Posts Tagged ‘vCAC’

A vCloud Automation Technical White Paper

Posted: January 7, 2014 in vCAC
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A vCloud Automation Technical White Paper

By Neeshan Peters

1. Introduction

The purpose of the white paper is to illustrate the benefits of vCloud Automation Center version 6.0 in a dispersed enterprise environment. Helping to resolve such issues as IP address management VM sprawl, labeling, descriptions, and control of overprovision.

2. Trends

Today’s virtualization technology gives us the ability to rapidly provision VM’s, and networks. The problem comes when you have more than two or three people that have the ability to provision VM’s and networks. It gets even worse the larger the IT department is and doubles in fault if the department is dispersed geographically.

Industry challenges

Complexity increasing

Long project lifecycles

Application definition

VM isolation

VM tracking

VM sprawl

Need to coordinate virtual enterprises

3. Problem

When a VM is created we find it hard for the creator to place notes on the VM for things like, the VM owner & the purpose of the machine. They may build the machine with way to much resource such as too much CPU, memory or disk space. Maybe they are building the machine on the wrong resources all together. This is where vCAC comes in.

Conventional management methods not up to the challenge

They is no product right now that will make these items a requirement and also is customizable to any environment.

4. Solution

vCloud Automation Center can resolve these issues and more. It is capable of being installed and running within a day to address these challenges. It gives you Ip address management, required fields and automatically making notes on the VM of who created it. Controls that make sure no user may over provision a machine without your consent via workflows.

This new generation of management systems can meet the challenge
  • Resource Reservations
    Resources can be pre allocated for a particular group’s usage assuring that they will be available when needed. However, they can also be reallocated if necessary to meet changing business needs.
  • Service Level Resource Thresholds
    vCloud Automation Center’s policies govern how compute resources are allocated to assure optimal performance for the task that needs to be performed. Optional approvals are available for requests, which exceed standard service levels.
  • Service Tiers
    Resources can be pooled within various service tiers (e.g. gold, silver, bronze). The combination of service level resource thresholds and service tier policies assure that resource consumers receive the “right size” compute or application service at the “right service level” for the task that need to perform.
  • Service Approvals
    vCloud Automation Center can be configured to facilitate automation of an approvals process. Where approvals are necessary, vCloud Automation Center can integrate with Active Directory and configured for alternate approvers to ensure that change management and business requirements are met.
  • Service Entitlements
    Each service created in vCloud Automation Center can be designed with entitlements to ensure that each user, or group, has access to the services they have been preauthorized to consume. – See more at: http://www.vmware.com/products/vcloud-automation-center/features/policy-governance-engine.html#sthash.uOHPW3Jc.dpuf
5. Benefits

There are just too many benefits to place into this white paper but here are a few that may be of interest;

Reduce unauthorized and over-provisioning of machines

Reuse resources automatically

Recycle inactive and abandoned machines

Build with the same speed or faster as being at the vCenter console

Control IP address management

Provision new networks with a VM

Integrate with hybrid services

Manage and see the cost of services and VM’s

Results

Better visibility into you infrastructure and the cost of running it. You will be able to know everything that goes on when you need to know and answer the tough questions when the arise.

7. Conclusion

As you can see vCloud Automation Center has the capability to resolve all of the problem specified and more. This is just the tip of the proverbially iceberg. You will be better able to manage you environment proactively rather than reactively in a world where being reactive is too late.

Additional information

For more information, visit the vCloud Automation Center product page

http://www.vmware.com/products/vcloud-automation-center/resources.html

vCAC 6 AD Forest Problem

Posted: January 3, 2014 in vCAC
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AD Login Problem

It seems I have hit my first major problem with vCAC 6. After doing a few test runs and other scenarios it looks like I have found the problem.

I have a multitiered domain, a forest. The main domain the users of vCAC will use is just under the main/root domain, we will call root level 1. So that means we are using the domain on level 2. Now what happens is I am only able to use AD accounts that I configure for vCAC that are on level 2 (identity source points to level 2) and do not belong to any AD groups of level 1 or 3. What happens if the account belongs to any group that is outside of level 2, is after a log on attempt, the progress bar on the log on page will stop and nothing will happen.

I found  the problem by looking at the “vmware-sts-idmd” log. It will say that the log on was successful however there was an error calling for an ldap search of a group the account is in, in domain level 1 or 3. In the log will be an ldap referral error code 10.

Error received by LDAP client: com.vmware.identity.interop.ldap.LinuxLdapClientLibrary, error code: 10

Exception when calling ldap_search_s: base=CN=ROL_3Par_User,OU=AdminRoleGroups,OU=Admin,DC=DOMAIN,DC=com, scope=0, filter=(objectClass=group), attrs=[Ljava.lang.String;@20bea718, attrsonly=0

I have tried using the global catalog port 3268 instead of 389. I thought this would work but it seems that the ldap client cannot bind on this port. I have also tried using just the root domain as the identity source with no luck.

So I am still working on this. Any help would be welcomed.

vCAC 6.0 Review

Posted: December 28, 2013 in vCAC
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vCAC 6 Review

I previously wrote my thoughts on the vCAC 6 preview in a post titled the same. My greatest issue with the application was the new web interface. I must say now that I was gravely mistaken.

I am very impressed with the interface. It has managed to keep it’s simplicity for end users and also seemed to have made the administrative tasks feel easier as well with the advent of the “My Goals” section. The interface seems to load quick and clean and I hope the next revision of vsphere will have such an interface. The install is a lot better that it was in 5.2 and with the help of the pre-req PowerShell script it was a breeze to install.

Now for the things I believe could use some improvement. While the interface is still simple, it does not feel streamlined at all. Without the “My Goals” section it will be a pain for a newbie to setup the product. I even find myself going back to this section for reference for new setups. The install while vastly improved, if not followed as laid out in the documentation exactly you will encounter problems. Now I know what you may be saying, that’s what documentation is for. VMware’s products, most if not all, you are able to install and run without documentation until you want to get very technical. Their interface is intuitive for there applications, but not this one. It must be precise or it will not install. Lastly I hope that the PowerShell script is built into the next install.

This is a great product for those with the appropriate license and another reason to upgrade to the vCloud level of licensing.

vCAC 6.0 preview

Posted: November 10, 2013 in vCAC
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vCloud Automation Center version 6

After reviewing vCAC version 6 which is said to be released mid November, I am not impressed. I liked the UI design of the original product. It was simple and easy to use for non technical people. The new web interface I believe still needs to be worked on when compared to the speed of the C# vSphere client. When using the VMware Lab to walk through the product I was very pleased with the administrators menu being more streamlined. Now when you are setting up the environment your steps are in order of the menu. What I thought was lacking in the LAB was creating networks with either vCNS or NSX, which is said to be included with the GA release.

Never the less I am looking forward to vCAC version 6 as not being able to provision an isolated network from within the application was preventing the organization I work for from deploying it.