vSphere 8.0 | Overview for 8 Features You Need to Know
Are you interested in the new version of vSphere? VMware announced vSphere 8.0 recently. It drew attention to the vSphere 8 new features. How will these new features change your vSphere environment?
New vSphere 8 is coming
VMware announced a new version of VMware vSphere On August 30, 2022. VMware vSphere 8 is the enterprise workload platform that brings the benefits of cloud to on-premises workloads. It supercharges performance with DPU and GPU based acceleration, enhances operational efficiency through the VMware Cloud Console, seamlessly integrates with add-on hybrid cloud services, and accelerates innovation with an enterprise-ready integrated Kubernetes runtime that runs containers alongside VMs.
As admins expand their organization's infrastructure, they must address concerns around server capacity, increased complexity and CPU-centric security models. According to VMware, about 30% of CPU capacity is just focused on network and security, which can reduce available computing power for mission-critical workloads. Admins can deploy vSphere 8 to make on-premises deployments suitable for flexible consumption, developer agility and high-performance workloads.
In today’s article, we are going to look at the upcoming improvements and features in VMware vSphere 8.0 in more detail.
What are the vSphere 8 features
vSphere 8 is optimized for private and public clouds as well as tasks related to artificial intelligence and machine learning. Next, we will introduce vSphere 8 new features in detail.
Distributed Services Engine
VMware vSphere 8 introduces the Distributed Services Engine to work with Data Processing Units that allow you to offload a central processing unit (CPU).
A Data Processing Unit (DPU) is a new class of programmable processors built on the ARM architecture, which can be used together with CPUs and GPUs (graphics processing units) for computing operations primarily related to networking and communications.
A DPU is now incorporated into a Smart NIC controller, which is plugged into the motherboard. This new approach allows us to improve network performance in a virtual environment built on vSphere 8 and offload a CPU for performing network operations.
A Smart NIC is much more powerful than the traditional NIC (network interface controller) and is especially useful with VMware NSX. VMware says that up to 20% of CPU workloads can be freed up when using DPUs now. The higher transaction rate, lower latency, and security benefits are the advantages you get with this feature.
NSX Distributed Firewall will now use DPUs, this is optimal for east-west network traffic, which is increasingly more common in modern virtualized data centers. This approach offloads security operations from CPU to DPU.
VMware vSphere on DPUs, known as Project Monterey before the release, was implemented in collaboration with hardware vendors like Intel, AMD, NVIDIA, and OEM system partners.
There are a few improvements to vSphere Scalability:
- vGPUs per VM changes from 4 to 8
- Lifecycle Manager can now manage 1000 hosts (up from 400)
- You can now manage 10000 VMs per cluster (was previously 8000)
- Each ESXi host can now have up to 32 VMDirectPath IO devices each
Enhanced DRS Performance
vSphere 8 allows DRS to better understand the memory of workloads (using persistent memory). In vSphere 8, DRS performance can be significantly improved when PMEM is present by leveraging memory statistics, resulting in optimal placement decisions for VMs without affecting performance and resource consumption.
vSphere Green Metrics
In vSphere 8, green metrics are introduced for monitoring power consumption to improve energy saving. You can view graphs in the native vSphere web interface. They include:
Tanzu Kubernetes Grid 2.0
VMware vSphere 8 includes the latest release of Tanzu Kubernetes Grid which is a great vSphere 8 update for administrators and DevOps working with containers. Workload Availability Zones allow you to deploy a Kubernetes cluster across VMware vSphere clusters. Kubernetes capabilities are expanded to include multi-availability zones. This feature can improve the resilience of cloud-native applications and modern workloads. Package management and cluster lifecycle are simplified.
Operating multiple Kubernetes clusters becomes simpler. You can manage clusters from a single place. Cluster creation is also simplified due to a new Cluster API feature called ClusterClass. Open-source API alignment can be used for automation and development.
vSphere 8 introduces DPU support for vSphere Lifecycle Manager to automatically remediate the ESXi installation on a DPU in lock-step with the host ESXi version. Staging of update/upgrade payloads, parallel remediation and standalone host support combine to bring vLCM up to feature parity with Update Manager. Standalone hosts can be managed using vSphere Lifecycle Manager via API. VMware Compatibility Guide details what vLCM features a Hardware Support Manager can support.
A technical preview of vSphere Configuration Profiles introduces the next generation of cluster configuration management as a future replacement of Host Profiles.
Enhanced Recovery of vCenter
If a v Center server is restored from backup, cluster configuration becomes reverted if there were many vCenter level changes in the meantime. As an example, if you add an ESXi host to a cluster and then restore the vCenter to a period of time before the host was added, this gets confusing.
With the new version of vCenter Server in vSphere 8, the cluster becomes the “source of truth”. In this example, the vCenter Server is restored and on boot, it queries the clusters for new (or absent) ESXi hosts. The cluster will then update the vCenter server with the real-time cluster status.
Guest OS & Workloads: New Virtual Hardware Version 20
VMware vSphere 8.0 provides VM hardware version 20. This version of virtual hardware allows you to use the latest features of the newest vSphere version, including:
- Support of the latest guest operating systems, including Windows 11
- High latency sensitivity with hyperthreading
- Application-aware migrations
VMware Tools must be installed in a guest OS to use the new vSphere 8 features, including the features supported by VM hardware 20.
When you update to vSphere 8.0, you should prepare a vSphere backup solution. An effective vSphere backup can protect your virtual machines in the production environment in case of disaster.
Best practice to protect virtual machines in vSphere environment
96% of businesses experienced at least one of the major causes of data loss: human errors, hard drive failures, outages, fire and natural disasters. It's no wonder that conscious companies would try every possible way to protect data security by upgrading hardware, firewalls, security gateways and so on.
For a large amount of data, professional VMware backup software is commonly used to simplify the backup process and protect data from security threats. Here, I will introduce an easy-to-use and agentless AOMEI Cyber Backup software to you. It can easily manage backups of virtual machines with one console and accommodate different virtual environment scales. With it, you don’t have to install Agent on each virtual machine, which saves time and simplifies the VM backup process.
According to 3-2-1 backup rule, it is able to offer flexible backup strategies and store VM backups to different locations. It is professional to backup and restore VMware and Hyper-V VMs in a flash.
If you use free VMware ESXi, your options may have been limited by not supporting vStorage APIs. Don't worry, AOMEI Cyber Backup support both paid and free ESXi.
With AOMEI Cyber Backup, you can enjoy the features:
✦ Support Free ESXi: support both paid and free versions of VMware ESXi.
✦ Auto Backup: Automatically backup virtual machines on regular basis - daily, weekly, monthly.
✦ Easy-to-use: Manage VM backup and recovery from central console without complicated reinstallation and complication.
✦ Multiple VM Backup: batch backup large numbers of VMs managed by vCenter Server, or multiple VMs on a standalone ESXi host.
✦ Flexible Backup Strategy: Create full / incremental/ differential backups to protect data comprehensively and save storage.
✦ Multiple Storage Destinations: Easily backup to local or network destinations.
✦ Instant Data Recovery: Without any complicated settings, you can restore your virtual machine to another datastore/ host/cluster easily.
Please hit the button below to download and use AOMEI Cyber Backup for a 30-day free trial:
In the next section, I will demonstrate how to create an automatic ESXi or Hyper-V VM backup task using this professional enterprise backup software.
1. Bind Devices: Access to AOMEI Cyber Backup web client, navigate to Source Device > VMware > + Add VMware vCenter or Standalone ESXi host. And then click … > Bind Device.
2. Create Backup Task: Navigate to Backup Task >> + Create New Task, and then select VMware ESXi Backup as the Device Type.
- Device: cover multiple VMs on the host in one backup task.
- Target: You can select to back up to a local path, or to a network path. Used paths will be saved in Favorite Storage for handy selection.
- Schedule: You can choose to perform full, differential or incremental backup, and automate execution daily, weekly or monthly according to the frequency you specified.
- On Backup Cleanup page, specify a backup retention policy to delete the unwanted backups automatically.
3. Click Start Backup.
4. Restore: click … > Restore to perform instant disaster recovery when your VM fails suddenly. It’s easy to restore an entire VM to its previous status from any selected backup versions. Then whole process is based on clicks and without any complicated reinstallation and configuration.
This article discusses the vSphere 8 features, including the brand-new vSphere Distributed Services Engine, as well as, enhancements and updates in the areas of vSphere with Tanzu, Lifecycle Management and much more.