Author Archives: Alain Geenrits

NetApp management pack and full stack demo

A while ago I recorded this video of how I show a demo of the Blue Medora management pack for VMware vRealize Operations. I think it can still benefit people to have a look at it.

In the recording I show the 3 most important features of Blue Medora management packs:

  • no agents to install, rapid deployment on vROps.
  • automatic import of data and, most important of all, automatic relations between objects. Even over management packs.
  • some custom dashboards installed.

I also show a full stack troubleshooting dashboard including NetApp storage, Cisco switches and UCS blades (a.k.a FlexPod) and a MS SQL database.

NetApp and Full stack demo.

Hope it is useful to you and let me know what you think.

Upgrading The Bitstream to use ssl.

It was long overdue, but now that I have to recertify as vExpert for 2019 and since I will be looking for new business opportunities, an upgrade to use ssl was long overdue. I host my blog at UnixSolutions, simply the best hoster I know in Belgium with the great support and options. Disclosure: I have a reseller account… so if you want to host there let me know … 😉

First the WordPress application I use for this blog itself: Unix Solutions uses a powerful, yet simple software management tool: Installatron. It includes a great portfolio of web apps, including ecommerce – ready websites! Once installed it is also very simple to take backups – even automatic ones. This came in handy later and it means my blog is safe without buying one of the professional plans from WordPress/Jetpack.

The Installatron management interface.

Unix Solutions supports a number of options for SSL configuration. I am not going into theory here, there are a lot of great resources for that. By default you can use a self-signed certificate, but that is obviously not going to roll for SSL encryption… When I asked they quickly reactivated support for Let’s Encrypt. I cannot give enough praise for an initiative like Let’s Encrypt. It is a free Certificate Authority. Where in the past you had to pay a lot of money to a CA like RSA, anyone can now secure their comms with their own certificate, free! The DirectAdmin interface at Unix Solutions makes it so simple, just fill out some fields, domain and subdomains and save! Presto and you get your certificate. You can even check automatic recertification!

The SSL config options.

After setting up SSL I applied the changes to my WordPress site as detailed here. I choose the second option of course, not to use a plugin but to edit config files to force rewrites from http to https and also for the admin interface. And then panic set in because my site would not load… I will spare you the details of everything I tried…. In the end I am not to proud to admit I went for a backup restore… I noticed that I could restore to the https version of the bitstream… and after a few minutes everything was working! You can see my second copy running in the first screenshot. And in good old IT fashion I am not exactly sure why! The backup option sure is great because you can configure it to make a backup before any WordPress upgrade, even plugin or theme updates.

And now the Bitstream is up and running again, ready for new blog posts…

Leaving Blue Medora…

This post is more of a marker than anything else. My contract with Blue Medora has been terminated January 2nd. I will be free to pursue other opportunities at the end of the month.

I will of course continue to write about VMware vRealize Operations and other monitoring and cloud provisioning tools. I might even write about the excellent Blue Medora plugins, but not working for them anymore.

And if you now of any opportunities….

Blue Medora vROps CLI launched!

Our second-to-none engineers have launched a utility today that has been developed internally to help with VMware vRealize Operations management: the vROps CLI tool! It is now publicly available for free on Github for linux, Mac and Windows on our public repository.

As you can guess this utility allows you to interact from the command line with your vROps instance: install adapters, list alerts,… And of course this opens the door to some nifty scripts to automate tasks in your environment… like installing those great new Blue Medora management packs:

vropscli uploadPak OracleDatabase-6.3_1.2.0_b20180319.144115.pak

The usage.md file has some instructions and there is an examples directory with scripts.

Expect more info here and on our company blog, or stop by our booth at VMworld EMEA to have a chat!

Accepted for vExpert 2018 !

A nice surprise at breakfast in my mailbox. I have been accepted for the VMware vExpert programme! I have been recognised as blogger and public speaker. Link to my public profile is here.

Big thanks to Kim Bottu and Tom Vallons for putting their shoulders under a new vExpert community in the Belux and helping us! Also special thanks to Erik Scholten for endorsing an old colleague…

It is very motivating and I look forward to new ways of putting in some good work for VMware cloud products!

vExpert logo

vExpert 2018

Blue Medora PCF management pack updated

One of the management packs for VMware vRealize Operations that has evolved the most over the past two years is the Pivotal Cloud Foundry solution. From connecting through our own open -source nozzle to using the BOSH API, Blue Medora now enables you to monitor all aspects of your PCF deployment, including apps. Today we publish yet another set of enhancements. This is one of the most comprehensive solutions on the market to monitor PCF and how it runs on your VMware environment.

PCF Infrastructure dashboard

PCF infrastructure dashboard

Features in this Release Include:

  • Added BOSH Job resource kind, which serves as a catch-all resource for any BOSH job (including BOSH metrics) not covered by other previously-defined resource kinds (See: Resource Kinds and Relationships)
  • Improved alerts and recommendations to align with PCF Key Performance Indicators best practice documentation (See: Alerts)
  • Added one new Advanced Configuration setting: Collect Events (See: Creating an Adapter Instance)
  • Updated Blue Medora Nozzle Tile to include timeseries for historical data to enable improved alerts (NOTE: Be sure to upgrade the management pack prior to upgrading to the new nozzle version. See: Upgrading the Management Pack.)

Blue Medora website product page: https://bluemedora.com/integration/pivotal-cloud-foundry/vmware-vrealize-true-visibility/

HTML Documentation: https://s3.amazonaws.com/docs.bluemedora.com/vROps/PCF/Default.htm

Official Build Number: 3.2.0.20180625.192805

As always contact sales@bluemedora.com for more info.

Great new profile QR code in Linkedin app

Linkedin published a new version of their iOS app today and it has a feature that I am going to use *a lot* at meetings, VMUGs, conferences… I think it might even revitalise my use of Linkedin. It’s profile QR codes. I heard about it through Engadget.

Basically if you click the QR icon in the search bar in the main screen, it allows you to display a QR code with link to your profile that others can scan. Or you can scan other QR codes. Since Apple now has easy QR scanning in the camera app (just point camera at any QR code), this is a great tool that is going to save me a lot of business cards and scanning in other cards.

My Linkedin profile QR code

My Linkedin profile QR code

Of course you want to make sure to update your contact details and visibility, I added for instance Blue Medora’s product matrix….

New version HPE management pack for vROps released

Blue Medora has concluded the project to update the vROps Management Pack for HPE Servers.

Updates in this Release Include:

• Added support for iLO 5

• Added least-privileged user (LPU) details for OA, VCM, and iLO users

• Added Prerequisite Configurations for ESXi Hosts topic (required to collect external Host > Server relationship and certain metrics)

• Incorporated 2.0.5 patch release, which added support for HP Blade/VMware Host System relationships based on hostname

• Incorporated 2.0.4 patch release, which fixed an issue where a missing keys exception was taking down collection

HTML Documentation: https://s3.amazonaws.com/docs.bluemedora.com/vROps/HPE-Servers/Default.htm

Official Build Number: 2.1.0.20180606.165223

As always if you are interested in this pack, contact sales@bluemedora.com, more info is on the product page here.

OEM Postgres plugin supports Postgres v10!

At Blue Medora we still have a very popular plugin for Oracle Enterprise Manager to monitor Postgres databases. With the number of customers moving to Postgres or supporting dual database environments on the rise, it is important to give the DBA the opportunity to keep monitoring his environment from his existing monitoring platform. The plugin integrates in the OEM dashboards and gives you a lot of details on Postgres.

OEM Postgres plugin

OEM Postgres plugin query overview

Last year we upgraded the software to support Postgres databases running on AWS RDS, now at the request of several customers we upgraded to support postgres v10. We also have trial versions available now!

All technical info is on our support site and more product info is – as always – in the product matrix. Please contact sales@bluemedora.com if you are interested in testing the product.

Blue Medora supports vRealize Operations v6.7!

Good news if you saw the announcement of VMware vRealize Operations v6.7 yesterday. We worked hard with VMware so that all our management packs are ready for use with this new version! The capacity planning engine has been overhauled a lot, so we wrote a KB article to explain the differences.

HPE 3PAR capacity dashboard

HPE 3PAR capacity dashboard

Blue Medora product management have published a partial list of latest versions to use. These also include other updates. The list is not complete yet, but more will follow. For a documentation and data sheets see the product matrix and contact sales there for a demo and trial or email sales@bluemedora.com.

  1. Apache Hadoop (1.1.0.20180322.151724) 
  1. Cisco UCS (3.1.1.20180405.024250) 
  1. Cohesity (1.1.0.20180316.141936) 
  1. Dell PowerEdge (1.2.0.20180404.144806) 
  1. KVM (1.1.0.20180315.202846) 
  1. Lenovo Compute (1.1.0.20180404.154614) 
  1. MEDITECH (1.3.0.20180312.164522) 
  1. Microsoft Azure (1.1.0.20180326.154253) 
  1. Microsoft SCOM (2.1.0.20180316.174713) 
  1. MongoDB (1.1.0.20180316.142042) 
  1. MySQL (2.1.0.20180316.205435) 
  1. NetApp E-Series (1.1.0.20180320.142233) 
  1. Nutanix (1.1.0.20180330.192826) 
  1. Oracle Database (1.2.0.20180319.144115) 
  1. Oracle Enterprise Manager (4.1.0.20180319.192845) 
  1. Pivotal Cloud Foundry (3.1.0.20180316.195000) 
  1. SAP (2.3.0.20180321.155955) 
  1. SAP HANA (2.1.0.20180319.134350) 
  1. SolarWinds (1.1.0.20180316.145743) 
  1. Xen Hypervisor (1.1.0.20180315.203013)