VMWorld 2017 – Day One Announcements 8/28/2017

Today, VMware announced a series of products and collaborations at today’s VMworld. Below is a summary:

VMware Cloud Services: Manage, Secure, Monitor, and Automate Cloud Infrastructure and Applications

 

VMware Cloud Services provide a unified approach to gain end-to-end visibility into cloud usage, costs, network traffic, metrics monitoring, and analytics, and deliver consistent security across public clouds and on-premises environments. By enabling IT organizations to manage and secure across clouds, VMware is helping IT organizations balance agility and flexibility with control and governance, across multiple clouds. Today, VMware is announcing its initial set of cloud services:

  • VMware AppDefense™: a data center endpoint security solution that protects applications by embedding application control, and threat detection and response capabilities into the VMware vSphere-based environments on which applications and data live. By leveraging vSphere, AppDefense gains a deep understanding of the intended state and behavior of the applications running on virtual machines and can detect and respond to unauthorized changes. With AppDefense, VMware is helping IT transform security by building on a virtualization foundation and moving to a new security architecture that’s intent-based and application focused. Read the AppDefense news release here.

 

  • VMware Cost Insight™: a cost monitoring and optimization service for public and private clouds that helps IT analyze cloud spend, find savings opportunities, and communicate the cost of services to the business. With Cost Insight, users can understand aggregated cloud costs and identify key cost drivers. Cost Insight provides granular visibility into public and private cloud costs so that IT leaders can map investments to strategic business priorities and ensure cost transparency. Read more about Cost Insight in this blog.

 

  • VMware Discovery™: an automated inventory service that improves cloud visibility and tames shadow IT by bringing together inventory information and cloud accounts from multiple clouds, making it easy for IT to search for and identify workloads deployed from their enterprise. Using native cloud tags and properties that have been identified, customers can group cloud resources even if they span across multiple clouds. With better organization of cloud resources, Discovery allows organization of cloud resources in ways that mirror business needs. Read more about Discovery in this blog.

 

  • VMware Network Insight™: a network and security analysis service offering purpose-built for public clouds and software-defined data centers. Network Insight provides comprehensive network visibility and granular understanding of traffic flows to enable cloud security planning and network troubleshooting. Best practices checks, an intuitive UI and search simplify VMware NSX administration, making it easier for cloud administrators to manage and troubleshoot NSX deployments at scale. Read more about Network Insight in this blog.

 

  • VMware NSX Cloud™: a service that provides consistent networking and security for applications running in multiple private and public clouds, via a single management console and common API. Micro-segmentation security policy is defined once and applied to application workloads running anywhere — in cloud virtual networks, regions, availability zones — and across multiple clouds. Overlay networking enables more precise control over topologies, traffic flows, IP addressing, and protocols used in public clouds. The consistency and control delivered by NSX Cloud enables IT to simplify and scale operations, improve standardization and compliance, and lower OPEX for applications running in public clouds. Read more about NSX Cloud in this blog.

 

  • Wavefront® by VMware®: a metrics monitoring and analytics platform that handles the high-scale requirements of modern cloud-native applications. Wavefront by VMware’s speed, scale, and flexibility empowers DevOps, and developer teams with instant insight into the performance of highly-distributed cloud-native services. Wavefront by VMware’s analytics, query-driven alerts, interactive visualizations, open API, and integrations, all powered by a scalable time-series database, deliver “first pane of glass” visibility to help DevOps teams detect performance anomalies while enabling high availability of key cloud services. Developers can self-serve and adapt Wavefront by VMware analytics to the unique needs of their code while gaining visibility into its production behavior. Read more about Wavefront in this blog.

 

New partners for the hybrid solutions include Fujitsu and its Fujitsu Cloud Service and DXC and its Managed Cloud Services.

 

VMware and HP announce a partnership to add VMware’s Workspace ONE to the HP’s DaaS technology platform for endpoint management.

 

VMware Cloud on AWS – VMware and Amazon announce the availability of VMware Cloud on Amazon Web Services.

 

VMware and Dell EMC Partner to Deliver First Data Protection Solution for VMware Cloud on AWS

  • Announced today, VMware Cloud on AWS is an on-demand service running on elastic, bare-metal AWS infrastructure
  • Dell EMC is the first to offer data protection for VMware Cloud on AWS, including backup and recovery for workloads running in VMware Cloud on AWS
  • Dell EMC Data Domain and Data Protection Suite provide self-service data protection services tightly integrated with VMware vSphere

 

VMware Cloud Foundation: Fastest Path To Private Cloud, On Premises or As A Service
VMware Cloud Foundation is the industry’s most advanced cloud infrastructure platform. It can be flexibly deployed on-premises or consumed as a service in the cloud, and used to run traditional and cloud-native containerized applications. VMware Cloud Foundation accelerates IT’s time-to-market by providing an integrated cloud infrastructure stack that includes a complete set of software-defined services for compute, storage, networking, and security. With new built-in lifecycle management automation, customers can eliminate the overhead of infrastructure-level Day 0 to Day 2 operations. VMware Cloud Foundation provides customers choice among a growing ecosystem of compatible public cloud services, turnkey integrated systems and certified server options:

  • New cloud services — VMware partners delivering services based on Cloud Foundation now include CenturyLink (announcement), Rackspace (announcement), and Fujitsu.
  • New Integrated systems — VMware partners announcing new solutions include the newly updated version of Dell EMC VxRack SDDC and the new releases of HDS UCP-RS, Fujitsu PRIMEFLEX and QCT QxStack.
  • New certified servers — VMware is announcing an expanded list of Cloud Foundation certified server options from Cisco, HDS, Fujitsu, and Lenovo.

 

VMware Integrated OpenStack 4 to Deliver Enhanced Performance and Scale Capabilities
VMware Integrated OpenStack is an OpenStack distribution from VMware that complies with the OpenStack Foundation’s 2017.01 interoperability guidelines. It provides customers with the fastest and most efficient solution to deploy and operate OpenStack clouds on VMware’s software-defined data center (SDDC) infrastructure — typically without the need for professional services. VMware Integrated OpenStack 4 will support the latest OpenStack release — Ocata — enabling customers to take advantage of new performance and scalability enhancements to core compute and networking services as well as increased support for containers. VMware Integrated OpenStack 4 will introduce several new capabilities and integrations beyond those made available by the community. Additional new functionality will include:

  • Enhancements that enable enterprises to run containerized applications alongside traditional applications in production on OpenStack
  • vRealize Automation™ integration to enable OpenStack users to use vRealize Automation-based policies and to consume OpenStack components within vRealize Automation blueprints
  • Increased scale and isolation for OpenStack clouds enabled through new multi-VMware vCenter® support

VMware is also announcing new pricing and packaging for VMware Integrated OpenStack, which was previously available at no cost to qualified customers. See additional details in the Pricing and Availability section.

vRealize Network Insight 3.5 to Deliver Enhanced Visibility for Networking and Security
VMware vRealize Network Insight delivers intelligent operations for software-defined networking and security across virtual, physical, and multiple-clouds with micro-segmentation planning that can be scaled to thousands of VMs at a time with 360-degree visibility and VMware NSX® operations. VMware vRealize Network Insight 3.5 will provide deeper visibility into the networking and security infrastructure enabling customers to easily monitor NSX deployments and help meet PCI (Payment Card Industry) compliance. Key new capabilities will include:

  • The NSX Edge Health Dashboard and NSX Internet Protocol Flow Information Export (IPFIX) integration to enable NSX customers to safeguard health and access analytics for SDDC flows impacted by NSX firewall rules
  • Support for Brocade MLX, Check Point Firewall and HPE OneView to provide customers with holistic visibility across their virtual and physical networking and security infrastructure
  • The PCI compliance dashboard for NSX Distributed Firewall (DFW) will help customers in verticals such as financial, healthcare and government to build compliance for their NSX infrastructure

This latest release will build on significant capabilities delivered in vRealize Network Insight 3.4, which introduced support for micro-segmentation planning, troubleshooting, and application modeling using native Amazon Web Services (AWS) components.

New VMware vSAN Offering, VMware HCI Acceleration Kit Accelerates the Adoption of Distributed IT
Digitally-driven customers are increasingly in need of enterprise-class infrastructure at remote and branch sites to accelerate decision-making and deliver a level of IT independence to these important extensions of their business or operations. The distributed nature of vertical applications ranging from retail locations to oil rigs to tactical military installations is driving a need for flexible, cost-sensitive infrastructure that can be managed by IT generalists. The new VMware HCI Acceleration Kit brings affordable enterprise infrastructure with familiar, common management from the data center to distributed environments. Powered by the award-winning VMware vSAN software, the new offering delivers server economics to enterprise storage environments with a unique VMware vSphere®-native architecture that can be deployed on a broad choice of hardware platforms certified by VMware vSAN ReadyLabs™. The solution includes VMware vSphere and VMware vSAN standard licenses. The software licenses support single-socket vSAN ReadyNodes, which are available from Dell, Fujitsu, Lenovo, NEC, and Supermicro today. The VMware HCI Acceleration Kit pricing starts at $7,852 per 3-node cluster and the software licenses allow unlimited virtual machines.These new HCI systems based on vSAN will help power edge analytics and enable on-prem deployments of the new VMware Pulse™ IoT Center™ for Internet of Things (IoT) use cases.Read what partners have to say about the new VMware HCI Acceleration Kit.

 

VMware Introduces New vSphere Scale-Out Edition for Big Data and HPC Workloads
VMware vSphere Scale-Out™ edition, a new solution in the vSphere product line aimed at Big Data and HPC workloads. VMware vSphere Scale-Out edition includes the features and functions most useful to Big Data and HPC workloads such as those provided by the core vSphere hypervisor and the vSphere Distributed Switch™. This new solution also enables the ability to rapidly change and provision compute nodes.

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Work at VMware – Achievement Unlocked!

 

Whoa! It’s been an exciting couple of months!  I’m very excited to announce on Monday August 14th I will officially start the next chapter in my career.  I have accepted the position of Pre-Sales System Engineer, Enterprise – UpState NY at VMware.  Yeah Baby!  The mother-ship!  VMware has been such a big part of my professional and personal life for so many years, this is really an incredible opportunity.  I cant tell you how thrilled I am to be able to provide technical guidance and help customers!  How awesome is that.  Im really looking forward to building a trust relationship with my customers and learning all about how they are working and what is unique to their business and where VMware can help empower their digital transformation.

With any change there are some doors that open and some that close.  I will absolutely miss working every day with my team at M&T.  These guys and gals are top notch.  Pro-quality, high test, premium grade, A1 choice cut.  The level of leadership and talent is top notch.  The good news is that I will be supporting them as their new SE.  🙂   Another door that closes for me is my leadership responsibilities at the Buffalo VMUG.  This one hurts.  Community give back is so important to me, and I truly enjoyed the planning of the meetings and vBeers. l’ll move onto the steering committee and Ill be at every one helping out as much as I can with presentations and spreading the good word of VMware!  Ahh VMworld…. I had to cancel my trip this year.  No worries though, ill be back next year.  Someone put a dollar in a slot machine for me!!

Lastly – whats up with this vBlog?  Its only gonna get better kids!  Hang tight.  Great things are coming!

 

VMworld 2017 Must See Sessions

Hey Everyone!  Wow I cant believe we are already looking forward to VMworld 2017.  Its back again this year in Las Vegas and if you have never attended or haven’t registered yet, you definitely should!  Its a great opportunity to learn about emerging virtualization technology and meet and socialize with your peers. Its really a great time.  You can check out a recap of my VMworld 2016 right here.

Every year VMworld releases a few weeks prior to the schedule builder going live the content catalog.  Its always fun to search through all the great sessions and start to ear mark the ones I want to attend.  Often by the time the schedule builder goes live if you don’t choose your sessions a head of time many sessions will fill up quickly and you will be left out in the cold! (well its hot in Vegas, but you know what I mean). With that said, below is the list of some of the session that I feel are going to be awesome and I’m going to register for.  Here is the link for the VMware US Content Catalog – https://my.vmworld.com/scripts/catalog/uscatalog.jsp

vRealize Operations Capacity Explained (MGT1599BU)
This is an absolute must see!  At VMworld 2016, I was fortunate enough to be involved in co-presenting this session and I would highly recommend it.  Hicham Mourad is an expert on capacity management and he always delivers a fast paced and interactive presentation.  Last year this session was a top 10 session for attendance and rating.  Hicham will take you through a deep understanding of the different capacity and efficiency badges and how they are calculated, and he will explain in depth the different capacity models.  Expect to see a demo also. As long as Hicham is doing this session, I will be in attendance.  Here is a pic of Hicham and I presenting!

vSphere APIs with Alan Renouf and Kyle Ruddy (SER3036GU)
Just look at the title – Alen Renouf and Kyle Ruddy  – are you kidding me!  Two giants in the field of APIs.  This is one I will register for.  I am looking forward to learn about vSphere APIs and how to use them.  This session will deliver some really great content.

The Top 10 Things to Know About vSAN (STO1264BU)
Duncan Epping and Cormac Hogan – BOOOOM!   This is the mother load of vSAN presentations. I really don’t need to type anything else, but just in case you need more……. Cormac and Duncan will go over starting from the design phase and benchmarking to the operational aspect of vSAN.  I cant image a more informative session on vSAN.  Make sure you favorite this session, it will fill up right away!  Im bringing my autograph book!

VMware Cloud on AWS – Getting Started Workshop (ELW18801U)
What to get some hands on with VMware Cloud interface to perform basic tasks and manage your public cloud capacity!!??  Hell yeah!

VMware Cloud on AWS: A Technical Deep Dive (LHC2384BU)
Frank Denneman and Ray Budavari are two of the most technical speakers around.  This session will take a closer look at key features of VMware Cloud on AWS, such as elastic cluster and NSX networking functionality.  I clicked the star on this one… don’t miss it!

NSX and VMware Cloud on AWS: Deep Dive (LHC2103BU)
This is another Ray Budavari presentation.  He is like the Papa Smurf of NSX, a true NSX OG! This session will take you through the connectivity models for VMware Cloud on AWS and how NSX provides consistent networking on security between on premises deployments and public cloud…plus a whole lot more!

So there you are, just a few of the amazing sessions coming up at VMworld US 2017, that I will be attending.  There are so many more to choose from, all the content looks good.  I know my schedule will be filled to the brim!  Don’t forget to allow a little time to do some Hands On Labs and check out the Solutions Exchange and Hang Space.   Also make sure to stop by the VMUG booth and if you are not a member register and get involved in the community!

See ya in Vegas, Baby!
Dan

 

 

VMware vExpert 2017

vExpert is a global recognition provided by VMware for having demonstrated significant contributions to the community and a willingness to share expertise with others. The vExpert group is responsible for much of the virtualization evangelism that is taking place in the world — both publicly in books, blogs, online forums, and VMUGs; and privately inside customers and VMware partners.

I am very honored for the second year in a row to be named VMware vExpert 2017.  You can check out the full announcement here – http://vexpert.me/YX

vmw-logo-vexpert-2017-k

Congratulations to my friends Tom Cronin @virtual_tom and Joe DePasquale @DePasqualeJoe for being awarded vExpert with me.

My New Journey – Into the Cloud

Happy New Year everyone! Over the last few years my work concentration has been, and still will be to a point, working to engineer solutions for my companies virtual infrastructure, and over the last couple years specializing in the vROPs suite of applications and now with the new year here, I have been assigned to work on what my companies direction and strategy will be for our cloud initiative. This doesn’t mean I am moving away from VMware, quite the opposite, I will be digging deeper into what VMware offers as a cloud platform and provider. I will also to some extent still have involvement in ESXi, vSphere, NSX and vROPs. My larger team still covers all of those products; however my focus will shift to private/public cloud. How cool is that right!? This is the industry trend and there is so much opportunity to be involved in engineering some awesome solutions and further grow the cloud footprint (cloudprint??) at work. Its not all going to be me, ill be part of a team, all of us working to provide real value. I’m very excited and feel privileged to be part of this movement.

So what does this all mean for this blog. Not much, except more cool and informative info as I work my way through this. Ill still focus on providing articles and write ups of solutions and information on how VMware deeply integrates with our cloud solutions, and the integration of VMware products. I betting you will still see some vROPs and capacity management stuff too as I transition. Over the last year the articles I have written here have been based around actual challenges or issue or decisions I have had to work through. Expect the same theme, just a focus change to cloud. I love sharing info with my VMUG/VMware community and I hope you will find the info I post will continue to interest you and maybe even help. 🙂

See ya in the clouds!
Dan @anothergeek

Considerations for Capacity Management with vROps

Navigating your way around capacity management is not and easy task, especially at a large company where it seems almost impossible to get your arms wrapped around it. HA – I picture a large tree and trying to hug it, not quite able to lock your fingers on the other side! It’s really kind of like that. You got most of it, but you are always reaching. At times you need to step back and re-evaluate your angle or approach. Over the last year or so I’ve been working with the capacity management team to choose exactly the right metrics to determine the best way to evaluate capacity. Last week one cluster, according to vROPs, was in desperate need of capacity, we were running into our buffers; however when we looked closely in our review meeting we noticed that the reason we were out of capacity was due to CPU Demand. This spun off a number of weekly meetings to re consider our approach or angle to see if we can get our fingers locked. In all honesty, this wasn’t an oversight, we have a pretty smart group of people and we meet regularly to review. Everyone on our team has the same goal and these types of discussions make sure we are staying on target; however we did realize that we needed a deeper understanding of the different types of capacity models and how to apply them as policies across the virtual infrastructure. So let’s start with a quick level set and go from there. All right, here we go!

Allocation Model
This model is capacity based on the configured amount of resources assigned to a VM or VMs in a cluster. The consensus is that this model should be used for production environments where you have important workloads, and you want to be able to keep resources for fail-over, and you want to make sure you don’t over commit by too much. You decide your over commitment ratio and set that in the policy. This is the most conservative capacity model.

Demand Model
The Demand model is often used in Test/Development environments where you don’t necessarily care about over allocation, and you really want to get as many guests as possible in the environment. If you are using this model you probably don’t care if the hosts are running hot. You will likely be way over allocated but again you don’t care because you want to run this for highest possible VM density.

Memory Consumed model
This model allows you to see the memory resources used just like you would in the vSphere client. It shows the active memory, plus shared memory pages, plus recently touched memory. All the memory overhead.

So which one do we choose? That’s an excellent question. In all likely hood, we are going to look at all these models and how they affect capacity. We have, and I’m guessing you do too, clusters with mixed workloads or due to licensing considerations clusters where you have to mix test/dev hosts with production hosts. So its not so easy to just pick one or the other and go with it, especially when you have to scale up the environment to meet the needs of the company. Our team decided to start to implement different policies specific to the cluster and workloads in those clusters. The polices will include different allocation over-commit ratios for CPU/Memory and Disk. Some policies will account for all three models others will just be one or a combination. What’s really great is vRealize Operations is so flexible its really easy to dial in capacity just the way you want it. One other decision we made that you might want to consider is that we will only rely on the data in vROPs for capacity management. We wont look at what vCenter is showing for cluster resources used to determine if we can “fit” more VMs in. Capacity management is not easy, it takes time to collect metric data, analyze it and then tweak it so you are sure you can make the best decisions. Sometimes those decisions can save (or cost) your company a significant amount of money. The good news is there is no magic going on there. If you put in the work and use a great tool like vRealize Operation Manager you will get to a point where real value will be realized with vROPs. Now that our team has determined to use a combination of models, we can then begin to adjust policies and review data that’s already been collected to make sure we are using metrics that meet our needs. I’d love to hear how others are using vROPs to determine capacity and some of the challenges and success you have encountered. If you read this and want to share, add a comment.

I’d like to thank Hicham Mourad for his help with some questions and his guidance along the way. He is a really smart guy, and Im thankful I can reach out to him when I need to. 🙂

VMware Announces General Availability – vSphere 6.5

Today VMware announced general availability for vSphere 6.5. Im really excited about this release, not only for vSphere 6.5, but I am also really looking forward to test out VSAN 6.5 and VROPs 6.4 along with Log Insight 4. All these products will go into my home lab first for me to play around with and try out new features, then Ill start to upgrade our Engineering Test lab at work, putting everthing through its paces, then onto test/dev/cert and into Prod.  I’m really interested in the new fully supported HTML-5 Web Client, and the predictive DRS features. I also want to check out the new appliance managemnt and update manager.

Happy testing! 🙂

Here is the link to the Official GA Announcement