VMware vSAN Powered Private Clouds


By Neal Wilkinson on 14th April, 2015.

vSAN: Disruptive Virtual Storage Technology

Following the launch of VMware vSphere version 6, Secura is now offering VMware vSAN powered private cloud services.

The combination of vSphere and vSAN provides real benefits to private cloud infrastructures:

  • Lower cost – compared to equivalent performance traditional SAN solutions
  • Flexible data protection – VMs can be categorised according to data protection requirements (number of copies)
  • High performance – the all-flash version of VSAN offers performance that rivals that of most high-end specialist SSD based SAN storage solutions
  • Scalable in all directions

How VMware vSAN Works

vSAN uses locally provisioned storage in the VMware ESXi host servers, negating the need for expensive SAN controllers and disk enclosures. Less data centre space is required and significantly, less power is consumed.

Each Virtual Machine (VM) stored on vSAN storage is allocated a storage policy, enabling control over how many vSAN failures the VM should tolerate without downtime.

This results in more efficient use of storage capacity as you can allocate a policy that is appropriate to the importance of each individual VM. For example, setting a policy for a VM to tolerate two failures will result in three copies of the VMs data supporting continued availability even after multiple failures.

If performance requirements are modest then a hybrid vSAN solution provides the best value solution, combining traditional SAS/SATA disks with SSD used purely for acceleration of read and write I/O. For high performance requirements the all-flash vSAN solution offers excellent value.

vSAN can scale up or out within or across hypervisors making it a very flexible alternative to the traditional SAN solutions that are available.

Each hypervisor server can contain up to five vSAN disk groups with each disk group built up of a single SSD and up to seven SAS/SATA hard disk drives (in the case of hybrid vSAN) or up to seven SSD drives (in the case of an all-flash configuration). Up to 32 VMware ESXi host servers can be pooled to create a single vSAN cluster offering significant scalability for most infrastructure requirements.

More About VMware vSAN

VMware vSAN is a vSphere integrated virtual storage platform offering high levels of data protection and availability with scalable performance and capacity for a fraction of the cost of traditional enterprise SAN storage.

VMware bought the vSAN software through the Virsto acquisition in 2013 and have spent the past two years developing it into a mature virtual storage platform.

Secura have been running vSAN in test environments since the initial VMware release which was made available in March 2014. Secura now has the confidence and experience to deploy vSAN powered cloud services into production on behalf of its managed service customers.

Features of vSAN version 6 include:

  • Hybrid (SSD accelerated) and All-Flash (SSD only) options
  • Up to 200 VMs per vSphere host
  • Up to 6000 VMs per vSphere cluster
  • Up to 40K IOPS per vSphere host (hybrid) and 90K IOPS per vSphere host (all-flash)
  • Tree depth of up to 32 snapshots per VM
  • Maximum virtual disk size of 62TB

If you want to know more about the reality of life with VMware vSAN or discuss how Secura could help you benefit from this disruptive virtual storage technology please get in touch.


Neal Wilkinson

Head of Marketing

Neal works in the marketing team at Secura and makes sure everyone uses the correct font size on their emails. Sometimes he succeeds.

Tweet me at:
@securacloud