Nutanix have finally taken the wraps off the Acropolis 5.11 Family and boy is it a juicy update! There is a lot to look at in here so lets get to it.

The Acropolis 5.11 Family includes new and updated features for Prism Central (5.11), AHV ( 20170830.301), AOS (5.11) as well as the introduction of Nutanix Objects (1.0).

Below I’ve outlined some of the new and updated features from the Acropolis 5.11 Family.

Note: AOS 5.11 is a Short Term Service (STS) branch so it is advised that you only hop to this STS if there is a feature that you require. While on the STS branch you will have to ensure your clusters are kept up to date as official support is limited for the STS releases.

New Features in AOS 5.11

  • Added ESXi Support for Nutanix Guest Tools
  • Storage Quality of Service (QOS) to Set Throttle Limits on a VM
  • Support for Up to 120 TiB Per Node
  • SRM Support for NearSync
  • Runbooks support for ESX (ESX -> ESX and ESX -> Xi)
  • NearSync support for Files
  • SRM Support for NearSync
  • Network Segmentation for Volumes
  • Metro Availability (ESX) – simplify failback procedure
  • Nutanix Objects GA

There’s a lot of good stuff in there so I just wanted to take a sec to talk about a couple of the features that stand out to me.

Runbooks support for ESX

One of the features I love about AHV is the ability to orchestrate the DR procedure using Runbooks. The fact that we can now do this on ESXi as well is just amazing. this gives us a Nutanix alternative for SRM when using the ESXi hypervisor.

NearSync support for Files

When NearSync was first introduced it was amazing to see that we could have such a small recovery time for VMs. Now that NearSync has extended to Files as well it gives you the opportunity to recover those pesky highly important and frequently changed files.

New Features in Prism Central 5.11

  • Storage Quality of Service (QOS) to Set Throttle Limits on a VM
  • Codeless Task Automation (X-Play)
  • Syslog Monitoring
  • Export and Import Security Policy
  • Image Placement Policies
  • Added ESXi Support for Nutanix Guest Tools
  • Flow Logging Support for Policy Hit
  • Nutanix Networking Service (Xi Cloud Services)
  • Support for Nutanix Guest Tools (NGT) in Xi Cloud Services
  • Manage Categories Support Added for ESXi on Prism User Interface
  • Enhanced Monitoring for Entity Metrics
  • Category-based RBAC for VM Mgmt

Just like AOS 5.11,the Prism Central 5.11 release is jam packed full of goodies. Let’s take a closer look at some of the features I’m particularly excited about.

Storage QoS to Throttle VMs

Imagine you have a few VMs on a single container and most of them use around the same IOPS however you have one VM on that same container that is really quite noisy and uses a heap of IOPS. You notice the performance of the other not so noisy VMs was starting to be impacted because of this noisy VM. Storage QoS will allow you to throttle the amount of IOPS that the storage layer will serve to that noisy VM which will prevent the VM over-utilising system resources.

Codeless Task Automation (X-Play)

With X-Play, you can automate routine administrative tasks through Prism Central by creating Playbooks. these playbooks can do things like, automatically add more RAM to a VM when a certain threshold is met, or auto-remediate issues that occur in your cluster.

X-Play requires only Prism Central to be at the 5.11 code base (Prism Element can be a lower level) and requires a Prism Pro license.Flow Logging Support for Policy Hit

Flow Logging Support for Policy Hit

When I started working with Flow there was one rather large annoyance, There was no way to see if there was actually any activity on the policy you had created other than exporting the syslogs. Now, when you create a Security Policy for Flow, there is an option to log traffic flow hits on the policy rules, called Policy Hit Logs. Incredibly helpful.

New Features in AHV-2017083-301

  • Support to Update the br0 Uplink Configuration
  • Support for Compute-Only Nodes on AHV Clusters
  • UEFI Support for VMs on AHV and Hyper-V clusters

New Features in Xi Leap

  • Nutanix VPN now Generally Available

Objects 1.0

  • S3 API Compatible Storage
  • Write Once Read Many (WORM)
  • Identity & Access Management (IAM)
  • Versioning and Lifecycle Policies
  • HTTPS Access

Portal Links

My Thoughts

The Acropolis 5.11 Family update is huge. It brings a heap of new features which I’m really excited about. I know there is a few things in there that will certainly make my life a lot easier.

I’m loving the general direction Nutanix seems to be going with the last few releases, giving us the tools to automate the more routine tasks and making our clusters more flexible.

Keep it up Nutanix. I’m a huge fan.

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