Today (well actually, a few days ago; but today is when I read more about it) I learnt that you can vMotion VMs across hosts without shared storage.
This is only for vSphere 5.1 and above. That’s a pretty cool feature, especially because at work we are migrating all our VMs to new hosts & storage and one of things we were wondering about was how to move the VMs across. The new hosts have 3Par storage while the old hosts have StoreVirtual storage, so the thinking was that we’d probably have to give the new hosts access to the StoreVirtual storage and then do a vMotion. Now we won’t have to!
There’s no separate name for this sort of vMotion and it seems to be a not quite hyped feature. For anyone interested here’s some screenshots on how to do such a vMotion.
For starters here’s my testlab setup:
Note that host esx03 has no connectivity to the shared storage either. I have removed the iSCSI VMkernel mappings from it so there’s no confusion.
Migration is quite simple. Right click the VM and select Migrate. Choose the option to migrate both host and datastore. If the VM is powered on (which it would be as we are doing vMotion instead of a cold migration) you will see the option is grayed out in the older/ C# vSphere client.
That’s because the newer features of vSphere 5.1 are only available in the web client so you’ll have to use that instead (thanks to this blog post for pointing me to that).
Notice that any datastore accessible from the destination host can be selected.
And that’s it. vMotion begins and I have easily live migrated a VM from one host to another without any shared storage. Cool! :)