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Monthly Archives: September 2012

vCAT 3.0 Implementation Examples Changes

Now that vCAT 3.0 has been released, it is worthwhile to discuss the obvious as well as the more subtle changes that are a part of this release and specifically the Implementation Examples document.  One of the key guidelines that we adhered to while writing vCAT was to be careful not to operate in a bubble. In other words, the authors tried to always be cognizant of why they were writing these documents.  One of the primary reasons behind writing these documents is simply to make the jobs of cloud architects and engineers a little easier.  In order to do this we listened to feedback from the field that would ultimately be consuming these documents. Three pieces of feedback based on previous versions of vCAT that were directly incorporated into the Implementation Examples document were:

  1. The document has a lot of information and readers are not always sure where to go for a specific task they need to accomplish.
  2. The document is a large monolithic representation of one very specific design example, which reduces its value to those without the same exact business requirements or constraints.
  3. While the document has very specific guidance and information about vCloud Director, what about other complimentary products in what is now the VMware vCloud Suite. Readers wanted more information on the integration and coexistence of VMware products such as vCenter Chargeback Manager, vCenter Operations Management Suite, vCenter Orchestrator or vFabric Application Director with Cloud.

I am very happy with what the team has been able to accomplish in this release. Both from a content perspective but also for the structural changes that were made that will pave the way for more interesting and relevant user stories to be seamlessly integrated in subsequent releases.

To address the first two pieces of feedback we changed the structure to be more modular in nature so each work product represented a specific feature, technology, or configuration.  These work products are then organized into design areas such as storage, networking, security or monitoring.   Each work product stands on its own and is provided in the context of a specific deployment model such as private, public, or hybrid.  In order to maintain consistency, each example or work product within the document contains the following information.

  • Deployment Models – Deployment models for this technology example (Private, Public, Hybrid).
  • Example Components – The required software components and versions. For example: vSphere 5.1, vCloud Director 5.1.
  • Background – Background and overview for the specific technology example.
  • Example – The actual example implementation of the technology or feature in the context of a specific use case.
  • Design Implications – Information to consider when using the technology or feature.

Aside from the fact that our readers should be able to quickly and efficiently find the information they are looking for, the new format should enable two other things:

  1. Because each work product stands alone, we can document different ways of implementing a feature or technology and our readers can decide which way works best for them.  For instance, we include different methods for providing network isolation for network pools such as VCDNI, VLANs, or VXLAN.
  2. Our readers can mix and match the design elements to help build a VMware Cloud that meets their specific needs.

To address the third piece of feedback, this release incorporates sections that involve integration, orchestration, security, and monitoring using multiple products in the VMware vCloud Suite. This only makes sense as Cloud computing is a way of providing and consuming services and will almost always involve customization and integration with other products both inside and outside of the VMware portfolio.

 

 

 

 

 

vCloud Architecture Toolkit (vCAT) 3.0 now available for download

VMware is pleased to announce the release of the vCAT 3.0 material.

The VMware vCloud Architecture Toolkit provides technical and operational guidance for cloud success. It includes the tools and guidance to build, operate, and consume an industry-leading cloud computing infrastructure solution. Unlike a Reference Architecture which focuses on one use case, this architecture toolkit includes support for multiple use cases and combinations of use cases. It is based on field experience with hundreds of customers and partners. It is validated by internal and external individuals and is supported by VMware as the de-facto reference for vCloud deployments. This is offered free of charge.

It is available for download at http://www.vmware.com/go/vcat under the registration section. Look for the ‘Register’ link.

Audience

This release has expanded content for architects, administrators, and consumers of a vCloud infrastructure. It supports enterprise customers and service providers.

VMware Validated Architecture Toolkit

This material has been created and validated by multiple organizations within VMware including Global Solutions and Enablement (GSE), Engineering and QA, Global Support Services (GSS), Tech Marketing, Product Management, Alliances, members of the Partner Technical Advisory Board, vendors, and others. Our Continuous Product Development (CPD) organization is currently reviewing this material to also provide validation. Part of this validation includes successful use for internal VMware vCloud projects including the VMworld lab environment.

Value Proposition

– Created by experts to HELP YOU BECOME AN EXPERT.
– Demonstrates REAL WORLD EXPERIENCE, not just theoretical gluing together of products.
– Creates a BASELINE to form a common knowledge base, or starting point, for cloud architectures.
– It is a DE-FACTO REFERENCE POINT for many questions that arise around both VMware vCloud and Cloud Computing environments.

Scope

We focus on Infrastructure as a Service for private, public, and community clouds. This material can be expanded to support other cloud models such as community and government clouds.

We include information on people, process, and technology. We have added several new sections that include workflow examples (vCenter Orchestrator), software tools, and cloud bursting theory.

This material is designed as an engineering document. It is written to provide flexibility in support of third party technologies integrated with VMware technologies. Vendors can provide their integration guidance at www.solutionexchange.vmware.com

This is a large body of material at over 700 pages across multiple documents. We have included reading guidance in the Introduction for the three audience categories. The documents include:

* Core Documents
– Introduction
– Service Definitions
– Architecting a VMware vCloud
– Operating a VMware vCloud
– Consuming a VMware vCloud
– Implementation Examples

* Tools and Advanced Topics
– Workflow Examples
– Software Tools
– Cloud Bursting

* Additional supporting documents such as Document Map, Release Notes, and Errata.

For this, our third major release, we have added a Documentation Center that can be used online or offline. The Documentation Center provides the ability to navigate and search through the library of toolkit documents, with access to PDFs from the user interface, and translations via Google Translate when Documentation Center is served from a web server. This is our first release of material using this technology and hope it will provide a benefit to your team members.

Technologies

The technologies used include the following including all features of each product where appropriate for a vCloud deployment.
– VMware vSphere
– VMware vCloud Director
– VMware vCloud Network and Security (App, Edge, Endpoint, Data Security)
– VMware vCenter Operations Manager
– VMware vCenter Chargeback Manager
– VMware vCenter Infrastructure Navigator
– VMware vCenter Configuration Manager
– VMware vCenter Orchestrator
– PowerCLI, vCloud API
– VMware IT Business Management
– VMware vFabric RabbitMQ
– VMware vFabric Applications Director
– VMware vFabric Hyperic
– VMware Site Recovery Manager

Why release this to the public?

We believe there are several reasons. It supports the customer directly. It support the sales and delivery teams of our partners. It supports third party software and hardware vendors.

– Includes design considerations, design patterns, and examples in one document that covers more than just the vCloud suite of products.
– Includes operational considerations and examples.
– Acts as a training document to educate.
– Is an all-in-one reference guide for architects, administrators, and consumers.
– Geared for VCP, VCAP-DCA, VCAP-DCD, and VCDX level skills.
– Used VCDX approach during development.
– Provides guidance for partners (sales and delivery teams).
– Provides a competitive tool by providing details based on the experience of hundreds of VMware customers and several years of experience working with them.
Supports enterprise customers and service providers.
– Provides information on design justification, impact, risk factors, and testing considerations that can embellish a set of delivery material.
– Shortens design and delivery time.

Next Steps

Feedback
We are looking for your feedback on this material.
– How useful has this been in your job role, organization, company?
– What areas do you find most valuable in your role (provide your role)?
– Is there material we should add, remove, modify, correct?
– Are you willing to provide a reference or quote on vCAT?

Updates to vCAT
– Minor update to be added shortly.
– Next release tentatively scheduled in late Q1 2013.
– Next major release schedule for Q3 2013.

Training on vCAT
We will be creating videos on the material and how to use it. These will be announced on the VMware blogs site at – http://blogs.vmware.com/vcat

Thank you
The vCAT 3.0 team

vCAT 3.0 Exposing Many New Features

When vCAT 3.0 is released you will be able to find out about the many, many NEW features that are available. One of the things that is so unique about vCAT 3.0, is that all these NEW features are exposed and accessible to you in one place. There really is no other resource quite like this available to you and that is so comprehensive.

vCAT 3.0 release end of day September 10, 2012

vCAT 3.0 Will be available for download September 10, 2012!!!!

We are planning a release at end of day California time.

This release continues to offer individual PDF and zipped PDF versions for download. We have now added a WebWorks and Reverb interface for online viewing with search and translate capabilities.

If you are interested in a print version as well, please comment. VMware Press is interested in doing this if there is demand for it. Our goal is the electronic version to be the primary source, but we also recognize from initial feedback that many would also like a printed hardcover reference copy. We will listen to your feedback and provide back to VMware Press.

Thank you
John