Version 1.5. This version is no longer supported as outlined in the Anthos version support policy. For the latest patches and updates for security vulnerabilities, exposures, and issues impacting Anthos clusters on VMware (GKE on-prem), upgrade to a supported version. You can find the most recent version here.

Using the vSphere Container Storage Interface driver

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This page explains how to use the vSphere Container Storage Interface (CSI) storage driver with GKE on-prem clusters.


Starting with GKE on-prem version 1.5, the vSphere CSI driver is automatically deployed in GKE on-prem clusters. For information about other CSI drivers, see Installing a CSI driver.

Before you begin

Make sure you have the following prerequisites:

Confirm driver availability

When the vSphere CSI driver is installed in your user cluster, a StorageClass called standard-rwo is created. To check that the driver is available on all nodes, run the following command:

kubectl get csinode -o=",DRIVERS:spec.drivers[].name"

You should see the following output:


Provisioning volumes

To provision volumes with the vSphere CSI driver, set the storageClassName field of your PersistentVolumeClaim to standard-rwo.

Setting the default storage class

To set standard-rwo as the default storage class, see Default storage class.

Creating additional StorageClasses

You can create additional vSphere CSI StorageClasses in your cluster using the datastoreurl or storagepolicyname parameters.

The following example uses the storagepolicyname parameter:

kind: StorageClass
  name: gold
parameters: ext4
  storagepolicyname: "Gold Policy"

To find the correct value for the datastoreurl parameter, run the following command:


where DATASTORE_NAME is the name of your vSphere datastore.

Use the value for URL from the output for datastoreurl. An example output looks like the following:

  Type:      VMFS
  URL:       ds:///vmfs/volumes/5d864fa0-7f2184d4-8eb4-3cfdfe0ce9a0/
  Capacity:  20479.8 GB
  Free:      10066.9 GB

Volume cleanup

Volumes provisioned by the vSphere CSI driver are not deleted when you delete a user cluster. You should delete all PVCs and StatefulSets before deleting the cluster. To delete your volumes, run the following command:

kubectl delete statefulsets,persistentvolumeclaims --namespace=MY_NAMESPACE --all

where MY_NAMESPACE is your Kubernetes namespace.

If you deleted a user cluster without deleting its volumes, you can find the volumes in vCenter:

  1. In vCenter, select a datastore.

  2. Navigate to Monitor > Cloud Native Storage > Container Volumes.

The Kubernetes cluster name is shown in the Details section of each volume.

Disabling vSphere CSI driver

To remove vSphere CSI support, add the following to your user cluster configuration:

# (Optional) Storage specification for the cluster
# To disable the vSphere CSI driver, set this to true. The value is set to false by default and # the vSphere CSI driver is enabled by default on vSphere version >= 6.7U3.
  vSphereCSIDisabled: true

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