HP StoreFront Analytics for VMware vCenter Operations Manager

https://h20392.www2.hp.com/portal/swdepot/displayProductInfo.do?productNumber=vCOPS

The HP StoreFront Analytics for VMware vCenter Operations Manager, an adapter for vCenter Operations Manager from VMware, relates virtual machines and datastores to volumes from HP 3PAR StoreServ storage systems. Administrators using HP StoreFront Analytics are able to visualize and analyze data from their HP 3PAR StoreServ storage array directly within vCenter Operations Manager.

Included Dashboards

StoreFront Analytics provides preconfigured dashboards that allow the vSphere administrator to easily get storage capacity information, optimize HP 3PAR StoreServ storage systems and enable comprehensive troubleshooting scenarios. These clear relationships between Virtual Machines, datastores, and storage increase, the vSphere administrator’s productivity, and ability to ensure outstanding quality of service.

Metrics

HP StoreFront Analytics reports detailed health, capacity, and performance metrics for HP 3PAR StoreServ components including volumes, CPGs, storage systems, controllers, drive cages, disk drives, ports, and fans.

Installation

HP StoreFront Analytics is distributed as a management pack that installs directly in VMware vCenter Operations.

Licensing

HP StoreFront Analytics includes a 60 day instant-on evaluation license. After 60 days the product will provide basic array health information at no charge, but requires a license for capacity and performance metrics.

 

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vCenter Operations contest

http://www.vmware.com/landing_pages/vmware-vcops-story-contest-promo.html

Since VMware introduced VMware vCenter Operations in early 2011, customer users have shared their enthusiasm and sentiments surrounding its inaugural release to its highly touted 5.0 release last January. We would like to hear your story – And perhaps give you a little something in return…

We are seeking the most compelling story on how you used vCenter Operations Manager to help solve, or predict any issues in your environment – it’s that easy! Once submitted, your story will be judged by a panel of experts both from VMware and the VMware community.

Terms & Conditions:

2 first prizes:

  • Ticket VMworld 2012 ($1,800 value) / Co-present in session / Dinner w/ panelists
  • Ticket VMworld EMEA 2012 / Co-present in session / Dinner w/ panelists

2 second prizes:

  • US – $500 Amex Gift Card / Bag of VMware Swag
  • EMEA – $500(USD) Amex Gift Card / Bag of VMware Swag

Judging criteria:

Judges will consider entries for organizations based in NA / LATAM (for VMworld 2012) and EMEA (for VMworld EMEA) only

  • 40% of judging score is based on originality of the most authentic, impactful and creative story.
  • 20% of judging score is based on definition of value to your business in time savings (OPEX), capital saving (CAPEX), or even ability to avert / plan for impactful events occurring in your environment, or anything else.
  • 20% on presentation of visuals / layout – e.g. use of custom dashboards, use of screenshot to display issues, videos
  • 10% Unique uses of vC Ops – custom dashboards, adapters, etc..
  • 10% A description of any evaluation done of other tools considered, or replacement of any existing management tools/methodologies

vCenter Operations for View now available

 General Availability of vCenter Operations Manager for View


The VMware vCenter Operations Manager for View team is happy to announce the availability of vCOPs for View!  Offered as a new add-on to VMware View, VMware vCenter Operations for VMware View enables administrators to have broad insight into desktop performance, quickly pinpoint and troubleshoot issues, optimize resource utilization, and proactively address potential issues in real-time. In this post, we will go deep into VMware vCenter Operations for VMware View and hopefully have a little fun too.

I heard some advice once for new parents regarding childrearing that goes like this: “See everything, ignore most of it.” The wisdom wasn’t a suggestion that you intentionally ignore what’s going on.  More it was a suggestion to intelligently respond to only what matters.

vCenter Operations Manager for View Features & Benefits
VMware vCenter Operations Manager for View takes this principal of “intelligent” response and applies it successfully to large-scale VMware View deployments. vCOPS for View reduces operational requirements, and provides the right amount of intervention and guidance when virtual infrastructure performance looks to be exceeding an expected range of behavior.

 

Advanced Analytics
vCOPs for View’s first unique accomplishment is determining, and constantly refining, what is “expected range of behavior.” vCOPs for View constantly analyzes the VMware View environment; resource consumption, the VMware View user experience, the interaction of performance metrics, and what factors are most influential at any point in a day, week or other point in your business cycle. This resulting expected range of behavior is a set of dynamic thresholds which vCOPs for View uses to determine when a users experience or utilization is outside of expectations. This eliminates huge quantities of “false positives,” and the associated operations staff load, such as those generated by many other performance monitoring/management tools. It also means you are alerting and responding to only the most significant issues!

Intelligent Response
vCOPs for View’s second unique accomplishment is to use the correlation linkages captured during the monitoring and analysis process to provide intelligent guidance when a problem occurs. vCOPs for View instantly provides context on the health of the whole virtual “stack” for any user when a problem occurs, and ranks the most likely causes of problems, and the associated metric data from the affected time period. This information is organized for the vCOPs for View administrator: the most significant data for a fault is most prominent, with related data, and events visually correlated on the same timeline for rapid visual confirmation of the source of “bad behavior.” Mean-time-to-investigate is greatly accelerated; also reducing operational staff requirements.

vCOPs for View does “See everything; and respond only to what is significant!” This makes management of large-scale View deployments manageable, with significant operation overhead and cost reduction. And, you are able to respond to only what is truly significant for your View users’ experience!

vCOPs for View Version 1 focuses on the View end-user experience with specific end-user metrics, problem search and organization capabilities, and custom dashboards.

Take a look at a few short videos that highlight what we’re all about:

vCenter Operations 5.01 has been released

VMware vCenter Operations Manager 5.0.1 is now generally available. This release includes scalability and performance improvements, and bug fixes. In addition, the release adds support for repairing the vCenter Operations Manager vApp and support for encrypted connections with SMTP servers.  The release notes are located here. The updated documentation is available here.  You can download the update here.

 

 

vCenter Operations – How to monitor a subset of your vCenter VMs legally

Many of my customers have asked me how they can license and monitor a subset of their entire virtual environment.  This process is laid out in KB 1036195.   Click that link to open a new window or just read the details below.

 

Selecting a subset of the vCenter Server inventory to monitor in vCenter Operations Standard 1.0.x or Manager 5.x

Details

Depending on your license, you can monitor up to 1500 virtual machines with vCenter Operations Standard or vCenter Operations Manager. If the inventory of the vCenter Server system that you want to monitor has more virtual machines than your license allows, you must buy more licenses. In certain cases, you might be able to reduce the number of objects that you want to monitor.

Solution

vCenter Operations Standard and vCenter Operations Manager monitor all the virtual machines that the collection user has read access to. To comply with the licensing terms and monitor a supported number of objects rather than the entire vCenter Server inventory, you can limit the permissions of the collection user to the set of virtual machines and other objects in one or more datacenters or clusters.
VMware supports providing access to all of the objects in a datacenter, cluster, or standalone host. You cannot provide access to individual virtual machines because selecting a subset of virtual machines that share the same underlying physical layer results in a mismatch of metric values. For example, if a host has two virtual machines and you provide access to only one of the virtual machines, the host workload does not match the sum of the virtual machine workload because the sum accounts for only one virtual machine. VMware recommends providing the collection user access to all of the datastores and networks that are visible to the selected datacenters, clusters, and standalone hosts. Do not share these datastores and networks with datacenters, clusters, or standalone hosts that the collection user does not have access to.
As a best practice before you assign a collection user, verify that the user has read access to the objects that you want to monitor. As a security precaution, do not assign the vSphere Administrator user as the collection user.

To provide access to a cluster:

  1. Use the vSphere Client to connect to the vCenter Server system that you want to monitor.
  2. Select Home > Inventory > Hosts and Clusters.
  3. Right-click the cluster and select Add Permission.
  4. Click Add to identify the user or group to assign a role and click OK.
  5. In the Assigned Role drop-down menu, select Read-only.
  6. Select the Propagate to Child Objects check box.
  7. Click OK to close the Assign Permissions dialog box.
  8. Select Home > Inventory > Datastores.
  9. On the Permissions tab for the datastores that are associated with the clusters to monitor, right-click the same user and select Properties.
  10. Select Read-only as the role and click OK.
  11. In the vCenter Operations Standard Administration page, assign the user with the Read-only role as the collection user and proceed to register vCenter Operations Standard with the vCenter Server system.
The URL format of the Administration page is https://<IP>/adminMain.action, where <IP> is the IP address or fully qualified host name of the vCenter Operations Standard virtual appliance.
The URL format of the Administration page for vCenter Operations Manager is  https://<IP>/admin/, where <IP> is the IP address or fully qualified host name of the vCenter Operations Manager virtual appliance.

You can follow a similar process to provide access to a datacenter. Granting access to a datacenter provides access to any datastores referenced by hosts within the datacenter. Note that the permission must be applied at the datacenter level and propagated to any child views (such as networking objects), as in the preceding procedure.

vCM 5.5 released – vCloud enabled

We are pleased to announce the General Availability of VMware vCenter Configuration Manager (VCM) 5.5, a key component of VMware vCenter Operations Suite.

The primary theme for the 5.5 release is “Cloud Ready”.  New capabilities within this release significantly increase the ability of the VI team to ensure that their VMware Infrastructure (vCenter, ESXi, vCloud Director and vShield) is properly configured to meet the rigorous demands associated with virtualizing business critical workloads – including addressing requirements associated with VMware’s own hardening guidelines.

Few highlights of this release are:

  • Deep configuration visibility, change tracking, and compliance management for VI admins across the Cloud Infrastructure Suite
  • Simplified set up process for vSphere and vCloud management
  • Comprehensive set of REST based APIs for virtual and physical Guest OS Management
  • VCO workflows to automate patching and compliance of vCenter templates and offline VMs
  • Security Content Automation Protocol (SCAP) 1.0 support – important for federal and other markets
  • Full support for 3-tier deployment architecture

links for 5.5:

Product page – http://www.vmware.com/products/configuration-manager/overview.html

Docs – https://www.vmware.com/support/pubs/vcm_pubs.html

Setting Hard Thresholds in vCenter Operations

One of the best features of vCenter Operations is its ability to create dynamic thresholds.  Based on the dynamic thresholds vCenter Operations will determine when your anomaly noise line has been crossed and fire off a ‘Smart Alert’.   This saves a lot of time and energy when trying to diagnose application issues in a complex environment.  With that being said many of my customers have asked me if they still could set up hard thresholds based on key metrics in their environment.  Here is a good step by step guide on how you can do this.

Hard Thresholds