It’s here…or is it. The above link went live and was then pulled, the explanation being that the vSPhere 6.0 RC is available, but ONLY for BETA program members.
Regardless, the features and improvements listed are worthy of being posted;
•Quality: Improved overall quality of the product, increased vCenter performance and usability enhancements, greater scale and uptime (1k hosts, 15k registered VMs, 7 days uptime) along with tangible fit-n-finish of the product
•vCenter for Windows: Installation experience has been enhanced with additional capabilities like custom ports, custom paths, re-install, uninstall and error messaging improvements. Command line interface (CLI) for automation of install is provided. All upgrade paths from Windows vCenter 5.0 and up are now supported. vPostgres is the default embedded DB in vCenter. Support SQL 2008/2012/2014 and Oracle 11g/12c as external databases. Self-contained ISO to reduce the download time
•vCenter Server Appliance (vCSA): A brand new guided installer available. Command line interface (CLI) for automation of install is provided. vPostgres is the default embedded DB in vCenter. Support Oracle 11g/12c as external databases. Self-contained ISO to reduce the download time. Upgrade of vCSA is not supported in this milestone
•vSphere Web Client Enhancements: Performance improvements done in many areas including login, home page loading, action menus, related objects and summary views. Improved usability experience by flattening menus, simplified right click menu and navigation. Moved tasks panel to the bottom of the screen
•vSphere Host Client: C#-based host client available in this milestone that can manage hosts running hardware versions 8 to 11. Flex-based host client will no longer be available
•Certificate Lifecycle Management: A new command line interface (CLI) for managing both VMware and third-party certificates
•IPv6 Support: vSphere supports greenfield installation on IPv6 using FQDNs. New in RC, added IPv6 support for guest OS customization and external databases
•vSphere Fault Tolerance for Multi-Processor VMs (SMP-FT): Fault Tolerance now brings continuous availability protection for VMs with up to 4 vCPUs
•VSAN 2.0: A new on-disk format that allows for efficient & scalable snapshots and clones. Support for online upgrades to the new on-disk format. Support ability to assign your favorite VM storage policy as a default. Improved serviceability. Run what-if scenarios to understand the resource utilization a VM storage policy would have on a Virtual SAN datastore
•vCenter Scalability: Cluster maximums have increased to support up to 64 nodes and 6,000 VMs for both vCenter Windows and Appliance platforms.
•ESXi Platform: Support for new AHCI/ATA devices for 2014 Intel chipsets. Update storage drivers to support latest devices. Support for new NVIDIA GRID graphics device
For me, the highlights are;
Multi vCPU Fault Tolerance support, which finally will make it viable for critical apps
C# host client support that can manage hosts with HW version 8-11. (I’m reliably told that the Web client is getting a lot of usability improvements also)
VSAN 2.0 — Current release is generating some buzz, but lacks fundamental features. Snaps, clones and policy application is good, but I can’t help feeling some data reduction methods are lacking (dedup, compression etc).
All in all though, this is looking like an excellent release.