VMware vSAN Overview

VMware vSAN is the #3 ranked solution in our list of HCI Software. It is most often compared to Nutanix Acropolis AOS: VMware vSAN vs Nutanix Acropolis AOS

What is VMware vSAN?

VMware vSAN is the industry-leading software powering Hyper-Converged Infrastructure solutions.

What vSAN Does

  1. Enables you to evolve without risk. Seamlessly extend virtualization to storage with an integrated hyper-converged solution that simply works with your overall VMware environment and reduces the risk in digital transformation by using existing tools, skillsets and solutions.
  2. Lowers total cost of ownership by 50% or more with capital and operational savings. Reduce storage CapEx, decrease operational costs, manage the day-to-day operations of compute and storage infrastructure, and accelerate responsiveness to traditionally time-consuming tasks.
  3. vSAN helps customers scale to tomorrow. Prepare for tomorrow's dynamic business in the multi-cloud era with a solution designed to utilize the latest storage and server technologies and ready to support a wide range of applications, from current business critical applications to next-gen applications using containers.

VMware vSAN is also known as vSAN.

VMware vSAN Buyer's Guide

Download the VMware vSAN Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: January 2021

VMware vSAN Customers

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Pricing Advice

What users are saying about VMware vSAN pricing:
  • "ROI from an administrative perspective is clearly much better because I only have to deal with one user interface."
  • "If they could reduce the cost, it would be better. Licensing costs are something that they could take care of. If you are a smaller and strong IT team, then VMware vSAN is a very good product. If you want to expand in the service provider space, then you will have to go for an open-source solution like OpenStack. We are now looking at OpenStack because we sell licensing costs. We are a service provider, so the IT component data is a substantial component in our overall costing. We feel that OpenStack might help us to cut down the licensing cost. Therefore, we are looking at SAS storage instead of vSAN. SAS is open source, but it is not wise to have open source without having the backend support. We are using RedHat SAS, and it is an open-source solution. You can also have a free version, but we are using it with support from RedHat so that we have somebody to back us up in case we have a problem. If you do normal business, then IT expense is 1% or 2% of the total turnover. The higher licensing costs sometimes don't make difference to the big companies who are not service providers and are using it only for their internal use. For them, the IT cost is 1% or 2%, but for an IT service provider, the IT costs will go up to 15% to 16% of the total cost of the operations. This is where the licensing costs become irrelevant. For example, the licensing cost of using VMware, VC, and vSAN is 8% of my monthly revenue. Every month, I pay about $35,000, and, with the revised plan, it will be something like $50,000 or revenue of 600k per month, which means almost 8% of the revenue is going into VMware licensing. In a very competitive world, 8% as a cost element is huge. So, if I can bring it down to 2%, I save 6% in revenue expenditure. In terms of profit, 6% of 30% is something like another 25% increase in my profit. My profit can be almost 25%. It would be 20% to 25% in case I am able to handle the licensing costs and bring them to a very low level. Because these IT costs are substantial for us, that is why we are going with OpenStack. OpenStack has a limitation that it requires more hardware. There will be some increase in the hardware cost, but overall we will save 5% to 6% of our licensing cost by using OpenStack."
  • "The price is expensive."
  • "It is fairly cost-effective for entry to mid-level performance based on the underlying hardware components."

VMware vSAN Reviews

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Yves Sandfort
CEO / Cloud Evangelist at Comdivision Consulting GmbH
Video Review
Real User
Top 20Popular
Jan 14, 2020
Gives us a lot of advantages when we need to expand resources

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use vSAN for cloud automation, so we provide test workloads for specific test use cases for customers who want to do software testing. In these specific cases, we also use vSAN because it gives us flexibility from a profile perspective on how we roll out specific workloads and specific test scenarios, making it easier for us to actually deploy things in comparison to legacy storage platforms.

Pros and Cons

  • "We can also create test cases. We can even throttle down performance or release more performance. So, we can run more precise test scenarios."
  • "When we do to do more scaled load testing, we can run more dense workloads and still have the same results across all specific nodes"
  • "When we talk about improvements for vSAN, there is some way to go from a at least stability perspective. Adding all these new features is nice, but we are now at the level that most of the features you need in production are there."
  • "Upgradability could be a bit easier sometimes. We are now where vSAN can be updated without ESXi, but there is still enough dependency. So that would be good if that actually would uncoupled even more."

What other advice do I have?

I would rate the solution somewhere around an eight out of ten. It is in the perfect place. There is room for improvement, but with the current versions, we are in a good stage.
reviewer1381863
CEO at a tech consulting company with 201-500 employees
Real User
Top 5Leaderboard
Oct 24, 2020
Very stable, easy to set up, and easy to use

What is our primary use case?

We are providing virtual machines for our niche area of accounting firms. For virtualization, we are using VMware vSphere, and for storing these virtualizations, we are using VMware vSAN. We have co-located servers in different data centers. That's where we have installed the VMware vSAN for our use.

Pros and Cons

  • "It is very easy to set up and very easy to use. It is very useful."
  • "If one node out of your ten nodes fails, it takes a lot of time to replicate and rebalance VMware vSAN. This time can be reduced. When a node fails and the data is not accessible, vSAN has to be rebalanced to make the redundancy level of two again. However, if it is taking a lot of time and any other hardware fails during that time, then we have a problem. Two disk failures mean that all data will be lost, and we may have to recover it from the backup. So, the number of threads that run to do the rebalancing could be more so that the time taken to make it fully redundant again is not so much."

What other advice do I have?

If you want a very simple structure, VMware vSAN is a good idea. If you have a larger and strong IT team and the cost is a factor for you, you can go for OpenStack. I would rate VMware vSAN an eight out of ten.
Learn what your peers think about VMware vSAN. Get advice and tips from experienced pros sharing their opinions. Updated: January 2021.
456,966 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Vishal Bhatia
Trainer/Consultant at Koenig Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
Consultant
Oct 28, 2020
Easy to configure, deploy, and manage

What is our primary use case?

We don't have any specific use cases, however, we do have a variety of workloads running on vSAN.

Pros and Cons

  • "The deduplication and compression are excellent."
  • "There's a lot that can be done to segregate. That may be available now in vSAN 7, I suppose, however, the deduplication and compression can be segregated."

What other advice do I have?

We're a partner with VMware. Overall, I would rate them eight out of ten. They still have room for improvement. However, overall, we've been pleased with the results. It's easy to use, manage, and monitor. The solution is best suited for small to medium-sized organizations. If the solution is ideal for a company depends on the workloads and what they're trying to do right now. If a company would like to make a choice between the All-Flash or the Hybrid, I would definitely go for All-Flash. It may be a bit expensive as compared to Hybrid, however, definitely from a feature perspective and a…
reviewer1351098
IT Infrastructure Specialist at a computer software company with 51-200 employees
MSP
Dec 5, 2020
Good unified administration, very stable, and easy to set up

What is our primary use case?

We primarily use the solution for remote offices as well as medium-sized businesses.

Pros and Cons

  • "The solution's unified administration is its most valuable aspect."
  • "The solution could maybe improve failure protection."

What other advice do I have?

We are a partner of VMware. Customers considering the solution should be aware that the principal benefits they will get from the solution include integration with HCI, NSX, and cloud solutions. Overall, I would rate the solution nine ut of ten. We've had a good experience overall and our clients are happy with the product.
Md.Shahadat Hossain Shipon
Sr. Manager-Data Center and Virtualization at Omgea Exim Ltd
MSP
Top 5Leaderboard
Nov 3, 2020
Flexible, reliable, and has easy to scale-out architecture with good security

What is our primary use case?

We are service providers. We offer pre-billed services anywhere from three-year or five-year contracts for our customers. We provide the maintenance of the solution during that time, and on the backend, we provide L1 and L2 support. The primary use case of this solution is for third party storage, and to leverage the local hard disk. This avoids the cost of expensive storage, sandboxes, and SAN switches.

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable features are secure IOPs and LAN security."
  • "The price can be reduced. Small businesses cannot afford this solution."

What other advice do I have?

VMware vSAN is a very good product and I would recommend it for other customers. I would rate this solution a ten out of ten.
reviewer1320009
Founder at a construction company with 11-50 employees
Real User
Oct 29, 2020
Easy to set up, fairly stable, and cost-effective

What is our primary use case?

We use it for commoditization and cost-effectiveness. We use it only to be able to spin up instances for monitoring and to do some application testing for other contracts. We are using the latest version.

Pros and Cons

  • "It uncoupled the idea of proprietary technology and component capabilities. It is basically a proprietary technology for a cost-effective infrastructure."
  • "They can package it in a way that is specific to the hardware infrastructure and the hardware platform. It should stay fairly up to date with the drivers and the manufacturer issues. The problem with uncoupling the proprietary technology and component capabilities is that by uncoupling them, you run into some concerns or challenges over the poor performance model. These concerns really come when you start talking about high performance, high bandwidth, and high availability types of environments. While vSAN is a leader, in a critical view, it is not about being cost-effective. It is more about the immediate impact of money loss to the business in critical applications where we want to maintain a continuous operational 59 model. It is, however, good for QA/QC tasks. I don't necessarily know how it works in regards to VDI or virtual desktop infrastructure."

What other advice do I have?

I would advise doing your homework and making sure that it scales according to your expectations, performance, and ownership cost. DataCore is a company that competes against them. DataCore is more focused, whereas VMware is wide. DataCore is a little bit better in terms of due diligence and information. vSAN is one of the many products based on the VMware industry, whereas DataCore is very focused and very niche. They've been doing virtualization since 1986. I would rate VMware vSAN an eight out of ten.
Pengineers0997
Principal Security Engineer at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Real User
Apr 24, 2019
Top Tier HCI with Great Import Management Functionalities

What is our primary use case?

We deliver the only end-to-end enterprise technology platform exclusively designed for quick service and food service communities. Our primary use case for this solution is for customer use in our internal labs. As partners with the vendor VMware vSAN, we leverage their tech to build customer-specific simulated environments, to provide unique, controlled individual environments to gain insightful perspectives and capture helpful data.

Pros and Cons

  • "As a function of our core business, it's a sought after tool that helps us provide analytical support across a wide spectrum of client needs. It's allowed us to test out in our connected restaurant - "TheWorks" - a fully-functional restaurant experience center that allows our clients to discover the value of our connected solutions firsthand. We deploy vSAN in this customer-like environment within a hyperconvergent infrastruction (HCI) to give our clients a better understanding and help optimize data and the end-users' experience."
  • "I would like to see the availability of more template based VMware systems. Combined with the ability to check and measure multiple and converging data segments. Another issue I've seen is that the tool seems to be slow when first starting up."

What other advice do I have?

I would suggest that anyone looking to deploy this solution do their due diligence and try out other competitive products first, like Nutanix. I've used Nutanix in the past. I found it to be a more agile tool compared to VMware. VMware has only just recently started offering this HCI solution. If I was to rate vSAN from one to ten, 10 being best, I would give it an 8. Not a ten primarily because I haven't tested some aspects of the arrays at this point.
systemen519357
System Engineer at a healthcare company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Top 10
Dec 26, 2019
A stable storage solution that we have come to trust

What is our primary use case?

We use this as storage solution for specific VMware services and for backup solution.

Pros and Cons

  • "It is more stable now than it was before. It's not like it was in the first year. Now it is stable, and we trust it more."
  • "Disaster recovery needs to be improved, when there is a crisis, there is a problem with what is the quickest way to get out of it."

What other advice do I have?

I would rate this solution an eight out of ten.
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