My only concern is that 8.1 is still in RC2, will probably have an RC3 and still has some strangeness. There's still no release date for 8.1 GA and we're seeing a really nice feature that will need 8.1.1 ... vSphere 5 is out from months now . I know that vsc 4 and Vaai will be available in cluster mode but when we will see it in production on not so big 7mode system?
We have all our storage on NetApp and Use Nfs for almost everything but it really seems that development on the data ontap is going really slow ...
There's a world full of feature with 8.1(.1) like Vaai, vasa, online disk alignment, 64 bit aggregate (and 32 to 64 bit conversion hopefully), compression and so on but it seems they'll never come to my hands ... 😞
I know how you feel. All of us here at NetApp have been waiting for 8.1 and beyond, we have so much goodness coming. However we know we have to get this right. We need the code to be stable and secure as companies such as yourselves depend on it. So although it hurts to wait, it will be well worth the wait!
I'm curious though, is it the cloning ability that ou are waiting for in VAAI? DO you do that many VM clones? Don't get me wrong, I'm excited for it but it will get really interesting when VMware View/VCD leverage VAAI for their cloning needs. Today they don't so we are waiting for those updates as well...
Also, don't discount c-mode even if you have a small cluster. Mind you there is no 7-mode to c-mode upgrade right now but I can see customers starting with 2 node c-mode deployments for VMware. Sets themselves up nicely to grow in the future.
Keith you're perfectly right... we want a code without any problems and for this we are waiting for 8.1 GA, we're still on 7.3.6 because until last December we still had a FAS3050c so we could not upgrade to 8.0.2 without having snapmirror problem between older 7.3 and newer 8 release.
This is probably one of our major problem because we're now getting larger disks (450/600 GB SAS and probably 1-2 TB SATA in the next few months to do archiving) and with 7.3 we cannot use 64 bit and create aggregate and volumes from scratch is not really possible (we should at least have the same space to store data before destroying the old data aggregates) so we're mostly waiting 8.1 hoping on a aggr convertion functionality that will allow us to extend our aggregate to 64 bit.
We already have a total of 4 HA cluster (1 3270, 2 3240, 1 3160) in 2 different sites. Out Disaster Recovery solution is based on vmware SRM/snapmirror, all our oracle databases are on NFS shares and we use flexclone to provision and refresh test environment starting from our DR snapmirror. Our vmware environment is already up and running and including 95% of production/development/test servers (we only have some Oracle RAC database that are on physical machine but we're finishing to migrate to a physical/virtual configuration in production so we can have a fast DR of the virtual node).
We also started our view projects using vmware linked clone on view 5 (we did a pilot on view 4.6) with NFS datastore and we're getting nice results but having all the "storage things" done from the storage will really be nice
Our environment at this moment will be difficult if not impossible to migrate to a new c-mode configuration starting from scratch.
Normally we don't clone vm every day but in some period when we have upgrade projects or when we need to deploy a new environment for SAP we have to clone 5-10 servers at a time and having the fast vm clone that work in that way will be really nice
As it will be nice to have compression (I would like to try it on oracle archive logs volumes if it will not impact too much on performance, with a gzip we get a 50-75% compression and some of our database produce 700-800 gb/archive logs a week).
So 8.1 (and probably more with 8.1.1.) will really be a big storage milestone for our infrastructure, we will get almost all the functionality we would like to have from NetApp storage.
I know that all of you are working hard for a good release and I see this also with other piece of software NetApp is developing (I should say that WFA and SnapCreator are 2 fantastic products ) and let me hope that when 8.1 GA will be out 8.1.1 will follow shortly (it's just a .1 release )