6961EN_VMware EssentialsIt should come as no surprise that I have been a huge fan of vCOPs – I've had the application installed in production ever since it's first beta with VMware, I've spoke twice at VMworld as a member of the customer panel, and I've done numerous blog posts about the value and benefits that you can get by implementing vCOPs.  That's why when I had the opportunity to perform a technical review of a new book by Lauren Malhoit (blog/twitter) centered around vCOPs I didn't have to think very long.  The book, titled VMware vCenter Operations Manager Essentials will most definitely not disappoint.

To begin Lauren jumps into what exactly vCOPs is, the different versions available, and how each can benefit you.  From Chapter 2 on you can expect to see a slew of tutorials, real world examples and detailed descriptions about all of the functionality that vCenter Operations delivers.  vCenter Operations in its base is a very easy application to get setup and configured; understanding all of the dashboards, colors and data is a whole other challenge. This book however does a great job at explaining all of the different dashboards, badges, and metrics that vCOPs collects in an easy, real world fashion.

Lauren doesn't just stop at that.  The remainder of the book takes you through step by step how to configure everything and anything that vCOPs has to offer including the various reports, what-if scenarios, Log Insight, vCenter Infrastructure Manager and vCenter Configuration Manager.   Aside from the core vCOPs components Lauren also delves into the configuration and setup of some popular vCOPs plug-ins; Horizon View and EMC Analytics.

To me though, the real gem I got out of this book was how to use vCOPs to troubleshoot different real world scenarios. Things such as capacity planning, VM/Host performance, network performance; they are all covered in this book.   You can definitely see how Lauren's career as a consultant shines through in this book by the methodologies and processes she uses to begin troubleshooting.  The vCenter Operations Suite is a very large collection of some complex applications, all collecting thousands of metrics.  This book is key to understanding just what the data means that vCOPs displays, as well as how to best use it in your day to day job to plan, analyze and troubleshoot issues as they occur.  I would recommend this book to anyone using vCOPs or simply wanting to learn more about vCOPs.  If you are interested, check out the books landing page on Packt, where you will find all the links to your preferred book seller.