Well the day is finally here, the day that I can share that I’ve successfully purchased my very own HomeLab! This has been a source of struggle for me, since I’ve always wanted a HomeLab. I entertained and researched various setups, including the Intel NUC. During my search I came across the SuperMicro E300-8D, which supports up to 128GB of RAM. For more information on the E300-8D, check out SuperMicro’s Website. It was the perfect price point and it allowed me to get the most out of my investment. It fit what I was looking for, which was a small footprint server that didn’t require much power. Additionally I wanted something quiet. While some have complained about the noise, I don’t believe it’s an issue with the stock fans, so long that it isn’t located within a sleeping area. The Server is setup in my Home Office. I also wanted to ensure I had plenty of memory so that I wouldn’t have any issues when provisioning a nested ESXi vSAN Lab.
To catch today’s General session, check out the video below! See how VMware’s customer obsession, vSAN, NSX and AWS all work together.
Wow! What an amazing day of announcements from VMworld 2018! If you didn’t already know, today was the first day of VMworld 2018, and it didn’t disappoint! Although I’ve never been to VMworld, I always follow each years event closely. With that said, I will be blogging each day to recap the major highlights and developments from the event.
In this section, I will go over the following objectives found within the VMware vSAN Specialist Blueprint: Objective 3.1 – Identify physical network requirements
Objective 3.1 – Identify physical network requirements
Let’s start with the network basics.
- Dedicated network port for vSAN traffic
- 10GB (dedicated or shared) highly recommended, required for all flash deployments) <1ms latency
- 1GB dedicated for hybrid setups. Real work environments would suffer with 1GB (Minus ROBO) <1ms latency
- vSAN VMkernal port required for each ESXi host, even if it isn’t contributing storage
- ESXi hosts within a vSAN cluster must all utilize Layer 2/3 upstream
In this section, I will go over the following objectives found within the VMware vSAN Specialist Blueprint: Section 2 – vSAN Fundamentals
Objective 2.1 – Provide a high-level description of vSAN
Introduction to vSAN
vSAN is an enterprise-class software storage solution built directly into the VMware platform. It runs on commodity hardware (x86) or vSAN Ready nodes. What does this mean? Instead of having a separate software solution controlling the storage, the actual ESXi hosts alongside with vSphere have the vSAN technology (Software Defined Storage) built directly into the kernel/software. This software then utilizes the commodity hardware (compute, storage, network) within the host/appliance to create the perfect marriage of virtualization and software defined storage. It utilizes storage policies to intelligently place VM objects on underlying local storage. This is the special sauce that makes vSAN so great. It automates storage on many levels, which in turn leads to significant simplification with regards to how storage is provisioned and managed.
Why is this important? Instead of having to buy separate software, you can utilize this software since it’s already a part of vSphere. This in combination with local disk installed within x86 hardware makes the vSAN solution a truly modern and software defined solution. This reduces costs and complexity.
In this section, I will go over the following objectives found within the VMware vSAN Specialist Blueprint: Section 1- Storage Fundamentals
Objective 1.1 – Identify storage device characteristics
vSAN is very similar to today’s traditional storage technologies; however, there are some key differences and unique configurations vSAN utilizes to make it the technology it is today. Here are some of the storage device characteristics that make vSAN hum. These are also requirements in order to use vSAN. Be sure to check out the HCL for vSAN, as it’s the TRUTH and should always be followed to ensure success!
Late last year, I made the decision to obtain the vSAN Specialist badge (2VB-601) that VMware just recently began offering. While I currently don’t have the necessary home lab equipment, I plan to get started and then figure out the lab situation. My ideal plan is to have a three node NUC cluster running vSAN, but this may change. Regardless, the most important thing is to start, so here we go!