VMware vsphere 4.1 Competitive Reviewer s Guide. VMware vsphere 4.1

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1 VMware vsphere 4.1 Competitive Reviewer s Guide VMware vsphere 4.1 W H I T E P A P E R

2 VMware vsphere 4.1 Table of Contents Getting Started About This Guide Intended Audience Assumptions Document Structure Reference Setup Environments Active Directory, DNS, and DHCP services Sample vsphere Evaluation Set Logical Network Setup What Will Be Covered VMware vsphere Review Worksheet Help and Support During the Review VMware Contact Information Providing Feedback Introduction: Top 15 vsphere Advantages Over the Competition What s New in vsphere 4.1? Section 1: Features for Small-Scale Deployments vnetwork Standard Switch VMware Differentiators vnetwork Standard Switch Hands-on Review iscsi Storage ESX Host Cluster Use vcenter Converter to Import Hyper-V VMs High Availability (HA) VMware High Availability Differentiators High Availability Hands-on Review vmotion VMware Live Migration Differentiators vmotion Hands-on Review Use VMware Data Recovery to Back Up and Restore VMs and VM Files Section 2: Features for Small-to Medium-Scale Deployments Fibre Channel Storage VMware Storage Differentiators ESXi Boot From SAN Host Profiles VMware Host Management Differentiators Host Profiles Hands-on Review Distributed Resource Scheduler VMware Dynamic Resource Scheduling Differentiators Distributed Resource Scheduler Hands-on Review C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 2

3 VMware vsphere Distributed Power Management VMware Power Management Differentiators Distributed Power Management Hands-on Review Fault Tolerance VMware Fault Tolerance Differentiators Fault Tolerance Hands-on Review Storage vmotion and Thin Provisioning VMware Live Storage Migration Differentiators Storage vmotion and This Provisioning Hands-on Review VMware vapp VMware vapp Differentiators VMware vapp Hands-on Review Update Manager VMware Patch Management Differentiators Update Manager Hands-on Review Section 3: Medium- to Large-Scale, Multi-Site Deployments ESXi Scripted Mode Installation Linked Mode VMware Linked Mode Differentiators Linked Mode Hands-on Review vnetwork Distributed Switch (vds) VMware Distributed Switch Differentiators vds Hands-on Review Network and Storage I/O Controls VMware Network and Storage I/O Control Differentiators Network and Storage I/O Control Hands-on Review Private VLAN VMware Private VLAN Differentiators Private VLAN Hands-on Review Hot Add VMware Hot Add Differentiators Hot Add Hands-on Review Dynamic Storage Management VMware Dynamic Storage Management Differentiators Dynamic Storage Management Hands-on Review Alarms VMware Alarms Differentiators Alarms Hands-on Review Management Assistant (vma) PowerCLI Conclusion C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 3

4 VMware vsphere 4.1 Getting Started About This Guide The purpose of this guide is to support a self-guided, hands-on evaluation of VMware vsphere 4.1 by press reviewers, technology analysts, and IT professionals who wish to compare vsphere to competing virtualization products such as Microsoft Hyper-V, Citrix XenServer, or Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (KVM). This guide can also be used by reviewers without hands-on access to a live vsphere installation. You will find the key VMware competitive advantages called out in the VMware Differentiators section associated with each key feature. Intended Audience This guide is intended to cover competitive evaluation cases that are suitable for reviewers and IT professionals who: Want a guided description of the key features in vsphere Want a detailed explanation of the differentiation provided by vsphere features compared to competing virtualization products Want scenario-based examples of the business and operational advantages vsphere features provide over Microsoft Hyper-V, Citrix XenServer, and Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (KVM) Readers are encouraged to follow the Document Structure section to select the self-contained sections that are appropriate for their evaluation requirements. Assumptions To successfully use this guide it is assumed that: All hardware has been validated against the VMware Hardware Compatibility List (HCL); VMware vsphere ESX or ESXi has been installed on the physical servers designated for this evaluation; VMware vcenter Server and vsphere Client have been installed in the environment to manage the VMware ESX hosts; Shared storage (i.e. a SAN infrastructure) exists for evaluation of vsphere Availability features; Virtual machines have been pre-configured and installed with proper Guest Operating Systems. For detailed information regarding installation, configuration, administration, and usage of VMware vsphere, please refer to the online documentation:

5 VMware vsphere 4.1 TASKS Install vcenter Server and vsphere Client Install ESX 4.1 Install and Configure VMware ESXi 4.1 Installable Install and Configure VMware ESXi 4.1 Embedded Deploy virtual machines Obtain and install licenses DOCUMENTS ESX and VirtualCenter Installation Guide VMware ESXi Installable and vcenter Server Setup Guide VMware ESXi Embedded and vcenter Server Setup Guide ESX and VirtualCenter Installation Guide VMware ESXi Installable and vcenter Server Setup Guide VMware ESXi Embedded and vcenter Server Setup Guide vsphere Basic System Administration ESX and VirtualCenter Installation Guide VMware ESXi Installable and vcenter Server Setup Guide VMware ESXi Embedded and vcenter Server Setup Guide Document Structure The purpose of this document is to support a self-guided, hands-on competitive review of VMware vsphere. The document has three sections as outlined below, starting off with basic virtualization features and concepts and moving through to the more advanced virtualization features and concepts in Section 3. SCALE OF DEPLOYMENT Section 1 Small scale deployment with 2 to 3 VMware ESX hosts CONTEXT AND PURPOSES Basic configuration of virtualization platform in areas of networking, storage (iscsi) and clustering. In this section, evaluators will experience these VMware vsphere features: High Availability (HA) vmotion Section 2 Section 3 Small to medium scale deployment with 4 or more VMware ESX hosts Medium to large scale, multisite deployment with 4 or more VMware ESX hosts per site Intermediate configuration of virtualization platform, including Host Profiles and Fibre Channel storage. In this section, evaluators will experience these VMware vsphere features: 1. Distributed Resource Scheduling (DRS) 2. Distributed Power Management (DPM) 3. Fault Tolerance (FT) 4. Storage vmotion and Thin Provisioning 5. Update Manager Advanced configuration and management topics of virtualization platform: 1. Multi-site management using LinkedMode 2. vnetwork Distributed Switch (vds) 3. Private VLAN 4. Dynamic Storage Management (e.g., growing a dynamic datastore) In addition, evaluators will experience these VMware vsphere features: Hot Add Custom Alarms (e.g., for network access) For advanced IT administrators who desire to programmatically manage their vsphere environments, this section provides exercises in using the vsphere CLI interfaces: 1. Management Assistant (vma) 2. PowerCLI C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 5

6 Reference Setup Environments Evaluators will need to provision the necessary hardware for the exercises included in this guide. In this section, details will be provided for a sample environment used for this vsphere evaluation in the lab. Below you will find architecture diagrams that illustrate the following setup in this lab: Active Directory, DNS, and DHCP services Sample vsphere Evaluation Set Logical network setup Active Directory, DNS, and DHCP services vsphere Eval Site Setup: IP Range: MASK: Default Gateway: adsrv1a Production Primary DNS, AD integrated, to allow for dynamic updates Single DHCP Scope ( excluded) Single Forest Root WIN2K3 Domain: tm.local adsrv1a adsrv1b adsrv1b Secondary DNS, AD integrated, to allow for dynamic updates adsrv1a DC Server for tm.local / Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Ed. Schema Master Domain Naming Master Infrastructure Master RID PDC adsrv1b DC Server for tm.local / Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Ed. Global Catalog Diagram A - Active Directory, DNS, and DHCP services in reference setup environment C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 6

7 VMware VMwarevSphere vsphere4.1 4 Sample vsphere Evaluation Set VMware Infrastructure vcenter Management Suite vsphere Evaluation Set vsphere Client vcenter Server VC-01 Datastore for VM Templates Datacenter_01 Example: IP Info for Set 01 vc01.tml.local esx01a.tml.local esx01b.tml.local VM VM VM es x0 1a FC_Set01_05 You can replace FC storage with iscsi storage according to your own requirements VM VM es VM x0 1b FC_Set01_06 Diagram B - Sample vsphere Evaluation Set Logical Network Setup VLAN Setup Service Console vswitch0 VMotion Fault Tolerance vmnic0 iscsi vmnic1 Virtual Machines VM01 vmnic2 Virtual Machines VM02 Virtual Machines VM03 vmnic3 Diagram C - VLAN Setup C o m petiti v e R e v iewer s G u i d e / 7

8 What Will Be Covered The content includes an overview of vsphere virtualization features, configuration options, and key use cases in order to demonstrate the tremendous benefits that vsphere provides to a datacenter and its advantages over other virtualization platforms. In the tables below, sections of the vsphere review that include competitive differentiators are marked with an asterisk (*). Note: The time estimate is an approximation, which may or may not necessarily reflect your time exact spent in each task. Section 1 Summary: CATEGORY FEATURES WHAT WILL BE COVERED TIME ESTIMATES Infrastructure Setup vnetwork Standard Switch Configuration* 1.1 Configure an existing vnetwork Standard Switch according to typical enterprise configuration with VLANs and NIC teaming 30 minutes 1. Add Port Groups to Standard Switch 2. Configure NIC Teaming Infrastructure Setup iscsi Storage Configuration 1.2 Configure iscsi Storage to house virtual machines 10 minutes 1. Confirm iscsi SW initiator has been configured on VMware ESX 2. Create a new iscsi datastore Infrastructure Setup ESX Host Cluster Setup 1.3 Create a new cluster of ESX hosts 1. Create a new cluster 2. Add ESX hosts to the cluster 10 minutes Infrastructure Setup vcenter Converter* 1.4 Use vcenter Converter to import Hyper-V VMs 10 minutes Availability and Capacity High Availability* 1.5 VMware HA detects server failure and restarts virtual machines on another host 10 minutes 1. Turn on VMware HA on a cluster 2. Set Admission Control and additional VMware HA options 3. Monitor VMware HA health from the Cluster Operational Status screen Availability and Capacity vmotion* 1.6 Allows the migration of running virtual machines from one ESX host to another. 10 minutes 1. Migrate a running virtual machine from one host to another host 2. Conduct simultaneous vmotions Availability and Capacity VMware Data Recovery 1.7 Use VMware Data Recovery to backup and restore VMs and VM files 10 minutes C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 8

9 Section 2 Summary: CATEGORY FEATURES WHAT WILL BE COVERED TIME ESTIMATES Infrastructure Setup FC Storage Setup 2.1 Create a second FC datastore 1. Create a new VMFS Volume/Datastore 10 minutes Infrastructure Setup ESXi Boot From SAN 2.2 Configure FC or iscsi Boot from SAN 20 minutes Infrastructure Setup Host Profiles* 2.3 Use host profiles to automate host provisioning and configuration: 30 minutes 1. Add two new hosts and re-configure their DNS and NTP settings 2. Create a host profile from a reference host 3. Attach host profile and check for host compliance 4. Apply host profile and re-check for host compliance Availability and Capacity Distributed Resource Scheduling* 2.4 Load balances resource utilization across a cluster using vmotion. 1. Turn on VMware DRS for a cluster 2. Set automation level for DRS cluster 3. Set automation level for each virtual machine 4. Set DRS host affinity rules 5. Enable DRS with HA and FT protected VMs 10 minutes Availability and Capacity Distributed Power Management* 2.5 Monitors the CPU and memory resource utilization of a cluster and decides whether to power off ESX hosts to reduce power consumption 20 minutes 1. Turn on VMware DPM for a cluster 2. Set Power Management for each ESX host in the cluster 3. Observe VMware DPM generating and executing recommendations Availability and Capacity Fault Tolerance* 2.6 VMware FT allows failover of a virtual machine with no data loss during server failures. 45 minutes 1. Turn on VMware Fault Tolerance for a virtual machine 2. Convert virtual disks to thick-provisioned virtual disk 3. Observe the following actions after turning on VMware FT 4. Simulate server failure to demonstrate FT failover 5. Observe vsphere alarms after host failure C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 9

10 CATEGORY FEATURES WHAT WILL BE COVERED TIME ESTIMATES Availability and Capacity Storage vmotion and Thin Provisioning* 2.7 Storage vmotion and Thin Provisioning. 1. Move VM from one datastore to the iscsi datastore.change the virtual disk format as you move the VMhome to the new datastore 20 minutes Application Deployment and Management VMware vapp* 2.8 Use VMware vapp to deploy and manage a multi-tier application: 1. Create a vapp 2. Specify startup sequence for the multi-tier application and perform single-step power operation 10 minutes Maintenance Update Manager* 2.9 Using Update Manager to automate ESX host and virtual machine patching and remediation Patching a cluster of ESX hosts with critical host patches Varies depending on number of patches 1. Attaching a Critical Host Patches Baseline to the cluster 2. Scanning the cluster for critical patch vulnerabilities 3. (Optional) Staging patches 4. Remediating the cluster with critical patches Orchestrated upgrade of datacenter to ESX 4.1 Upgrading an ESX 3.5 host to ESX 4.1 Upgrading VMware Tools and VM hardware 60 minutes per host 1. Attaching Tools upgrade Baseline group to the VM 2. Scanning the VM for VMware Tools and VM hardware upgrade compliance 3. Remediating the VM with VMware Tools and VM hardware upgrades Configuring Update Manager to use a central shared Patch Repository 1. Modifying Update Manager settings using vsphere Client 10 minutes to configure Update Manager. Time to setup patch repository varies depending on the number and size of patches C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 0

11 Section 3 Summary: CATEGORY FEATURES WHAT WILL BE COVERED TIME ESTIMATES Infrastructure Setup ESXi Scripted Mode Installation 3.1 Configure an ESXi host for a scripted, unattended installation 30 minutes Infrastructure Setup Linked Mode* 3.2 Automatic Role Replication across vcenter instances and performing cross vcenter tasks 20 minutes Automatic Role Replication across vcenter instances: 1. Create a custom role 2. Grant role to user or group 3. Verify replication Perform cross vcenter tasks 1. Remediate VMs with out-of-date VMware Tools 2. Identify datastores with low free space Infrastructure Setup vnetwork Distributed Switch* 3.3 Migrate from Standard Switch to a vnetwork Distributed Switch Per Host Manual Migration to vds: 90 minutes 1. Create vds 2. Create DV Port Groups 3. Add host to vds and migrate vmnics and virtual ports 4. Delete Standard Switch 5. Repeat Steps 3 & 4 for remaining hosts Configuration and Deployment of vds using Host Profiles 1-4 Migrate Reference Host to vds using Step 1-4 of Manual Migration 5. Create Host Profile of Reference Host 6. Attach and apply Host Profile to Candidate Hosts 7. Migrate VM Networking to vds Infrastructure Setup Network and Storage I/O Controls* 3.4 Configure Network I/O Control to prioritize different network traffic types on the vds Configure Storage I/O Control to enforce storage quality-of-service guarantees 20 minutes Infrastructure Setup Private VLANs with vnetwork Distributed Switch* 3.5 Create and use a Private VLAN on a vnetwork Distributed Switch: 1. Configure vds for Private VLAN 2. Create new DV Port Groups for Private VLANs 3. Move VMs to new DV Port Groups 30 minutes C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 1

12 CATEGORY FEATURES WHAT WILL BE COVERED TIME ESTIMATES Availability and Capacity VMware Hot Add* 3.6 Hot add capacity to powered-on virtual machines: 10 minutes 1. Enable memory/cpu hotplug support 2. Hot add CPU and memory to a powered-on virtual machine Availability and Capacity Dynamic Storage Management* 3.7 Migrate virtual machines to fill up a datastore, trigger an alarm, and then solve the issue by increasing the size of that datastore. 60 minutes 1. Use datastore views to confirm which virtual machines are in each datastore 2. Use Storage vmotion to fill up a datastore and trigger an alarm 3. Detect and investigate alarm that is triggered 4. Expand the datastore using VMFS Volume Grow 5. Notice alarm is now no longer raised Availability and Capacity Custom Alarm Setup* 3.8 Using a custom alarm for network access 1. Configure a vnetwork Distributed Switch 2. Set up a custom network alarm 3. Trigger the alarm 20 minutes Programmability vsphere Management Assistant (vma) 3.9 Using vma to interact remotely with ESX and ESXi Adding a vswitch to an ESX host, creating a portgroup and adding an uplink: 10 minutes 1. Adding target hosts to vma 2. List the vswitches on the host 3. Add a vswitch to the host, add a portgroup and an uplink Gathering logs from multiple ESX and ESXi hosts: 10 minutes 1. Adding target hosts to vma 2. Setting Up Log Collection for ESX/ESXi Hosts Programmability PowerCLI 3.10 Using PowerCLI to perform vsphere management tasks: 60 minutes 1. Enabe vmotion on all VMs 2. Storage vmotion with PowerCLI 3. Simple Automated Reporting with PowerCLI C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 2

13 VMware vsphere Review Worksheet You can use the worksheet below to organize your competitive review process. Hardware Checklist: All hardware has been validated against the VMware Hardware Compatibility List (HCL) Software Checklist: VMware ESX or ESXi VMware vcenter Server VMware vsphere Client After you have successfully installed the VMware vsphere software components on your hardware, you can proceed to perform the review of VMware vsphere. For each scenario, you can use the corresponding checklist below to ensure that you are following the proper sequence. Section 1 Network Configuration Storage Configuration Cluster Setup Physical and Virtual Machine Conversion High Availability vmotion Virtual Machine Backup and Restore Section 2 FC Storage Setup ESXi Boot from SAN Setup Host Profiles Distributed Resource Scheduling Distributed Power Management Fault Tolerance Storage vmotion and Thin Provisioning vapp Update Manager C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 3

14 Section 3 ESXi Scripted Installation Setup Linked Mode vnetwork Distributed Switch Private VLAN Network and Storage I/O Control Setup Hot Add Dynamic Storage Management Custom Alarm Setup Management Assistant PowerCLI Help and Support During the Review This guide is intended to provide an overview of the steps required to ensure a successful review of VMware vsphere. It is not meant to substitute for product documentation. Please refer to the online product documentation for vsphere for more detailed information (see below for links). You may also consult the online Knowledge Base if you have any additional questions. Press and analyst reviewers that require further assistance may contact the VMware Public Relations team to be placed in contact with technical resources at VMware. Customers that require further assistance should contact a VMware sales representative or channel partner. VMware vsphere and vcenter Resources: Product Documentation: Online Support: Support Offerings: Education Services: Support Knowledge Base: VMware vsphere Management Assistant VMware Command-Line Interface Documentation PowerCLI Toolkit Community: (or type Get-VIToolkitCommunity within PowerCLI) PowerCLI Blogs: C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 4

15 VMware Contact Information For customers seeking additional information or to purchase VMware vsphere, VMware s global network of solutions providers is ready to assist. If you would like to contact VMware directly, you can reach a sales representative at VMWARE ( outside North America) or When ing, please include the state, country and company name from which you are inquiring. You can also visit Press and analyst reviewers conducting comparative reviews of VMware vsphere and competing virtualization products should contact the VMware Public Relations team VMware PR team can arrange access to special technical support resources. Providing Feedback We appreciate your feedback on the material included in this guide. In particular, we would be grateful for any guidance on the following topics: How useful was the information in this guide? What other specific topics would you like to see covered? Overall, how would you rate this guide? Please send your feedback to the following address: with VMware vsphere 4.1 in the subject line. Thank you for your help in making this guide a valuable resource. Introduction: 1. Top 15 vsphere Advantages Over the Competition 1. The Industry s Most Reliable Hypervisor Just Got Better VMware ESX/ESXi 4.1 VMware ESX/ESXi 4.1, a part of VMware vsphere, extends the VMware legacy of highly reliable, highly scalable virtualization by delivering even greater levels of robustness, security and performance. Already, more than 85 percent of ESX/ESXi deployments are in production environments an example of how companies, both large and small, trust VMware for their business-critical workloads. ESXi 4.1 is the VMware thin virtualization form factor, with no dependence on a general-purpose server operating system in the virtualization layer. With a 70MB disk footprint, ESXi 4.1 dramatically shrinks the code base that must be maintained and secured, ultimately resulting in a more secure environment. In contrast, all versions of Microsoft Hyper-V R2 still rely on Windows Server running inside the parent partition, the same architecture as Hyper-V R1. So the smallest version of Hyper-V R2 available (Windows Server 2008 R2 with Server Core installation) still has a disk footprint of approximately 3.6GB, representing millions of more lines of code to maintain and secure. Hyper-V R2 s continued dependence on Windows means it still faces performance and scalability limitations, especially when running many concurrent virtual machines on the same host. With Hyper-V, the security and stability of your datacenter will always be dependent on the security and stability of Windows. Citrix XenServer has a similar problem because it relies on Linux running in the Domain Zero partition. An installation of XenServer 5.6 still has a disk footprint of approximately 1.8GB. C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 5

16 2. Reliable, Cost-Effective Solutions for Newcomers to Virtualization vsphere Essentials Editions and Acceleration Kits The robust, proven capabilities of VMware vsphere are now also available in cost-effective packages designed for small offices or those who are new to virtualization, starting at just $166 per processor. vsphere Essentials edition enables server consolidation and centralized provisioning, management and patching for immediate savings on hardware and operational costs. vsphere Essentials Plus edition is an easy-to-deploy, always-on IT package that includes everything from vsphere Essentials edition and adds capabilities to dramatically improve application uptime and quickly deploy data protection (with built-in data deduplication to save on storage costs). vsphere Acceleration Kits provide enterprise-level virtualization features including manageability, dynamic load balancing and business continuity. With vsphere Essentials, Essentials Plus, and Acceleration Kits, small and midsized offices get the industry s most proven, complete virtualization platform in an integrated package that solves a small and midsized office s most pressing needs application uptime and data protection. The free Hyper-V from Microsoft and XenServer from Citrix are still just hypervisors with point capabilities, as opposed to a complete solution. Businesses still must purchase Microsoft System Center or a paid version of Citrix XenServer to get management capabilities that are critical for controlling costs. 3. Higher Consolidation Ratios Mean Lower Cost than Free vsphere Performance Improvements Better performance and utilization lead to higher virtual machine consolidation ratios, which lead to lower capital expenditure costs. vsphere significantly improves the performance of all subsystems over the already high standards set by VMware Infrastructure 3 from CPU to memory to storage to networking to cluster-level utilization, to achieve the highest consolidation ratios in the industry. (Refer to vsphere Key Features for details on all of the performance improvements of vsphere.) New in vsphere 4.1 are Memory Compression (to further optimize memory usage while delivering high performance) and Storage and Network I/O Control (to set quality of service for storage and network I/O traffic). This overall VMware advantage in performance and scalability results in a lower total cost compared to virtualizing with other vendors so-called free offerings. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 and Citrix XenServer continue to trail considerably in consolidation ratios because they lack fundamental capabilities such as a highperformance gang scheduler, a full set of memory management capabilities (ballooning, transparent page sharing, memory compression), a direct driver model, and logical resource pools with dynamic load balancing. As a result, Microsoft s Hyper-V and Citrix XenServer offerings are often more expensive than the robust, proven VMware vsphere solution. 4. Zero Downtime, Zero Data Loss for Applications VMware Fault Tolerance VMware Fault Tolerance (VMware FT) ensures that protected applications are always available, even in the event of hardware failure your applications might never have to go down again. It creates a shadow copy of a protected virtual machine and automatically triggers a seamless stateful failover if the virtual machine stops responding due to hardware failure. After the failover, VMware FT automatically creates a new shadow copy on another host to ensure continuous protection. It works with all types of shared storage Fibre Channel, NAS or iscsi and with all operating systems supported by VMware ESX. No complex setup is required, and applications do not have to be cluster aware. Microsoft has no equivalent functionality; in January 2009, it made a preannouncement with Marathon Technologies on a VMware FT-like capability for Hyper-V R2. But since then, there has been no update on delivery date or any public beta code. Microsoft claims that active-active clustering can address the same need, but active-active clustering is complex to set up and only works with a small set of cluster-aware applications. Marathon has released an add-on for Citrix XenServer, but it comes at a significantly extra cost ($2,800 list price per XenServer host) and has major limitations (it only works with three guest operating systems: Windows bit, Windows bit and Windows Server 2008 R1 64-bit). C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 6

17 5. Virtual Networking for Private Clouds VMware vnetwork Distributed Switch With VMware vnetwork Distributed Switch (Distributed Switch), IT can manage one virtual switch that spans an entire cluster instead of managing a separate virtual switch for each host a new, time-saving way to manage virtual networks. It creates a single distributed switch that spans a cluster of ESX/ESXi hosts and retains network runtime state when virtual machines move between hosts. This new capability is a critical enabler for building private clouds because it enables cluster-level network settings to be managed and policies to be enforced centrally. Networking vendors have built third-party virtual switches, such as the Cisco Nexus 1000V, based on the Distributed Switch, to make it easier to integrate virtualized environments and manage physical and virtual networks with a common set of tools. For customers, this means that environments that were not previously virtualized, due to security reasons, DMZ or compliance requirements, can now be easily virtualized and centrally controlled. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 has nothing comparable to Distributed Switch. Those who deploy Hyper-V R2 must manually manage virtual networks on a host-by-host basis. Each time a Hyper-V virtual machine migrates from one host to another, the administrator must manually reconfigure network settings for it. In 2009, Citrix announced plans to deliver an open-source version of a distributed switch, but that capability has not yet been made available another example of Citrix s selling futures to customers on capabilities that VMware delivers today. 6. A Better Way to Enforce Network Security in a Virtual Environment VMware vshield Zones A key benefit of virtualization is the ability to break down silos within the datacenter. So why create silos of physical virtualization hosts to enforce security zones? VMware vshield Zones (vshield Zones) enables you to manage your security zones in software. vshield Zones controls network access to sensitive areas of the virtual datacenter DMZ, applications subject to SOX compliance, and so on on a virtual machine by virtual machine basis. Companies can enforce security zones using this integrated vsphere capability (manage it in software) instead of creating new physical silos of virtualization hosts (manage it by separating hardware). This capability is critical to the sharing of resource computing pools, a core element of cloud computing. Neither Microsoft Hyper-V R2 nor Citrix XenServer has anything comparable to vshield Zones. Those who deploy Hyper-V R2 or XenServer must enforce security zones by setting up silos of physical hosts. 7. Easier Way to Configure Virtualization Hosts VMware Host Profiles VMware Host Profiles greatly simplifies ESX host configuration management, reducing operational costs, because IT administrators spend less time manually configuring and compliance checking each individual host. It automatically applies a gold host configuration profile (includes networking, storage and security settings) to multiple ESX hosts. It also monitors compliance to the gold host configuration profile and can remediate noncompliant hosts with the push of a button. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 has no automated, out-of-box host profiling capability. Host configuration and remediation requires a manual installation and not-so-easy configuration of Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager. XenServer s host pooling capabilities enable sharing of storage and networking configuration settings but do not do compliance checking and automated remediation. 8. Add Virtual Machine Resources with No Downtime Hot-Add CPU/Memory, Hot-Add/Extend Disks Even with the best preplanning, applications at times might require more resources than originally were expected. VMware vsphere delivers hot-add virtual CPU/memory and hot-add/extend virtual disks to dynamically add virtual machine resources. The ability to hot-add and hot-extend enables IT to increase the amount of resources available to an application, by provisioning additional CPU, memory and disk to the virtual machine without disrupting the application or the end users. Hot-add/extend of virtual disk is supported on all virtual machines. Hot-add of virtual CPU/memory is supported on any guest operating system that natively supports hot-add CPU/memory on a physical server. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 and Citrix XenServer have no hot-add virtual CPU, hot-add virtual memory or hot-extend virtual disk. They only have hot-add virtual disk, which requires a running application to recognize and deal with a new drive letter. The vsphere hot-extend virtual disk is more flexible and nondisruptive because it adds more capacity to an existing virtual drive. C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 7

18 9. Virtualize 100 Percent of Your Applications Support for Eight Virtual CPUs and 255GB per Virtual Machine Higher CPU and memory maximums per virtual machine enable companies to virtualize the CPU and memory-intensive applications in their datacenters. VMware vsphere enables a single virtual machine to simultaneously use up to eight logical processors (8-way virtual SMP) and 255GB of RAM. With 8-way virtual SMP, even the most processor-intensive applications, such as databases and messaging servers, can be virtualized with no impact to performance. With 255GB per virtual machine, companies can run the most memory-intensive workloads. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 supports 4-way virtual SMP on Windows Server 2008 and Windows 7 virtual machines only all other guest operating systems are limited to 1- or 2-way virtual SMP. Regarding memory, Hyper-V R2 supports only up to 64GB of RAM per virtual machine. These limitations of Hyper-V R2 mean that companies can virtualize only a small subset of their applications. Citrix XenServer s main limitation is that it supports only up to 32GB of RAM per virtual machine. 10. Enabling the Internal Cloud in the Datacenter Improved Logical Resource Pools and DRS New VMware vsphere cluster-level management capabilities Distributed Switch, vshield Zones, VMware Distributed Power Management (VMware DPM), and so on its performance and utilization optimizations and its VMware Distributed Resource Scheduler (VMware DRS) all improve the effectiveness and flexibility of VMware logical resource pools. These resource pools aggregate and share resources across many servers the essence of cloud computing. Companies can create a logical, shared pool of resources for a specific business group and guarantee resource availability while maintaining isolation from other pools. VMware DRS enables intelligent, automated load balancing so applications get the right level of resources at the right time. It is the heart of enabling logical resource pools that deliver on SLAs. Microsoft PRO Tips and Citrix WLB are the competitive offerings to VMware DRS, but both have major limitations and neither supports true logical resource pools. With PRO Tips, one major issue is that it relies upon multiple third-party management packs for its intelligence there is no way to ensure that those packs do not issue conflicting recommendations. With Citrix WLB, the automation heuristics are quite primitive and, in lab testing, don t always trigger when they are expected to. And, again, neither is designed to carve up a cluster of resources into logical resource pools. Those who deploy Hyper-V R2 or XenServer must set up dedicated physical clusters of hosts for each business group, a rigid, siloed infrastructure that is time consuming and costly to maintain. 11. Lower OpEx Costs During Planned Maintenance Improved VMware vmotion, Storage vmotion The need to perform planned maintenance during nonpeak hours is a significant contributor to higher operational costs. Overtime pay for nights and weekends is compounded with time spent coordinating with business owners to schedule a maintenance window. vsphere improves on the market-proven VMware vmotion and Storage vmotion capabilities that enable IT administrators to perform planned maintenance during normal business hours without a maintenance window. Enhanced vmotion Compatibility (EVC) automatically configures servers whose CPUs feature Intel FlexMigration and AMD-V Extended Migration technologies to be vmotion compatible with servers that use older CPUs. vsphere 4.1 also improves the speed of a vmotion operation by up to 10x over previous generations. Storage vmotion now works across different types of storage (FC, iscsi, NFS, DAS) and has a new graphical administrator interface in VMware vcenter Server. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 has a CPU compatibility mode, but it downgrades the entire Hyper-V cluster to look like Pentium 4 CPUs to the virtual machines (Intel CPU generation from 2005). For storage migration, Hyper-V R2 has an inferior capability called Quick Storage Migration, which disrupts applications and therefore causes application downtime; Citrix XenServer has nothing built in at all. C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 8

19 12. Save on Storage Costs VMware vstorage Thin Provisioning with Comprehensive Alerts VMware vstorage Thin Provisioning (Thin Provisioning) is a cost-saving technology that defers and avoids excess storage costs. The technology lowers capital and operating expenditures by reducing disk purchases and cutting the power and cooling costs of the excess disk. Thin provisioning of disks works by enabling IT administrators to create virtual machines without having to provision all the storage upfront. When a virtual machine is created, the thin-provisioned disk only consumes what s needed. Then the virtual disk grows over time when more storage space is required. Thin Provisioning comes with comprehensive consumption-based monitoring and alerting. IT administrators can set alerts to trigger when they need to procure more storage or to rebalance virtual machines across the available storage with Storage vmotion. These monitoring and alerting capabilities prevent the accidental running out of storage space. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 has thin provisioning of disks but lacks the built-in monitoring and alerting capabilities that make it safe to use. Citrix XenServer only supports thin disks with a small set of SAN products. 13. Save Even More Energy VMware Distributed Power Management VMware Distributed Power Management (VMware DPM) reduces datacenter energy consumption during nonpeak hours by consolidating workloads within a cluster and turning off unneeded servers think of it as cluster-wide power management. While other offerings focus only on power savings for individual servers, VMware DPM provides a holistic, cluster-wide approach to power savings. To conserve energy during periods of low utilization (e.g., evenings, weekends, and so on), it consolidates workloads and powers-off unused host servers. When utilization is expected to increase (e.g., before a work day begins and so on), it brings servers back online to ensure that service levels are met. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 has nothing comparable. Microsoft talks about PRO Tips doing something similar to VMware DPM, but it has not demonstrated a PRO Tips based solution that can intelligently consolidate, power-off, and power-on a cluster of Hyper-V hosts based on application resource requirements. Paid versions of Citrix XenServer 5.6 include a version 1.0 technology called Advanced Power Management (APM); but in lab testing, it did not always power-up/-down servers when it should have. 14. Use the Operating System That s Right for You Broadest Guest Operating System Support VMware has always supported the broadest set of guest operating systems in the industry, including Windows, Linux, Solaris and Novell NetWare, so companies can virtualize their existing applications and maintain flexibility for future applications. vsphere 4.1 now supports 65 guest operating systems, including the latest Windows and Linux distributions that s more versions of Windows than even Microsoft Hyper-V supports and more versions of Linux than Citrix XenServer supports. In contrast, Microsoft Hyper-V R2 supports only 17 guest operating systems; it treats Linux more like a secondclass citizen, with support for new capabilities on Linux trailing support on Windows by many months if not years. This bias towards Windows limits a customer s ability to virtualize existing non-windows applications and restricts choice when making future application decisions. Citrix XenServer supports 25 guest operating systems, which is less than 40 percent of what vsphere 4.1 supports. 15. Built-in Network Adaptor Failover and Load Balancing Improved Integrated Network Adaptor Teaming VMware vsphere provides built-in network adaptor failover and load balancing to each networked virtual machine, which results in greater hardware availability and fault tolerance in case of network adaptor failure. It works with any network adaptor supported by VMware ESX. Network adaptor teaming policies allow users to configure multiple active and standby adaptors; teaming configurations can vary per port group on the same virtual switch, uplinks and network traffic loading, balancing across the network adaptors. Microsoft Hyper-V R2 still does not have integrated network adaptor teaming, instead relying on third-party network adaptor drivers to provide the functionality. The issues with the third-party approach are: 1) the drivers only work with network adaptors from that same third party; 2) it requires a separate installation; and 3) it is unclear whether Microsoft or the third party provides support if an issue arises. Citrix XenServer does support network adaptor teaming, but it lacks any load balancing capabilities. C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 1 9

20 2. What s New in vsphere 4.1? Any customer, as well as press and analyst reviewers, should be sure to use the new vsphere 4.1 release to experience the latest enhancements offered by VMware. vsphere 4.1 pushes the envelope on two dimensions: 1. It dramatically expands the scale of the platform to an unmatched number of virtual machines and virtualized hosts, supporting the buildout of private and public clouds at even lower operational costs than before. 2. It introduces new capabilities for the most efficient aggregation of all datacenter resources into an elastic pool of computing power that applications can utilize on an as-needed basis, ensuring that SLAs are met. Installation and Deployment Scripted Install for ESXi. Scripted installation of ESXi to local and remote disks enables rapid deployment of ESXi to many machines. You can start the scripted installation with a CD-ROM drive or over the network by using PXE booting. Storage Boot from SAN. vsphere 4.1 enables ESXi boot from SAN (BFN). iscsi, FCoE and Fibre Channel boot are supported. Refer to the HCL for the latest list of network adaptors and converged adaptors that are supported with iscsi boot. Hardware Acceleration with vstorage APIs for Array Integration (vaai). ESX can offload specific storage operations to compliant storage hardware. With storage hardware assistance, ESX performs these operations faster and consumes less CPU, memory and storage fabric bandwidth. Storage Performance Statistics. vsphere 4.1 offers enhanced visibility into storage throughput and latency of hosts and virtual machines. It aids in troubleshooting storage performance issues. NFS statistics are now available in vcenter Server performance charts as well as esxtop. New VMDK and datastore statistics are included. All statistics are available through the vsphere SDK. Storage I/O Control (SIOC). This feature provides quality-of-service capabilities for storage I/O in the form of I/O shares and limits that are enforced across all virtual machines accessing a datastore, regardless of which host they are running on. Using SIOC, vsphere administrators can ensure that the most important virtual machines get adequate I/O resources, even in times of congestion. iscsi Hardware Offloads. vsphere 4.1 enables 10Gb iscsi hardware offloads (Broadcom 57711) and 1Gb iscsi hardware offloads (Broadcom 5709). NFS Performance Enhancements. Networking performance for NFS has been optimized to improve throughput and reduce CPU usage. Network Network I/O Control (NetIOC). Traffic-management controls enable flexible partitioning of physical network adaptor bandwidth between different traffic types, including virtual machine, vmotion, fault-tolerant and IP storage traffic (VMware vnetwork Distributed Switch (Distributed Switch) only). IPv6 Enhancements. IPv6 in ESX supports Internet Protocol Security (IPsec) with manual keying. Load-Based Teaming. vsphere 4.1 enables dynamic adjustment of the teaming algorithm so that the load is always balanced across a team of physical adaptors on a Distributed Switch. E1000 vnic Enhancements. E1000 vnic supports jumbo frames in vsphere 4.1. Availability Windows Failover Clustering with VMware High Availability (VMware HA). Clustered virtual machines that utilize Windows Failover Clustering/Microsoft Cluster Service are now fully supported in conjunction with VMware HA. C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 2 0

21 VMware HA Scalability Improvements. VMware HA has the same limits for virtual machines per host, hosts per cluster, and virtual machines per cluster as vsphere. VMware HA Healthcheck and Operational Status. The VMware HA dashboard in the vsphere Client provides a new detailed window called Cluster Operational Status. This window displays more information about the current VMware HA operational status, including the specific status and errors for each host in the VMware HA cluster. VMware Fault Tolerance (VMware FT) Enhancements. vsphere 4.1 introduces a fault tolerance (FT) specific versioning-control mechanism that enables the primary and secondary virtual machines to run on FT-compatible hosts at different but compatible patch levels. vsphere 4.1 differentiates between events that are logged for a primary virtual machine and those that are logged for its secondary virtual machine, and it reports on why a host might not support FT. In addition, you can disable VMware HA when FT-enabled virtual machines are deployed in a cluster, enabling cluster maintenance operations without turning off FT. VMware Distributed Resource Scheduler (VMware DRS) Interoperability for VMware HA and VMware FT. FT-enabled virtual machines can take advantage of VMware DRS functionality for load balancing and initial placement. In addition, VMware HA and VMware DRS are tightly integrated, which enables VMware HA to restart virtual machines in more situations. Enhanced Network Logging Performance. FT network logging performance enables improved throughput and reduced CPU usage. In addition, you can use vmxnet3 vnics in FT-enabled virtual machines. Concurrent VMware Data Recovery Sessions. vsphere 4.1 provides the ability to concurrently manage multiple VMware Data Recovery appliances. vstorage APIs for Data Protection (VADP) Enhancements. VADP now offers VSS quiescing support for Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 servers. This enables application-consistent backup and restore operations for Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2008 R2 applications. Management VMware vsphere 4.1 PowerCLI (vsphere PowerCLI) Enhancements. vsphere PowerCLI adds options for SCSI, VAAI, network and virtual machine control, including the ability to terminate an unresponsive virtual machine. In addition, vsphere 4.1 provides controls that enable you to log vsphere PowerCLI activity. Lockdown Mode Enhancements. VMware ESXi 4.1 lockdown mode enables the administrator to tightly restrict access to the ESXi Direct Console User Interface (DCUI) and Tech Support Mode (TSM). When lockdown mode is enabled, DCUI access is restricted to the root user, while access to Tech Support Mode is completely disabled for all users. With lockdown mode enabled, access to the host for management or monitoring using CIM is possible only through vcenter Server. Direct access to the host using the vsphere Client is not permitted. Access Virtual Machine Serial Ports over the Network. You can redirect virtual machine serial ports over a standard network link in vsphere 4.1. This enables solutions such as third-party virtual serial port concentrators for virtual machine serial console management or monitoring. vcenter Converter Hyper-V Import. vcenter Converter enables users to point to a Hyper-V machine. It displays the virtual machines running on the Hyper-V system, and users can select a powered-off virtual machine to import to a VMware destination. Enhancements to Host Profiles. You can use Host Profiles to roll out administrator password changes in vsphere 4.1. Enhancements also include improved Cisco Nexus 1000V support and PCI device ordering configuration. Unattended Authentication in vsphere Management Assistant (vma). vma 4.1 offers improved authentication capability, including integration with Active Directory and commands to configure the connection. C o m p e t i t i v e R e v i e w e r s G u i d e / 2 1

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