VMworld content catalog hints at VSAN upgrade

VSAN getting closer to real SANs, desktop hypervisors to grow up at virtugabfests

The content catalog for VMware's North American and European virtu-fests – aka VMworld – has landed, complete with a few hints about just what Virtzilla will announce at the show.

The catalog isn't final, which is reasonable given the show is still eight weeks off. VMware has named the theme for this year's events - "Ready for Any" - but hasn't been silly enough to list sessions about headline news items from the show at this stage.

Which is not to say there's nothing to be learned by grazing the catalog. A big hint can be found in a session “STO5877”, described as titled What's New in Virtual SAN 6.1that promises a chance to “Come learn what’s new with the latest release of Virtual SAN 6.1. Some of the most exciting features in VMware’s first software-defined storage product will be announced ...”. VSAN's currently in version 6.0, so is due at least a small upgrade. Word on the street is that data compression, de-duplication and erasure coding are likely additions. Those features are certainly worthy additions to VSAN, as the first two are utterly mainstream for physical or virtual storage. Erasure coding also makes sense as it allows data redundancy while using fewer disks than RAID. With one of VSAN's main schticks being that it allows cheaper storage than dedicated arrays, it would make sense to include it. Throw in the fact that Nutanix, a company VMware likes to best, has signalled it will add erasure codes to its products, and a VSAN announcement looks likely.

There's also a session promising ” the latest update to our vSphere and vSphere with Operations Management product line-ups”, although as vSphere 6.0 landed this year and VMware has hinted at a slower release cadence it seems wise to assume only small enhancements.

More concrete news looks to be on offer for users of VMware's desktop hypervisors, which look to be getting refreshes, if sessions titled What’s New in VMware Fusion Pro 2015 and What's new in Workstation 15. These products are currently known as Fusion Pro 7 and Workstation 11, so it looks like a new naming scheme is on the way too.

The catalog also hints at a forthcoming deployment wizard and improved high availability options for vRealize Automation, and new features for vRealize Operations.

Another session, “VDI Sizing Deep Dive” promises to ”reveal the Horizon Sizing Tool”, suggesting VMware is offering more help to those contemplating desktop virtualisation.

The hints in the catalog don't, to the minds behind The Reg's virtualisation desk, suggest the conference's headline announcements. VMware's made some big announcements this year – think vSphere 6.0 and the expansion of its end-user computing portfolio – but has also hinted it has more in hand. To this desk's mind, the company's been a bit quiet on network virtualisation daddy Martin Casado's late 2014 statement that he wants to reinvent security. News on that front would be rather more keynote-worthy than improved vSphere management tools! ®

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