Recently a customer shared a story with me about a routine patch upgrade that resulted in several production VMs becoming inaccessible. The only way to bring them back online was to get the host out of maintenance mode. Read more


Episode 61

The benefits of NVME over SSD are pretty compelling. Not only do NVMe drives offer more bandwidth, but the updated interface and protocols improve latency and better handle heavy workloads . Now, as NVMe approaches price parity with SATA SSDs organizations are making the switch, but what about the storage fabric? Are we just shifting the bottleneck to the network?

This week we bring in Dr J Metz to discuss storage networking technologies, protocols and standards. J shares his thoughts on what’s near end of road and what is gaining momentum.

Dr J Metz is a Data Center Technologist in the Office of the CTO at Cisco, focusing on Storage

Topics discussed:

  • Ethernet, Fibre Channel, PCI Express, Omni-Path (a new Intel high-performance communications architecture), and InfiniBand.
  • NVMe’s impact on datacenter design
  • Technology transitions (the game of whack-a-mole)
  • Is Tape going away?

Links mentioned in this episode:

The Virtually Speaking Podcast

The Virtually Speaking Podcast is a weekly technical podcast dedicated to discussing VMware topics related to storage and availability. Each week Pete Flecha and John Nicholson bring in various subject matter experts from VMware and within the industry to discuss their respective areas of expertise. If you’re new to the Virtually Speaking Podcast check out all episodes on

Episode 60.png

This week we continue the Partner Perspective series with three great VMware Partners. This week we continue the Partner Perspective series with three great VMware Partners.

Topics discussed

  • Cohesity’s Rawlinson Rivera shares their solution for the recovery of a datacenter’s management stack.
  • Veeam’s Anthony Spiteri and Michael Cade update us on Veeam Powered Network, and their data protecton for VMware Cloud on AWS.
  • Duncan and John talk with Fujitsu Chief Evangalist Data Center Business, Udo Würtz

Links mentioned in this episode

The Virtually Speaking Podcast

The Virtually Speaking Podcast is a weekly technical podcast dedicated to discussing VMware topics related to storage and availability. Each week Pete Flecha and John Nicholson bring in various subject matter experts from VMware and within the industry to discuss their respective areas of expertise. If you’re new to the Virtually Speaking Podcast check out all episodes on

The short version of this post is…. we moved

Our new rss feed is

What does this mean to you?

  • If you subscribed on iTunes, SoundCloud, GooglePlay, or stitcher it’s business as usual. We redirected to the new rss feed.
  • If you subscribe to a different service please use the new rss feed.
  • Take a peek at the new site. We’ve aggregated all show notes pages and episodes.  While you’re there be sure to subscribe.

So long SoundCloud

For those of you that hadn’t heard, SoundCloud was about to close the doors before securing the largest ever funding round securing their future.  During this period of uncertainty we decided to look at alternatives. The criteria we had was pretty simple

  • An embedded player
  • Ability to migrate our existing content catalog
  • A seamless change for our existing subscriber base

There were a few companies that met our needs, but one stood out among the rest for various reasons. Ultimately we decided to move from SoundCloud to

Hello ZenCast


One of the new features we have with ZenCast is a dedicated page for each episode and the respective show notes and relative links. We also have a guests page that provides links to the episodes each guest has appeared on.  This should be a really helpful when trying to find a specific guest.


The real advantage I see with this new site is the aggregation of all episodes.  We have been posting individual show notes blog posts on Virtual Blocks but using SoundCloud as the aggregate for actual episodes.  Now with the new site we’ve aggregated the episodes and all the show notes pages.


SoundCloud has been a great option for us for the past year.  Sure it had it’s limitations but worked.   That said, change is always tricky.  Hopefully this will be a welcome change and at very least non-disruptive to your podcast listening experience.  Let us know what you think.  Alright, thats the update, we hope to hear from you but until then… bye for now.

Lets do this..


OK My buddy Russ Cantwell has yet again entertained and inspired me.  This time to put together a compilation of Virtually Speaking Podcast listeners who love to rock out to our intro.


About a year ago, shortly after joining the ranks of the VMware technical marketing team I decided to start a podcast to help me learn more about all the different products and solutions out there but also to contribute to this vCommunity that has been such an amazing source of information, not to mention networking etc.  So my buddy John Nicholson (@lost_signal) and I decided… Lets do this, and started recording.

Side Rant: If you’re new to the world of virtualization you’ll be pleased to know there is an enormous community of IT professionals who are passionate about learning and share their knowledge through blogs, podcasts, VMUGs, and sessions at various industry events.  If your’e already part of this community, you know exactly what I’m talking about, and on that note, thank you for your contributions.

Now, just over a year in, and 75K downloads we have been overwhelmed with all the positive (and appreciative of the constructive) feedback we have received.  Now I have to be honest, sure we get lots of positive comments about the content, guests, format and even audio quality, but by far the thing we hear most is how much people love the intro. Recently a vCommunity member and all around awesome guy, Russ Cantwell ()  posted the following hilarious video of his weekly drive when listening to the Virtually Speaking Podcast.

If you don’t know Russ, be sure to follow him on Twitter.  He is a brilliant guy who is beyond passionate about all technology. Also be sure to check out his SEV Ops videos. (Short Educational Videos) on YouTube.

Lets All Do this

Here’s where you come in. Just like Russ, we want to see your creative submission of you rocking out to the intro music. You can tweet the video to @vPedroArrow and @lost_Signal or email it to podcast @ vmware . com.  John and I will assemble the submissions and make a compilation video.  We will be accepting submissions up until 8-20-17 so get moving. All submissions that make the video will receive a nice Virtually Speaking Podcast care package.  Russ, you definitely made the cut 🙂

Please be safe, John and I won’t be paying your medical bills if you hurt yourself. (we also don’t advocate handling any recording equipment while driving).


Now that vSphere 6.5 supports array-based replication (ABR), customers are starting to configure replication in their VM Storage Policies. Before you configure your policies for replication below are a few prerequisites to check.

Note: Always check with your storage vendor for specific instructions on configuring your VASA Provider.  While very similar, each vendor I’ve configured is slightly different.

  1.  Does your VASA Provider support VASA API 3.0?  Always check with your storage vendor first to see if they offer support for VASA 3.0.  If you already have your VP registered in vSphere you can verify by doing the following:
    1. From your vCenter go to configureStorage Providers
    2. Select your VASA Provider and verify the status is online and the VASA API Version is 3.0vasa-api
  2. Be sure to create a storage component for replication.
    1. Click on VM Storage Policies
    2. Click on the Storage Policy Component tab.
    3. Click Create Storage Policy Componentspc
      • Name your SPC
      • Select Replication for the category
      • Select your VASA Provider for the Provider


Configure VVol Replication

Now that you have registered VPs with VASA API version 3.0 or higher and you’ve successfully configured your Storage Component, all that’s left to do is create a VM Storage Policy with replication.  This is a pretty straight forward task, but it’s important to keep in mind that the options displayed in the configuration of the SPBM Storage Policies are determined by your storage Vendor.  In the example below I am creating a policy using Nimble Storage.

  1. Click on VM Storage Policies
  2. Click Create VM Storage Policy
  3. Add the desired capabilities to your policy to include a replication schedule.  In the example below I have an hourly replication policy.  This means any VM created using this policy will automatically be configured to replicate to my preconfigured target location (group-b).
  4. IMPORTANT: Click Add ComponentReplication and then your previously created Storage Component (Nimble Replication)
  5. Click NextFinish



Adding replication to SPBM Storage Policies has been the most popular feature request since VVol 1.0  Using vSphere 6.5 and a VASA Provider certified with VASA API 3.0 you will find setting up VVol replication to be a fairly simple task.  As always there are prerequisites to consider from both VMware and your storage vendor. So now that we have preconfigured replication, how do we actually do a failover?  In my next post I will be sharing examples of VVol Disaster Recovery using PowerCLI.  Stay tuned and until then… bye for now.


I can’t even believe it is already time again for VMworld. As always I can’t wait for it to be here (and I can’t wait for it to be over)  On one hand, its the largest opportunity to unite with my fellow IT brethren and sistren from all over the world yet on the other hand it also mean I need to spend months preparing speaking sessions and demos to share.  Now as we near the 30 day countdown and shift into high gear preparation mode I thought I would share a few thoughts about this year’s events.

Best VMworld Ever

Last year I said it was the Best VMworld Ever.  No I don’t intend to say that every year, but I truly believe this is going to be MY best VMworld ever.  If for no other reason, the fact that it will be my first ever VMworld as a VMware employee.  Sure that comes with a whole lot more work, but that’s OK.  I love my job, and am proud to represent the Storage and Availability Unit this year.

VIVA Las VVols Sessions

This year there are a ton of different VVol sessions at VMworld to choose from, and in case you’re wondering why that is, it’s because this is the YEAR of VVols! 🙂  Below are several VVols sessions that I am either presenting or attending this year. I hope to see you there.

STO7645 – 8/29/16 (Monday) 11:00 AM
Virtual Volumes Technical Deep Dive

This is going to be my favorite session, because I get to co-present with the manager of the VVol development team, Patrick Dirks.  If you don’t know Patrick let me tell you, there isn’t a person on this planet that knows more about VVols, but more than that he an awesome teacher.  IMHO this is a must attend session for anyone interested in VVols.

STO8619 – 8/31/16 (Wednesday) 4:00 PM
Transitioning to VVols: Partner Panel

This is going to be a really interesting session because of all the different storage vendors that will be participating and sharing their views on the VVol transition.  The fun part about panel sessions is you, the audience member drive the discussion topics. I love having a free flowing conversation with subject matter experts for all the key storage vendors talking about this hot topic.  Another must attend IMHO.

STO8159 -8/31/16 (Wednesday) 11:30 AM
Snapshots Suck: How VSAN and VVol fix all your operational nightmares

I’m not sure how we got this controversial title approved but hey lets do this. If you’ve ever listened to the vSpeakingPodcast with John and I than this title makes more sense.  Either way if you’ve been in the industry for any amount of time you’ve probably experienced the pains of VMFS snapshots, whether its having too many which kills your IO or just waiting hours to delete them.  The good news is both VSAN and VVols bring significant  performance gains in this area and John and I are going to break it down.

STO8144 – 8/30/16 (Tuesday) 3:30 PM
Virtual Volumes in a NetApp Environment

Regardless of what storage you use this will be an informative session on VVols. We will be discussing what VVol looks like on all storage platforms and sharing what both ONTAP and Element OS users can expect with their VAS Providers.

STO8159 – 8/30/16 (Tuesday) 12:30 PM
Deploy Scalable Private Cloud with vSphere Virtual Volumes

This session is a technical deep-dive on how using VVols with Hitachi Storage systems will solve common challenges in managing VMs, streamline the storage operations with policy-based management and improve efficiency of VM operations.

STO8422 – Thursday, Sep 01, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Virtual Volumes: Why?

In this session Ben Meadowcroft and Rajib Ghosh look at the VVol framework and how EMC is using this to deliver a new generation of VM-aware storage that puts the VMs in charge. You will learn about this revolutionary change in the way storage is delivered to VMware environments, and why this industry-wide initiative will provide you with a new, efficient and intelligent ways to use storage arrays.

vSpeakingPodcast – Road Show

vsp (1) copy

If you are a listener of the vSpeakingPodcast you might be interested to know that John and I will be recording content for a special VMworld episode.  Come find us and say hi.  We would love to interview you or at least hook you up with some swag.

See you there

Alright time to get back to work on my sessions. I hope to see you in Vegas in a few short weeks because it will be the best VMworld Ever 🙂 Bye for now..