News Releases5 min read

VMware Announces General Availability of VMware Virtual SAN

VMware Virtual SAN Simplifies Storage for Virtual Environments With Unique Architecture Based on VM-Centric Policies and Built-In Automation

PALO ALTO, CA--(Marketwired - Mar 12, 2014) - VMware, Inc. (NYSE: VMW), the global leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure, today announced the general availability of VMware® Virtual SAN™, VMware's first Software-Defined Storage product.

Built directly into the VMware vSphere kernel, VMware Virtual SAN provides a new tier of hypervisor-converged storage. The software abstracts and pools internal magnetic disks and flash devices from industry-standard x86 servers to produce a high-performance and resilient shared datastore for virtual machines (VMs). According to internal benchmarks, VMware Virtual SAN performs:

  • 2 million input/output operations per second (IOPS) on a read-only workload on a 32 node cluster; (1) and,
  • 640,000 IOPS on a mixed workload on a 32 node cluster. (2)

"Today VMware changes the way that storage has been operated to date," said John Gilmartin, vice president and general manager, SDDC Suite Business Unit, VMware. "VMware Virtual SAN™ is a radically simple storage solution optimized for virtual environments that brings an application-centric approach to storage management. Customers that know VMware vSphere know VMware Virtual SAN, and can rely on that familiarity to hit the ground running with VMware Virtual SAN."

"VMware Virtual SAN enables us to scale our storage infrastructure and gives us the redundancy we require to help bring our solutions to market faster to our Line of Business customers," said Frans Van Rooyen, Cloud Architect, Adobe Systems Incorporated. "With VMware Virtual SAN, we use policy based management to automate storage aggregation across a large distributed environment while maintaining the same hardware platforms we know and use today."

"With VMware Virtual SAN, Itrica now has the capability to right-size storage solutions for our customers," said David Sampson, CTO, Itrica. "We can custom engineer IO, and scale on demand as customer capacity needs grow. Having a hypervisor-converged storage solution that's spread across our host machines, replicating data all the time, and operating in a similar model to how compute virtualization works, makes perfect sense for what we're trying to accomplish."

Simple, High-Performance Storage for Virtual Machines
VMware Virtual SAN simplifies storage provisioning and management while reducing total cost of ownership (TCO) enabling a fundamentally more agile operational model. VMware Virtual SAN provides the reliability and robustness of an enterprise storage system, and is highly resilient protecting against data loss in the event of any hardware failures. It is ideally suited for several use cases in virtual environments such as Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI), test/development, and disaster recovery. Features include:

  • Hypervisor-converged architecture: Embedded within the VMware vSphere kernel, VMware Virtual SAN delivers the most efficient data path for superior performance while minimizing resource utilization resulting in the consumption of less than 10 percent of CPU resources.
  • High performance with elastic and linear scalability: VMware Virtual SAN uses flash to deliver performance acceleration through read/write caching. The software provides a granular and elastic approach to provision performance and capacity enabling customers to linearly scale their clusters on demand by adding nodes to a cluster or disks to individual nodes
  • Storage Policy Based Management: With storage policy based management, VMware Virtual SAN shifts the management model for storage from the device to the application. A single VMware Virtual SAN datastore can provide differentiated service levels based on individual VM policies. For administrators, there are no complex configurations through LUNs or volumes, they avoid overprovisioning, and can change policies easily. With automated provisioning and management, administrators improve the ability to meet Service Level Agreements (SLAs).
  • Integration with the VMware stack: VMware Virtual SAN is easy to configure and deploy requiring two clicks using VMware vSphere Web Client. Its integration with VMware vSphere enables customers to use data services such as backup, cloning, replication and snapshots as well as features such as Distributed Resource Scheduler™, High Availability, vMotion and Storage vMotion. Additionally, VMware Virtual SAN is interoperable with VMware Horizon View 5.3.1, VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager, VMware vCenter Operations Management Suite and VMware vCloud Automation Center.

A hardware independent solution, VMware Virtual SAN can be deployed on a wide range of servers. Customers have two options for deploying VMware Virtual SAN - VMware Virtual SAN Ready Nodes (pre-validated configurations of servers), and a component-based hardware compatibility list that enables customers to pick and choose the components they prefer. More than 150 components and 13 Ready Nodes are certified with VMware Virtual SAN today. The VMware Compatibility Guide for VMware Virtual SAN is accessible at:

Helping Customers to Reduce TCO
VMware Virtual SAN helps customers to reduce Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) through Capital Expenditures (Capex) and Operating Expenditures (Opex) savings. The software takes advantage of server side hardware economics by pooling internal magnetic disks and flash devices from industry-standard x86 servers. Customers avoid large upfront costs by starting small and adding disks or nodes to their VMware Virtual SAN cluster as capacity or performance needs arise without disruption. VMware Virtual SAN also helps customers to achieve Opex savings through automation that eliminates time-consuming manual processes as well as easing traditionally complex change management, storage configuration and capacity planning tasks.

Pricing and Availability
VMware Virtual SAN is now generally available. VMware Virtual SAN is priced at $2,495 per processor. VMware Virtual SAN for Desktop is priced at $50 per user.

  • For a limited time, customers can purchase a bundle of VMware Virtual SAN with VMware vSphere Data Protection Advanced for $2,875 per processor.
  • For a limited time, VMware vSphere Storage Appliance customers will be able to upgrade to VMware Virtual SAN at 20 percent off the list price.

Additional Resources

About VMware
VMware is the leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure solutions that enable businesses to thrive in the Cloud Era. Customers rely on VMware to help them transform the way they build, deliver and consume Information Technology resources in a manner that is evolutionary and based on their specific needs. With 2013 revenues of $5.21 billion, VMware has more than 500,000 customers and 75,000 partners. The company is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout the world and can be found online at

VMware, vSphere, vCenter, vCenter Operations Management Suite, VMware Virtual SAN, and Distributed Resource Schedule are registered trademarks or trademarks of VMware, Inc. in the United States and other jurisdictions. All other marks and names mentioned herein may be trademarks of their respective companies. The use of the word "partner" or "partnership" does not imply a legal partnership relationship between VMware and any other company.

(1) 2 million IOPS on read-only workloads achieved on 32 node VMware Virtual SAN cluster, based on IOmeter benchmark, February 2014

(2) 640,000 IOPS on mixed workloads (Mixed = 70 percent/30 percent Read/Write, 4K 80 percent random) achieved on 32 node VMware Virtual SAN cluster, based on IOmeter benchmark, February 2014

Contact Information:

Eloy Ontiveros
VMware Global Communications

Beth Handoll
H+K Strategies for VMware