This post is also available in: Italian

VMware vSphere 6.5 Update 1 has been released on July 27, 2017 with several bug fix, some improvements, but also some interesting changing in maximum numbers (for vCenter in linked-mode) and an interesting news for the Foundation edition that now can manage up to 4 nodes (and not only 3 nodes like in the past).

Seems a minor improvement, but demostrare how VMware takes care of its customers. In discussions with customers with smaller environments, VMware has received feedback that 3 host environments were too small in many cases, and just another hosts could be enough (of course still for SMB enviroments).  This is why with vSphere 6.5 Update 1 VMware is now increasing the number of hosts that vCenter Server Foundation will support from 3 host to 4.

What are the possible implication of this? With 4 nodes you can do interesting thinks that you can now plan in your design:

  • vSAN cluster: technically 3 nodes are the minimum, but I don’t like too much build a vSAN cluster with only 3 nodes… I prefer have 4 in order to plan a better resiliency
  • vSAN 2 nodes cluster: make sense have just a cluster with 2 nodes, the witness appliance on a 3rd node and manage both the 3rd node and the witness with the same vCenter? Maybe yes or, let’s say… why not… now it can be considered
  • Production and DR cluster: also with 3 nodes was possible, but limited to 2+1, in this case you have more flexibility
  • Scale out instead of scale in: will make sense have more hosts (maybe with single processor) instead of few?

And a vSAN stretched cluster could be possible? Seems crazy, and out of the scope of SMB, also because you need ESXi with Enterprise Plus, but those can be managed by a Foundation license. The issue is the witness, you need a 3rd site with the witness, and it but could stay on a free hypervisor or on a cloud resourse, but how you can manage it if you already have 4 connected nodes, and to set up the stretched cluster you need also the witness inside the SAME vCenter.

Note that the Essential edition of vCenter remain still limited to only 3 nodes, and that ESXi Essential or Essential Plus can only be managed by vCenter Essential (this limitation has become also a technical limitation starting with vSphere 5.x).

This post has already been read 3336 times.

Andrea MauroAbout Andrea Mauro (2740 Posts)

Virtualization, Cloud and Storage Architect. Tech Field delegate. VMUG IT Co-Founder and board member. VMware VMTN Moderator and vExpert 2010-18. Dell TechCenter Rockstar 2014-15. Microsoft MVP 2014-16. Veeam Vanguard 2015-18. Nutanix NTC 2014-18. PernixPro 2014-16. Several certifications including: VCDX-DCV, VCP-DCV/DT/Cloud, VCAP-DCA/DCD/CIA/CID/DTA/DTD, MCSA, MCSE, MCITP, CCA, NPP.


Related Post:

Share