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VMware Offers Virtual SAN for vSphere

Eric is a veteran British tech journalist, currently editing ChannelBiz for NetMediaEurope. With expertise in security, the channel, and Britain's startup culture, through his TechBritannia initiative

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Virtual SANs get the OK from the biggest brand in virtualisation, as VMware launches its VSAN for vSphere

VMware has lent credibility to the Virtual Storage Area Network (VSAN) market with the release of its first software-defined storage product, Virtual SAN.

The virtualised storage system has been designed to integrate with the vSphere kernel and aggregates internal magnetic and solid state Flash storage devices into a shared data store for virtual machines running on an x86 server.

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The technology was flagged at VMworld 2013 last October when VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger announced the release of the company’s NSX virtual networking and detailed the roadmap into the VSAN market. The release of Virtual SAN now brings VMware into the competitive market kick-started by startups such as Nutanix and SimpliVity.

John Gilmartin, vice president and general manager of the SDDC Suite business unit at VMware, said, “Today VMware changes the way that storage has been operated to date. VMware Virtual SAN is a radically simple storage solution optimised for virtual environments that brings an application-centric approach to storage management. Customers that know VMware vSphere know VMware Virtual SAN, and can rely on that familiarity to hit the ground running.”

While disputing that the new product is quite as revolutionary as Gilmartin claimed, Nutanix has welcomed VMware’s entry into the market.

“VMware’s Virtual SAN product is terrific validation of the distributed, scale-out storage architecture that Nutanix has pioneered for over four years” commented Howard Ting, VP of marketing and product management for Nutanix. “But, in order to run all workloads, these software defined storage products must deliver all enterprise class data management features such as deduplication, compression, snapshots, and disaster recovery – without adding excess complexity and licensing costs.”

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