By: Kyle Wassink, Blue Medora
vROps Views Blog Series (5 of 5): Distribution Presentation Mode
There is a lot to love about vROps Views. So much, in fact, that they deserve an entire blog series! This series will cover how to create them, how to reuse them, why they are valuable, and much more.
Graphical Views Overview
Having covered table-based Views (List and Summary) and Trend Views, the final presentation mode is Distribution. It is the second option for displaying data graphically using a View, but differs significantly from Trend Views. Where Trend can only be used to display information about a single resource, Distribution Views are specifically designed to show information about multiple resources.
Figure 1: A sample distribution showing the breakdown of VM Guest OS in a VMware Cluster.
Configuring a Distribution View
Most customization in other View types occurs in the “Data” step of creating a View, however the Distribution View has a lot of configuration in the second step, “Presentation”. Options that are defined here include the visualization type, distribution type, and buckets.
Figure 2: The options in step 2 for Distribution Views.
First, let’s cover visualization. For Distribution Views you have the option of displaying information in a pie chart or bar chart. They behave the same way and are configured the same way, so it’s up to you to determine which visualization format conveys the information you are charting better.
Next is the Distribution type, which lets you select dynamic, manual, or discrete. Dynamic distributions let you define the number of buckets and how these buckets are identified by vROps (interval, logarithmic, and simple max/min). Manual distributions let you define each bucket manually. Finally, the discrete distribution type creates a bucket for each value, up to the max number of buckets.
Figure 3: A Distribution pie chart that is using discrete distribution.
Each of these distribution types have situations which they are great for, and others they shouldn’t be used in. For example, if want to chart out memory size configuration for all VM’s in a datacenter, discrete distribution is probably the best option as it will automatically create buckets for the common configuration values (1 GB, 2 GB, 4 GB, etc.). If, however, you want to chart memory utilization percent for all VM’s in a datacenter, dynamic or manual would be the better options as will have ranges of values that you want each bucket to represent (0-10% utilization, 10.1-20% utilization, etc.).
After configuring these options in step 2 “Presentation”, select your resource kind in step 3 “Subjects”. Then in step 4, “Data”, a single metric must be selected. Add the desired metric into the data section, and modify the configuration of the metric if needed. You can also adjust time settings and resource filtering. For example, if you are creating a Distribution View to show memory configuration values across VMs, you may want to filter out powered off VM’s.
Figure 4: Step 4, “Data”, of creating a Distribution View. A preview of the final View is displayed in the upper half of the screen.
Finally, adjust the visibility in step 5 if needed, else save your Distribution View and start using it!
Wrapping Up the Series
Over the past five posts you’ve see exactly how modular, customizable, and powerful vROps Views are. Please re-visit and share this series with your vROps friends, and stay tuned for a summary blog post later this week.