Tag Archives: standalone

VMware vSphere update tweaks HTML5 client, bundles AppDefense

A stand-alone update to VMware vSphere 6.7 sports a few upgrades and a polished HTML5 client interface, while another version bundles the company’s AppDefense security product with a higher price tag.

Besides the new interface, vSphere 6.7 Update 1 contains a vCenter Server Converge Tool and additional vMotion and snapshot capabilities for Nvidia Grid vGPUs and support for field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs).

Experts said these additional vSphere capabilities are useful, if not long overdue, but don’t elevate this release to a major one for vSphere customers.

“There are some nice things, like the vSphere Client, and the FPGA support for vMotion is good for people that will use the product every day … but it is a minor upgrade,” said Gary Chen, research manager for software-defined compute at IDC.

Gary Chen, research manager for software-defined compute, IDCGary Chen

Some of the higher-end technical improvements could attract some users who implement machine learning and AI capabilities, Chen said. However, the virtualization market is very well-penetrated, and the new release is more to evolve the product and keep customers on board.

Most end users will welcome the vSphere update’s tweaks to improve the HTML5 client, as well as vGPU vMotion additions, but those particular functions won’t drive greater adoption of the product, said Brian Kirsch, IT architect and instructor at Milwaukee Area Technical College.

VSphere Platinum plugs in AppDefense

The bundled version, vSphere Platinum Edition, contains vSphere 6.7 Update 1 and AppDefense, with a vCenter plug-in for AppDefense, and it offers application-level security, according to Mike Adams, senior director of product marketing for VMware’s cloud platform business unit.

“AppDefense can offer a good known state for what should be running in the hypervisor from the applications’ perspective,” Adams said. “So, if there is any deviation from that, admins will get an alert right away and be able to do something about it.”

Most IT shops will appreciate VMware’s continued focus on security with the bundling of AppDefense, Kirsch said. This, combined with NSX’s attention to east-west attacks, should curry favor with larger IT shops.

Bargain hunters beware

Why would you [buy] the bundle if you can buy [vSphere and AppDefense] cheaper separately?
Gary Chenanalyst, IDC

What could steal attention away from the products’ new features, however, is the Platinum Edition’s price tag of $4,195 per CPU, per year. The current edition of vSphere Enterprise Plus goes for $3,495 per CPU, per year, and the current SaaS version of AppDefense is $500 per CPU, per year, totaling $3,995.

Asked to explain the higher Platinum price tag, Adams noted the package includes $10,000 in promotional credits for VMware Cloud on AWS. He added that this, plus the AppDefense vCenter plug-in, “is of significant value” to users.

The additional $200 per CPU, per year, is a significant sum for some large IT shops that have hundreds of servers, each with four, eight or more CPUs. Many might opt to buy the products separately and pocket the savings.

“Why would you [buy] the bundle if you can buy them cheaper separately, unless they are not telling us something?” IDC’s Chen said.

The promotional credits for VMware Cloud on AWS may offer some incentive, but workloads that require the aforementioned horsepower in AWS will use that up relatively quickly. Buyers also should be aware that the credits are good for only six months and can be used only toward single-server instances, Chen said.

SearchServerVirtualization site editor Ryann Burnett contributed to this story.

A great way to collect logs for troubleshooting

Did you ever have to troubleshoot issues within a Hyper-V cluster or standalone environment and found yourself switching between different event logs? Or did you repro something just to find out not all of the important Windows event channels had been activated?

To make it easier to collect the right set of event logs into a single evtx file to help with troubleshooting we have published a HyperVLogs PowerShell module on GitHub.

In this blog post I am sharing with you how to get the module and how to gather event logs using the functions provided.

Step 1: Download and import the PowerShell module

First of all you need to download the PowerShell module and import it.

Step 2: Reproduce the issue and capture logs

Now, you can use the functions provided as part of the module to collect logs for different situations.
For example, to investigate an issue on a single node, you can collect events with the following steps:

Using this module and its functions made it a lot easier for me to collect the right event data to help with investigations. Any feedback or suggestions are highly welcome.

Cheers,
Lars

SD-WAN-only devices disappearing as market matures

SD-WAN is evolving from stand-alone technology to just another feature within WAN edge appliances that deliver multiple application-centric services to remote and branch offices.

The trend is due to an alignment between the interests of SD-WAN vendors and enterprises. The former sees revenue potential in SD-WAN’s rising popularity while the latter wants consolidation of network infrastructure for the branch.

In a survey scheduled for release next month, the Enterprise Strategy Group, based in Milford, Mass., found that 60% of IT organizations in medium to large companies preferred SD-WAN as a feature within a broader package of branch network services. Only 36% of the 300 respondents thought of the technology as a stand-alone product.

SD-WAN vendors that deliver the traffic-routing software the way customers want will have access to a fast-growing market. IDC estimates revenue from SD-WAN infrastructure and services will increase nearly 70% annually to more than $8 billion in 2021.

SD-WAN’s attraction

Enterprises are turning to SD-WAN-only appliances to lower the cost of connecting branch offices to cloud-based business applications. Rather than backhaul all traffic to the corporate data center, companies can separate packets marked for the cloud and send them directly to the internet — a faster and less expensive option.

Startups selling SD-WAN appliances that plug into an enterprise’s network infrastructure have dominated the market for the last few years. Today, companies are looking for more versatile hardware that incorporates SD-WAN, WAN optimization, firewalls and IP services such as voice over IP.

“With time, you’ll see SD-WAN products shift from dedicated single-function hardware to software loads on multifunction appliances,” said Andrew Lerner, an analyst at Gartner.

Suppliers on that path include Cisco, CloudGenix, Nokia-owned Nuage Networks, Riverbed, Silver Peak, VeloCloud Networks Inc. and Versa Networks. The vendors, however, are not equal.

“They might architect their solutions differently, use different nomenclature, have different approaches to building a partner ecosystem, and be further or lesser along the path to bringing the vision to fruition,” said Brad Casemore, an analyst at IDC.

Choosing the right SD-WAN vendor

More than 40 companies sell WAN edge infrastructure, including SD-WAN, so trying to separate those with products that match an organization’s needs will take work. In a recent market report, Gartner had recommendations for making the right choice:

  • Everything should begin with the applications served by the network. Technologies that meet their requirements are the best candidates for the shortlist.
  • Choose an SD-WAN vendor with products that are in line with the organization’s long-term WAN and application architecture. Purchases shouldn’t operate in a silo.
  • Companies ready for an edge router refresh or replacement should consider SD-WAN alternatives.
  • Do not assume that a single set of WAN edge functionality will fit the needs of every business unit and branch office. Create a list of requirements for each location.
  • Finally, because SD-WAN favors the use of broadband for internet connectivity, do not assume legacy MPLS connections for applications are dead. Gartner expects a mixture of internet and MPLS connections to provide enterprises with the needed performance, reliability and security for the next three years.