Dell EMC ScaleIO Software Defined Storage with ESXi 5.5, ESXi 6.0 and ESXi 6.5
search cancel

Dell EMC ScaleIO Software Defined Storage with ESXi 5.5, ESXi 6.0 and ESXi 6.5


Article ID: 339977


Updated On:


VMware vSphere ESXi


This article provides information about support for the deployment of EMC ScaleIO versions 1.32 and 2.0 in ESXi 5.5, 6.0 and 6.5 environments. ScaleIO is fully supported in systems deploying the VMware configurations described below. For more information on engaging VMware support, see the Technical Support Welcome Guide.

Disclaimer: The partner products referenced in this article are hardware devices or software that are developed and supported by stated partners. Use of these products is also governed by the end user license agreements of the partners. You must obtain the application, support and licensing for using these products from the partners. For more information, see EMC Support.

Note: The preceding link was correct as of February 15, 2018. If you find the link is broken, provide feedback and a VMware employee will update the link.


VMware vSphere ESXi 6.0
VMware vSphere ESXi 5.5
VMware vSphere ESXi 6.5



Dell EMC ScaleIO is a software-only server-based storage area network (SAN) that converges storage and compute resources to form ahyper-converged, enterprise-grade storage product. ScaleIO storage is elastic and delivers linearly scalable performance. Its scale-out server SAN architecture can grow from a few to thousands of servers.

For a detailed support matrix of ScaleIO versions supported with VMware ESXi please refer to the following documents:



Minimum requirements
These are the minimum system requirements for a ScaleIO implementation:
  • Three ESXi servers with 100 GB of free capacity per server
  • 1 Gbps network
    ESXi 5.5, 6.0ScaleIO versions 1.32, 2.0, 2.0,,,, 2.0.1,,
    ESXi 6.5ScaleIO version,, 2.5


The ScaleIO hyper-converged configuration consists of a dedicated ScaleIO Virtual Machine (SVM) and three software components:

  • ScaleIO Virtual Machine (SVM): The SVM is a Linux-based virtual machine dedicated to ScaleIO and is used to host the different ScaleIO software components described here.
  • Meta Data Manager (MDM): Configures and monitors the ScaleIO system. The MDM is configured in redundant Cluster Mode. The MDM is installed on the SVM. In ScaleIO 1.32 the MDM is configured as a three-node cluster (Primary MDM, Secondary MDM and Tie-Breaker MDM). In ScaleIO 2.0 there is an additional option of configuring the MDM as a five-node cluster (Primary MDM, 2 Secondary MDMs and 2 Tie-Breaker MDMs) to provide greater resiliency.
  • ScaleIO Data Server (SDS): Manages the capacity of a single server and acts as a back-end for data access. The SDS is installed on all servers contributing storage devices to the ScaleIO system. These devices are accessed using SDS. The SDS is installed on the SVM.
  • ScaleIO Data Client (SDC): A lightweight device driver exposes ScaleIO volumes as block devices to the application located on the same server on which the SDC is installed. The SDC creates a logical adapter, which is an ESXi kernel construct. The logical adapter informs the ESXi about the arrival and disappearance of SCSI devices. These LUNs can be formatted with VMFS and then exposed using the ESXi host to the virtual machine or can be used as RDM devices. This is depicted in Figure1. Note that the SDC is installed inside the ESXi kernel and can be installed like any other VIB.



Figure 1: ScaleIO implementation in ESXi with SDC in VMkernel.

For more information, see Dell EMC ScaleIO page.

Supported Features
These VMware features are supported by ScaleIO:
  • vMotion and Storage vMotion
  • Fault Tolerance
  • DRS and Storage DRS
  • VAAI (except Full Copy primitive)

Recommendations and limitations

ScaleIO offers a vSphere plug-in for easy installation and deployment in VMware ESXi environments. It is recommended to use ScaleIO vSphere plug-in for the deployment and provisioning process. The ScaleIO plug-in for vSphere enables you to perform all the ScaleIO activities in a simple and efficient manner for all the ESXi nodes in vCenter Server. The plug-in can be used for provisioning ScaleIO nodes and on an existing ScaleIO cluster adding additional SDS nodes.

For details on the ScaleIO vSphere plug-in and for other recommendations and limitations for VMware ESXi environments, see the Dell EMC ScaleIO for VMware Environments Best Practices Guide.

Additional Information

For more information on configuration guidelines and deployment best practices, see EMC Support.

Note: You must be registered with EMC to view the preceding link.

Note: The preceding link was correct as of February 15, 2018. If you find the link is broken, provide feedback and a VMware employee will update the link.ESXi 5.5 和 ESXi 6.0 中 EMC ScaleIO 软件定义的存储
EMC ScaleIO ソフトウェア デファインド ストレージと ESXi 5.5、ESXi 6.0 および ESXi 6.5