vCOps managing business-critical applications demo

I created a recording of my demo for the Belux Big 15 events. In this example you will see how we use adapters and management packs to bring data from EMC, HP and Dell storage layers into vCOps. There are additional adapters for SAP, Oracle, Brocade, check out the market place online. Dashboards can be created very quickly to explore application level health. We explore how you can relate a degraded lun to issues on a datastore with a VM that is writing a lot of data.

A big thanks to Dave Overbeek and his team who created the demo !

VMworld Barcelona cloud management resources

Our great technical conference VMworld EMEA is on it’s way to Barcelona ! In two weeks we will be running our feet off in the Fira Gran Via. If you have no idea yet why you should attend, you can watch an overview video here:

In this post I also want to give you an overview of sessions and labs related to cloud provisioning and management to help you fill your agenda 😉

Sessions:

I cannot list all of them and do not know all the speakers, but here are my recommendations. You can consult the complete list here.

Tuesday:

VCM7369-S – Uncovering the Hidden Truth in Log Data With vCenter Log Insight. John Herlocker, CTO Log Insight, will be presenting.

VCM5539 – The Missing Link: Storage Visibility In Virtualized Environments. If you ever saw Colin present, you know why 😉

VCM4885 – Business Management for Cloud. Hear from a customer !

Wednesday:

VCM5271 – VMware and Puppet: How to Plan, Deploy & Manage Modern Applications. I attended this session in SF. Becky and Nigel do a superb job of explaining what we are doing with Puppet and do great demos. Don’t miss !

VCM5811 – How to Manage vSphere and Hybrid Cloud with vCenter Operations Management.

VCM5009 – Practical Real World Reporting with vCenter Operations. This is what we keep explaining to customers. Tom Findling is now the product owner of vCOps…

VCM4992 – Tips and Tricks for Capacity Risk Assessment, Rightsizing and Planning.

VCM5008 – vCenter Operations and the Quest for the Missing Metrics. Advanced stuff, but very interesting. By two nice Dutch guys Duco & Eric (of VMworld TV fame…)

Thursday:

VCM5148 – Provisioning and Managing a Heterogeneous Cloud with vCloud Automation Center. Naomi is the product manager for vCAC and Zack is extremely knowledgeable. He created some great demos.

VCM5781 – Whats New and What’s Next in vCenter Operations: A Tech Preview. Jai is Director, cloud management products, if anyone can tell you what is coming in vCOps…

VCM4952 – Practicing What We Preach: VMware IT on vCenter Operations Management Suite and vCloud Automation Center. Yes, we use vCAC and vCOps internally, come see us eat our own dog food.

 Hands-On Labs:

Of course we are back this year with the Hands-on Labs where you can come and learn in a real-life environment. For each lab a complete environment is deployed on-the-fly in a vCloud Director environment, so that you can actually use a real product. You can use thin clients or bring your own device (even a tablet !). New this year is a hotspot where you can take labs with your own laptop, I think in Barcelona it will be in Hall 8. The HOL itself is in Hall 7.

Even better you can take a lot of labs just from the comfort of your home… Nine labs have already been added from the new labs. See the announcement on the blog. You can enroll in the lab I am lab captain for here.

Labs relating to vCOps:

HOL-SDC-1301 – APPLIED CLOUD OPERATIONS. VSOM, Log Insight and vCOps Enterprise content.

HOL-SDC-1310 – VSPHERE AND VSOM 101

Also note there will be a lab around OpenStack on VMware: HOL-SDC-1320 – OPENSTACK ON VMWARE VSPHERE.

Other events:

There are Partner Q&A sessions on vCOps and vCAC. I am participating in the vCOps one. Not sure where they are listed.

I am also trying to organize a mini briefing for customers on vCOPs, more info to follow.

Free VMware learning videos

The friendly people at VMware education have a website with free intructions videos for products. There are 10 movies about vCOPs and 6 about vCAC alone. Need I say more ? Get over there !

And on top of that there are videos about VMware certification.

vCOPS 5.7.1 new features overview

This week we launched a slew of updates in the Enterprise Management group at VMware, namely vCenter Operations Manager 5.7.1, Hyperic 5.7 and the public beta of Log Insight. This is the first of my blog posts about the new vCOps. The update comes only two months after the 5.7 release, but has some interesting new updates. For full details see the release notes and full documentation.

Custom dashboards

vCOps now features a number of pre-build custom dashboards in the custom interface available in the Advanced and Enterprise versions. You can find them in the dashboards menu, under vSphere. This is great news since for some people the learning curve for creating their own dashboards is a bit steep or they wonder what info to put in there. Now they can benefit from the engineering minds that build this stuff to get them started. “VM Usage” for exxample is a great one to get a quick overview of your worst offenders in different areas.

vcops571 dashboards

Performance reports.

The standard reports available have been enhanced with some new ones that contain a lot more information about performance. See the example below:

vcops571 reports

Log Insight and in context launching

Last but not least you can integrate the new Log Insight product with vCenter Operations Manager, this means you can analyse data from ESX hosts, vCenter or any other Syslogd compatible source and have events sent to vCOPs. On the alerts page you can now configure application to be launched in context to quickly jump to Log Insight or the vCenter web interface.

More….

Other enhancements include the fact that the vApp is now security hardened according to The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) and The Security Technical Implementation Guides (STIG) guideliness so that deployment in banks and government should be even easier accepted.

As ever it is incredibly easy and quick to upgrade. Just download the 460MB .pak file from MyVMware and navigate to the update tab in the admin interface. Point to the file and presto !

SCOM adapter for vCOps

VMware TV on Youtube has published a great demo video on how to integrate data from Microsoft SCOM in vCenter Operations Manager with the SCOM adapter. Watch it here:

Belgium VMUG meeting

There is a VMUG meeting in Belgium this Friday, May 24th. Membership and this meeting of the user group are free ! You can see the agenda and register here.

There are a lot of interesting technical sessions throughout the day and I will give a talk on “vCOps : Extending enterprise management”, where I will show how to build supermetrics, apps and custom dashboards. Live without slides !

Managing business critical applications with vCOps

A new white paper was just published on managing Microsoft Exchange, Oracle DB, SAP and Microsoft SQL Server with vCenter Operations Manager and Hyperic. The document does a good job of explaining from installation to gathering metrics and creating custom dashboards.

A great resource to help you get started, this is the stuff most of my demos and talks are about these days. I did not author the paper, but since I deem it important and it is not on the central site yet, you can download it from my Dropbox.

vCOps Fundamentals course updated for v5.6

We have a free self-paced course that covers the basics to get started with vCenter Operations Manager in approx. 2,5 hours. This training has now been upgraded to cover v5.6. From the objectives:

•  Technical Overview of vCenter Operations Manager covers the vCenter Operations Manager 5.0 vApp architecture and resource requirements, the vCenter Operations Manager 5.0 vApp installation considerations, and introduces you to the major and minor badges.

•  Installing and Configuring vCenter Operations Manager discusses how to install and configure vCenter Operations Manager.

•  Using the Dashboards and Badges explains the main function of the major and minor badges, how to interpret the badge results, and how to configure thresholds and notifications.

•  Operations and Planning describes how to use the Operations tab and the Planning tab.

•  Working with Smart Alerts and Reports covers how to configure and use smart alerts, how heat maps are used, and how to work with reports.

•  Integration discusses how the other products contained in the suite integrate with vCenter Operations Manager.

You can register and take the course here.

Demo recording of the new vCenter Operations Manager 5.6

Today the new vCloud Management Suite components we announced at VMWorld 2012 are general available:

  • vCenter Operations Manager v5.6 (vC Ops)
  • Hyperic v5.0 integration for apps management
  • vCM 5.6 for compliance, config management and patching.

vC Ops v5.6 introduces some great new features:

  • User-defined groups: these can be static or dynamic (f.e. all objects of type VM and power state = ‘on’) and can be nested. All config settings are now policies you can install per group, so different groups can have different badges, capacity calculation,…
  • The weather map is clickable !
  • Some screens and dashboards have been improved, see the demo below.
  • We integrate with Hyperic 5.0 now for more detailed OS and apps performance data inside the VMs. This data can be integrated in vC Ops.
  • vCM 5.6 integrates even more tightly with the vC Ops 5.6 dashboards, we already featured timeline integration of change events, but now you can also look at a compliance dashboard and score within vC Ops.

The vCloud Suite advanced and enterprise include vC Ops, Hyperic and vCM. In the advanced version you get the Hyperic agents for the OS (Windows, linux) and in the enterprise version you get agents for apps like the Microsoft stack (SQL Server, Exchange,…) and database systems such as Oracle, Postgres,… A complete list of agents is here, but note that not all of them are included by default. Consult your VMware sales contact.

The official web page with all details and trial download is on the VMware website.