Chapter 12. VMFS Architecture

vSphere 6 and its near predecessors are inherently highly scalable clustered environments. From the very beginning of the life of ESX, VMware Virtual Machine File System (VMFS) has been the core element that holds the environment together.

VMFS is the core component of vSphere’s storage virtualization, as it abstracts the underlying storage and presents it to virtual machines (VMs) in various formats: virtual disks, passthrough RDMs, non-passthrough RDMs, snapshots, and so on.

History of VMFS

VMFS evolved from a flat file system to a highly specialized clustered file system over four generations.


The first version of VMFS, which shipped with ESX 1.x, was a flat file system (that is, it did not provide ...

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