vSANShowCoverLet 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

Greg W Stuart
Greg is the owner and editor of vDestination.com. He's been a VMware vExpert every year since 2011. Greg enjoys spending time with his wife and 3 kids. He works as a Sr. Consultant at VMware and resides in Northern Virginia, 15 minutes west of Washington DC.

6 thoughts on “vSAN Book Review & Giveaway!

  1. We have an all-flash vSAN 6.2 on update 3, looking to get to 6.6 sometime in the next quarter. I would love a copy of the book!

    1. Congrats Matt! You won the Essential VSAN book by Duncan Epping and Cormac Hogan! Thanks for reading, I will email you directly to get your mailing address and get the book in the mail right away. Everyone else, stay tuned, more giveaways to come and thanks for reading.


  2. Saw a tweet about this book giveaway in my Twitter feed this morning and wanted to learn more. My company has VSAN deployed at the moment, but I wasn’t there when it was initially set up and configured. I’d like to learn more about the setup, configuration, and especially the management of VSAN (and pretty much all things VMware).

  3. I am just getting started with vSAN at work and would love to add another one of your books to my library Greg. Thanks for the chance!

  4. We have bean running in our regional office and sonbeen quite impressed. We did have issues months back and got VMware engineer to help us with disappearing storage. Would love to get a copy of your book and read up on more.

  5. I’ve implemented vSAN at multiple customers and love the simplicity and ease of management.

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