VMware vSphere 6.5: Next Gen Infrastructure for Modern Applications
VMware vSphere 6.5 will feature a simplified customer experience through increased automation and management capabilities, comprehensive built-in security, and support for new application types including containers. With these new capabilities, VMware vSphere 6.5 offers customers a universal application platform that supports traditional and modern applications — spanning 3D graphics, Big Data, cloud-native, containerized machine learning and Software as a Service — to run any application anywhere. The new release will feature:
VMware vCenter Server® Appliance – will deliver a simplified building block for vSphere environments offering an easy to deploy and manage approach that reduces operational complexity by embedding key functionality into a single virtual appliance. The appliance will offer customers simplified patching, upgrading, backup and recovery, high availability and more, including a 2x increase in both scale and performance of their vCenter Server environments.
REST APIs – will improve both the IT and developer experience by enabling greater control and automation of virtual infrastructure for modern applications via new REST-based APIs.
VMware vSphere Client – based on HTML5, the new vSphere Client will simplify the administrative experience via a modern, native tool that meets the performance and usability needs and expectations of users for day-to-day operations.
VM Encryption – new virtual machine-level encryption will protect against unauthorized data access safeguarding data at rest as well as virtual machines that are moved with VMware vMotion®.
Secure Boot – new feature will prevent the tampering of images as well as the loading of unauthorized components into vSphere environments.
VMware vSphere Integrated Containers™ – will allow IT operations teams to provide a Docker-compatible interface to their app teams enabling vSphere customers to transform their businesses with containers without re-architecting their existing infrastructure.
More information: Introducing vSphere 6.5
VMware Virtual SAN 6.5: Further Lowering TCO for Hyper-Converged Infrastructures
VMware continues to rapidly update its industry-leading hyper-converged solution with Virtual SAN 6.5 — its fifth product release in less than three years. The new release will improve total cost of ownership (TCO) savings an additional 50 percent by adding support for containers and physical workloads, unveiling iSCSI support, eliminating networking hardware costs from two-node Remote Office/Branch Office (ROBO) configurations, and adding all-flash hardware support to Virtual SAN Standard Edition. VMware Virtual SAN 6.5 will deliver:
iSCSI Support – will enable Virtual SAN storage to be presented as an iSCSI target for external physical workloads including clustered applications such as Microsoft SQL Server with Failover Clustering on a limited number of physical servers.
Containers Support – Virtual SAN will provide persistent data layer for containerized applications via VMware vSphere Integrated Containers.
Two-node Direct Connect – new functionality will eliminate the need for routers/switches between Virtual SAN systems in ROBO sites helping customers lower infrastructure costs by 15 to 20 percent per site.
REST APIs and Expanded PowerCLI – will help customers accelerate responsiveness with enterprise-class automation that brings cloud-like flexibility and management to Virtual SAN environments.
512e Hard Disk Drives and Solid State Drives (SSDs) – support for 512-byte emulated disk drives enables high-capacity drives to be supported.
In Q4 2016, VMware will update the packaging for Virtual SAN Standard Edition to introduce support for basic all-flash configurations enabling customers to further lower TCO for their storage system.
VMware today is announcing a new VMware Ready for vSAN certification program to provide customers with the confidence that file services and data protection partner solutions will seamlessly deploy, run and interoperate with Virtual SAN. The program will accelerate customer time-to-value by helping them to quickly find a qualified solution partner. Dell EMC, NetApp and Nexenta are the initial file services partners. Commvault, Dell EMC, Veeam and Veritas are the initial data protection partners participating in this program. Over time, VMware expects to work with additional partners to further enhance the ecosystem.
In addition, VMware is also announcing vSphere Virtual Volumes™ 2.0, which will feature enhanced enterprise-readiness through capabilities like native support for array replication, as well as support for business-critical applications such as Oracle Database with Real Application Clusters.
More information: What’s New with VMware Virtual SAN 6.5 / What’s New in Virtual Volumes 2.0
VMware vRealize: Enhances Ease of Use with Out-of-the-Box Support for Azure and Containers
VMware today introduced a number of updates to its cloud management platform with significant enhancements to vRealize Automation and vRealize Log Insight™. To better address the needs of developers and IT teams, VMware vRealize Automation 7.2 will introduce out-of-the box support for Microsoft Azure as well as new container management capabilities. With this new release, the ability of IT and DevOps practitioners to use unified service blueprints to simplify the delivery of integrated multi-tier applications with application-centric networking and security will be extended to Microsoft Azure, as well as currently supported clouds including Amazon Web Services (AWS), VMware vCloud® Air™ and the vCloud Air Network™.
VMware vRealize Automation 7.2 support for containers will enable developers and application teams to accelerate application delivery. The latest release will feature Admiral™, a highly scalable and lightweight container management portal to deploy and manage containers to Docker hosts supporting operating systems that Docker supports. Currently VMware is testing Admiral to deploy containers to virtual
container hosts on VMware vSphere Integrated Containers in a private beta. Beyond Admiral support, developers will be able to provision container hosts from the vRealize Automation 7.2 service catalog. They will have the choice of modeling containerized applications using unified service blueprints or Docker Compose. Application teams will have the ability to build hybrid deployments consisting of VMs and containers. Cloud administrators will be able to manage container hosts and apply governance to their usage including capacity quotas or approval workflows. vRealize Automation 7.2 is well suited to organizations required to support existing apps while modernizing them via the adoption of microservices and a cloud-native architecture. VMware’s multi-technology approach across private and public clouds with support for containers and OpenStack affords customers the flexibility to manage their talent pools and technology stacks as needed today and over time.
VMware is also introducing vRealize Log Insight 4.0 and vRealize Operations 6.4. The latest release of VMware’s log management and analysis solution will feature enhanced alert management functionality and a redesigned, easy to use interface. VMware vRealize Operations 6.4 will deliver improved alert management and metric grouping for faster troubleshooting and new dashboards customized to specific user personas that span infrastructure, application and cloud teams. Both vRealize Log Insight 4.0 and vRealize Operations 6.4 will also include integrations with the newly announced vSphere 6.5.
More information: vRealize Automation 7.2 – What’s New / New vRealize Log Insight 4.0 release
VMware Cloud Services: New Hybrid Cloud Solutions for the Enterprise
VMware continues to help customers extend their private workloads into the public cloud, using VMware vCloud Air Network and VMware vCloud Air. A common driver for cloud adoption is Disaster Recovery as a Service. VMware vCloud Air Network recently introduced VMware vCloud Availability™ for vCloud Director® to the ecosystem of over 4,000 service providers located in more than 100 countries offering VMware-based cloud services. As part of today’s announcements, VMware is also introducing the beta of a new vCloud Air disaster recovery solution designed specifically for the enterprise. The new offering is designed to provide the security and isolation of a dedicated cloud environment combined with the simplicity of a replication solution that is directly integrated into vSphere and optimized with SD-WAN technologies. As part of today’s announcement, VMware is also introducing the beta of VMware Cloud Foundation Service on vCloud Air which provides a fast and easy way to leverage the combined power of vSphere, Virtual SAN, NSX and SDDC Manager in a fully integrated service offering from VMware. When combined with VMware Cloud Foundation environments on-premises, customers gain cloud scale, agility, and flexibility with complete compatibility for a unified hybrid cloud experience.
More information: vCloud Availability for vCloud Director
VMware Adapter for SAP Landscape Management Version 1.4
VMware private cloud solution for SAP defines the software stack to virtualize, secure and automate SAP environments leveraging VMware’s software-defined architecture. At its core, it includes vSphere, NSX, vRealize Automation and the VMware Adapter for SAP Landscape Management (LaMa). For customers interested in hyper-converged storage, VMware Virtual SAN can also be added.
VMware Adapter for SAP Landscape Management is the new key element that integrates SAP Landscape Management with VMware management software (vCenter Server and vRealize Automation), delivering unique automation capabilities that radically simplifies how you provision and manage SAP Landscapes. The VMware Adapter for SAP Landscape Management empowers SAP BASIS admins to automate operations, such as cloning, copying, refreshing, mass stop and start and migration of entire SAP landscapes while maintaining application consistency.
In the upcoming 1.4 version that will be releasing in Q4, we are delivering several important new features, including integration with vRealize Automation 7 and the option to obtain enterprise level support from VMware GSS. The free community edition of the Adapter will continue to be available for non-production environments.
By leveraging the new adapter in conjunction with the other elements of the VMware private cloud solution for SAP, many of the operational overhead of managing infrastructure for SAP environments can be drastically reduced from days to minutes.
More information: VMware Adapter for SAP LVM
New VMware Workspace ONE Essentials and Digital Workspace Innovations
Companies are turning to Workspace ONE to power their digital transformations and Workspace ONE Essentials is a new edition for companies that have implemented a bring-your-own (BYO) initiative and enables unmanaged devices to access business applications and services through an identity-defined workspace. The solution includes user authentication and an application catalogue so IT administrators can have control and visibility into the access of business applications for enterprise security. End-users benefit from consumer simplicity with unified access to all approved business resources needed for productivity, application self-service, and SSO using any device or platform. End-users benefit from consumer simplicity with unified access to all approved business resources needed for productivity, application self-service, and SSO using any device or platform.
Combined with the existing Workspace ONE solution portfolio, companies can now deploy a company-wide digital workspace strategy using a solution that can extend to all user types and use cases using Workspace ONE. VMware continues to innovate Workspace ONE with new data loss prevention (DLP) capabilities to prevent Office 365 applications from being linked to personal online file sharing services. The Workspace ONE policy engine enables the use of personal file sharing applications for personal files and containerizes work applications such as Office 365. This capability will enable organizations to deploy Office 365 securely and integrate it with other applications and services approved for corporate use while keeping files and data within the corporate container on the device.
Lastly, VMware and F5 Networks have collaborated to enable SSO to all existing enterprise web applications including ones that do not support security assertion markup language (SAML). This is delivered through the F5 Networks BIG-IP platform on Workspace ONE. This expands the SSO capabilities
already in Workspace ONE and broadens the range of applications that can be made available in the digital workspace (web, mobile, SaaS, modern and legacy Windows) to enhance the end-user experience.
More information: Introducing VMware Workspace ONE Essentials / Workspace ONE Infographic
Collaboration with Microsoft to Deliver Optimized Skype for Business Experience in Horizon
VMware will demonstrate a technology preview during the general session at VMworld on Wednesday, October 19 that showcases VMware and Microsoft collaborating to enhance the Microsoft Skype for Business experience in Horizon virtual desktops and published applications. The solution will create a direct peer-to-peer endpoint virtual channel and offloads media processing to the endpoints, resulting in an improved end-user experience while reducing the strain on datacenter infrastructure. In general, the use of Skype for Business in a virtual desktop offers secure collaboration to keep corporate data secure in the datacenter and prevent data leakage. It also offers simple management with greater visibility, policy management and control through centralized deployment and application updates. Lastly, it delivers a consistent end-user experience across any device and platform along with lower IT infrastructure costs.
“Microsoft and VMware have a long history of collaborating to bring modern desktop and application solutions to customers and those efforts continue with the technology preview of Skype for Business on Horizon 7,” said Andrew Sinclair, general manager, Skype Marketing, Microsoft. “Microsoft providing Skype API’s to VDI vendors such as VMware enables both companies to offer great Skype deployment options to their customers. Virtualization provides benefits such as secure collaboration by avoiding remote data loss, simplified desktop management, and a consistent experience for virtualized users.”
More information: VMware + Microsoft: Delivering an Even Better Skype for Business Experience
Photon Platform Introduces Kubernetes as a Service, New Networking and Storage Services
In August 2015, VMware introduced Photon Platform as an enterprise cloud-native infrastructure platform optimized for containers and modern applications. It is purpose-built for use in API-driven, multi-tenant and high-scale environments. With this release, VMware will expand Photon Platform with new developer services and broader infrastructure functionality including:
Kubernetes as a Service – VMware Photon Platform will enable IT operations teams to deliver Kubernetes as a Service to developers in a multi-tenant fashion for workload isolation and security. Kubernetes clusters — which can be sized from single node clusters to hundreds of nodes — can be provisioned in minutes with developers being able to scale up their clusters as needed with no down time. The resilient VMware Photon Platform features high availability capabilities such as automatic healing from failures to reduce downtime of Kubernetes services. VMware provides end-to-end support of Photon Platform including a commercially-supported distribution of Kubernetes.
Virtual Networks Powered by VMware NSX – Photon Platform will introduce network services based on the industry leading VMware NSX. Initially, the platform will provide switching and routing services. Over time, the platform will offer a complete set of logical networking elements and services. Learn more about VMware NSX.
Hyper-converged Storage Powered by VMware Virtual SAN – Photon Platform will introduce block storage services featuring the industry-leading VMware Virtual SAN. This new service will offer flexible, programmable and proven persistent storage for containerized and cloud-native applications. The service will deliver elastic storage that scales up and out to enable rapid application deployment. Workloads will benefit from robust data services such as deduplication, stretched clusters, erasure coding and more. Built using a hyper-converged infrastructure model, Photon Platform offers customers a simplified hardware architecture that enables customers to scale-out their server and storage resources incrementally. Photon Platform will also connect to external NAS and SAN arrays. Learn more about VMware Virtual SAN.
Photon Platform has incorporated Kubernetes, network and storage services to enable IT to deliver a growing set of on-demand services to developers. Developers will be able to rapidly provision Kubernetes clusters, containers and virtual machines from a catalog of machine sizes, container and operating system base images managed by IT.
Photon Platform is suited for deployments where organizations are embracing DevOps and agile development practices and require a technology stack that aligns with modern application development practices. Additionally, Photon Platform supports IT operations teams moving workloads from public cloud to private cloud to reduce OPEX costs without sacrificing the benefits of highly available IT resources.
More information: VMware Photon Platform: The Private Cloud for Developers
PowerCLI Core Fling
This release is based on, and requires, Microsoft PowerShell Core and .NET core. If you do not already have it installed, see the accompanied documentation for a walkthrough on getting started.
Feedback is very much welcomed. Please use the Fling site’s comment section to submit feedback. Keep in mind, we improve the product based off of your feedback, so please do let us know!
Enough suspense, the PowerCLI Core Fling is available here: https://labs.vmware.com/flings/powercli-core