The nicest thing about vVols in our environment was its native snapshots. You could pile up a bunch of snapshots if you were so inclined without worry. Stability and performance were not impacted while running with snapshots and deleting any number/size of snapshots on a VM took only a few seconds. But with NetApp's VAAI 2.0, VMware 7.0U2, and one entry in a VM's Configuration Parameters, we now have those same native snapshots. What's more, the improved VAAI works a lot better than vVols ever did with Citrix's Machine Creation Services.
I understand vVols have other advantages that we don't use in our environment right now. If we ever flip back to LUNs, we may need to revisit vVols, but with the new VAAI, I may decommission vVols in our environment if only for the sake of simplicity. Don't forget to add a line to your VMs' configurations to take advantage of native snapshots:
Lots of tools in the toolbox. It's just a matter of picking the right one that meets your requirements.
I would tend to agree though. If the only VASA feature you're using is snapshot offload, the VAAI plugin may offer greater simplicity due to not relaying on the VASA service or having to worry about changing passwords and stuff like that.
Hi, and thanks, Bingen. I've watched two of your videos on the improvements in VAAI. I'm also glad to now know about the Storage vMotion caveat. We'll just delete any native snapshots before any storage migration.
I guess one additional reason for us to migrate from NFS vVols to NFS+VAAI is the data loss I experienced previously with vVols (see my previous post). I believe that particular bug has been addressed in of ONTAP Tools for VMware vSphere 8.0 and Virtual Storage Console for VMware vSphere 9.7.1P2, but simpler is usually better.
Now I just eagerly await NetApp's approving VMware 7.0U3 with VAAI and ONTAP Tools for VMware vSphere. 🙂