As hinted in my earlier blog post, you can indeed setup a vSAN Witness using the ESXi-Arm Fling running on a Raspberry Pi (rPI) 4b (8GB) model. In fact, you can even setup a standard 2-Node or 3-Node vSAN Cluster using the exact same technique. For those familiar with vSAN and the vSAN Witness, we will need to have at least two storage devices for the caching and capacity tier.
For the rPI, this means we are limited to using USB storage devices and luckily, vSAN can actually claim and consume USB storage devices. For a basic homelab, this is probably okay but if you want something a bit more reliable, you can look into using a USB 3.0 to M.2 NVMe chassis. The ability to use an M.2 NVMe device should definitely provide more resiliency compared to a typical USB stick you might have lying around. From a capacity point of view, I had two 32GB USB keys that I ended up using which should be plenty for a small setup but you can always look at purchasing large capacity given how cheap USB devices are.
Disclaimer: ESXi-Arm is a VMware Fling which means it is not a product and therefore it is not officially supported. Please do not use it in Production.
With the disclaimer out of the way, I think this is a fantastic use case for an inexpensive vSAN Witness which could be running at a ROBO/Edge location or simply supporting your homelab. The possibilities are certainly endless and I think this is where the ESXi-Arm team would love to hear whether this is something customers would even be interested in and please share your feedback to help with priorities for both the ESXi-Arm and vSAN team.
In my setup, I have two Intel NUC 9th Pro which make up my 2-Node vSAN Cluster and then an rPI as my vSAN Witness. Detailed instructions can be found below including a video for those wanting to see vSAN Witness in action by actually powering on an actual workload 😀