In my previous post, VMware VSAN Meets EZLAB, I highlighted the implementation of VSAN into my vCloud lab. At the time of writing, 1 of 4 my vSphere hosts was down for maintenance and was not added to the VSAN cluster. Now that it’s back online, I thought I would share the experience of adding a new VSAN host…and another 2.25TB of capacity.

Here’s a “before” shot — 3 hosts configured with 6.13TB total capacity…

Step 1: Add the host to the existing VSAN cluster: I’m pretty sure I don’t have to review how this is done. Once added, configure all settings to match the other hosts in the cluster…in my setup I’m using a dedicated pNIC and vmkernel port (vmk1) for all storage traffic.

Adding new host to the vSphere cluster

The local storage of the new host, a Dell R610 box, is configured identically to the other
three — 1 x 256GB SSD + 3 x 750GB SATA drives. And since it is
identical, that also means I had to deal with the fact that the PERC 6/i
controller does not support JBOD. So, I stepped through the work-around to identify the SSD as such…

before…the SSD show up as “Non-SSD”


“esxcli storage…” command executed on host



the SSD is now recognized as an SSD drive


Step 2: Enable VSAN Service on the vmk port…

Configure vmk for VSAN traffic

Step 3: Disk Management…

Since my VSAN cluster is configured to “Manual” mode, adding the new host’s disks to the cluster takes an additional step. With “Disk Management” selected, highlight the new host and click the “Claim Disks” icon (circled in red)…

Disk Management

Step 4: Claim Disks for VSAN Use…

VSAN will automatically recognize the new host and all the eligible local disks. To use all the local disks in for this disk group, simply select “Select all eligible disks” then click OK. Note that the host will not show up as eligible if minimum requirements were not met (e.g. no SSD drive)…

Claiming Disks for VSAN Use

Once selected, the host and it’s disks will be added to the VSAN cluster. Review the configuration then take the host out of maintenance mode…

New Disk Group added

Step 5: Admire. In the “General” section, you can see the new capacity of the VSAN Datastore, which is immediately available for VM consumption…

It’s a beautiful thing!

That’s it. In 5 steps and less than 10 minutes later I’ve scaled my VSAN cluster to take on a new host and it’s 2.25TB (minus overhead) of disk capacity for a new capacity of 8.18TB…and that’s when VSAN is in “Manual” mode. If set to “Automatic” mode, I would have been done after Step 2!

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@virtualjad
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