vSphere 5: some small interesting new features

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While most of the interest about vSphere 5 has gone to the main new features we are reading in these days, there are also small enhancements worth a post:

With v5, now local and remote CLI are the same, and esxcfg is dismissed and replaced with esxcli. This is a big improvement for scripting activities, since we do not need anymore two different set of scripts.
Esxcli command has an extended namespace, so we can manage almost all the ESXi configurations. Also, command output can be formatted in several ways, like cvs or xml.

ESXi Firewall
Completely rewritten and no more iptables based, is now a stateless firewall service oriented to manage ESXi “daemons”, and allows the creation of ACL based on IP addresses or subnets. GUI management is similar to v4, and there is a specific namespace for it in esxcli command.

Update Manager
The tool now allows to download only components and updates related to the owned products, reducing amount of bandwidth and storage.
Great new feature, it can be used to upgrade ESX 4.x to ESXi 5.0, even if VMware itself suggest to do a clean install.
Also, it can upgrade third party components like Cisco Nexus 1000v or EMC PowerPath (do not know if also others…)

VM Hardware Specs
Besides new size limits (32 virtual CPUs and 1 TB di ram) we will have:
– 3D graphics support (interesting for View environments)
– USB 3.0
– EFI Bios for VMs
– support for Mac OS X servers (do not know if it means we will be able to install it on a VM)