Question

Install VMware in Nutanix Nodes

  • 26 February 2020
  • 4 replies
  • 5983 views

We just purchased Nutanix ( 2 Appliances , 3 nodes on each ) , we are planning to use VMware Enterprise plus on them.

I've few questions, I would be more than happy if I get the answers:

1- if we used VMware, all Nutanix functions will be applied ? ( for example, if one HD failed, the data will be transfered to another Hard disk? )

2- If I'm using 3 nodes, and I'm utlizing all the CPU and Memory and HD capabilities for all three, once one node goes down, how the VMs on this node will go to the other nodes while we are utlizing their full capacity?

3- if one node fail, the VMware VMs on this Node will be Automatically moved to another Node ?

4- In general, is there any difference if we used Acropolies or VMware ? will we get the same functions on Nutanix?


4 replies

Userlevel 6
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1- if we used VMware, all Nutanix functions will be applied ? ( for example, if one HD failed, the data will be transfered to another Hard disk? )

VMware ESXi is a hypervisor with its own set of features. When you use VMware ESXi with Nutanix AOS you get the benefits of the ESXi as a hypervisor together with the benefits of the Nutanix Distributed Storage Fabric as well as features relevant to the storage operations (data locality, storage tiering, data path resiliency, shadow clones to name a few). DSF functionality, as well as other Nutanix features, are explained on a high level in Nutanix Bible: Distributed Storage Fabric.

When you use Nutanix AHV (hypervisor) together with AOS you get the features of both Nutanix hypervisor and AOS.

In the case of a disk failure regardless of the choice of the hypervisor Nutanix keeps 2 copies of data. Hence if there is a hard drive failure there is still another copy of the data within the DSF.

2- If I'm using 3 nodes, and I'm utlizing all the CPU and Memory and HD capabilities for all three, once one node goes down, how the VMs on this node will go to the other nodes while we are utlizing their full capacity?

What you are describing is the High Availability feature. Depending on the chosen hypervisor the behaviour differs. Try this .NEXT post to read on AHV HA VM High Availability (HA) on AHV. The method for both hypervisors is a VM’s restart. As the VM’s configuration file and its disks are still on the storage it can be simply registered with a different host provided there are sufficient resources on the target cluster. Second copy of the data will be replicated within the DSF.

Should there be a constraint in resources i.e. no sufficient CPU/RAM capacity available then the VMs will not be restarted. With AHV you will receive alerts in advance stating that the cluster is not able to tolerate a node failure.


3- if one node fail, the VMware VMs on this Node will be Automatically moved to another Node ?

That depends on the HA settings of the cluster. Should you configure HA on the ESXi cluster and there are sufficient resources (whether through admission control or simply not allocated on the host) then the VMs are restarted on that host.

4- In general, is there any difference if we used Acropolies or VMware ? will we get the same functions on Nutanix?

As you can see from the above, there is a difference. To make an educated decision on the choice of the hypervisor I would suggest speaking to one of Nutanix Software Engineers as they would be able to access your requirements and expectations and come up with a solution.

Please let me know if the above helps at all and if you have further questions.

Thank you thank you.

it is very clear.

Just i have other question :

1)

Waiting for materials, i prepare for installation.

When i start server in first time, i need begin with ISO of VMWare to install Hypervisor. then i need to download VM of CVM from Nutanix website for each node. then install it.

This VM will apply all Nutanix functionality.

is there other layer to install or it is all ?

2)

I need configure all Disks with RAID or only disks for System (vmware) then CVM will configure disks of all nodes ?

 

Sorry for derangement, but i need quick way to have information without lost time to read books.

Userlevel 6
Badge +5

Deployment of a Nutanix cluster is different from a traditional layered approach. The hypervisor will be deployed together with the CVM during nodes imaging process using Foundation.

The hypervisor will be installed to a SATA DOM or an M.2 card.

Nutanix does not leverage hardware RAID technology. Redundancy is achieved by storing more than one copies of data.

All the storage will be detected by CVM via passthrough. The hypervisor will not be able to detect the disks hence you will not be able to install CVM yourself.

From Foundation Guide:

To use a different hypervisor (ESXi or Hyper-V) on factory nodes or to use any hypervisor on bare metal nodes, the nodes must be imaged in the field. This guide provides step-by-step instructions on how to use the Foundation tool to do a field installation, which consists of installing a hypervisor and the Nutanix Controller VM on each node and then creating a cluster. You can also use Foundation to create just a cluster from nodes that are already imaged or to image nodes without creating a cluster.

Foundation Guide v4.5

Essentially what you need to do is check compatibility, download ESXi image and follow the guide.

I would suggest asking Nutanix Software Engineer (SE) for guidance on the process. Should this be not an option log a case with Nutanix Support and we will guide you through the process taking into account hardware configuration.

Let me know if there are further questions.

Userlevel 3
Badge +4

For installation of VMware / Nutanix cluster you should not do any disk configuration prior. The entire PCI disk controller is given to the CVM via PCI passthrough and the hypervisor OS ESXi resides on the SATADOM or M.2 drive. 

If you download and run Foundation on a network where the nodes are powered up and discoverable, you can walk through all the setup details without triggering the installation and see most of it is intuitive, just filling in IPs and other details as needed in the UI forms. The actual installation is all automated by Foundation so you don’t need to do any preparation steps, just need it to be able to reach the nodes. 

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