Nutanix Acropolis File Services (AFS) has been available to organizations utilizing the Acropolis hypervisor for a while now. With the release of AOS 5.0, it is now available for organizations who utilize VMware ESXi. This is great for organizations that currently utilize Windows file servers or standalone NAS devices. This solution provides a single interface for virtual machines, as well as file services.

Before deploying AFS, I would recommend that you are on the latest version of AOS and AFS.


  • Ensure vSphere DRS is enabled
  • Ensure you have downloaded the BITS from Nutanix portal
  • Ensure you have configured your “External Data Services IP”
  • Have two Networks setup –
    • Client Access Network – Users will connect to this IP to access the File Server
    • Storage Network – I prefer to put this on the same network as your CVM’s.

Deploying the File Server

  1. Go to Menu and Select “File Server” dave's 2nd nutanic blog pic 1
  2. Click “+File Server” dave's 2nd nutanic blog pic 22
  3. You will be presented a list of prerequisites, ensure all items are “Checked” prior to the next steppreres
  4. Click on “Download or Upload AFS Software
    1. Upload the Metadata file as well as the AFS Bits
    2. Click “Upload Now”FileUpoad
  5. On the “Basics” screen, you will enter name, file server size and FileServer VM specs. This should be sized to Nutanix Best Practices – Found Here.basics
  6. On the “Client Network” screen, you will enter IP Addresses that your end user / services will connect toclients
  7. On the “Storage Network” screen. This network will be used for backed communication between the CVMs and the FSVMsstorage
  8. On the “Join AD” screen – enter the information needed to join your local AD environmentAD
  9. On the “Summary” screen – it will show information you entered on previous screens – click Create – this will create AFS on this cluster.summary

Once the File Server has been created, you can then go on to create shares and begin copying data/using your file server

Replication to DR

In this scenario, we will be replicating to another Nutanix Cluster at our DR environment. I will also assume you have setup and configured the “Remote Site”

  1. Go to “Data Protection” on the menuDP
  2. Click on the file protection group that was created when you created your file server. It will be named “NTNX-<FileServerName>
  3. Click Update
  4. Click to create a new schedule –
  5. Configure your local schedule – Select your Remote Site and select how many snapshots you would like to keep at the DR Site. schedule-Files
  6. Click Create Schedule | Click Close

Go to the “Remote Site” tab and click “Update”. You will need to configure you vStore mapping – Select your local container, in this example, I have chosen “Nutanix_files_ctr” to be mapped to the “Prod-Site–Files” container. Click SaveDRvStore

On the next snapshot schedule, your file server will be replicated to the DR Site.

In this walkthrough we have accomplished the following items. 

  • Deployed a Nutanix AFS File Server
  • Configured Nutanix AFS Replication to your DR Site

Check out more on my blog, vThistle.

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