Almost four years ago, I documented a really cool vSAN capability here and here, which demonstrates how to bootstrap a vSAN datastore onto a single ESXi host. This powerful capability, which was by design, enables customers to easily standup new infrastructure including the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) in a pure greenfield environment where you only had bare-metal hardware to start with and no existing vCenter Server.
As you can probably guess, I am a huge advocate for this capability and I think it enables some really interesting use cases for being able to quickly and easily stand up a complete vSphere environment without having to rely on an external storage array or playing games with Storage vMotion'ing the VCSA between local VMFS and the vSAN datastore for initial provisioning.
Over time, this vSAN capability has gone mainstream not only from a customer standpoint but also internal to VMware. In fact, the use of this feature has made its way into several VMware implementations including but not limited to VMware Validated Designs (VVD), VxRail, VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) and even in the upcoming VMware Cloud on AWS. This really goes to show how useful and critical of a feature this has become for standing up brand new VMware infrastructure which runs on top of vSAN. Huge thanks goes out to the original vSAN Architects who had envisioned such use cases and designed vSAN to include this functionality natively within the product and not have to rely or depend on vCenter Server.