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By: Lavanya Shastri, Product Line Manager, VMware Cloud Foundation

Managing Large Scale Deployments with VCF Multi-Instance Management

With the GA of VMware Cloud Foundation 3.9, customers now have the ability to view the health of all workloads running across all VCF instances globally enabling them to treat their data centers as a single resource pool and make informed decisions about key workload placement.

VMware customers are adopting VCF and configuring more workloads across more geographic locations. Having experienced the benefits of consistent operations, repeatable deployments and automated lifecycle management, customers are standardizing on VCF as the de-facto HCI stack for their data centers. However, as VI Admins, Site Reliability Engineers (SREs) and Cloud Admins think about how they scale their VCF adoption, a few key questions come to mind:

  1. How much capacity do I have distributed across my data centers and edge locations?
  2. How can I monitor all my private clouds from a single place?
  3. How do I know what changes my oversees colleagues are making to their data centers?
  4. How can I protect my data center from disaster?
  5. How do I upgrade my global infrastructure from one place?

The VMware Cloud Foundation Multi-Instance Management functionality addresses many of these challenges today.

Cloud Foundation Federations

Multi-Instance Management works by enabling customers to create a federation of all their VCF instances. Forming a federation is straight-forward, where the first user can invite the admins responsible for the other VCF instances to securely join the federation.

Figure 1: VMware Cloud Foundation Multi-Instance Management

The first member of the federation is considered the master controller with other instances considered members. For scenarios where High-Availability is required, two more members are required to be nominated as controllers in addition. The originating member is always a controller and exactly 3 controllers are needed to establish a quorum..

Once a federation is formed a VI admin can log into any member of the federation to view the overall health of the federation. This view visualizes information about every workload located in very VCF instance, including Compute, Network and Storage utilization shown as an aggregate view for the entire federation that can be further drilled down.

For a better understanding, watch this demonstration to see of how easy it is to create a VCF Federation to enable multi-site management.

Figure 2: VCF Federation Demonstration

Global Capacity Management

The ability to view all the available capacity across all the members of the federation provides users with additional context and information needed to make accurate and optimal placement choices for their workloads. This capability provides global visibility across all federation members from a single dashboard, simplifying management of large scale private cloud deployments from all data center locations and remote edge locations as well.

Figure 3: VCF Global Capacity Management

Moreover, as the Multi-Instance Manager is designed to connect SDDC Managers deployed across VCF instances, it can span to include a heterogenous mix of Core Datacenter, as well as VCF Edge, instances.

Get Started Today

To learn more about the Multi-Instance Manager, reference the VMware Cloud Foundation documentation here. The multi-instance manager feature is available at no cost to VCF customers, so in order to get started with setting up your own federation simply click on the globe icon in your SDDC Manager UI.