Archives for October 2015


The Easy Button For Hadoop

The Nutanix team just finished wrapping up the lastest revsion of Hadoop on Nutanix. Personally I’ve had a great time working on the newest reference architecture for Hadoop running on top of the Acropolis hypervisor. It was fun to work with so many people across the company to get the testing and validation finished. Engineering, Solutions, Alliances, Marketing and SE’s alike all helped at some point.

< read more here >


How Does Nutanix and OpenStack Work Together?

Lukas Lundell describe opportunities for integrating the Nutanix hyper-converged appliance and Nutanix’s Acropolis solution with an OpenStack cloud deployment. Lukas describes how the Nutanix Distributed Storage Fabric and the Acropolis APIs along with the Nutanix OpenStack drivers to build a scalable foundation for any OpenStack cloud deployment.


AHV Best Practice Guide is Out. #NPX

This doc shows the true team work of Nutanix with multiple team members contributing to the paper. KVM based solutions tend to be scary when it comes to networking but this paper should put your mind to ease.

Other notable topics:


800 Desktops Cloned In Less Than 11 Mintues on Nutanix with VAAI

A video that shows the impact of Nutanix’s implementation of vStorage API for Array Integration (VAAI). 800 desktops cloned with VAAI in less than 11 Mintues. Prism shows a very small amounts of IOPS considering what the impact would be without VAAI.


Make Hadoop an Application, Not an Adventure.

In a couple of weeks we’ll discuss how to bring blazing fast performance for your analytic jobs while empowering your application team to deploy additional resources and makes changes on the fly. The first webinar will start at November 3, 2015 at 7:00AM PST.

The big added bonus is having Andy Nelson is joining me on the webinar. Andy is Distributed Systems Specialist at Nutanix and also has worked in the Office of the CTO at VMware. He brings a wealth of knowledge on Hadoop and variety of open source projects and can even talk a mean game of containers. Andy has also been a speaker at Hadoop World and can talk to this ever changing landscape.

Signup for the webinar -> HERE

Andy’s Last Talk at Hadoop World: Scalable On Demand Hadoop Clusters with Docker and Mesos


Dell Commits To Nutanix with New XC Models

Below is the opening keynote where Michael Dell commits to the Dell XC line and adding some new products lines, XC630. Great to see Dell offer a 2U – 4 node box.

The latest hyperconverged solutions include the Dell XC6320, the highest-density XC Series appliance to-date, with four compute nodes that support more than 44 terabytes of storage in a 2U form factor. This substantially reduces datacenter hardware rack space, power and cooling required to run various workloads in service provider, ROBO and large customer datacenters. New Dell XC630-10F and XC6320-6F All-Flash Nodes are the first XC Series all-flash appliances.

Community Post from Dell -> here

Note: Dell XC630-10F and XC6320-6F All-Flash Nodes have planned globally availability in November 2015.


CommVaullt & Nutanix Complete The Treasure Map

Nutanix now has Integration with CommVault allowing Nutanix’s Per VM snapshots to be fully indexed. This allows for finding the files and databases you need instead of going on a treasure hunt. Per VM restores are great to bring back a service but doesn’t have the same granularity as being fully indexed. CommVault search servers provide fulltext indexes of over 300 supported file types including indexes of metadata to files as well. Users can search against these indexes to find and retrieve information without needing to know the exact file or location where the data resided.

With a Hypervisor agnostic Commvault Nutanix Plugin called as NOS Connector installed on the Media Agent, it will allow snapshots to be mounted and have the data indexed into Commserve.

Configuration is easy to setup by using external IP address of the cluster as seen below.


The above information is used to generate Rest-API calls behind the scenes to automate the process of creating production domains on Nutnaix and protecting your data.

CommVault Press Release: <Here>


NPX: Not About The Paper

Certifications have always made me feel wishy washy if they’re worth the time spent in achieving them. I had lots of VMware certs including VCP-DT #10 which I was super proud of at the time. I was on the fence for a long time if I should go for NPX. There was a part of me that thought I should do it because I work at Nutanix and I should support it. The reality is there is lots of work to do for NPX and probably not the best thing if your heart isn’t in it. Without your own personal reasons it would really be too easy to toss in the towel. I thought from a skill set it would be great for me to sharpen some of the more consulting like skills and there is an abundance of resources to help me out too. What pushed me over the edge was an opportunity to design a new Acropolis Hypervisor environment and to learn more about KVM and networking which were not as sharp as my VMware skills.

It’s worth noting that I did fail my first attempt at the VCP-DCD so I knew this wasn’t going to be a walk in the park in addressing all of the requirements. Luckily I have both Josh Odgers and Lane Leverett to help out out when I have questions. Not to mention my team, Steve Poitras, aka Creator of the Nutanix Bible, Hyper-V guru, Mike Mcghee, Kevin Fernandez, CCIE and brand new member Design Artist, Brian Suhr. The great thing is all those people are a tweet away for anyone. Also just look at what Derek Seaman is doing for VCDX candidates below:

In deciding in selecting brown-field environment is great from the stand point that I don’t have to make anything up but it’s also brings in a lot of variables. A part of me wishes I would have found a brand new VMware View environment to stand up because of my background but I think once finished this will be pretty rewarding.

To me NPX is learning and strengthening skills and working together to achieve something great. I look forward to sharing what I learn here.

NPX Guidelines:


Nutanix – Windows Failover Clustering

Acropolis base software 4.5 and 4.1.5 supports configuring Windows guest VMs as a failover cluster. This clustering type enables applications on a failed VM to fail over to and run on another guest VM on the same or different host. This release supports this feature on ESXi, Acropolis Hypervisor (AHV) and Hyper-V hosts with in-guest VM iSCSI and SCSI 3 Persistent Reservation. In the past you would have had to setup MS Availability Groups using a file server for quorom. Availability groups are great but getting people to switch adds additional constraints for setup and training. The other downside from field is that there are tons of people running SQL 2008 and availability groups don’t exist there.

You have the ability to create a Volume Group with multiple vDisks that get attached using iSCSI. If your using AHV the disk attachment to the VM can be automatic. On AHV, the Volume Group gets attached to a specific SCSI bus and can happen while the VM is running. The shared Volume Group can be shared among multiple machines.

Note: AHV is apart of the MS Server Virtualization Validation Program. Nutanix has certiied with Windows 2012 R2. When a vendor validates their virtualization solution with Windows Server 2012 R2, then Windows Server 2012, Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2003 SP2 and subsequent service packs are also supported.


Nutanix 4.5 – DR and Backup For The Fitness Nut and New Features


DR practices in environments that aren’t heavily regulated can be a lot like eating right. You know you should eat more fruits and vegetables but lots of times people pick the easiest or cheapest option. Usually that option is to do nothing until something really bad happens. With the release of the Acropolis Operating System 4.5 continues with greater flexibility and ease of use for SMB up to the largest of enterprises. Disaster recovery (DR) support has been verified for up to 50 VMs per protection domain(grouping of VM with a common RPO) and the following replication topologies: 1-to-1, many-to-1, and bidirectional. You can have as many production domains as you want to get around the hurdles of managing LUNS on both sides.

New in 4.5 for DR
Bandwidth Limit on Schedule
Max bandwidth is set to throttle traffic between sites when no network device can limit replication traffic. Max bandwidth does not imply a maximum observed throughput. Max bandwidth allows for different settings throughout the day. Assign a max bandwidth policy when your sites are busy with production data. On days that are not busy you can deselect them which make them turn white.

This setting is in MB/s not Mb/s, this is important to note when talking with your networking teams.

Cloud Connect for Azure and AWS
The cloud connect feature for Azure enables you to back up and restore copies of virtual machines and files to and from an on-premise cluster and a Nutanix Controller VM located on the Microsoft Azure cloud. Once configured through the Prism web console, the remote site cluster is managed and monitored through the Data Protection dashboard like any other remote site you have created and configured. This feature is currently supported for ESXi hypervisor environments only. Cloud Connect for AWS is know supported on all supported hypervisors.

NX-6035C Clusters Usable as a Target for Replication
You can use a Nutanix NX-6035C cluster as a target for Nutanix native replication and snapshots, created by source Nutanix clusters in your environment. You can configure the NX-6035C as a target for snapshots, set a longer retention policy than on the source cluster (for example), and restore snapshots to the source cluster as needed. Low cost per TB and combined with Erasure Coding (EC-X) that is now GA makes a pretty compelling solution. Keep in mind EC-X is complementary to deduplication and compression.

The source cluster hypervisor environment can be AHV, Hyper-V, or ESXi. We are starting to see service providers provide DR and backup for their customers and this will go to help them in a long way. One Canadian Nutanix backed service provider is CloudSFY.

Network Mapping
settings2Network mapping allows you to control network configuration for the VMs when they are started on the remote site. This feature enables you to specify network mapping between the source cluster and the destination cluster. The remote site wizard includes an option to create one or more network mappings and allows you to select source and destination network from the drop-down list. You can also modify or remove network mappings as part of modifying the remote sites. Today it’s just for AHV <-> AHV movement of VM but you can tell by the picture of where this is headed.

Prism Central Can Now Be Deployed on the Acropolis Hypervisor (AHV)
Nutanix has introduced a Prism Central OVA which can be deployed on an AHV cluster by leveraging Image Service features. Great for managing all of your remote sites.

CommVault IntelliSnap Integration
Cluster level API integration with CommVault allowing the backup tool to directly manage the storage tier for snapshots and backups. This give Nutanix customers the ability to ensure the entire datacenter is backup managed by a single tool; in Nutanix and non-Nutanix deployments using CommVault.

File Level Restore in Tech Preview
The file level restore feature allows a virtual machine user to restore a file within a virtual machine from the Nutanix protected snapshot with minimal Nutanix administrator intervention.

Behind the scenes the whole Engineering team at Nutanix has done a ton of work around snapshots and performance as well. Their work won’t show up anywhere glamorous but rest assured a lot of testing as went into the 4.5. Testing high transnational workloads passed with flying colours.

VMware SRM was already supported from earlier versions.