improvement:There is not much improvement needed. If you work with the HC Platform, vSAN is not directly touched, i.e., once the HC appliance takes care of it.Use of Solution:I have used this solution for nine months (but only for sales proposal, it has not been implemented, just technical sales information).Stability Issues:I did not encounter any stability issues.Scalability Issues:I did not encounter any scalability issues.Technical Support:Always when I was in need of any technical support, I was promptly answered by them.Initial Setup:As I have worked with the HC Platform, the setup was very simple and easy.Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing:For Latin America, the costs are very higher; even if you go deep on functionalities, but still it is sellable.Other Advice:Work hard on the sizing matters.Disclaimer: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer:We are a business partner.
Date published: 2017-07-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by DennisLefeber from The most valuable feature is its simplicity of implementation.Valuable Features:The feature that is most valuable is the simplicity of implementation, as you only have to enable the feature on the already existing cluster(s).Improvements to My Organization:For a PaaS platform which I’ve developed the scalability of VMware, vSAN was a necessary feature as we could grow with the onboard customers.Room for Improvement:As the product is very scalable, it is not scalable in a way that the different host sizes could effectively be added to an existing cluster. All the hosts/disk configuration has to be consistent, for a consistent performance experience.Use of Solution:I’ve been using VMware vSAN for about two years, i.e., since VMware vSAN 6.0 was released.Stability Issues:The stability of VMware vSAN 6.0 is good, you sometimes have to resynchronize the data over the cluster (which is a single button task).Scalability Issues:As stated earlier, all the hosts have to be exactly the same for a consistent performance experience, which limits the scalability of the product. Also, the computer and storage components within the HCI solution are linked to each other, it’s not possible to add only storage nodes.Technical Support:The documentation of VMware vSAN is good. I’ve had no experience with VMware support regarding vSAN.Previous Solutions:I haven’t used a different HCI solution before.Initial Setup:The initial setup is really straightforward, you only have to enable it on the VMware cluster. But, before the initial setup you will have to check the HCL of vSAN for the compatibility of the different components. With VMware vSAN ready nodes, this process is made simple, but it still is something you have to take in consideration.Cost and Licensing Advice:VMware vSAN is licensed per CPU and the cost is to the other VMware (and Microsoft) product. VMware vSAN is reasonable priced, but with the addition of more nodes to the cluster, the needed CPU licenses (for VMware/Microsoft/etc) are increasing rapidly, which makes it an expensive solution.Other Solutions Considered:I’ve looked at SimpliVity, but it has a special hardware requirement whereby it failed in terms of the project-requirements.Other Advice:Use VMware vSAN for special use-cases only and don’t use it as an all-purpose storage solution.Use VMware vSAN for VDI, small VSI, and dev-test environments. Don’t use it for messaging/database solutions as the licensing costs are huge.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Date published: 2017-07-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by Adnan Majeed from It provides high availability without needing a full vCentre/host license or a physical SAN. There are bugs in the SAN Health Check utility.Valuable Features:* HA* No physical SAN overheadHaving high availability without the need for a full vCentre/host license is a plus that, along with not needing a physical SAN, makes this solution great when you need functionality without the extra overhead of additional hardware and licences.Improvements to My Organization:It accelerated our P2V plan.Room for Improvement:There are bugs in the SAN Health Check utility. It misreports latency issues when the hosts are actual within the correct tolerances. I have been on the phone with VMware about this and they have said it’s a bug.Use of Solution:I have used it for 10 months.Stability Issues:I have not encountered any stability issues yet.Scalability Issues:We have not crossed this bridge yet.Technical Support:So far, technical support is 8/10.Previous Solutions:We did not previously use a different solution.Initial Setup:Initial setup was straightforward.Cost and Licensing Advice:Licensing is fairly straightforward.Other Solutions Considered:Before choosing this product, I did not evaluate other options.Other Advice:Take a look at the network requirements and use 10GbE.Disclaimer: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.