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The last week I’ve realized an article for the StarWind blog and focused on the design and architecture of VMware vCenter and PSC topologies (see VMware vCenter and PSC topologies).

Some days ago, there was an interesting post from Emad Younis, on how the external PSC deployment it’s not only an old approach, but will also become no more supported in future release of vSphere (see: External Platform Services Controller, A Thing of the Past).

Starting with the release of vSphere 6.0, vCenter Server deployment has changed and it’s now possible to deploy two different components that together provide all services for the vCenter management platform.

  • The Platform Services Controller (PSC) that provides common infrastructure services for the datacenter.
  • The vCenter Server that provides the remainder of the vCenter Server functionality.

PSC  deployments options where internal (with the vCenter) or external and the main (initial) reason for external PSC deployment what to “share” it across multiple vCenter Server nodes, using the Enhanced Linked Mode capability.

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But starting with vSphere 6.5 Update 2 (and of course with vSphere 6.7) it’s also possible to have more vCenter with embedded PSC and using the SSO replication to keep all those PSC components in sync without the need of external PSC:

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The embedded PSC deployment is becoming much more popular and also will become the recommend deployment type (from vSphere 6.5 Update 2) because it permits both the Enhanced Linked Mode (ELM) and the new Hybrid Linked Mode (HLM), introduced for VMware Cloud on AWS (VMC).

Also, the embedded PSC is the only option to use some new features like HLM for cloud “federation” and the new VCHA (introduced in vSphere 6.5) for the availability of the vCenter AND the PSC.

What is interesting that the now officially VMware has announced the deprecation of the external PSC deployment modelIn a future vSphere release (not update release), there will no longer be an option to deploy the external PSC.

Andrea MauroAbout Andrea Mauro (2918 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.


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