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  • Preetam Zare

{Day -08 } Constraints or Minimum Requirement for VCF

Updated: Dec 3, 2019

In this post I try to understand what are the minimum requirement to install VCF. I also feel these are constraints around which we must work.

Management Domain Minimum Requirements

  1. vSAN Ready Nodes : This brings more than one constraints. First, your node must on vSAN Compatibiltiy list. Second, you can make changes on the server but it must as per the KB:52084. As per this blog article here you can now have single CPU vSAN Node. This definitely saves license cost and makes easier to justify the cost for the management domain. This is the only supported configuration in Management domain.

  2. Memory: Minimum support is 192 GB RAM

  3. NIC : NIC must be 10 GbE (IOVP) Certified. You must have 2 NICs. You cannot have more than 2. Out of Band 1 GbE is also supported. But it is optional.

  4. Storage: As per the minimum requirement by vSAN design.

As per me the important selection criteria is for the NICs e.g. how many are supported and which Speeds. Does it support 25 Gbps yet?. This is new standard in DC these days though we hardly hit 10 Gbps. But selling team just tells you one thing "It is same price as 10 Gbps"

Virtual Infrastructure Workload Domain

WLD simplest definition is - it is Tenant. The Tenant can contain more than one cluster.

Homogenous : You can have multiple cluster in WLD. You must have homogenous nodes within the cluster but do not need to same node in all clusters.

e.g. WLD has cluster:01 with 5 Nodes and Cluster:02 with 10 nodes

In this case, all Servers must be of same model e.g. Server Model -A in Cluster:01. While Cluster:02 can have all nodes of Server Model-A (but not necessarily) or they must have all nodes of Server Model-B.

To make it more clear, initial there was initial requirement to have homogenous cluster in all nodes in a WLD irrespective of clusters you had. This is changed and it is changed for good.

In WLD, you do not have to have vSAN ready nodes when you choose FC as primary storage but it always recommended. Also note, you must select the ESXi version stated in the BOM. Bill Of Material (BOM) is stated in release notes of specific version.

CPU must be inline with vSAN Ready nodes. When you choose non-VSAN nodes then you must see that ESXi host version must be compatible with VCF release notes.

RAM must be inline with vSAN Ready nodes. As started above ESXi version must be compatible with VCF release notes

vSAN Storage follows design guidelines provided by vSAN but the Storage guidelines for FC storage must adhere to the ESXi version supported in the release notes. Important Design consideration: Option to select Primary storage is available only during the time when you create WLD. i.e. If you select FC as primary storage for the WLD then you must use FC as primary storage for all clusters created in the WLD. So this is constraint.

Network cards requirements is similar to the MGMT domain, there is little difference. For Primary communicaton you must have two NICs but additional NICs might be supported for NFS communication.