EVO:Rail – Second impression at #VMworld

So I attended the EVO:Rail session with Duncan and Shaun, and that gave me a few new insights on EVO:Rail VMware’s software for a HyperConverged Infrastructure.

And I must say, damn that looks awesome. Would be nice to run something like VDI on it, or say your Dev servers could have their own infrastructure, without ever hurting your production environment.

And as all it need is a 10gbit IPV6 vlan with layer2 multicast enabled, putting these kind of systems into a stretched metro cluster seems as easy as the setup of the system is.

They showed the setup process, which took a whooping 13 minutes! And with that you had 4 ESXi hosts, 1 vCenter Server, LogInsight and VSAN installed and configured. DAMN nice.

They have basically created an installer in HTML5 that does all the heavy lifting for you. setting up NTP, DNS and proxy servers is done 1 place and is automatically pushed to all the components.


The interface seems very fast and nice, and is stripped of a lot of the stuff you don’t you daily. For easy and fast Management. If you need more than that, you can always access the web client with a link from the EVO:Rail interface.

I would expect this direction from VMware to be rolled out to a lot of other products over time, as installing a lot of the VMware product sometimes is a pain. Imagine installing and configuring everything from Horizon View to VCAC with just a few clicks. Hoping for happy times ahead!

EVO:Rail – first Impressions

Yesterday at the Keynote, one of the new offerings VMware announced was EVO:Rail, A Hyperconverged Infrastructure. This means OEMS have created small 2U formfactor rail mountable machines, that each hold 4 ESXi hosts. VMware has then provided the software that goes on top.

So no VMware is NOT selling us Hardware, we have to go to the OEM vendors like Dell, EMC, Fujitsu, Inspur, Net One Systems and SuperMicro. to get these.

Licensed in the SKU is all the software you need to get a SDDC up and running in around 15 minutes from its been racked and cabled. For full details on whats in an EVO:Rail offering ¬†look at Duncan’s post under Links.

So who is this for ? People who wants to get to close SDDC nirvana fast. And people starting out might find this very tempting. I don’t see myself using EVO:Rail at my workplace. But small companies that, for whatever reason, don’t want a Cloud solution, could find EVO:Rail very promising. As it contains everything you need to start and has a simple interface for you to use. Everything installs itself.

This is the first offering, but they were hinting at Rack-scale or Datacentre scale versions of this, and that might be promising to bigger companies. EVO:Rack Tech Preview

For me personally, its not the process of getting the Hardware and Software installed, that is the biggest problem with going toward SDDC. The problem is getting all your tweaks and various administrative procedures implemented in the Software. I would be nice if you could standardize those administrative procedures to fit something like EVO:Rail, but that is usually a far larger battle than getting the money for the software and hardware.

I’m sure we’ll see a lot more press about EVO:Rail in the coming months.


EVO:Rail at Yellow-bricks

Chad Sakac’s piece on EVO:Rail (Long read)

Mike Laverick’s guide to EVO:Rail

Eric Sloof on EVO:Rail