We are excited to announce the release of vCenter Operations Manager version 5.7, which is the key component of vCenter Operations Management Suite, and provides you with operations dashboards to gain deep insights and visibility into health, risk and efficiency of your infrastructure, and also includes performance management and capacity optimization capabilities.

With this latest release, vCenter Operations Manager 5.7 comes with robust enhancements including:

  • Allocation-based Capacity Planning
  • Greater Scalability
  • New and Improved Widgets

Let’s take a look at these in more detail below. You can also check out this video that provides an overview of the new features and enhancements.

Allocation-based Capacity Planning

Customers have varying business needs across their environments, from ‘production’ to ‘test-dev’ to ‘infra-IT’ environments.

For example, in ‘production’ they may want to optimize for performance, and in ‘test-dev’ they may prefer optimizing for higher density. They may not want to over-commit at all in ‘production’ and have an allocation-based approach to assess risk and forecast future needs. On the other hand, they may have high over-commit ratios for both CPU and memory in ‘test-dev’, and increase the VM density right to the edge of acceptable performance. Similarly, they may want higher buffers in production to ensure peak unexpected usage periods can be handled smoothly, whereas they may be ok to have none or low buffers in ‘test-dev’. They may want alerts on capacity conditions in ‘production’ but not as many for ‘test –dev’. You get the idea.

Hence, what we have introduced in this release is a way for you to fine tune your capacity analysis to account for your varying business and operational needs, via out-of-the-box policies enabling quick configuration, so you can make accurate and smart decisions in your day-to-day operations.

  • Capacity Planning by Allocation and Actual Demand: Policy driven allocation and demand models enable you to optimize for performance versus VM density. You now get granular control on CPU/memory over-commitments, buffer limits and risk thresholds, as well as peak & business periods, etc. You can also look at what-if scenarios and do forecasting based on allocated capacity or demand. And yes, the new color-coded views are quite useful to highlight issues at a glance. 
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  • New Views for Capacity Risk: You can now quickly identify what resources are at capacity risk for your environment. There are two new views to track capacity risks at host and cluster level. You can identify which hosts and clusters are at capacity risk – whether by exceeding allocation limit or due to contention. There is also a detailed view showing which resources are constrained.
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  • Out-of-the-box Policies for Quick Configuration:With new Policies available out-of-the-box, you can now jump start capacity planning for your environment.
    • Environment based policies:
      • Production – Optimized for performance (Low over commit, High buffers)
      • Test/Development – Optimized for density (High over commit, Low buffers)
    • Workload profile based policies:
      • Interactive (e.g. web servers with frequent peak periods)
      • Batch (e.g. payroll app with less frequent & longer peak periods)
    • Ignore VMs from waste analysis.
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Greater Scalability

  • Increased Scale and Performance: With this release, you can now monitor larger vSphere environments from a single deployment using the new metrics profile. The metrics profile comes with intelligent metrics collection for the vSphere environment. The default mode out-of-the-box is the ‘Full mode’, which does not have any changes from the version 5.6 release. In the new ‘Balanced mode’, you now have about half the previous set of metrics, without any impact on out-of-the-box badges and dashboards. And yes, you may not need this level of scale, but if you ever do, rest assured that now a single instance can monitor more than 10,000 VMs in Balanced mode, by allocating higher memory (26GB) to the UI VM.


Widgets & Import/Export

  • New and Improved Widgets: Available for users of vC Ops Suite Advanced and Enterprise editions, are a new widget, as well as improved versions of existing ones. They are –
    • NEW! Custom Relationship Widget: that enables you to build a custom resource hierarchy and relationships view. It is highly configurable, allowing resource and metrics selection, ordering, coloring and labeling, and has the look and feel of a vCenter widget.
    • Health Tree Widget: for easy visualization for large number of objects.
    • Generic Scoreboard Widget: for sparklines, string metrics and metrics filtering by resource.
    • Metric Sparkline Widget: for configurable color ranges and units, support for resource type and label.
    • Resource Widget: customizable to add metrics beyond health.
    • Top N Analysis Widget: with support for analysis based on latest values.
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  • Enhanced Import/Export Functionality: There is now a lower operational overhead in building and maintaining custom components, with import/export change for dashboards and Super Metrics. Export format is changed from binary (.bin) to XML (.xml), and is now human readable. Note that older binary formats are still supported. There are also DBCLI enhancements to programmatically export/import Super Metrics, as well as pre-population of dashboard objects during import.


The following table summarizes the availability of new features in the various editions of vCenter Operations Management Suite.


Clearly, this release of vCenter Operations Manager version 5.7 makes significant strides enabling flexible capacity planning, greater scalability, and includes various new and useful widgets. We’d like you to try out these new capabilities for yourself.

Current users can update/upgrade by downloading from here. New users can obtain a free trial of this release from here.

If you have any questions related to vCenter Operations Manager, or any component of the vCenter Operations Management Suite, please visit the Community Forum. Follow us on twitter @vCenterOps.

Thanks for reading folks!

Himanshu Singh, Senior Product Marketing Manager, Virtualization and Cloud Operations Management