Let me just start off by saying that vSAN is amazing! I love the technology, and I love working with some of the best tech minds in the industry. Today’s book review is perfectly in line with vSAN week at vDestination.com. The book is titled Essential Virtual SAN co-authored by Cormac Hogan and Duncan Epping, two of the foremost experts on vSAN. The book covers vSAN it’s functionality, configuration as well as some storage gotchas. This book is good if you are a beginner, expert or just want to get an idea of what vSAN is and how it works. I’ve used this book on a customer engagement actually to help me get past some networking issues I had with LACP configuration. So, let’s get into the nuts and bolts of the book and see if it’s right for you.
What is Covered?
Introduction to vSAN
The initial chapter is all about introducing vSAN to the reader, and the authors do a really good job of this. On the surface, vSAN might seem a little confusing to the casual reader or even the beginning administrator, however the authors break it down nicely. It starts out explaining what the Software Defined Datacenter (SDDC) is, the components of it and how it all fits together. The introduction then moves on to describing Software Defined Storage and how it works and then touches on Hyper-converged solutions. Overall, the introduction is a great chapter and not just a uninteresting intro, it primes the reader for the rest of the book.
vSAN Prerequisites and Requirements for Deployment
This is one of the most important chapters of the book in my opinion and the authors do a really good job of breaking down all of the pre-reqs for deploying vSAN. vSAN is a cluster level setting and while it mostly requires simply click the check box to turn on vSAN, there’s a little more involved than just a check box. There are networking requirements, disk requirements as well ensuring that all pieces of your configuration are in line with VMware’s Hardware Compatibility Guide.
Management and Maintenance
Chapter 7 is a great chapter and very thorough. It gives the administrator a blueprint of how things should be managed and maintained in vSAN. Specifically, the chapter covers items such as disk management, wiping a disk, thin provisioning considerations and vCenter Management. I found this chapter to be very helpful when it came to needing to reference something while on site with a customer or for research afterwards.
Should I buy it?
This is one of the easiest “Should I buy it?” answers in all of my Book Review series of blog posts, this is a resounding YES! Buy the book, keep it at your desk or on your shelf or even in your backpack if you are going from site to site. The book will come in handy whether you are a beginner, casual reader or experienced administrator looking for a reference guide.
Give it Away Now! (CONTEST CLOSED)
I have an extra copy of this book and I would like to give it away to a deserving reader. If you would like this book, simply leave a comment on my blog about your experience level with vSAN, even if it’s just a “never touched it”, I’d love to hear from you. I will open up the give away today and have it run through Friday May 19 closing at 12pm Eastern. There are no major rules here, just be a resident of planet earth and have a desire to read a great book on vSAN. Leave a comment, and a way to reach you should you be the winner. I’ll draw a winner randomly and announce it at 1pm Eastern on Friday the 19th. Good luck!
Check out other Book Reviews on vDestination.com