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vRealize Operations Tech Tips #7 – Filtering the vRealize Operations Manager UI based on Adapter

Today’s #TechTip is the answer to the question:

“Why is it in certain areas of the vRealize Operations Manager UI do I only see a small subset of the data and relationships, that I know are there?”

I recently had this question come up, so here is a short video on how to get what you are looking for. I focus on the “relationship widget” but this work all across the new vRealize Operations Manager UI.

vRealize Operations Tech Tips #6 – Understanding Capacity Planning Terminology

vRealize Operations Manager continues lead the industry with its capacity planning functionality by enhancing its capacity algorithms, providing even more flexibility, better out of the box default options and initial configuration wizards to help you set up your capacity policies.  Build a capacity “What-if-scenario” to determine your future needs and hardware purchases and commit them as a Project so it is reflected as a committed change throughout the management system.  vRealize Operations Manager also extend its capacity planning beyond the virtual environment and into heterogeneous environments for storage, network, operating systems, applications, etc.

Before we get too deep into the new features and functions its probably a good idea to level set on what capacity planning really means and start by clarifying the terminology.  Check out the video below to learn all about the concepts and important terms associated with capacity planning.

Up next we describe the need for and the differences between a Demand and an Allocation based capacity model.  You won’t want to miss it!

vRealize Operations Tech Tips #4 – Smart Alerts – Part 4 of 4

Here it is…the big finish for Smart Alerts and we are ending with what many might consider the most important part…Actions!  As you now know, Smarts Alerts are defined by a set of symptoms, which can be made up of static or dynamic thresholds for collected metrics, faults, 3rd party events, badges, etc.  Each alert also comes with a set of recommendations telling you how to best attack and resolve the issue highlighted by the alert. All together these provide you enough visibility and guidance to make your job a lot easier, but vRealize Operations Manager takes this a step further.

Recommendations can also supply actions that allow you to click a button and “fix the problem now”.  Out-of-the-box (OOTB) actions include things like CPU and Memory configuration of a VM, deleting snapshots, Power off/on VMs, deleting VMs, etc.  What is great for you is that actions, like Alert Definitions themselves, are content in vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 and not tied to code.  Because of that we will be providing MORE OOTB alert definitions, actions and recommendations to you out-of-band of the standard release cycle.  What that means to you is you will be able to easily download new content from VMware Solution Exchange without having to wait for the next version of vRealize Operations Manager.

Check out the video below to learn all about Actions.

We still have so much to talk about!  Watch this space for a lot more on the new features and capabilities.

vRealize Operations Tech Tips #3 – Smart Alerts – Part 3 of 4

If you have been following this Tech Tips thread over the past couple of weeks you will recall we have introduced you to the new concept of Smart Alerts in vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 with their OOTB recommendation and actions.  You have also seen these alerts in action to help you manage the day-to-day health and performance of your software defined data center (SDDC).  So now you are probably wondering, “Hey a lot of OOTB Alerts is great, but how can I tweak them or make my OWN Smart Alerts to better fit the needs of my environment?”  That’s a great question and I am happy top provide you the answer in today’s video.

This video will walk you through and explain the Alert Definition creation process of vRealize Operations Manager. It will show you the simple to use Alert Definition Workspace and explain how the different components of an Alert Definition (Symptoms, Recommendations and Actions) all come together to make a more meaningful alert.

Check out the video below to learn all about it.


Watch this space for a lot more on the new features and capabilities…next up Actions!

vRealize Operations Tech Tips #2 – Smart Alerts – Part 2 of 4

Our last blog on this topic was very conceptual, where we introduced you to the new Smart Alerts feature of vRealize Operations.  We explained the new alert definitions and how these alerts are made up of symptoms, recommendations and actions.  These alert definitions are built by subject matter experts and provided to you out-of-the-box (OOTB), but you can also quickly create your own alert definitions to customize vRealize Operations to your specific business needs.  Stay tuned to this blog for more details on how to do that!

Now it’s time to see alerts in action.  This video shows how vRealize Operations helps you manage the day-to-day health and performance of your software defined data center (SDDC) by taking advantage of these aforementioned OOTB Smart Alerts.  There are hundreds of alert definitions available, but we’ll look at just two of them.  We also get our first look of the new UI including the recommendations screen which shows you a quick status of your data center and the alert details screen where you can quickly resolve issues.  The bottom line is alerts will lower your mean-time-to-resolution (MTTR), make your customers happy as their services will perform better and will make you look like a rock star!

Check out the video below to learn all about it.

Use Case – Virtual Infrastructure Performance Monitoring Guided Remediation​

Watch this space for a lot more on the new features and capabilities that will make your life better…well, at least at your workplace!

vRealize Operations Tech Tips #1 – Smart Alerts – Part 1 of 4

The General Availability date for vRealize Operations 6.0 is right around the corner and the new version is full of powerful and user-friendly features to help you better manage your IT environment.  Some of the new features are major updates that will ensure your environment is always performing at its best and you are meeting your customer’s needs.  Some features are just slick and cool and will make you wonder how you ever lived without them!  Still others are there to help you be more efficient and will allow you to really impress your boss…and your boss’s boss!

The feature I want to talk about today is a major one that will change how you do day-to-day management. It’s one of the slick and cool ones, it is going to save you a ton of time…and it will impress your boss!

The new Smart Alerts feature of vRealize Operations Manager greatly reduces your mean-time-to-resolution (MTTR) by showing you not only there is a problem, but also  the causes  underlying that problem, as well as recommendations on how to fix it and even an ‘Action’ button to resolve the issue immediately.

Out-of-the-box alert definitions provide you with subject matter expertise around not only your virtual environment but also your storage, network, operating systems, applications and hybrid cloud deployments.  Simple workspaces, or wizards, allow you to customize and build your own alerts based on symptoms from metric dynamic or static thresholds, faults, error messages, logs, etc.

Check out the video below to learn all about it.

Watch this space for a lot more on the new features and capabilities that will make your life better…well, at least at your workplace!

vCenter Operations Tech Tips: Tip #42 – Latest Plugin Updates in vCenter Hyperic

I wanted to provide you with an update on some of the recent updates to VMware vCenter Hyperic and of course the relevant content that can be consumed through VMware vCenter Operations Manager.

Microsoft SQL server plugin now supports Microsoft SQL Server 2014. In addition to supporting the new version of MSSQL we have updated some of the default metrics following customer feedback.

 

MSSQL2014

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vCenter Operations Tech Tips: Tip#41 – How to Correctly Size vCOps For Your IT Environment

I am sure there are many people who would have worked on VMware vCenter Operations Manager and used this as a component to monitor their VMware Infrastructure. But when ever you use it, you must account that the vCOPs itself will take certain amount of physical resources that includes, CPU, Memory, Storage & Networking. In generic term networking is not the hard, however other three are the major components to consider.

Consider the vCOPs vApp as two VMs (UI VM & Analytics VM) and add that to your overall VM design strategy, including consideration for the disk size, CPU & Memory. It will add these resources to your overall VM design strategy. The vCenter Operations Manager vApp consists of two virtual machines with the same basic virtual machine layout. Both virtual machines have a system disk which is sized at 8GB which should not be resized. On initial deployment, within a logical volume managed by a logical volume manager, both virtual machines have created a 120GB disk each.

Sizing of a vCenter Operations Manager environment can be challenging. In this entire post we will assume some basic consideration. Core CPU speed for the physical host is 2GHz, each VM will produce 250-300 metrics each, a physical host will bring in 1200-1500 metrics. As you can see there is a variation and this is because the number of metrics depends not only on the virtual machine itself, they depend on soft values such as the number of virtual CPUs, memory, number of network adapters, and virtual disks. Each of these components usually brings at least one metric, but can also provide multiple metrics.

You also need to consider the consolidation ratio in your environment when sizing your vCOPs. If you use vCenter Operations Manager only with vSphere and no other additional adapters, you can use the formula shown below. This formula is only used to estimate the amount of expected metrics, in order to size the vApp correctly.

Environment size: metrics = (1350/10 x consolidation_ratio) x hosts + 275 x VMs

Data retention: storage[GB]= ((metrics x 16)/(1024 x 1024 x 1024)) x interval x 12 x 168 x 4.33 x (months+1) x 1.2

Additional adapters: Metrics per resource

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vCenter Operations Tech Tips: Tip#40 – Designing a Custom Storage Performance Dashboard using vCOps

Do you know what it takes to design a custom dashboard in VMware vCenter Operations Manager? If you ever wondered how big that deal is, this post will help you to achieve that.

What you want for creating a custom dashboard (in this example a storage monitoring interactive dashboard) is a heat map dashboard with a health tree, mashup charts and metric graph (rolling view). This is not there in the default storage performance dashboard. Before we roll on to show you how do you create this dashboard, we need to tell you what are the kinds of widget that we will be using and what are their purpose built in.

Heat Map

In most cases, you can select only from internally generated attributes that describe the general operation of the resources, such as health or the active anomaly count. When you select a single resource kind, you can select a metric for that resource kind.

The Health Map widget has a General mode and an Instance mode:

General mode:

The widget displays a colored rectangle for each selected resource. The size of the rectangle indicates the value of one selected attribute. The color of the rectangle indicates the value of another selected attribute.

Instance mode:

Each rectangle represents a single instance of the selected metric for a resource. A resource can have multiple instances of the same metric. The rectangles are all the same size. The color of the rectangles varies based on the instance value. You can use instance mode only if you select a single resource kind.

In either mode, you can group the rectangles according to tag type and select the color range to use. By default, green indicates a low value and red indicates the high end of the value range.

When you point to the rectangle for a resource, the widget displays the resource’s name, group-by values, and the current values of the two tracked attributes. You can click Show Sparkline in the pop-up window to review a small sparkline of the tracked metric by the heat map color.

HeatMap

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Manage Your Templates!

Hey, have you seen my Windows 2012 template?  Which one, you ask?  Simple, I just mean the one with SP1.  No, not .NET SP1…  I mean the one with WINDOWS SP1, and just plain ol’ .NET 4.5.  What?  NO, not the one with IE 11!  Seriously, you know none of our apps work past IE 8.  Wait, which version of Java??  WHO runs that version!?  You didn’t put that into the MASTER template, DID YOU!!??

When template sprawl gets out of hand, maintaining all the variations and keeping track of all the things that are in this template but not in that template can turn into a real mess.  Fortunately, as vSphere Admins, we are responsible for keeping order; it’s our duty to rein things in every now and again.  My goal for this article is to pass along a few tips to help you maintain some control over your VM templates.

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