Setting up a SAN NAS to be used as template storage across multiple ESXi hosts

Environment:
3 different vmware systems (vblock, 'legacy ESX' and Big Intel)
24+ different ESXi hosts within those systems
Numerous vlans with one vlan common to all ESXi hosts

Question:
We want to set up ONE common datastore on a SAN NAS and map that share as a datastore on all the esxi hosts. This NAS will house all our templates and will be connected to the one and only vlan common to ALL the ESXi hosts. What format does the NAS need to be in to be able to be used and seen as a datastore on all the ESXi hosts? Will NTFS work or will it have to be something else?
jimlock720Asked:
Who is Participating?

[Product update] Infrastructure Analysis Tool is now available with Business Accounts.Learn More

x
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
If you have a NAS, an NFS Export would suffice, and support all your ESXi Hosts.

It does not matter about the NAS file system, when your Export the Mount as NFS.
jimlock720Author Commented:
Thank you. So what you're saying is that the NAS itself can be NTFS (Windows) formatted or does the NAS have to be set up ahead of time to support NFS export? Please explain in more detail how this connectivity is done.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Yes, the NAS supports it's own file system.

e.g. You can use a Windows Server, with a formatted NTFS disk, Exported NFS mounts, and it will work with ESXi.

ESXi is not aware of the underlying file system on the NAS.

You can see my videos here...

Video Tutorial - Creating an NFS Datastore using Windows 2008 R2 for VMware vSphere ESX/ESX 4.x

Video Tutorial - Adding an NFS Datastore to a VMware vSphere ESX/ESXi 4.x host server

The same is applicable for ESXi 5.x and 6.x.

How you setup your NAS for NFS, depends on the NAS, but most NAS support NFS.

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
jimlock720Author Commented:
Exactly what was needed, thank you!
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Storage

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.