While Blue Medora provides monitoring data integrations for traditional data center compute platforms from Cisco, Dell EMC, HPE, and Lenovo, we have been expanding our footprint into converged and hyper-converged infrastructures (HCI). Recently we added support for NetApp HCI & SolidFire, including a new management pack for the VMware vRealize Operations (vROps) monitoring platform. Despite the debate as to whether NetApp HCI is really hyper-converged infrastructure like other solutions, monitoring storage in the context of its dependencies to VMs and cloud resources improves service delivery and return on your storage investment. Let’s drill into how Blue Medora’s vROps management pack adds relational visibility into NetApp HCI & the SolidFire Element OS.
NetApp describes HCI as an enterprise-scale hyper-converged cloud infrastructure. NetApp HCI comes in a 2RU chassis with four node expansion slots. The minimum configuration for NetApp HCI is:
- Two 2RU four node chassis
- Four storage nodes
- Two compute nodes
- Two open bays for expansion nodes
- Once the minimum configuration is met, storage and compute nodes and sizes can be mixed and matched
Blue Medora’s management pack for NetApp HCI on SolidFire accesses the SolidFire Element OS API to import NetApp HCI/SolidFire storage-related resources, relationships, metrics, and alerts into vROps, enabling comprehensive monitoring and troubleshooting, while providing visibility into the virtual layer within vROps.
Compute resources and data are not available directly through the SolidFire Element OS API or NetApp API Services (data collection is limited to storage only). The management pack connects to ESXi hosts for compute node data. We make the following relationships:
Once connected, the user will be presented with several dashboards:
- NetApp HCI Cluster Overview
- NetApp HCI Health Investigation
- NetApp HCI Volume Overview
- NetApp HCI VVol Overview
The NetApp HCI Cluster Overview dashboard provides cluster-level visibility into the overall health and performance of your clusters and related storage and compute nodes. Click on a cluster to populate the Cluster Overview, Relationships, and IOPS, Throughput, and Latency widgets. You can then select a related storage node and host system (compute node) to view additional KPIs for each resource.
The NetApp HCI Health Investigation dashboard provides a dashboard for troubleshooting your NetApp HCI storage environment. Select a resource from the Environment widget to populate its alerts, KPIs, and object relationships.
The NetApp HCI Volume Overview dashboard provides an overview of volume capacity, utilization, performance, and relationships, as well as insight into volume related datastore(s). Click on a volume from the heatmap-based Volume Selector widget to populate the Volume Overview, Relationships, and IOPS, Throughput, and Latency widgets. Then select a related datastore to view additional KPIs for the selected resource.
The NetApp HCI VVOL Overview dashboard provides an overview of VVOL capacity, utilization, performance, and relationships, as well as insight into VVOL related virtual machine(s). Click on a VVOL from the heatmap-based VVOL Selector widget to populate the VVOL Overview, Relationships, IOPS, and Throughput widgets. Then select a related virtual machine to view additional KPIs for the selected resource.
Beyond dashboards, our management pack also provides two reports:
- NetApp HCI KPIs
- HCI Node Report
The management pack for NetApp HCI & SolidFire passes alerts into vROps from the SolidFire Element OS API based on the Minimum Event Severity Advanced Configuration setting. If the user leaves the default setting of INFO selected at configuration time, all events from the Element OS API will be brought into vROps.
Blue Medora supports more than 150 monitoring signal sources, including cloud resources like Kubernetes, AWS, and Azure. So even as NetApp data fabric resources extend to the public cloud, you can maintain visibility in vRealize.
Try it yourself. For teams using vRealize Operations to manage their hybrid environments, the NetApp HCI & SolidFire management pack is available on VMware Solution Exchange as part of the True Visibility Suite, or the new options of VMware vRealize® Suite Standard with Extensibility or vCloud Suite with Extensibility (available soon).