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Category Archives: vCloud Suite

Journey to the SDDC – vSphere with Operations Management

Are you looking at the Software-Defined Datacenter (SDDC) and taking a dive into the vCloud Suite? As you take your journey it sometimes becomes confusing and potentially overwhelming as you look at all the possibilities and figure out what comes next.

For example, it’s fairly easy to recognize the value in these solutions, but you also do understand that implementing change takes time and resources no matter how much you desire to get them done. Continue reading

vCenter Server 5.5 Update 1b released

Today VMware released an update to its virtualization management solution, vCenter Server. The update brings several fixes as documented in the release notes which can be reviewed in full here.

The new versions are as follows:

  • vCenter Server 5.5 Update 1b | 12 JUN 2014 | Build 1891313
  • vCenter Server 5.5 Update 1b Installation Package | 12 JUN 2014 | Build 1891310
  • vCenter Server Appliance 5.5 Update 1b | 12 JUN 2014 | Build 1891314
    downloaded now from vmware.com

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Which vCenter Server platform should I use – Appliance or Windows?

One of the most repetitive questions that I get asked is which version of vCenter Server should I be using. This obviously is based on the decision between using the vCenter Server appliance (VCSA) introduced with vSphere 5.0 or the trusted and proven vCenter Server on Windows.

whichplatform

It has been general knowledge that the vCenter Server appliance, since its introduction has lacked features to that of its Windows counterpart. With vSphere 5.5 the vCenter Server appliance has come a long way, it supports all solutions that integrate with vCenter Server (vCD, vCOPs, SRM, VUM etc) but is it production ready? I can confidently say yes but will it meet your requirements?
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vCenter Availability and Performance survey

As many of you know, I work very closely with VMware Product Management and Engineering and we are always looking for data points to support concepts and aid the development of future generations with our products. We have created a 3 page survey that covers Performance and Availability within vCenter Server environments.

Help us make our products better by spending a few minutes to complete, your participation is much appreciated.

https://www.tinyurl.com/VCPerf

 

vSphere Distributed Switch Concept Video

Over the past few months I’ve been creating assets showcasing the features and how to deploy them for our VMware vSphere Distributed Switch (VDS). This last video takes a much higher level overview to help those not so technical realize the benefits of leveraging the VDS.

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Reporting on Site Recovery Manager Failover via PowerCLI

Here’s another fun one!

So we’ve automated some Site Recovery Manager failovers with PowerCLI.  Say we run a weekly test for a given recovery plan.  But now we want to know how it worked.  Maybe generate a table report, maybe email it out, whatever.

Take a look at the following:

I’m assuming you’ve already done the Connect-VIServer and $SrmConnection to the appropriate systems.  What next?  Well as before the $SrmAPI mapping again gives us an entry point to the actual SRM API itself.

$PlanMoref = $SrmApi.Recovery.Listplans()[1].moref 

This is in essence retrieving the managed object reference ID for the recovery plan returned by “Listplans”.  You will need to know which recovery plan you want to report on, but that is easily determined by running the Listplans method without any reference, i.e. simply running:

$SrmApi.Recovery.Listplans

Once you know that you know which plan you want to run the report on and you know whether to pass a [0] or a [1] or whatever to the $PlanMoref variable you are creating.

Once that is done we want to pull out the managed object reference to the *history* of the recovery plan execution.  So we execute the GetHistory method against the $PlanMoref variable we have created, and assign it to the new variable $HistoryMoref.

$HistoryMoref = $SrmApi.Recovery.GetHistory($PlanMoref)

This then attaches us to the history of the particular recovery plan we want, and gives us a nice variable name to use for the next step:

$HistoryMoRef.GetRecoveryResult(1)

This, now, is the heart of the matter.  It is retrieving the data from the latest run of the recovery plan we attached to earlier.  The “1″ listed here indicates the most recent execution of the recovery plan.  If we indicated “2″ it would not retrieve the second most recent, but the last *two* executions, and so forth.  So to retrieve the details of the last run of our recovery plan, we need to know: a) The plan as listed by ListPlans, b) the Moref of the plan as listed by Listplans()[planid].moref, c) to attach to the history using the plan’s GetHistory($PlanMoref), and that we d) access the output by running GetRecoveryResult against all the prior input.

Make sense?  Fundamentally it can be reduced to the 4 or fewer lines, as per my example at the top.  What you do *with* that output is up to you!  If you check out the sample scripts for generating reports against the SRM API, or really reference any PowerCLI materials you’ll doubtless come up with some great ideas for generating tables, reports, emails, whatever is appropriate.

One last thing though – we’ve generated a test run automatically, and now run a report against the result.  What’s next?  Run a cleanup, as per my previous blog about automating execution.

Automating Failover with SRM and PowerCLI

Today we’ll take a look at running a recovery plan for SRM programatically, from the API via PowerCLI.

In almost all scenarios, falling over in an automated fashion is a poor idea.  There is a lot of risk associated with it and a lot of potential liability for failing over due to incorrect reasoning.  Failing over automatically in *test mode* however makes an awful lot of sense!

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SAP HANA Now Supported on VMware vSphere 5.5 for Production Scenarios

Eighteen months ago at SAP SAPPHIRE Madrid 2012, VMware presented impressive performance data showcasing SAP HANA running on vSphere. At that time, vSphere 5.1 received support from SAP to run SAP HANA for non-production scenarios.

After an extended and successful joint testing program with SAP, we’re proud to announce that vSphere 5.5 has achieved production support for SAP HANA.  Today, joint customers can run and scale single node SAP HANA databases up to 1TB in a virtual environment while taking advantage of all of the vSphere features they know and rely on to achieve high availability and improved Quality of Service for their mission critical workloads.

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Enabling and Monitoring Storage I/O Control

Storage I/O Control (SIOC) is one of those features that tend to get forgotten about. I’ve talked to many customers both while I was in the field doing architectures and deployments and still today and many either don’t know about the feature or never looked into it.

SIOC is extremely powerful, it can increase your consolidation ratios on the storage side, allowing more VM’s per datastore. Which leads to lower storage costs and less administrative overhead.

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vSphere OpenStack Virtual Appliance (VOVA): Product Walkthrough Demos

OpenStack_LogoI’ve created a new set of vSphere OpenStack Virtual Appliance (VOVA) walkthrough demos for vSphere admins that are interested in learning about OpenStack and what it can do.
The walkthrough demos are available and accessible online, for everyone that is interested in learning about how the vSphere OpenStack Virtual Appliance (VOVA) works. I have even included a the vSphere OpenStack Virtual Appliance (VOVA) with VMware Virtual SAN for those of you looking for a storage solution.

For more walkthrough demos continue to check the site as I will be updating the demo catalog frequently.

- Enjoy

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