VM Storage Policies / Profiles, don’t mix up

With vSphere 5.5 came many, many changes. Without a doubt, the biggest change is the prominent role of the vSphere Web Client, now being the preferred client to manage your vSphere Clusters.

Being very familiar with the traditional vSphere Client, it takes a reasonable amount of time to get used to the vSphere Web Client (vWC). In my case, I always tried to perform the action with the vWC, with the traditional Client for Fall-back or while in a hurry.

While refreshing my knowledge about Storage Profiles, I noticed, in vSphere 5.5 “Storage Profiles” have been renamed to “Storage Policies”.
Although, not quite. Figure 1, shows part of the home screen of the same vCenter 5.5 server.


Figure 1– [Left] vSphere Web Client – [Right] traditional vSphere Client

But, soon I discovered that not only the name of this feature has changed.

In general, the concept of this feature has not changed. In a few words, with Storage Policies / Profiles, you can describe storage capabilities in terms of Capacity, performance, Fault tolerance, Replication etc. The information comes from Storage vendors (also known as “vSphere Storage APIs – Storage Awareness” or VASA) or is custom defined.
VM’s can be associated with a Storage Policy. Depending on its placement, the VM is compliant or not.

For more information how to use VM Storage profiles using the traditional vSphere Client, read this post.

In the vSphere Web Client, Custom Defined Capabilities have been replaced with Tags. Tags are only available in the vWC and can be used in many situations and are in fact a kind of replacement for the Custom Attributes in the traditional vSphere Client.

The point is that working with Storage Policies / Profiles in the traditional and the Web Client is not interchangeable. When you had a nice set-up of Custom Defined Capabilities in the traditional Client, you will find no trace of these in the Web Client. Virtual Machines will show No Storage Policies.

The only common factor is, when you enable Storage Policies / Profiles on one or more host, both clients will tell you so.

In my opinion, the best way to go is; if you’re still using the traditional Client and heavily depend on Custom Defined capabilities, move over to the Web Client and re-create the Storage Policies using Tags.

Unfortunately, I have no option to test the Vendor-specific capabilities and how these behave using both vSphere Clients. I would be grateful if anyone can provide me some information on this topic.

As always, I thank you for reading.

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