I had to wait before I could test-drive the new VMware vSphere (ESX4) that follows up ESX3.5, also known as VMware Infrastructure that currently serves all my IT-environment in the datacenter. Today, UPS delivered the new HP Smart Array P400i 256Mb BWBC raid-controller so I could update my old P200i controller in a HP DL360G5, my testing box at home. Finally the raid-10 array is gone and replaced with araid-5 array, which holds up 5 146 Gbyte 10K RPM SAS SFF disks, which leaves one slot for the VMware hypervisor running on a 73 Gbyte 15K RPM SAS SFF.

After installation I saw a wanted new function: IPv6 support in the management interface. Since the IPv4 addresses are running out ISP’s have mayor problems in the near future. No IP-addresses means no servers, clients and connections. Another new cool feature is the support for USB devices in the virtual machine. It’s possible to attach a USB disk on the physical server that then connects to the virtual environment. Also, video memory and 3D acceleration is supported. I’ll test-drive Windows 7 RC in my new environment to see it the score will be higher this time.

esxi4_ipv6-ready

More new cool features are:
– Hot-add CPU cores
– Hot-add Memory
– VT Support in Guest OS (Testdrive ESX, Citrix Xenserver of Microsoft Hyper-V in ESX!)
– Thin provisioning of diskspace
– Vcenter finaly runs on Windows Server 2008
– More new features on the VMware website here

More next week. Since I don’t have a iSCSI SAN at home, I can only test the single-server ESXi version. There is also one cons: I have to update my VSP and VSTP skills for my certification. That will cost me about 2 days training.