VMware Cloud Flex Storage is a scalable, elastic, and natively integrated cloud storage service, fully managed by VMware and delivered with simple cloud economics.

These release notes provide information about VMware Cloud Flex Storage product features, system requirements and software support, caveats and limitations, and any known or fixed issues related to the service.

What's New

8 February 2023

  • VMware Cloud DR and VMware Cloud Flex Storage compatibility. VMware Cloud DR and VMware Cloud Flex Storage are now compatible, and you can have both services in the same organization as long as the deployments are in different regions. 

  • New AWS region support. VMware Cloud Flex Storage is now available in the Mumbai, Sydney, Singapore, and Tokyo Asia Pacific AWS regions.

14 December 2022 - Announcing VMware Cloud Flex Storage!

VMware Cloud Flex Storage is a Storage-as-a-Service Offering for VMware Cloud on AWS, and provides the ability to provision and scale storage independently of their SDDC hosts. VMware Cloud Flex Storage is fully VMware-managed and natively integrated, so you can cost-effectively supplement your capacity needs.

VMware Cloud Flex Storage offers a simple pay-per-utilized GiB consumption model. You can buy a subscription, or pay on demand. With this model, you can scale storage at a low cost without adding hosts, which reduces your overall total cost of ownership (TCO).

The initial release of VMware Cloud Flex Storage provides NFS datastores for workloads that do not require VMware vSAN performance for mission critical or consistent low latency storage requirements. You can independently provision and scale storage capacity external to VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC hosts, up to ~400 TiB of logical/usable capacity.

VMware Cloud Flex Storage utilizes the Scale-Out Cloud Filesystem (SCFS), which provides built-in data services and integrity features that are always on by default. Storage capacity is presented as an NFS datastore that can be attached to existing vSAN clusters in your SDDC, and is managed through vCenter and through a dedicated management interface.

You can create datastores, mount or unmount datastores for SDDC clusters, and then delete datastores when you no longer need them. Datastore monitoring provides performance statistics such as IOPS, throughput, latency, cache hit rate, and logical storage usage. VMware Cloud Flex Storage offers a simple pay-per-utilized GiB consumption model. You can buy a subscription, or pay on demand, as you need.

VMware Cloud Flex Storage supports VMware Cloud on AWS SDDCs version 1.18v3 and above running i3, i3en, and i4i hosts.

Caveats and Limitations

  • VMware Cloud Flex Storage does not support stretched clusters.

  • VMware Site Recovery and VMware Site Recovery Manager are supported, but VMware Cloud Flex Storage cannot be used as a VMware Site Recovery target datastore.

  • AWS GovCloud (US) is not supported.

  • PCI-DSS SDDCs are not supported.

  • You cannot protect VMware Cloud Flex Storage workloads with VMware Cloud DR, and you cannot have both services in the same AWS region.

  • Cloning VMs that reside on a VMware Cloud Flex Storage requires a full data copy and hence can take some time to complete.

  • VMware vSphere Virtual Volumes (vVols), vStorage APIs for Storage Awareness (VASA), and VMware vSphere Storage APIs – Array Integration (VAAI) are not supported with VMware Cloud Flex Storage.

Restrictions for Creating a Datastore

  • Each SDDC can be associated with only one VMware Cloud Flex Storage datastore.

  • Once you create a datastore, you cannot move it to a different AWS availability zone.

  • Non-ASCII characters are not supported in the datastore name.

Other Restrictions

  • VMware Cloud Flex Storage does not support organization level IP Allow List authentication policies. If IP Allow Lists are enabled in your organization, it might prevent you from Configuring the API Token with the VMware Cloud Flex Storage UI or mounting your first datastore. If your organization leverages the organization level IP “Allow List” feature, please contact support prior to deployment for assistance.

Known Issues

  • Datastores list incorrectly shows physical capacity

    When you select Datastores from the left navigation of the VMware Cloud Flex Storage UI, the datastores list shows shows an incorrect capacity value for the datastore. It should display the logical amount of storage being used.

    To view the logical storage currently being used by a datastore, click an individual datastore and view Cloud storage.

  • Do not mount datastore if major SDDC operation is in progress

    In some cases, if you attempt to mount a datastore to a cluster while the SDDC is running a major operation, such as adding or removing hosts from a cluster, or the datastore mount operation might have issues.

    Workaround: Check your SDDC to ensure no major processes are running before you mount a datastore to a cluster on the SDDC.

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