This section provides recommendations and guidelines for designing your VDI environment.
Dell Technologies provides a range of storage solutions that can be used to complement DTCP using VMware Cloud Foundation on VxRail as secondary storage options. These storage solutions are primarily used for persistent VDI user file data and do not replace VxRail as the primary storage within DTCP. General recommendations and high level configurations are provided in the following sections.
Dell EMC Unity
Dell EMC Unity storage is simple, unified all-flash and hybrid storage with hybrid cloud capabilities. Dell EMC Unity is ideal for general-purpose NAS/SAN mixed workload consolidation, smaller file workloads (including small to midsized VDI environments), and transactional databases. When you are deploying Unity in a VDI environment, Dell Technologies recommends that you deploy a separate Dell EMC Unity storage system with a vSphere HA cluster or Block.
This structure provides the greatest scalability, resiliency, and flexibility when deploying and maintaining file services for the overall user pod. As unstructured data storage needs grow over time, the capacity of each Unity storage system can be scaled up independently with minimal user impact. You have the choice to deploy alternative architectures to the one suggested here, but you should carefully consider the tradeoffs. For information on selecting an appropriate Unity storage solution for your file workload requirements, see Dell EMC Unity All-Flash Unified Storage.
The following figure shows an example of a 5,000-user VDI deployment using Dell EMC Unity storage for file shares.
Dell EMC Isilon file storage
Dell EMC Isilon storage is the industry's number one scale-out NAS solution for any file workload. Isilon is ideal for a wide range of file workloads (including large-scale enterprise VDI environments requiring a single file system namespace), high-performance computing (HPC), archiving, and infrastructure consolidation.
The following figure shows an example of a 20,000-user VDI deployment using DeIl EMC Isilon scale-out storage with a single namespace.
When deploying Isilon in a VDI environment, we recommend that you deploy a separate Isilon storage system with a vSphere HA cluster or Block. This structure provides the greatest scalability, resiliency, and flexibility for deploying and maintaining file services for the overall user pod. As unstructured data-storage needs grow over time, you can scale up the capacity of each Isilon storage system independently with minimal user impact. In addition to scaling up each Isilon chassis, you can scale out Isilon by using the OneFS operating system. This ability means that you can add additional Isilon systems to provide a single volume and namespace that all user pods in a data center can access.
As shown in figure 10, you can scale out the system as the VDI environment grows. You can deploy alternative architectures to the one suggested here, but first consider the tradeoffs carefully.
For guidance about selecting an appropriate Isilon storage solution for your file workload requirements, see Dell EMC Isilon Scale-Out Network Attached Storage.
Data center infrastructure
Enterprise equipment requires power to operate, racks to enable streamlined management, and cooling to maintain reliable operations. Careful selection of the infrastructure solutions that provide these capabilities is vital to ensure uptime, scalability, energy efficiency, and ease of management.
Dell Technologies provides a wide range of Data Center Infrastructure solutions including:
The growing adoption of VDI has resulted in an elevation of the strategic importance of organizational VDI environments. Users who are critical to business success are increasingly using VDI for their day-to-day productivity tasks. Consequently, the importance of protecting the VDI environment and the business value of its data has also grown as organizations want to ensure that their VDI environments meet their corporate availability, RTO, and RPO requirements.
For information about data protection of a VMware Horizon environment, see the Data Protection for a VMware Horizon VDI Environment using Dell EMC Data Protection Suite Operations Guide. Dell EMC provides several data protection solutions for different data protection requirements.
Dell EMC Avamar Virtual Edition
Dell EMC Avamar Virtual Edition (AVE) is a data protection solution that delivers software-only data protection for virtualized environments, which makes it ideal for the VDI use case. AVE is a full featured data protection solution that is deployed as a virtual appliance. It supports advanced functionality such as backup in the cloud (including VMware Cloud on AWS), change block tracking for fast backup and recovery, and integration with multiple VMware interfaces such as the vRealize Automation Data Protection Extension. For additional information, see Dell EMC Avamar Virtual Edition Data Protection Software.
Data Domain Virtual Edition
Dell EMC Data Domain Virtual Edition (DDVE) is a data protection storage solution that runs as a virtual appliance on your choice of on-premises hardware or on various public cloud options, including VMware Cloud on AWS. DDVE has a single point of management with Dell EMC Data Domain Management Center and scales up to 96 TB per instance. One of the key features of the DDVE storage protection solution is DD Boost, which provides advanced integration with data protection applications such as AVE to enable client-side deduplication, thus accelerating backup. For additional information, see Dell EMC Data Domain Virtual Edition Data Protection Software.
For information about protecting a VMware Horizon VDI environment using AVE and DDVE, see the Data Protection for a VMware Horizon VDI Environment using Dell EMC Data Protection Suite Operations Guide.
Other Dell EMC data protection products
Dell EMC provides several other data protection products for specific use cases, including a range of appliances that reduce data protection complexity. These scalable, preconfigured solutions combine data protection storage with software, search, and analytics. For additional information, see Data Protection and Management.
Hybrid Disaster Recovery as a Service
Hybrid Disaster Recovery as a Service (HDRaaS) provided by Faction offers disaster recovery for VMC on AWS by incorporating a variety of technologies to protect the most critical data components of a Hybrid cloud VDI deployment. The following sections discuss the components that are used to protect the VDI infrastructure virtual machine data and unstructured file data in a typical VDI environment.
VMware Cloud on AWS Site Recovery
For rapid recovery and turnkey operations, Site Recovery can be added to both the VMC on AWS SDDC and the customer on-premises SDDC. Site Recovery works like VMware vSphere Site Recovery Manager except that it is offered as a fully managed service by VMware. VMware manages components in the VMC on AWS recovery site while customers maintain the protected site within their on-premises data center.
The two sites are paired and data is replicated asynchronously from the on-premises data center to the cloud with vSphere replication. On-premises virtual machines are placed in protection groups and associated with recovery plans. Customers can then activate the protected virtual machines in the cloud by testing or running the recovery plans.
The following figure shows the VMware Cloud on AWS Site Recovery architecture:
Recovery to VMC on AWS offers unique advantages compared to traditional DR methods. Customers do not need to finance and maintain their own building or infrastructure for DR. A broad set of AWS Global Infrastructure services such as Route 53, a highly available and scalable cloud Domain Name Service (DNS) web service, are available to VMC on AWS through the Elastic Network Interface (ENI) in the customer’s virtual private cloud (VPC).
Accommodating growth and scale is easy because DR infrastructure in the cloud SDDC can be scaled out by adding an additional vSphere host in less than 15 minutes. The environment can also be scaled back as needed by using host removal. Host-removal timings vary depending on the amount of vSAN data that has to be migrated off the host. On-demand elasticity of resources is a fundamental principle of cloud strategy and it is realized in this solution.
Faction HDRaaS augments the VMware Cloud on AWS Site Recovery by providing Dell EMC Unity, Isilon, and PowerMax customers with additional storage capacity with Cloud Control Volumes (CCVs). CCVs provide durable, persistent, cloud-attached, and cloud-adjacent storage directly connected to the cloud of choice (VMC on AWS, AWS, Azure, and GCP). CCVs enable the use of multiple clouds and quick switching between clouds based on business needs. The following figure shows an example of HDRaaS architecture:
VMware Cloud on AWS integration with Faction is called External Storage as a Service through MSP by VMware. Beyond adding CCV storage capacity to the SDDC in VMC on AWS, the HDRaaS offering provides additional options for disaster recovery planning and operations. For more information on the support arrays and solutions offered by Faction and Dell Technologies, see https://www.factioninc.com/dell/