The VMware Cloud Provider Program:
The VMware Cloud Provider Program is comprised of VMware software-as-a-service offerings and our global ecosystem of VMware Service Provider Partners. It is the ideal solution for all companies that offer hosted services to third parties, including infrastructure as a service (IaaS) provider, cloud service providers (CSPs), application service providers (ASPs), Internet service providers (ISPs) and platform as a service (PaaS) providers.
As the world’s largest network of validated cloud services based on VMware technology, the VMware Cloud Provider Program enables partners to consume VMware products on a pay-as-you-go, pay-as-you-grow, monthly subscription model. By offering a wide range of VMware-based cloud services on a geographical basis, VMware Service Provider Partners can now offer hybrid cloud services that quickly and seamlessly extend the customer’s data center into the cloud using the same VMware products and tools they already use on premise.
ScaleGrid, a VMware partner was built by database experts to provide an enterprise-grade Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) hosting solution with robust management tools. Their fully managed platform is used by thousands of developers, startups and enterprise businesses, including UPS, Dell, and Adobe, and has the ability to handle all database operations at scale.
The ScaleGrid DBaaS supports relational databases like MS SQL, PostgreSQL, Greenplum, and MySQL, as well as NoSQL databases, MongoDB and Redis, on VMware Cloud Infrastructure. The ScaleGrid on-premises software captures all of your key IT performance indicators for ultimate application performance visibility, and easily manages your infrastructure, resources, and information through one powerful platform.
Core Capabilities of ScaleGrid:
DBaaS simplifies the administration of users, stakeholders, and permissions, implementing consistency and standardization of deployments. With DBaaS automation, tasks are simplified and made more effective. Organizations can control server and database sprawl by applying a single source of truth (SSOT) to manage all of their database clusters. DBaaS also helps reduce IT staff time from performing redundant, time-consuming activities such as provisioning, management, administration and monitoring. It enables in-house DBAs to focus on more core, value-added activities such as logical database administration and application architecture rationalization.
ScaleGrid Integration with the VMware Cloud Platform
ScaleGrid integrates well with VMware vCenter and its cloud platform. The integration allows for provisioning of supported databases on VMware. ScaleGrid uses a common CentOS-7 template for all its Linux based database machines. After deploying the ScaleGrid Enterprise VMware vSphere® vApp™ with appropriate permissions, a vVol datastore the infrastructure is ready to start creating the VMware Cloud Profile for PostgreSQL.
ScaleGrid’s Cloud Profiles are an abstraction of the underlying cloud platform. A Cloud Profile contains all the relevant settings for the underlying cloud. The setup process only takes a few minutes and is a one-time process.
The database type is selected and authenticated with vCenter credentials. Compute resources are selected in the virtual datacenter by choosing a cluster, host or resource pool as appropriate. A vVol datastore is chosen and associated with the compute resources for the Scalegrid DBaaS. A network portgroup with an available DHCP server and a location to hold your long-term full backups along a network folder to hold your periodic WAL log backups are then chosen.
This information is used to create VMware Cloud Profile for PostgreSQL, an example summary of the choices is shown below.
Figure 4: Choices for creating a VMware Cloud Profile
Once the information is validated, the cloud profile is created and used to start provisioning database deployments on VMware with ScaleGrid. We will look at a PostgreSQL DBaaS example to see the workings of the solution.
Provisioning Database Deployments
ScaleGrid provides cloud like database creation wizards that configures and automates all the steps of the deployment. Some of the cluster customizations available include:
- VM Size: Customize your virtual machine size, disk size, disk IOPS, etc to meet your deployment needs.
- PostgreSQL Version: Use the PostgreSQL version you need and upgrade at any time you choose with the help of ScaleGrid support.
- Replication: Customize your replica setup as a primary-standby-standby or primary-standby-quorum, and distribute across locations.
- Enable SSL: Secure your PostgreSQL clusters by enabling SSL to create a secure connection between your server and client.
- Data Disk Encryption: Enable disk encryption to encrypt with Linux Unified Key Setup (LUKS) to securely encrypt storage media volumes.
- Enable PgBouncer: Leverage the number one PostgreSQL connection pooler to manage your database connections and improve performance.
Figure 5: Options for PostgreSQL Deployment
- Firewall Rules: Lock down access to the intended clients of your deployments by creating firewall rules at the cluster and account level.
- Data Imports: Enter your server name, port, DB name, username and password, authentication DB, and SSL strategy to import your data.
Figure 6: Workflow to create PostgreSQL deployment in VMware Cloud
One can also customize your PostgreSQL cluster configurations after creation anytime through the cluster details profile in the ScaleGrid platform. Deleting Database clusters is very simple with little manual effort required.
High Availability & Disaster Recovery
Potential failures can impact any part of the system, so it’s important to configure a high availability framework to instantaneously recover through automated failover. DBaaS platform can be leveraged to provide redundancy for infrastructure and data. Database (PostGres) standby replica sets can be deployed across multiple data center locations to minimize the impact of losing any critical component in a disastrous event. If the master server goes down for any reason, one of the replicas will be automatically elected as the new master.
Copy Data Management (CDM)
With built-in tools for Copy Data Management (CDM) that leverages the capabilities of VMware vVols and storage array data reduction capabilities, ScaleGrid works reduce storage consumption by eliminating unnecessary, redundant copies of production data. ScaleGrid lowers the Capex costs by effectively managing database copies across the lifecycle of testing, development and production through simple automation. As discussed in the introductory section, vVol integration for DBaaS provides fast and easy cloning of database deployments, which is a core tenet of the service.
Performance Management, Monitoring & Alerting
The ScaleGrid DBaaS platform on VMware provides advanced monitoring to ensure the continuous health of deployments. Each cluster includes its own unique Monitoring Console that allows analysis of database and OS metrics, including CPU, memory, disk, operations, connections, and locks. Slow queries can have the biggest impact on database performance. ScaleGrid DBaaS helps generate slow query heatmaps to identify queries that need indexes across any time period. Scalegrid DBaaS provides several tools to continuously track, benchmark, and identify issues that might be affecting the database performance. It helps visualize the top queries causing read and write-load on your system through interactive pie charts.
Database Backup Management
Modern applications require proactive disaster recovery and business continuity planning to protect their mission-critical applications. Instead of manually administering these safeguards, organizations need to leveraging tools and best practices to solidify a comprehensive strategy safeguarding data through regular and consistent backup procedures.
Scalegrid DBaaS allows DBAs to automate recurring backups for standalone instances and replicas, so that all production databases are backed up at regular intervals. The service allows for Database recovery through automated restore jobs that quickly recover a backup of a DB instance or replica set. Backups can additionally be performed anytime on-demand, before performing any application changes.
There is also an ability to get a peek at the backups through selective restores to facilitate recovery of a single row or document from a table or collection. The peek at backup feature creates a new standalone instance with the data from the selected backup, and then allows you to perform a selected partial restore for a single collection.
Database Configuration and Lifecycle Management
The goal of a good DBaaS system is to rid DBAs of monotonous day-to-day management tasks, through automation tools to streamline time-consuming routine operations allowing them focus on proactive optimizations and development. The ScaleGrid platform allows DBAs to easily manage the configuration of all the databases. In addition, Database and OS patching can be easily managed centrally by the DBaaS platform and performed in a rolling non disruptive manner.
With the pivot to the cloud, offering database as a service is becoming a requirement for many enterprises. Many of the databases have strict business SLAs for performance, managing rapidly growing production databases, and simultaneously reducing backup windows Frequent demands for database cloning and refreshing further complicate matters. VMware vVols addresses the challenges of day-to-day operations, including backup and recovery, cloning, and database provisioning. In this solution, we have effectively shown how ScaleGrid a VMware partner has leveraged VMware platform capabilities and vVols, to offer a robust DBaaS solution for enterprises and other partners to leverage.