vRealize Code Stream v 1.0.0 has been released

vRealize™ Code Stream™ is a new release automation product that allows teams to deliver software rapidly, reliably and of higher quality, all the while lowering manual overhead and operational risks.  It is particularly relevant for organizations that have a Continuous Delivery or DevOps initiative.
Code Stream allows developers and operations teams to release software more frequently and efficiently, all the while leveraging their investments in existing development and operations tools. For customers who already use vRealize Automation, vRealize Code Stream is a complementary offering that extends automation to the entire release process itself. Beyond provisioning, it integrates with Continuous Integration, repository and testing solutions to push new software automatically from Development and Test to Staging and Production environments, saving the time and errors typically associated with manual procedures and hand-offs.

Code Stream 1.0 is available as a virtual appliance and offers major new capabilities, some of which are highlighted below:
·         Pipeline Automation: automating any release process for any kind of software thanks to Code Stream’s flexible pipeline modeling engine.
·         vRealize Automation integration: out of the box integration with vRA 6.2 and 6.1 to automate vSphere machine provisioning as a part of the release process.
·         Governance: gating rules that, based on test results or manual approvals, control whether an application build should be promoted to the next stage.
·         Artifact management: tracking and managing software artifacts thanks to an embedded version of JFrog Artifactory Pro, the market leader in repository management.
·         Release Dashboard: provides full visibility into the release process by reporting on relationships between pipelines, artifacts, and machines on which they have been deployed.
·         Extensibility: pre-built integrations with Jenkins, Yum, Nexus, testing frameworks, BASH or PowerShell scripts, and an extensible plug-in model powered by Artifactory and vRealize Orchestrator.

Download Landing Page: https://my.vmware.com/web/vmware/info/slug/infrastructure_operations_management/vmware_vrealize_code_stream/1_0
Documentation Landing Page: https://www.vmware.com/support/pubs/vrcs-pubs.html
Release notes: https://www.vmware.com/support/codestream/doc/vrealize-code-stream-10-release-notes.html
vRealize Code Stream Product web page: https://www.vmware.com/products/vrealize-code-stream

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vRealize Operations Manger – vROM – 6.0 Released

The much anticipated vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 released today.  This new release is a milestone further tying together components of the vRealize Suite.  With the release of vRealize Operations 6.0 and vRealize Automation 6.2 comes the integration of the two products.  However that is not all vRealize Operations 6.0 has some very exciting new features of it’s own.The release introduces the following new enhancements and features:

Scale-Out Deployment Architecture
This release provides distributed deployment with elastic scale and higher scalability.

Unified User Interface
This release introduces a single user interface to manage vSphere as well as non vSphere domains. You can create powerful, flexible custom dashboards enabling you to bring any information you want into the management console.

Licensing Management in 6.0
vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 has an independent license-management GUI that provides enhanced administration of license keys specific to vRealize Operations. Customers can now deploy mixed editions in a single vRealize Operations 6.0 instance.

Smart Alerts
Smart alerts combine multiple symptoms to generate a single alert that focuses on the underlying issue with clear recommendations and option to take action for remediation.

Enhanced Reporting
Enhanced reporting provides several out-of-the-box reports with the ability to generate fully customizable reports.

Capacity Planning and Project Management Capabilities
New capacity planning and project management capabilities extend beyond vSphere and across physical and application level metrics. Flexible capacity models can be adjusted to meet different business needs.

Custom Policies
Custom policies can applied for specific workload types, applications or clusters enabling more advanced monitoring of performance, capacity and configuration standards.

Automated Remediation of Problems
Integrated action and remediation capabilities with the ability to apply actions according to the recommendation for the alerts.

User Access Control Management
Improved user access control, including granular role-based access control.

Unified Storage Visibility
New storage visibility shows the correlation between the application group and the storage infrastructure supporting it, including HBA’s, Fabric and Arrays, along with the ability to trace operational issues all the way to storage.

You can download vRealize Operations here.

You can view the release notes here.

vRealize Automation – vRA (vCAC) 6.2 – vRealize Automation 6.2 released

FIlter vRealize Automation 6.2 has been released.  This release although not a Major Version packs a pretty powerful punch.  It’s loaded with new features and enhancements that you are all going to want.  This release aims to add some features that solve some basic challenges that have been seen by many of you running the product in your production environments.  Here is a breakdown of what is new in this release:

  • vCloud Air EndPoint with support for Proxy Servers with vCloud Air
  • Configurable email tempaltes
  • Calendar of Events
  • Use IaaS custom properties within Application Services (Application Services)
  • Support for CloudFoundry as a deployment target (Application Services)
  • vRealize Operations Integration including health badges in vRA Portal.
  • XenDesktop 7.x Support
  • Support for OpenStack Havana
  • Ability to edit Custom Properties during approval time
  • Scheduler for reconfigure operations
  • Ability to change lease times to indefinite
  • Enhanced Event and Audit Logging
  • Log Bundle tool
  • VM Disk Support for up to 60 disks (Previously 15)
  • Improved Rest API
  • API for Reservation Management
  • Better control for DB log rollover
  • Swap Space Custom Property to account for swap space on disk
  • Filter Catalog by Business Groups
  • Enhanced installation for easier HA deployments
  • UI Performance Improvements

Continue reading “vRealize Automation – vRA (vCAC) 6.2 – vRealize Automation 6.2 released”

VRealize Automation – vRA (vCAC) 6.2 – Hardening Guide Released

This is something that has been long sought after by many.  The hardening guide is 38 pages long packed with hardening information for the vRA Appliance, IaaS Server, Identity Appliance, and Application services appliance.  This document takes you through the hardening of the SLES 11, PostgresSQL, Windows Host including SQL Server, IIS, and Microsoft .Net.  The hardening guide also covers the network security and securing communications between the vRA components.

The network security section of the guide includes a complete list of all the vRA components and the ports/protocols that are used by the component.  Even if you are not ready to start creating a fully hardened deployment it’s worth taking a look at the guide and becoming familiar with the the communications between the different components.

Continue reading “VRealize Automation – vRA (vCAC) 6.2 – Hardening Guide Released”

vRealize Autoamtion – vCAC 6.x – Identity Appliance vs. vCenter SSO Server

I am frequently get asked “Should we deploy the vRealize Automation Identity Appliance or should we connect vRealize to the vCenter SSO server”?  The answer to this really depends on what is important to you.  There are pro’s and con’s both scenarios.  Let’s look at the vRealize Identity appliance first.

vRealize Identity Appliance

The major benefit to running the vRealize Identiy appliance is that it is released as part of the vRealize Automation code stream.  This is important because if new features are released in vRealize Automation that have dependencies on specific support from the SSO server the Identity Appliance will be updated with the needed support.  This will allow you upgrade when a new version is released without having to worry about external dependencies.

The downside of running the vRealize Identity Appliance is the extra administrative overhead, especially of you are deploying an HA environment.  It’s extra servers to support, backup, and maintain on top of the vRA Appliance, IaasS Server, and any deployed for DEM’s/Agents.  Not a huge deal, but it’s something to consider.

Continue reading “vRealize Autoamtion – vCAC 6.x – Identity Appliance vs. vCenter SSO Server”

vRealize Automation – vCAC 6.1 – Ultimate Multi-Machine Blueprint Extension v1.0.2 – Updated

Have you ever needed more control over what custom properties get assigned to specific component machines of a multi-machine blueprint, or want to use the same component blueprints for all component machine of a multi-machine blueprint?  The Ultimate Multi-Machine Blueprint Extension aims to help with that.

The Ultimate Multi-Machine Blueprint Extension allows you to utilize the same source component blueprint for multiple component machines while at the same time controlling which custom propertied get assigned to each of the components.  This allows you customize each of them differently during deployment.

This extension works well with the Custom Hostname and the Custom vCenter Folders extension to round out the use of Multi-Machine Blueprints.

Example Use Cases:

  1. Use a single machine blueprint for all components of a multi-tiered multi-machine blueprint and customize the name of each component.
  2. Use a single machine blueprint for all components of a multi-tiered multi-machine blueprint and customize the guest agent actions of each component machine.
  3. Use a single machine blueprint for all components of a multi-tiered multi-machine blueprint and override the template for each component to deploy from a different source vCenter template for each component.

The goal of this extension is to limit blueprint sprawl and leverage the multi-machine construct to customize the component machines and rely less on customizing the single machine blueprints making them more re-usable.

This extension was designed and built as a collective effort by Tom Bonanno and Sid Smith.  If you have any feedback please let us know.

Features

  • Define which component machines to apply custom properties to in a multi-machine blueprint.
  • Utilize a singular blueprint for all component machines in a multi-machine blueprint.

Change Log

v1.0.2

  • Fixed bug that caused properties with Multiple periods not to be processed properly.

v1.0.1

  • Initial Release

Remember we have performed a large amount of testing, but this is a v1.0 extension so please test and let us know if you find any issues.

Continue reading “vRealize Automation – vCAC 6.1 – Ultimate Multi-Machine Blueprint Extension v1.0.2 – Updated”

VMware NSX for vSPhere 6.1.2 – Upgrading from NSX 6.1 to NSX 6.1.2

NSX for vSphere was released on December 4th and I’m sure you all dropped everything to get the bits upgraded in your lab environments.  Good news is if your installs took as long as mine you might still have time to read this before they finish 😉  In all seriousness I would recommend setting aside a good amount of time. I have 3 clusters with a total of 8 hosts and 5 Edge Gateways it took a total of about 5 hours to complete the upgrade.  Worst part is I told my wife I would be an hour and then we could go Christmas Shopping.  Not good 😉  Good news is if you finish in 2 hours you get the rest of the day off.  Seriously your boss called me and said that would be fine.  Oh and if you are running EVO:Rail the upgrade only takes 1/4th of the time……. j/k.

To start you will need to download the upgrade bundle.  IF you haven’t already I have the link in my post about the release.

First thing you will want to do before starting the upgrade is take a snapshot of your NSX manager Server.  No seriously take a snapshot it will only add a few minutes to the overall time.  Actually mine took a little bit of time to complete.

Continue reading “VMware NSX for vSPhere 6.1.2 – Upgrading from NSX 6.1 to NSX 6.1.2”

vRealize Automation – vCAC 6.2 – Pre-Req Automation Script

Are you getting ready for the pending release of vRealize Automation 6.2 next week?  If so you’ll want to make your first stop GitHub to download Brian Graf’svCAC62-PreReq-Automation.ps1 script.  If you are not familiar with Brian’s PreREq automation scrip, it is a script that configures all of the needed requirements ion your Windows IaaS server prior to installing vCAC.  Brian did a fantastic job with the creation of this, it is a must have if you are installing vCAC from scratch.

In this version he updated the script to account for vCAC 6.2 Pre-Requisites so head on over to https://github.com/vtagion/Scripts/blob/master/vCAC62-PreReq-Automation.ps1 to download the script and get familiar with it to be prepared for the pendinf release.

VMware vCenter Orchestrator 5.1.3 is released.

This release of vCenter Orchestrator fixes a number of issue from the previous release.  Mainly a maintenance release, so when you can find the time I would recommend getting it installed and putting some of these issues in the past.  If for no other reason you will want to get this installed to resolve the issue where nested workflow don’t resume properly when rebooting the vCO server. Issues resolved in this release:

 

Active Directory account gets locked when connecting to Microsoft SQL database
If you set up a connection to a Microsoft SQL database with a Windows Active Directory account, the account gets locked from the domain.

vCenter Server inventory disappears from the Orchestrator client
If there is an outage of the connectivity to vCenter Server, the vCenter Server inventory disappears from the Orchestrator client and cannot be accessed until you restart the vCenter Orchestrator server.

Purging operations might cause a Microsoft SQL database deadlock
Orchestrator’s purging operations for events might cause a deadlock in a Microsoft SQL database.

VcAuthorizationRole.roleId does not provide the correct role ID and always returns 0
When you use the vCenter Server plug-in VcAuthorizationRole.roleId attribute, the correct role ID is not provided. Instead, the role ID of every object is displayed as 0.

Nested workflows not resuming properly when rebooting
If there are nested workflows still running when you reboot an Orchestrator server, the nested workflows do not resume from the last workflow element that was running at the time of reboot. After the Orchestrator server starts again, the nested workflows resume from the begining.

Import Package dialog responding slowly
The Import Package dialog might respond slowly when importing a package with content that is already available in Orchestrator.

Problematic releasing of locks
If you create a lock with LockingSystem.lockAndWait(lockName,””) and try to release it by running the Release all locks workflow, the LockingSystem.unlockAll() method does not release all locks.

Release Notes can be found here.

Download can be found here.

VMware NSX 6.1.2 for vSphere has been released

If you are currently running NSX for vSphere 6.1 you will be happy to hear that that NSX 6.1.2 for vSphere has been released.  In it is a number of bug fixes that I am particularly happy about.  One fix in particular that I am very happy to see is:

vNICs get ejected because of insufficient ESXi heap memory –  I ran into this in the MoaC Lab and of course it took some time to track down and get resolved.  Aside from being a difficult bug to diagnose it caused secondary issues that were just a pain.  So glad to see this one is taken care of.

Poodle Vulnerability – This release includes an API call that you can use to diable SSL v3 on  specified NSX Edges.

OpenSSL – Has been upgraded to the 101j release

UI Fixes – Not yet sure which ones.

Security Group Parallel Creation  – has been added.  This should help in the over time it takes to deploy App Services in vRealize Automation.

VPN Fixes – I’m not sure on what these fixes are, but I hope there is a fix for OSPF updates over Layer2 VPN.  I will surely let you know once I find out.

There is more details on the the NSX for vSphere 6.1.2 release in the release notes.

You can also find the download here.