VMware Cloud Director VMware Cloud Provider

Cloud Director 10.3.2 General Availability

What is new in VMware Cloud Director 10.3.2?

Cloud Director adds support for NVIDIA AI Enterprise to enable AI/ML workloads

As modern applications become more prolific, Cloud Providers need to address the increasing customer demand for accelerated computing that typically requires large volumes of multiple, simultaneous computation that can be met with GPU capability.

VMware Cloud Director & NVIDIA

Cloud Providers can now leverage vSphere support for NVIDIA GPUs and NVIDIA AI Enterprise, a cloud-native software suite for the development and deployment of AI and has been optimized and certified for VMware vSphere. This enables vSphere capabilities like vMotion from within Cloud Director to now deliver multi-tenancy GPU services which are key to maximizing GPU resource utilization. With Cloud Director support for the NVIDIA AI Enterprise software suite, customers now have access to best-in-class, GPU optimized AI frameworks and tools and to deliver compute intensive workloads including artificial intelligence (AI) or machine learning (ML) applications within their datacenters.

Customers can self serve, manage and monitor their GPU accelerated hosts and virtual machines within Cloud Director. Cloud Providers are able to monitor (through vCloud API and UI dashboard) NVIDIA vGPU allocation, usage per VDC and per VM to optimize utilization and meter/bill (through vCloud API) NVIDIA vGPU usage averaged over a unit of time per tenant for tenant billing.

Cloud Director with NVIDIA AI Enterprise software can support NVIDIA GPU virtualization though preconfigured hosts with NVIDIA GPU device attached and all required vSphere Installation Bundles (VIBs) using vSphere 7 Update 2 and NVIDIA AI Enterprise Compatible system. Whereby the NVIDIA technology included in the NVIDIA AI Enterprise software suite virtualizes the NVIDIA GPU hardware allowing multiple virtual machines to share the same GPU resources.

This solution with NVIDIA also takes advantage of NVIDIA MIG (Multi-instance GPU) which supports spatial segmentation between workloads at the physical level inside a single device and is a big deal for multi-tenant environments driving better optimization of hardware and increased margins. Cloud Director is reliant on host pre-configuration for GPU services included in NVIDIA AI Enterprise which contains vGPU technology to enable deployment/configuration on hosts and GPU profiles.

For the initial phase of this release, Cloud Director supports vMotion and High Availability of NVIDIA GPU workloads, and only Flex based tenant Orgs can support GPU Profiles & Policies.  Cloud Director also now enables GPU accelerated Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence with NVIDIA AI Enterprise software which includes GPU optimized frameworks and tools such as NVIDIA Triton Inference Server and NVIDIA RAPIDS which have been broadly adopted by data scientists and AI practitioners across market leading enterprises.

Cloud Providers can offer vApp Templates pre-configured with all the necessary placement policies, GPU Profiles assigned, VM and guest OS enabled for GPU. Finally, Tenants can also use relevant applications to avail of AI/ML capabilities through VMware Marketplace offerings delivered via for free with App Launchpad, such as TensorFlow, Mxnet, Dkube, Cognitive Assistance, and Dask Parallel Computing.


Networking services: NSX-T Segment Profiles

To simplify operational onboarding and configuration of essential services Cloud Director now allows system administrators to assign custom NSX-T segment profiles to organization virtual data center networks. Segment profile capabilities include:

  • Spoof Guard: Enable/disable Port Bindings based on an IP or MAC address
  • IP Discovery: Configure ARP and/or DHCP snooping
  • MAC Discovery: Setup MAC Change and MAC Learning rules
  • Segment Security: BPDU and DHCP Filter, Rate Limits, etc.
  • QoS: DSCP (trusted or untrusted), CoS, Bandwidth limitations

This allows providers or tenant admins to apply a profile encapsulating multiple networking components to a network segment. This can save considerable configuration time and using profiles help ensure a consistent approach to networks and security minimizing space for manual configuration error.

Networking services: NSX-T Edge Gateway Rate Limiting

Customers need quality of service to ensure the performance of critical applications where there is limited network capacity. The primary goal of Quality of Service (QoS) is to manage packet loss and reduce latency and jitters on a network connection.

VMware Cloud Director is now able to use a preconfigured QoS Profile at the customer Gateway for both ingress and egress traffic. The QoS profiles can be designed simply and infrequently as an operational configuration or managed service in NSX-T. The more frequent workflow – i.e. assigning these profiles to an NSX-T Data Center Edge Gateway with the bulk of the QoS profile specification occurring, is accomplished in Cloud Director.

Cloud Director provides a simple mechanism for the provider and or tenant to specify the desired QoS profiles when configuring NSX-T Data Center Edge Gateways. The QoS profiles must already exist on the target NSX-T manager configured as a day two operation or a managed service that can done by the provider and offers additional upsell opportunity.

Networking services: vApp move with networking

The move vApp API has been extended to now also move the entire network configuration with the vApp to negate re-configuration post move (apart from the new parent network connection or any new parent environment compatibility issues).

Networking services: New Distributed Routing Toggle for Org VDC

Cloud Director now allows tenants to configure their NSX-T routed organization virtual data center networks as being “distributed” or “not distributed” in much the same way that NSX-V routed organization virtual data center networks could be configured with a “distributed routing” flag. For NSX-T Org VDC Networks that are not distributed, VCD will attach this network to a Tier-1 Service Interface port (i.e., directly to the Service Router component of the Tier-1 gateway).

This delivers the possibility for tenants to use the Edge Gateway firewall capability to control East-West traffic between organization virtual data center networks connected the edge gateway. Prior 10.3.2, that is impossible to do since East-West traffic is always distributed, by-passing the NSX-T Service Router altogether. By forcing all East-West traffic (between networks) through the Edge Gateway, using the more expensive Distributed Firewall (DFW) solution is not necessary.


Automation capability: vRealize Orchestrator update and NSX-T support

Cloud Director now supports vRealize Orchestrator versions 8.6/8.5/8.4 and orchestration support for the Cloud Director REST API schema in 10.3.2.1, this has been compiled with support for latest JRE/JDK for Java v11. For organisations that use vRealize suite this has been a long awaited update enabling them to upgrade to the latest Cloud Director version, but also support has been supplied for basic NSX-T workflows; NSX-T manager, Geneve Network pools, NSX-T backed provider vDC, T0 Gateways, NSX-T backed external networks and NSX-T backed edge gateway.


To find out more about VMware Cloud Director 10.3.2 please head over to the release notes, documentation and Download Landing Page, or watch the YouTube video.

For API Documentation please follow these links: VMware Cloud Director API, VMware Cloud Director Appliance API and VMware Cloud Director Appliance SDK

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