If you have been using the vCenter Appliance (vCSA) in vSphere 5.5 or been considering it, then you are more likely aware of its limitations. You might have in the past as well looked at my blog post that highlighted the vCSA 5.5 limitations found at: vCenter Server Appliance 5.5 limitations. The good news in vCSA 6.0 seems to over come the biggest one of these as follow:
– vCenter Linked mode is now supported with vCSA 6.0. This one by far was the biggest limitation of the vCSA 5.5 and the one that had been most mentioned by my customers who were considering vCSA 5.5 at that time. Now this has been resolved for you and you can use vCenter Linked mode with vCSA 6.0. Wohooooo!
– You were limited to 100 hosts and 3000 VMs when using the embeded DB with vCSA 5.5, where you had to use an external Oracle Database to expand beyond these limits, which did not make larger customers happy. The good news these limits were waived in vCSA 6.0 and you will be able to use up to 1000 hosts and 10,000 VMs using the embedded database. I am sure between this one and the availability of vCenter Linked mode, many customers who were considering to move to the vCSA appliance, they will be eager to put their hands on the vCSA 6.0 to make the shift.
– vCenter Heartbeat was not supported with vCSA 5.5, but hey VMware has went away already with vCenter Heartbeat, so this should not be regarded as a limitation of the appliance it self anymore especially for new customers.
– Unfortunately the only external database that still supported by vCSA 6.0 is Oracle DB, but as the embedded DB allow you to grow up to 1,000 hosts and 10,000 DBs, this might not come to be a problem for most customers.
– It seems the new vCSA has a new DCUI interface added to it, one that is very similar to the one ESXi has as shown in the screenshot below.
Oh yeah, you have noticed the new colors of the appliance being blue rather than the old yellow? This has as well changed on the main screen of the appliance as below:
Before closing up, I wanted to mention that you still will need to install update manager on a windows machine even when using the vCSA as well there is currently no migration tool from the embedded database to MS SQL.
Enjoy the new vCenter Server Appliance 6.0!