Datastores are logical containers, analogous to file systems, that hide specifics of each storage device and provide a uniform model for storing virtual machine files. You can display all datastores available to your hosts and analyze their properties.

Datastores are added to vCenter Server in the following ways:

  • You can create VMFS or NFS datastores using the New Datastore wizard. A Virtual SAN datastore is automatically created when you enable Virtual SAN.

  • When you add a host to vCenter Server, all datastores on the host are added to vCenter Server.

The following table describes datastore details that you can see when you review datastores. Certain characteristic might not be available or applicable to all types of datastores.

Table 1. Datastore Information

Datastore Information

Applicable Datastore Type

Description

Name

VMFS

NFS

Virtual SAN

Editable name that you assign to a datastore. For information on renaming a datastore, see Change Datastore Name in the vSphere Web Client.

File System Type

VMFS

NFS

Virtual SAN

File system that the datastore uses. For information about VMFS and NFS datastores and how to manage them, see Working with Datastores. For information about Virtual SAN (vsan) datastores, see Working with Virtual SAN.

Device Backing

VMFS

NFS

Virtual SAN

Information about underlying storage, such as a storage device on which the datastore is deployed (VMFS), server and folder (NFS), or disk groups (Virtual SAN) .

Extents

VMFS

Individual extents that the datastore spans and their capacity.

Drive Type

VMFS

NFS

Type of underlying storage device, a Solid State Drive (SSD) or a regular non-SSD hard drive. For details, see Working with Solid State Disks.

Capacity

VMFS

NFS

Virtual SAN

Includes total capacity, provisioned space, and free space.

Location (Mount Point)

VMFS

NFS

Virtual SAN

A path to the datastore in the /vmfs/volumes/ directory.

Server

NFS

Name or IP address of a NAS server.

Folder

NFS

Name of a mounted folder.

Datastore Capabilities

VMFS

Note:

A multi-extent VMFS datastore assumes capabilities of only one of its extents.

NFS

Virtual SAN

Storage capabilities reported by physical storage and inherited by the datastores. You cannot modify them.

Storage I/O Control

VMFS

NFS

Information on whether cluster-wide storage I/O prioritization is enabled. See the vSphere Resource Management documentation.

Hardware Acceleration

VMFS

NFS

Virtual SAN

Information on whether the underlying storage device supports hardware acceleration. The status can be Supported, Not Supported, or Unknown. For details, see Storage Hardware Acceleration.

Tags

VMFS

NFS

Virtual SAN

Datastore capabilities that you define and associate with datastores in a form of tags. For information, see Understanding Storage Capabilities.

Connectivity

VMFS

NFS

Hosts where the datastore is mounted.

Multipathing Policies

VMFS

Path selection policy the host uses to access storage. For more information, see Understanding Multipathing and Failover.

Paths

VMFS

Number of paths used to access storage and their status.