As the end of general support for both vSphere 5.5 and vSAN 5.5 approaches in this fall—many CIOs and IT directors are wondering if upgrading to the latest version of vSphere is a wise move beyond just the comfort of running a supported version of the product. After all—VMs are pretty standard fare for data centers today. What can a new version of vSphere really offer?
First of all—many people are hailing vSphere 6.5 as the most beneficial upgrade in years, and customers are moving it into production environments at an unprecedented rate. The impending end of general support only accounts for some of that production adoption—the remainder resides in the strengths and benefits of vSphere 6.5. In fact—vSphere 6.5 if the foundation of VMware’s hybrid cloud strategy moving forward—and is required for cross-cloud architectures. This fact alone may account for its rapid adoption, but let’s explore a bit further.
Keeping Score: The Latest Winning Benefits
Reduced IT Operational Complexity
While much can be said for ease of operations—the re-imagined vCenter Server Appliance provides two to three times greater performance and scale—a noticeable difference when managing your virtual environment. Additionally, vSphere 6.5 provides native vCenter high availability, file-based back-up and recovery, integrated vSphere host management, and patching. And vSphere 6.5 also boasts a modern, HTML5-based client too. The end result— managing your virtual environment just got a whole lot easier.
Better Resource Utilization
The latest trends in IT stress the emerging intelligence of systems—and vSphere 6.5 enjoys that with a predictive Distributed Resource Scheduler (DRS). This nifty bit of technology analyzes the ebbs and flows of usage and preemptively rebalances workloads in advance of upcoming demands and spikes—eliminating resource contention before it occurs. Additionally, vSphere also has proactive high availability that anticipates hardware failure and uses vSphere vMotion to redirect workloads to servers in good standing before a failure occurs.
More IT Agility and Automation
For those who are looking for quicker ways to respond to both business demands and changing IT conditions—automation is great way to reduce errors, speed response times, and eliminate manual tasks. vSphere 6.5 boasts simple, REST-based APIs that make it easy to automate IT operations for a more agile and modern data center.
Even More Security
In today’s constantly evolving threat landscape—your core technologies that run your data center must keep pace. vSphere 6.5 rises to the challenge with comprehensive, built-in security. vSphere encryption and encrypted vMotion protect both data at rest and data in motion. Secure Boot now prevent hypervisor and guest operating system tampering too. vSphere 6.5 also enjoys audit-quality logging for superior forensic data so you can understand who did what, when and where when security threats occur.
vSphere Integrated Containers provides an enterprise container infrastructure that delivers the best of both worlds for your developers and IT operations team. This is DevOps made reality. Containers can run side-by-side with virtual machines on the same vSphere infrastructure without any additional tooling required.
No Need for Overtime: Craft Your Game Plan Now
In order to maintain your full level of support and subscription services—existing vSphere 5.5 customers should upgrade to either vSphere 6.0 or vSphere 6.5. Of course—the wise choice is to upgrade all the way to vSphere 6.5 to enjoy all the benefits talked about above.
Consider September 19, 2018 as the end of regulation play. That’s the end of general support for vSphere 5.5 and should be your target date to have your entire environment moved over to vSphere 6.5. If, for some reason, you are unable to upgrade from vSphere 5.5 before this date, you can still purchase Extended Support in one-year increments for the next two years. This means you can do your upgrade at your own pace—and still remain covered while you do so.
The nice thing is—Clearpath is ready to assist you in stepping up your game to vSphere 6.5. If you’d like to have a more in depth conversation about the benefits of moving to vSphere 6.5 or what the end of general support may mean for you—just contact us! The end result of getting Clearpath’s help and VMware’s latest version of vSphere will be scoring a more modern, more responsive, more intelligent data center that’s ready for the playing field, while transforming your business and accelerating hybrid cloud adoption.