VMworld 2015 Abstracts – Vote Now!

VMworld 2015 is right around the corner (relatively speaking) and it’s that time again when anyone who has submitted an abstract is out promoting their sessions for the promise of presenting their topics and speaking their minds in front of a captured VMworld audience. While the fine individuals of the VMworld voting committee are out placing their votes, the public has an opportunity to contribute to the cause. So, get out and vote!

https://vmworld2015.lanyonevents.com/scheduler/publicVoting.do

This year I have submitted 4 abstracts and included in a 5th, all of which I’m quite passionate about. If any of these resonate with you, please take a moment to give a “thumbs up”…

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vRA Live! – Extensibility Videos Published

In the second act of vRA Live!, we took a dive into extensibility and uncovered many of the ways in which vRealize Automation can be incorporated into a broader ecosystem of tools and extensions, largely leveraging vRA’s BFF, vRealize Orchestrator (vRO). This session was part of an ongoing series of vRA deep-dives and a follow up to the inaugural session, vRA Live! – Install and Configure. With more than 350 RSVP’s and ~140 hanging out for 3 1/2 hours, I’d say this was another success…so thanks to all that attended!These sessions wouldn’t be what they are without the awesome panel. A ton of thanks and a huge shout-out goes to this crew, who presented their own use cases (live), etched an epic vRO whiteboard on the fly, and answered more than 110 attendee questions throughout the session…

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vRA Live!, Session 2 – Extensibility

** Update 12/31/14: Videos have been posted! – http://www.virtualjad.com/2015/05/vra-live-extensibility-videos-published.html

As a much overdue follow-up to vRA Live! – Install and Configure, I will be hosting the next session on April 17th @ 1:00PM EST.  vRA Live! – Extensibility will focus on extending vRealize Automation through vRA’s extensibility tools.

Extensibility is used to unlock the power of vRA’s integration and automation of the cloud ecosystem, deliver custom services, and help bridge the gap between what is available “out of the box” vs. the reality that is an enterprise’s high-customized and often complex environment. While vRA can deliver basic IaaS services with relatively little effort, the real value for enterprises and those leveraging vRA for managing a software-defined datacenter is delivered by the ability for it to integrate, automate, and orchestrate the surrounding environment.

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vRealize Automation End-to-End Install in 4 Minutes

I have installed VMware vRealize Automation MANY times…

I’ve done it in private, I’ve done it in public, I have installed vRA for many a POC, I’ve installed vRA for training and enablement. I’ve done it remotely, I’ve done it locally.

I’ve installed vRA from a United club lounge, I’ve installed vRA from a Horizon desktop while crossing the country at 44,000 ft.

I’ve done small and isolated installs, I’ve done highly-available and distributed installs…

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Installing the vROps Management Pack for vRealize Automation

Following the general availability of vRealize Operations (vROps) 6.0 and vRealize Automation (vRA) 6.2, VMware has released several integration and management packs that bring the solutions together to help streamline management between consumption and operations. These management packs connect external sources and “solutions” into vROps to provide a more holistic view of the ecosystem. vROps has provided this capability for a small set external sources for quite some time, but not until vROps 6 has that included more of VMware’s own cloud management solutions. Considering the number of VMware customers that purchase these products together (e.g. vCloud Suite or vRealize Suite), these integrations add a ton of overall value. One great example is the vROps Management Pack for vRealize Automation.

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ProTip – Importing and Exporting ASD Content Between vRA Instances

Many customers have asked for the ability to move Blueprints built in the Advanced Services Designer (ASD) between environments. Up until vRA 6.2 this wasn’t possible – but now this capability will make moving content in and out of vRA instances significantly easier. Use the Import/Export wizards to move ASD Blueprints from a Test/Dev environment to a Production instance, across regions, or even across Tenants.


“Content” refers to any logic that supports the ASD Blueprint, including vRO workflows, custom resources, resource mappings, resource actions, and the service blueprint itself.


The wizards are located at Administration -> Advanced Services -> Import (or Export) Content.

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@virtualjad

vRealize Automation 6.2 Install and Config (Live!) Videos

Earlier this month I hosted “vRA 6.2 Install and Config Live!“, an open-invite social event dubbed “vRA Live” (#vralive). To my surprise, I had 185 RSVP’s with more than 100 people — VMware partners, customers, and several of my peers — attending the 4 1/2+ hour online session. Although I tried to focus on the fundamentals of deploying vRA and associated services, the online Q&A and dialog provided by the experts panel added several examples, lesson’s learned, and plenty of colorful commentary. I couldn’t be more pleased with the turnout and hope to get the next session(s) queued up very soon!

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NSX Uncovered – Part 2, Solution Overview

Network virtualization is by no means a new concept for VMware. Think about it for a moment — wherever vSphere (or any other VMware T1 or T2 hypervisor) has been implemented, a virtual switch exists and connects guest VMs to the physical world. That’s more than 500,000 customers globally, millions of vSphere hosts, and many more millions of virtual network ports backed by a standard (vSwitch) or distributed virtual switch (dvSwitch). In fact, if you count the network ports provisioned by vSphere and logically assigned to VM nics, one can argue that VMware is one of the top datalink providers on earth. Okay, perhaps that’s a stretch, but you get my point! VMware virtual networks have existed just about as long as VMware itself. And since the very beginning, there has been no shortage of innovation. The vSwitch has evolved in many ways, leading to new technologies, increased scope and scale, distributed architectures, open protocol support, ecosystem integration, and massive adoption. Over the years VMware has continued to introduce new networking technologies through organic maturity and strategic acquisition — ESXi platform security, dvSwitch (and associated services), vShield, vCloud Networking and Security (vCNS), etc. — and leveraged 3rd party integration into partner solutions, such as Cisco’s Nexus 1000v (a solution brought to market by tight collaboration between VMware and Cisco). The bottom line is VMware is no novice when it comes to networking, so it should have been no surprise when it’s ambitions to continue to evolve in this realm became evident.

And then Nicira happened…

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VMware vRA 6.2 Install & Configure Live Event!

Thanks to all who have shown interest in this event.  I was expecting 50 RSVP’s…currently at 128!  That just about guarantees this will be a fun (and informative) event.  I have put together the following agenda based on feedback from the sign up survey.

The primary objective is to install, configure, and demonstrate vRA 6.2 from scratch.  For this, I will follow the install and configure workflow I previously covered in my vCAC 6.0 POC and Detailed Implementation Guide.  Although vRA 6.2 provides additional capabilities and a more streamlined installation, many of the concepts are the same.

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ProTip – Scheduling Tasks in vSphere Web Client

There are many hidden gems in the vSphere Web Client that are intended to make managing the environment much more efficient. This is one of my favorites. You can quickly schedule any of the supported tasks for a one-time shot or repeating.

On a Windows machine, hold the CTRL button *after* right-clicking on a VM object. Continue to hold the button until you select the [supported] task to schedule.  On an OSX machine, i noticed the schedule icon will appear while pressing CTRL but only function with COMMAND instead (bug will be filed).

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@virtualjad