When starting with vCloud Director the most asked question I receive is: "How can we deploy our customized VMs into the vCloud Director?". The reason is that a VM template or vApp is used for vCloud Director.
With this example I want to show how easy it is to build a VM and deliver it to the vCloud Director using vCenter Orchestrator and it´s plug-ins.
Of course, there are several methods to automate these imports:
- clone a customized VM into a VMware template for vCD import
- choose and transform an existing VM into a vApp
The following simple example is based on the workflows "Create simple virtual machine" and "Import VM as vApp" and a little scriptable task for MoRef (ID of the VM) translation. Both workflows are standard workflows, delivered with the vCO library and vCD plug-in.
To keep it simple I used some static inputs (datastore, host-system etc.). In real environments I automate these too, like choosing the datastore based on free space and left space. With these static parameters the inputs are reduced to:
In most environments there are some specific steps for the customized deployment of a virtual machine, like Altiris trigger for Windows or ssh deployment commands for Linux, but there is no deployment server in my lab 🙂
The small scriptable task in the middle is used for delivering the MoRef ID of the new VM as input for the "Import VM as vApp" workflow:
After all inputs and attributes are defined, I start the workflow and look into the vSphere Client to check the state of the deployment:
Also I check my vCloud Direcor App catalog for the new vApp template:
And finally my new VM is deployed and registered in the vCloud Director as a new vApp template in my Application catalog. For sure this is only an example to show the direction. In normal use cases there a few things more to do:
- ensure that applications are proper installed and able to get cloned
- define a application catalog for the right departments (HR for example)
- setting the right users and groups
So, get your feet on the street and test it!