by Lyle Smith

VMware Virtual SAN (VSAN) Now Generally Available

VMware has announced the general availability of VMware Virtual SAN, VMware’s first Software Defined Data Center product. A webcast event was held last week which detailed new information and pointed to this week for GA, however VMware did not release licensing and pricing information. Today VMware makes good on last week's promises by announcing pricing VMware Virtual SAN which is priced at $2,495 per processor and Virtual SAN for Desktop at $50 per user.

VMware Virtual SAN is built directly into the VMware vSphere kernel and offers a new tier of hypervisor-converged storage. The software abstracts and pools internal magnetic disks and flash devices from industry-standard x86 servers in order to produce a high-performance and resilient shared datastore for virtual machines (VMs). According to internal benchmarks, VMware Virtual SAN can perform up to 2 million IOPS read-only and 640,000 IOPS mixed on a 32 node cluster.


VMware Virtual SAN simplifies storage provisioning and management all the while reducing the total cost of ownership; this allows for a fundamentally more agile operational model. Additionally, VMware VSAN provides the reliability and robustness that an enterprise storage system would offer and is very effective when it comes to protecting against data loss when hardware failures occur. It is also designed for several use cases in virtual environments including Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), test/development, and disaster recovery.

Additional features include:

  • Hypervisor-converged architecture: Embedded within the VMware vSphere kernel, VMware Virtual SAN delivers the most efficient data path for superior performance while minimizing resource utilization resulting in the consumption of less than 10 percent of CPU resources.
  • High performance with elastic and linear scalability: VMware Virtual SAN uses flash to deliver performance acceleration through read/write caching. The software provides a granular and elastic approach to provision performance and capacity enabling customers to linearly scale their clusters on demand by adding nodes to a cluster or disks to individual nodes
  • Storage Policy Based Management: With storage policy based management, VMware Virtual SAN shifts the management model for storage from the device to the application. A single VMware Virtual SAN datastore can provide differentiated service levels based on individual VM policies. For administrators, there are no complex configurations through LUNs or volumes, they avoid overprovisioning, and can change policies easily. With automated provisioning and management, administrators improve the ability to meet Service Level Agreements (SLAs).
  • Integration with the VMware stack: VMware Virtual SAN is easy to configure and deploy requiring two clicks using VMware vSphere Web Client. Its integration with VMware vSphere enables customers to use data services such as backup, cloning, replication and snapshots as well as features such as Distributed Resource Scheduler, High Availability, vMotion and Storage vMotion.  Additionally, VMware Virtual SAN is interoperable with VMware Horizon View 5.3.1, VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager and VMware vCenter Operations Management Suite.

VMware Virtual SAN is a hardware independent solution that can be deployed on a variety of different servers. Customers are given two options when deploying VMware Virtual SAN: VMware Virtual SAN Ready Nodes (pre-validated configurations of servers), and a component-based hardware compatibility list that gives customers the ability to pick and choose the components they require. Over 150 components and 13 Ready Nodes are certified with VMware Virtual SAN today. See the VMware Compatibility Guide for VMware Virtual SAN for more information.

VMware Virtual SAN provides a substantially lower Total Cost of Ownership by reducing Capital Expenditures and Operating Expenditures. Additionally, the software takes advantage of server side hardware economics by pooling internal magnetic disks and flash devices from industry-standard x86 servers. By starting small and adding disks or nodes to their VMware Virtual SAN cluster as capacity or performance needs arise, customers avoid large upfront costs. VMware Virtual SAN also aids customers to achieve Opex savings using automation, which eliminates manual processes as well as easing traditionally complex change management, storage configuration, and capacity planning tasks.

Pricing and Availability

VMware Virtual SAN is now generally available and is priced at $2,495 per processor. VMware Virtual SAN for Desktop is priced at $50 per user.

VMware has also indicated that it will be offering a few limited-time deals:

  • For a limited time, customers can purchase a bundle of VMware Virtual SAN with VMware vSphere Data Protection Advanced for $2,875 per processor. 
  • For a limited time, VMware vSphere Storage Appliance customers will be able to upgrade to VMware Virtual SAN at 20 percent off the list price.

VMware VSAN Product Page

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