Month: April 2013

Backing up your vCenter DB – all three of’em

Wait!  What!  3!?!?!  Yes, you read correctly!  While in the days of vCenter 5.0 and below we only had to worry about 1 database, the release of 5.1 has tripled that!   This is something I hadn’t even thought about until recently attending a vBrownbag put on by Justin King (@vcenterGuy). So there’s the SQL database from vCenter right – ok – no big, I know about that one and am backing it up – KB article on how to do that. Then there is the SSO database – no problem, I knew about that one as well since I had to create it when I first upgraded to 5.1.  Again it’s a MS SQL DB, doesn’t change that much –  which is easy enough to backup… But then Justin started talking about the Inventory service – remember, that’s the third requirement you had to install when upgrading.  Well guess what?  It has a database too!  It’s not SQL at all – it’s sitting on your vCenter Server in xDB format.  My first thought was what is even in this database – I can’t browse it like I can the SQL databases (or I just don’t know how to).  What I can gather from the What’s New docs and VMworld presentations the Inventory database holds things such as a read cache of all the objects that are accessed within the vSphere...

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My First vCenter Orchestrator Workflow – Part 4 – A look at the Powershell Plug-in

Alright!  So far throughout this series of posts we have installed, configured and setup vCenter Orchestrator; as well as created and tested the integration between both vCO and the vSphere Web Client.  So what’s next in my venture?  Well if you can remember back to Part 1 of the series I set out on a quest to develop a workflow that would take an un-configured host and go through a series of tasks to create datastores, rename networks, setup hostname, etc…  Basically configure it the way I wanted.  Now there are built-in workflows in vCO to do this, however I had already done this work inside of a PowerShell script – so my main goal was to get vCO to execute that script.  And this leads us to part 4! So first off as I said above there are a ton of great built in workflows inside of vCO that can do pretty much anything.  Some things however, such as the ability to run a Powershell script, are missing!  Thankfully there is a thriving developers community built around vCO and it’s SDKs allowing third party vendors to release their own sets of workflows in the form of a plug-in.  So as you probably guessed by now we will need to install a plugin to handle our Powershell script execution. This plugin is called the vCenter Orchestrator Plug-in for Microsoft...

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Friday Shorts – Simplivity, Veeam and vOpenData

Too bad, she said she doesn’t want you here when she gets back because you’ve been ruining everybody’s lives and eating all our steak. – Napolean Dynamite SimpliVity out of stealth One of my fellow #vDB comrades Gabriel Chapman ( blog / twitter ) has joined SimpliVity.  I’ve not heard of SimpliVity before Gabe joined them but since have done a little reading on their product offering.  In a nutshell they provide a simplified building block solution for your virtual environment, one that contains everything you need to get going (storage, compute, network) in a 2U format called the OmniCube which is built for a scale-out environment.  The box looks pretty slick in the fact that it contains built in deduplication, replication, ha, etc…  If you have some time I would definitely consider going and checking them out over on SimpliVity.com – also vExpert Chris Wahl has a great post on their product over on his blog.  Congrats Gabe on the move – looks like a good one! Veeam v7 to backup to tape! Tape is dead right – apparently not, Veeam has announced their support of adding an archive to tape option into version 7 of Backup and Replication.  Now I’ve been long off tape, but I’m sure this is appealing to those that are not.  Honestly it does make a good case for Veeam in the case that companies require retention...

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Get your hands on a free Unitrends NFR lisense – and some top notch community knowledge to boot

I’ve just been informed that Unitrends, one of the great sponsors of this blog will be hosting a webinar with none other than the great Eric Siebert!  You know, the vExpert, Author, Blogger – oh and the guy behind the coveted vSphere-Land Top Virtualization Blogs – yah, him! Eric and Unitrends will be going over how you can utilize blogging tech experts and peers writing from the IT trenches as well as the following points… How the virtualization blogger community has evolved Why you should pay attention to what bloggers are saying Top virtualization blogs to watch in 2013 This is certainly one that I don’t want to miss!  It’s always great to hear Eric speak about the state of the blogosphere!  He certainly has been through mostly all of the blogs out there during his yearly vote!  So, if you have nothing to do on April 18th around lunchtime (12PM EST) why not go and sign up to watch this – landing page is here. Oh, did I mention that Unitrends is giving EVERY attendee a free NFR license of their Unitrends Enterprise Backup – not too shabby for just showing up.  Also, one of the lucky attendees could get their hands on a $200 ThinkGeek.com giftcard! See yah there...

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My First vCenter Orchestrator Workflow – Part 3 – Create a test workflow and see the awesomesauce

Ok we are finally getting somewhere now with this series! So far we have downloaded, installed, and configured our vCO appliance. As well, we have registered our vCO instance with both vCenter and our SSO instance. This post will take us through verifying and testing our installation by creating and setting up a small workflow that we can then assign to some inventory objects inside of vCenter. This will allow us to perform that right-click magic in the Web Client and see for ourselves some of the awesome integration vCO and vCenter have. With that said let’s get started on our test workflow. To do so you will need one of clients available to vCO. As you can see in the screenshot vCO provides you with a couple of options to start the client; one simply runs a java applet and the other let’s you install a client directly on your machine – whichever method you chose you end up sitting at the exact same login screen. Once you get there you should be able to simply input your vCO IP as the Host name and your proper credentials. OK! So here we are, the vCO workflow development interface. Look a little foreign to you? No worries, it did to me as well. Actually, it still kind of does, this is just “My First” vCO workflow remember! So for the most part I’ve only really explored the workflow...

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