In the last few weeks VMware confirmed multiple times that a major new release of vSphere is due this year.
virtualization.info has a detailed list of features that will appear in the next vSphere release, tentatively named 4.1, but it’s unclear if this is the major update that the VMware’s CEO Paul Maritz mentioned during the last earnings call.
It’s important to clarify that while the features below, partially unveiled in March, are already part of the current beta builds, there’s no guarantee that VMware will keep all of them before reaching the GA status.
Additionally it’s important to note that the list below may be incomplete:
- Storage I/O can be shaped by I/O shares and limits through the new Storage I/O Control quality of service (QoS) feature
- Network I/O can be partitioned through a new QoS engine that distinguish between virtual machines, vMotion, Fault Tolerance (FT) and IP storage traffic.
- Memory compression will allow to compress RAM pages instead of swapping on disk, improving virtual machines performance.
- Distribute Resource Scheduling (DRS) now can follow affinity rules defining a subset of hosts where a virtual machine can be placed
- Virtual sockets can now have multiple virtual CPUs. Each virtual CPU will appear as a single core in the guest operating system.
- A team physical network interface cards in a vNetwork Distributed Switch can now dynamically load balance traffic.
- Health check status and operational dashboard are available for HA configurations.
- vSphere Client is no more part of the ESX and ESXi installation packages. At the end of the installation process administrators are redirected online to download the client.
- ESXi installation can be scripted. The script can start from a CD or over a PXE boot source, and can install the hypervisor on local or remote disks.
- ESX can boot from iSCSI targets (support for iBFT)
- NFS performance stats are included in esxtop and vCenter Server, as well as through the vSphere SDK.
- Virtual machines serial ports redirection over the network
- Support for up to 4 vMotion concurrent live migrations in 1GbE networks and up to 8 concurrent live migrations in 10GbE networks
- Support for USB pass-through (virtual machines can use ESX/ESXi local USB devices)
- Support for administrator password change in Host Profiles
- Support for FT in DRS clusters with with Enhanced vMotion Compatibility (EVC)
- Support for iSCSI TCP/IP Offload Engine (TOE) network interface cards (both 10GB an 1GB)
- Support for 8GB Fibre Chanell HBAs
- Support for IPsec on IPv6 network configurations
- Support for multiple Data Recovery virtual appliances
- Support for Microsoft Volume Shadow Service (VSS) in Windows Server 2008 and 2008 R2 guest operating systems for vStorage APIs for Data Protection (VADP)
- Update Manager (VUM) can now patch additional 3rd party modules for ESX (like EMC PowerPath)
- Virtual to Virtual (V2) migration for offline Hyper-V virtual machines in vCenter Converter
- ESX and ESXi direct support for Microsoft Active Directory through Likewise technology integration
- Support for Intel Xeon 7500 / 5600 / 3600 CPU series (this includes EVC support)
- Support for AMD Opteron 4000 / 6000 CPU series (this includes EVC support)