Newsletter: October 22, 2016 – vSphere Edition

Hello all,

Update: – you can now – 11/15/16 09:12 – find the bits and docs to download.  Use Williams article to help find what you need. For those of us with only vExpert ability to download you will find the evals are still old versions.  Wait a bit and it should change.


This is day 28 on the road.  And I am sitting in an airport (FRA) waiting for the my flight to reach home.  It is a big deal and I am very excited to get home. I will be at home for a while.  There is some very interesting software I need to review that I think many of you will be interested in.  I also need to start work on my Windows 2016 template as well.  I hope that goes better than my Windows 10 one! So a bunch of time in the lab means good things for my readers!

One of the things I want to mention is at this VMworld in Barcelona it was one of the best I remember for technical content.  I enjoyed it thoroughly and thus this issue of the newsletter is dedicated to the technical info from that event.  We will get back to normal next week.

One of the things I participated in, and enjoyed really a lot – was the Hackathon that Alan Renouf did. I wrote about it but I do strongly recommend it to people.

BTW, someone I know with both a newish Mac, and an Apple Watch was not using the Auto Unlock functionality.  I love the functionality and it improves security – yes, that is true as it requires behind the scenes 2FA.  But for him, and anyone else – here is an article to make Auto Unlock work.  This article is for use with the beta of Sierra but it works fine still with the GA.

ABTW, the info below is what I think of as the good stuff.  From people I know – mostly – who I know have touched and worked with it.  I am sure I have missed some good stuff and will update this article with that as I find it.  I will not update this article once 6.5 is available – other to strike-through stuff which is wrong – which I do not expect much of at all!

So, as you may expect, I have a lot to share and I best get started. Have a great week!


Newly added – Virtual NVMe and Nested ESXi 6.5
Another interesting new feature in vSphere 6.5 – you can do nested virtual NVMe.  Amazing.  Check out the story.

Newly added – vSphere 6.5 with VVols 2.0 does not yet support in-band bind
A very informative article about in and out band bind in VVols.  Very good learning, and very well done.

Newly added – vSphere 6.5 whats-new – Storage IO Control
This is quite a useful feature and it is good to learn about how it changes in 6.5.  It is quite interesting how it has changed actually.

Automatic space reclamation (UNMAP) is back in vSphere 6.5
This is interesting as it seems that VMware has figured out a nice way to do automated UNMAP in 6.5.  So that is good for those of you who are using iSCSI.  I

Whats new with Virtual SAN v6.5
Jeff has an article with good info on this new version, and Duncan has an article with related info. Between the two you have just what you need!  It seems that they both think iSCSI is pretty big in the release, and while I think it useful, I hope that most people do not use it, as I think a VSAN datastore is best!  But, for certain physical machines, and certain specific circumstances, iSCSI will in fact be quite useful.  I also like the PowerCLI support, as well as the next gen hardware support (like 512e drives).   And all flash being supported in hybrid is a nice step.  Don’t get too excited – like I did – as it doesn’t include the compression or dedupe support.  It is still pretty nice though! Here is a little more info on the direct connect mode of VSAN which is – I think – pretty darn useful!

VVols 2.0 with array based replication support announced with vSphere 6.5
A nice article that breaks down what VVols 2.0 is in vSphere 6.5.  A big thing is replication support. But there is more and the article does a very nice job describing it. It looks like Duncan has some good VVols info too.

vSphere 6.5 what’s new – VMFS 6 / Core storage
Duncan’s article on this highlights something I think important in this area – automatic space reclamation.

Big Improvements to vSphere HA and DRS in 6.5 Release
A very nice article detailing the improvements in HA and DRS in 6.5. I love the predictive HA – I talked with PM about that when I was at VMware and it was something I was quite excited about. Dell has support for this in previous versions of vSphere and it works pretty darn good (part of the Dell OpenManage Integration for Virtual Center product).  But now with any vendor being able to integrate with HA that is a big deal.  More smarts baked into Admission Control is nice too! We know Duncan really likes HA and DRS and he talks about the new versions here and here.

What’s new in vSphere 6.5 security?
This is an area with some most excellent improvements. Logging has been improved with actionable info which is a big deal.  There is encryption that is outside of the VM so very easy – in comparison to in guest solutions – to manage.  Each VM is encrypted with a different key, which is then encrypted by the Key Management System.  So some cool stuff but I was not able to find a lot of into to share – here is one very good article.

A look at VMware’s vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) 6.5 Release
A good look at the updated VCSA is in this article.  Important stuff actually – things like there is HA for the appliance and it looks pretty easy to support too! But a lot of work has been done in the UI as well and I like how both the vSphere Web Client, and the vSphere HTML5 Client are supported and available.  The vSphere HTML5 Client (now called vSphere Client) will be updated frequently and out of band of the normal VCSA update scheduled so that is good!  And VUM built in – yahoo! Here is an article that provides a pretty detailed list of what’s new for the VCSA. You can learn more about the install of the VCSA in this article, and you can get more info on the VCSA in this article – both first rate and factual.

Nested ESXi Enhancements in vSphere 6.5
William has an article about great enhancements for nested ESXi.  Very cool, and useful for home labbers and SP alike! Very good stuff!

vSphere 6.5 – The NFS Edition
I had not seen much talk of how NFS was improved in 6.5 but here is an article with the full scope.  Some good changes and it is now more likely that people will use NFS 4.1 I think.

Newly added – What’s New with Developer and Automation Interfaces for vSphere 6.5
If you work with vSphere API – either as a developer or an automation person you will be very surprised and quite impressed to see this new API Explorer.  Find out more in this article.

Newly added – Interview with Mike Foley on VMworld TV
Certainly I have seen people say that Security is big with vSphere 6.5 and it is true.  Part of the reason I talk about more then you might expect is that I think there is a lot to think about for people and it is not too soon to start thinking about it.  Here is a VMworld TV session that talks to Mike about some good stuff in this area.

Newly added – What to expect with PowerCLI 6.5?
Some good stuff will be in the next release of PowerCLI.

Cormac has a nice overview of VMworld EMEA in this article

VMworld Video – good collection – here – seems to be sessions.

VMworld TV –  a good collection of interviews.

Brian has the start of an amazing series here.  He already has a lot of very good articles! And it keeps growing!

Chris Wahl has started a series here.  He has a nice start to it!

I did a nice interview with three cool guys about vSphere 6.5. Here is one about the migration to 6.5 VCSA.


  • 11/15/16 – added some links to very good VCSA articles, and the download info from William.
  • 10/29/16 – added a few new articles.

Thanks for reading or skimming this far!


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