Check out this video from Eric Sloof of VMwareWolf.com. It shows a demonstration from VMworld 2008 of VMware’s new ‘Fault Tolerance’ feature that will apparently be available in the upcoming Virtual Datacenter Operating System (VDC-OS).
This solution could potentially offer a far easier alternative to clustering (though this is made a lot more hassle free in Windows Server 2008).
Eric’s blog posting about VMware Fault Tolerance can be found here.
Though it would appear not everyone is impressed with VMware’s Fault Tolerance offering. Marathon Technologies point out some of it’s perceived flaws in their blog here and is also covered in this article from SearchServerVirtualization.com.
In my opinion Marathon put forward a lukewarm case against the ‘Fault Tolerance’ feature by focusing on hardware component failures and how VMware’s ‘Fault Tolerance’ doesn’t address that.
Irrelevant of product if you don’t have decent resilience in the hardware (server, networks, SAN, etc) then there will always be potential weak spots in an infrastructure. VMware aren’t in the hardware game and surely at some point the onus needs to fall on the individual/company implementing such a solution to provide a decent level of hardware resilience (budget permitting) or risk unplanned downtime.