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The Latest VMware Product Updates: vSphere, vSAN, VCF, and Tanzu

Last week, VMware announced several updates across multiple products. We’ve compiled the top changes and what they mean for users. These products and editions are expected to be available before the end of October 2020.

vSphere 7 Update 1

A number of enhancements were made with this release, but there will be two notable outcomes for users:

  • The wait is over – Many vSphere customers have been waiting for the first major update of vSphere 7.0 before upgrading their infrastructure. With this announcement, you can now start planning your upgrade based on 7 U1.
  • Bring-your-own networking for Kubernetes – vSphere 7 with Kubernetes has been renamed vSphere 7 with Tanzu. The native Kubernetes functionality of vSphere will no longer require NSX for networking.

vSAN 7 Update 1

Coupled with the vSphere 7 U1, this vSAN 7 update brings several enhancements:

  • HCI Mesh – Users can now mount vSAN datastores across clusters that are managed by the same vCenter Server.
  • Shared witness – Customers with 2-node clusters were previously required to deploy one witness host virtual appliance for every cluster. Now a single witness can manage multiple 2-node vSAN clusters.
  • File Services – In addition to NFS support that was introduced with vSAN 7, vSAN 7 U1 adds support for SMB v2.1 and v3.

VMware Cloud Foundation 4.1

VMware Cloud Foundation 4.1 will include vSphere 7 U1 and vSAN 7 U1 and a few additional enhancements to the platform’s overall capabilities:

  • Remote Clusters – VCF will be able to deploy and manage clusters at remote locations. Use cases will include ROBO (Remote Office Branch Office) and edge locations. 
  • vVols as Principal Storage in Workload Domain – In addition to the introduction of Block and File storage as principal storage in previous versions of VCF, 4.1 will now support vVols as the storage management framework in workload domains. VCF management domains will still require vSAN as principal storage.

Tanzu Editions

VMware will make bundled Tanzu products available. Products are still available a la carte, and vSphere with Tanzu (integrated Kubernetes) can now be purchased without VCF. This is a significant requirement change that will now put the purchase of vSphere’s native Kubernetes functionality within reach of more customers. Available bundles:

  • Tanzu Basic – Run Kubernetes in vSphere
  • Tanzu Standard – Run and manage Kubernetes across multiple clouds
  • Tanzu Advanced – Build, run, and manage modern applications with the Tanzu suite
  • Tanzu Enterprise – Most complete edition of the Tanzu suite. Meant to build, run, and manage modern applications at scale.

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