Last week was big release week from VMware prospective, where VMware released vSphere 7 Update 1, vSAN 7 Update 1, and VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) 4.1. There are some nice new enhancements with VCF 4.1. In this post, I’ll highlight the big features which customers and architects were looking with upcoming release.
With VMware Cloud Foundation 4.1, you can now rename domains, clusters, as well as network pools. Domain and Network Pool objects can be renamed from SDDC Manager UI. And Cluster objects can be renamed from vCenter Server. Once you do, you can go back to the SDDC Manager and refresh the UI, the new cluster name will be retrieved by the SDDC Manager.
SDDC Manager Backup Enhancements
With this release of VCF 4.1 backup can be scheduled on a reoccurring basis, Now customer can enable backup state change and SDDC manager backup will occur 10 minutes after the successful completion of the event, such as the creation of a workload domain.
Support for vVols as a Principal Storage for Workload Domains With Cloud Foundation 4.1, vVols can now be used for principle storage for workload domains and secondary storage for both management domain as well as workload domains.
If you want to read in details about vVols, please refer blog written by Cormac Hogan (Director and Chief Technologist in the Office of the CTO in the Cloud Platform Business Unit (CPBU) at VMware – https://cormachogan.com/2015/02/17/vsphere-6-0-storage-features-part-5-virtual-volumes/
Support for Remote Clusters (Extends VCF at the Remote/Edge) We continue to see growing demands of Remote or Edge sites, where customer wants to have small infra footprint at remote or edge sites, but wanted to have automated deployment and lifecycle management as unified management.
With release of VCF 4.1, Support for remote clusters will be a minimum of 3 nodes and maximum of 4 nodes vSAN Ready Node configuration. Remote clusters can be implemented in two different design. The first is when each remote site is managed as a separate workload domain. In this design, each remote site has a dedicated vCenter Server instance. The second is when each remote site is managed as a cluster within a single workload domain. In this design, each remote site shares a single vCenter Server instance. Day 2 operations (such as lifecycle management, adding and removing clusters) can be performed centrally from the data center to the remote sites.
Improved Lifecycle Management (VCF Upgrade Process) In previous editions of VCF, the upgrade process was sequential in nature. For example, if you started at Cloud Foundation version 4.0, And you wanted to go to Cloud Foundation version 4.1, You had go through a process where you first upgraded to any versions that may existed in-between and eventually upgrading to the desired version. This resulted in the need to schedule multiple maintenance windows and took more time to get to the desired state.
Now with release of VCF 4.1 has ability to perform skip level upgrades for the SDDC Manager. With this feature, you can schedule a single maintenance window and update to the desired state in a single action. This can result in a reduction in the time needed to perform the upgrades.
vRealize Suite for VCF With Cloud Foundation 4.1, VCF now deploys a ‘VCF Aware’ vRSLCM appliance. First enhancement is no need to manually download and deploy vRSLCM. Once you have management domain bring up done and SDDC Manager up and running, you can initiate the installation of vRSLCM from SDDC Manager.
Now with VCF 4.1, there will be also bidirectional vRSLCM and SDDC Manager relationship. This will provide unified product experience. Users can log into vRSCLM to perform operations, and SDDC Manager can now discover if vRSLCM was used to deploy vRealize suite of products such as vRealize Automation (vRA), vRealize Operations Manager (vROps) and vRealize Log Insight (vRLI). This will ease the deployment for customers and any potential interoperability issues between vRSLCM and SDDC Manager.
Hybrid Cloud Extension (HCX) Integration
With the release of VCF 4.1, HCX R143 now has native support for Cloud Foundation 4.1 with Converged Virtual Distributed Switches (CVDS). This will be extremely helpful for customers who have a need to migrate existing workloads to a new Cloud Foundation installation.
Role-Based Access Control for VCF
A New VCF User Role – ‘viewer’
A new ‘view-only’ role has been added to VCF 4.1, In previous edition of VCF had only 2 roles, Administrator and Operator. Now third role available called a ‘viewer’. As name suggest, with this view only role Users has no ability to create, delete, or modify objects. with this limited ‘view-only’ role assigned users may also see a message saying they are unauthorized to perform certain actions.
VCF Local Account
With VCF 4.1, Custer can have local account that can be used during a SSO failure.
What happens when the SSO domain is unavailable for some reason? In this case, the user would not be able to login. To address this, customers now can create VCF local account called admin@local. This account will allow to perform certain actions until the SSO domain is functional again.
This VCF local account can be defined in the deployment bring up worksheet.
I tried to cover all the new enhancements with VCF 4.1 release, But always refer official documentation for more and complete details :- https://docs.vmware.com/en/VMware-Cloud-Foundation/index.html