To successfully create and manage a workload domain, Cloud Foundation requires a principal storage service for all ESXi hosts within the workload domain. Once a principal storage service has been provisioned and the workload domain has been created, supplemental storage can be provided to the workload domain using the vSphere Client.
Cloud Foundation uses and is validated against vSAN, NFS v3, and VMFS on FC for principal storage. The management domain requires vSAN for principal storage. You can use vSAN, NFS v3, or VMFS on FC for principal storage with VI workload domains. The type of principal storage used by the initial vSphere cluster in a VI workload domain is defined when the VI workload domain is created. For VI workload domains, you can add vSphere clusters that use a different type of principal storage than the type selected for the initial cluster when the VI workload domain was created. After a vSphere cluster has been deployed you cannot change to another storage type.
Using vSAN as the principal storage for all VI workload domains leverages the benefits of managing and maintaining a full software-defined stack. vSAN is also updated and patched through SDDC Manager lifecycle management. Updating and patching non-vSAN storage is a manual task and falls outside of SDDC Manager lifecycle management. To ensure supportability, non-vSAN storage and HBAs must be validated against the vSphere HCL.
Supplemental storage can be added to the management domain or a VI workload domain for the purposes of workload migration, backup and archive purposes. Cloud Foundation supports vVols, iSCSI, NFS (v3 or v4.1), and VMFS on FC as supplemental storage. See vSphere Storage for information about adding these storage types.
Both the principal and supplemental storage must be listed in the VMware Compatibility Guide for vSphere Storage and validated by the storage vendor as a VMware Cloud Foundation supplemental storage solution. Supplemental storage is not managed by or integrated into SDDC Manager processes. Because Cloud Foundation manages lifecycle processes automatically and without direct intervention, any storage provided to a workload domain must not modify the workload domain hosts in such a way that maintenance mode or graceful guest shutdown requests are prevented or dependent upon another separate process or action. Additionally, since workload domains can be scaled up or down by adding or removing ESXi hosts, any storage provided to a workload domain must not prevent the processes used by SDDC Manager to add or remove hosts in vSphere clusters.
Storage requiring the use of VMware Installation Bundles (VIBs) is supported, provided the storage presented is vSAN, NFS, or VMFS on FC. However, VIBs which must be installed or upgraded after deploying or upgrading ESXi are not managed or maintained by Cloud Foundation. Work with your storage vendor to manage these VIBs.