Road to Automation with VMware vRA – vRA Design Part 1

GSS has decided on a number of design considerations for their vRA implementation.  GSS is currently using a consumption based model for their resource allocation.  They don’t pre-reserve any amount of resources for specific groups within the organization.  GSS feels their current consumption model allows them to more efficiently manage their resources.  It also prevents them from having pockets of idol resources that may never get used.  Based on this utilization model GSS will be implementing the following elements within vRA.

GSS  considered having a business group for each environment (Dev, Test, Stage, and Production).  To evaluate how they would like to proceed they asked to have 5 initial tenants created.  One for each of their environments and one to evaluate a collapsed model of all environments in one group.

Business Groups

  •  Development – All Developers across all groups within GSS
  • Test – All QA engineers within GSS
  • Stage – All production teams
  • Production – All Production teams
  • Gregarious – All Dev, QA, and Production teams

Continue reading “Road to Automation with VMware vRA – vRA Design Part 1”

My vRA Journey Continues

Many of you may have already heard after 6 years at VMware I decided to spread my wings and go back to the world from which I came.  I joined VMware when they acquired DynamicOps a little over 6 years ago, and after 6 great years at VMware I decided to move on to something new, but not so new.

If it doesn’t show from my blog I am very passionate about automation.   I’m even more passionate about helping organizations overcome all the challenges they face during their journey towards automation.  Having been working with vRA for over 10 years I’ve learned a lot.  I’ve learned the countless ways different organizations go about achieving the same end result.  I’ve learned the challenges with automation in the datacenter.  I’ve learned I could probably write endlessly about what I have learned Winking smile

Continue reading “My vRA Journey Continues”

vRA 7.3 – Configuring SovLabs Custom Naming Module

Many of you have utilized the Custom Hostname module that has been made available by Tom Bonanno here on Dailyhypervisor.  Those that use have probably noticed that it is no longer maintained.  This is because there are supportable modules available like the one I’m writing about now by SovLabs.  The Sovlabs module offers more flexibility and is a supported product making it a best of breed solution for this task.  Whats even better is their is a common framework that exists within the SovLabs platform that greatly extends the capabilities of each module.  More of the framework to come.  For now let’s go ahead and configure the custom hostname module.

Within the SovLabs custom naming module hostnames are broken in to two parts.  A Naming Sequence and a Naming Standard.

Naming Sequences

Naming sequences are exactly exactly what they sound like.  They basically define how are we going to sequence the names that are created.  Sounds basic right?  Well SovLabs has taken sequencing to a whole new level.  Most of you are probably familiar with using a standard decimal based sequence that might look like host001, host002, and so on.  SovLabs has added the ability to use HexaDecimal, Octal, and Pattern based sequences for your naming needs.  Pattern based sequences are insanely powerful.   Pattern naming sequences can contain Decimal, HexaDecimal, Octal, Binary, and Alpha.  Below are an examples of what you can achieve with Pattern Based naming sequences:
Continue reading “vRA 7.3 – Configuring SovLabs Custom Naming Module”

vRA 7.3 – Installing and configuring vRA plugin for ITSM – ServiceNow – Part 2

If you haven’t read Part 1 of this article you will want to go back and read it before you proceed. In part 2 we will build on the installation that we performed in part 1. Let’s just dig right in and get started.

How this integration works

Configuring the integration to use native vRA authentication requires the user to login to ServiceNow and vRA both. When the user logs into ServiceNow they are redirected to the vRA Login page and was logged in they are then redirected back to ServiceNow. This allows requests the user makes to be passed to vRA as that user. The main difference between this and the SAML (ADFS) integration is the user only need to login to vRA the very first time they use it and never again as the user is auto-magically logged in to vRA in the background using the SAML token. This is a great option for testing the integration without having to touch your Identity Management configuration.

Continue reading “vRA 7.3 – Installing and configuring vRA plugin for ITSM – ServiceNow – Part 2”

Using the vRA Cloud Client to export and import blueprints

There are lots of reasons to want to export and import blueprints from one vRA instance to another.  My current motives are to move blueprints from my vRA 7.2 environment to my newly deployed vRA 7.3 environment.  In vRA 7.3 their is a great new free feature available, the Code Stream Management Pack for IT Devops that is free.  However if you are running a pre vRA 7.3 environment you may want to get that content from that environment backed up so you can use it in another instance.  Cloud Client is a great option.

You can download Cloud CLient 4.4.0 here. Continue reading “Using the vRA Cloud Client to export and import blueprints”

Release Announcement – vRealize Cloud Client 4.3

vRealize CloudClient 4.3

What’s new?

  • Support for the vRealize Automation 7.2 capability to assign all users of a business group to an entitlement or to delete an inactive entitlement.
  • The new vra catalogitem service unassign command enables you to remove a service from a catalog item.
  • CloudClient’s truststore password can now be set by the user. As a result of this update, users may be prompted to accept certificates that were previously accepted in earlier versions of CloudClient.
  • CloudClient 4.3 runs on Java version 1.8. Java 1.7 is no longer supported.

For additional details about this release, please refer to the Release Notes (links below).

Continue reading “Release Announcement – vRealize Cloud Client 4.3”

Release Announcement – vRealize Automation vRA 7.2

While I was away on vacation last week it seems VMware had another exciting round of releasing starting with the Release of vRA 7.2.  Probably the most anticipated feature is the new Azure Endpoint.  Although this is a very exciting feature there are some other very exciting enhancements as well.  Enhancements to the API, container support, installation API, and one of my personal favorites Scale out/scale in.

GA date: 22 November 2016

What’s new?

The vRealize Automation 7.2 release includes resolved issues and the following changes:

Continue reading “Release Announcement – vRealize Automation vRA 7.2”

VMware round of Q2 releases including vRA 7.1, vROPs 6.3, vRCS 2.1, Cloud Client 4.2, vRB 7.1 and more

Many of you may have already seen the news, but I like to create a roll up to make it easy to see what’s been newly released.  Yesterday Tuesday August 23rd 2016 VMware released a number of much awaited Management product updates.  See below for a breakdown of the updates per product.

 

vRealize Automation 7.1

 

What’s new?

vRealize Automation 7.1 is optimized for growing clouds thanks to significant improvements in the automated installation experience.

vRealize Automation 7.1 continue simplifying the primarily and secondary setup process by adding ability to automate the setup process among similar deployments leveraging the new Silent Installer. Cloud Admins are now able to scale out existing vRealize deployment by adding more vRA components and manage them automatically though the new Command Line(CLI) interface.

vRA 7.1 release is also equipped with a brand new Migration tool which allows you to perform safe and sound side by side upgrade (migration) existing vRealize Automation systems 6.2.X to the latest and greatest release. During the migration process the source production environment remains intact which guarantees a minimum downtime of the production environment.

Continue reading “VMware round of Q2 releases including vRA 7.1, vROPs 6.3, vRCS 2.1, Cloud Client 4.2, vRB 7.1 and more”

Platypus Project Update

platypusOver the weekend Roman, Grant, John and I released a significant update to the platypus project, which is essentially a very simple and elegant way to provide a Swagger based documentation of several VMware Products.  This project started out by providing a quick way to consume the vRealize Automation 7 API, but it has grown a healthy set of legs.

One of the goals of the project was to take publicly available specifications and make them consumable and adaptable by the larger community.

So,  what’s new? Everything.

  • Flexibility: When you run the docker container, there is the option to provide variables for Product Name and Product Version.
  • Product Support: The updated platypus project now includes vRealize Operations 6.2,  vRealize Orchestrator 7.0, and NSX 6.2.
  • Host Config: The host variable now provides the ability to input the hostname of an instance of the VMware Product in question (preferably a test/dev instance) and issue the REST API calls.

To get your hands dirty with the NSX version of Platypus, just issue the following command:

docker run –name platypus –rm -p 80:8080 -e PRODUCT=”nsx” -e VERSION=”6.2″ vmware/platypus

Interested in checking the platypus project out? Find out more at https://github.com/vmware/platypus.  If you are interested in contributing to the project, simply issue a PR.

Please leave your feedback or comments below, I’d love to hear from you.

cloudcanuck.ca / twitter / facebook