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VMworld US 2016 Buzz: Office of the CTO Stand: Exo-Clones: Better Container Storage Management Across the Clouds

September 14th, 2016

Adding some more colour to the highlights from my VMworld US 2016 coverage:

I made a point as I always do at VMworld to head to the VMware Office of the CTO booth to have a glimpse into the future.

I had had a look at the stand talking about Exo-Clones and then also attended a session by Christos Karamanolis, who is also a VMware Fellow, I blogged about the whole sessions: VMworld US 2016 Buzz: An Industry Roadmap: From storage to data management – STO7903 which covers more about the portable snapshots part of it, very interesting tech, well worth reading.

Portable snapshot functionality allows snapshots to be exported as stand-alone files which can then be imported into somewhere else. They work in the same way as git commits work in a distributed source control system so you always know the source tree of where the snapshots have come from. These portable snapshots are called Exo-clones.

During the session Christos talked about extending the portable snapshots idea with a distributed file system for cloud native apps, called VFS which would sit on top of VSANs file system, VDFS (vSphere Distributed File System) and provide a file system that could massively scale for cloud native apps.


You can then also do better dedupe and manage container images.  If you are refreshing thousands of containers in multiple sites, currently you can’t do block level differential updates, Exo-clones would give this to you. You can also use Exo-clones to do rapid copies of Big Data, Christos did a demo of just this.

Here are the pics from the Office of the CTO booth in the solutions exchange to give you more of an idea.

The portable snapshot functionality would be there to for example be a

20160830_001343505_iOS-001 20160830_001355111_iOS-001 20160830_001400881_iOS-001

There is also an excellent and very in-depth paper written by VMware’s Richard P. Spillane, Wenguang Wang, Luke Lu, Maxime Austruy, Christos Karamanolis, and Rawlinson Rivera


Again, we see the VSAN team pushing advancements which are useful in other areas of vSphere, here being cloud native apps.

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