vRealize Operations Manager Tenant App for vCloud Director

With the release of the vRealize Operations Manager Tenant App for vCloud Director, VMware Cloud Provider Program Service Providers can now easily offer vRealize Operations Manager as a Service to their vCloud Director Tenants, to grant them self-service monitoring and capacity planning for their vCloud Director Organizations, Organization Virtual Datacenters and vApps.
The new Virtual Appliance comes with the release of vRealize Operations Management Pack for vCloud Director version 4.5.
The vRealize Operations Manager Tenant App is provided as a Virtual Appliance based on Photon OS.
The Tenant App Web Portal is an HTML5 Portal based on the Clarity Design System.
While the Management Pack alone works with vRealize Operations Manager 6.5 and above, to use the Tenant Appliance you need to upgrade your vROps installation to version 6.6.
Supported versions of vCloud Director are: 8.10 and 8.20 (supported and tested), 5.x and above (below 8.10) (supported not tested).
Supported versions of vCenter Server are 5.5 and 6.0.

In this blog post I want to show you all the steps needed to configure this new service and the features it offers to Providers and Tenants.
The first step is to access the VMware Solution Exchange website and download both the Management Pack and the Virtual Appliance.
You can point to the following URL in your Web Browser:
https://marketplace.vmware.com/vsx/solutions/management-pack-for-vcloud-director
The Management Pack is in the PAK format while the vApp is in the OVA format.

To download the Management Pack you must Login hitting the green “Login to Try” button.

After you have downloaded the files, the next step is to access the vRealize Operations Manager Admin Portal in order to install the version 4.5 of the vCloud Director Management Pack.

The next step is to select the Software Update page and click on “INSTALL A SOFTWARE UPDATE…” button.

Click the Browse button the select the right PAK file.

In this release of the vCD Management Pack, the file is named vmware-MPforVCD-4.5-5700881.pak; wait for the check to complete (green flag), then click the “UPLOAD” button.

Once the PAK is uploaded and the green flag “The PAK file signature is valid” appears, you can click on the “NEXT” button.

You must read and accept the EULA to proceed clicking on the “NEXT” button.

The next section, update and release information, is empty. No additional information to read so you can click on the “NEXT” button.

Finally, you must click on the “INSTALL” button to start the installation process.

When the installation completes, the system shows the PAK as installed and the status as completed. This concludes the Management Pack installation. The next step is to configure the vCloud Director adapter provided with the Management Pack to feed vROps with vCloud Director data.

To configure the vCD adapter, you need to enter the vRealize Operations Manager UI.

The next step is to access the Administration section.

In the Administration section you can find the Solutions page, where you find all the installed Management Packs.
You need to configure both the vCloud Director adapter to point to the instances you want to monitor and the vCenter adapter to point to the vCenters that hosts all the Clusters used by vCloud Director as Provider VDCs.
The vCenter Server Management Pack is installed by default with vRealize Operations Manager.
I proceed with the vCloud Director adapter configuration highlighting the solution and clicking the “Gear” button.

You need to provide a friendly name for the instance, the FQDN or IP address of the vCloud Director instance, set auto-discovery to true or false and specify the Organization to monitor (specifying “System”, all the Organizations will be monitored). You can optionally filter discovered data by Provider VDC list and/or by Organization List. You then need to add the credentials to be used to connect, you do this by clicking the green “Plus” sign near the Credentials field.

In the Manage Credentials window, you must specify the credential kind (vCloud Credentials to monitor the instance as Provider System Administrator, Tenant Credentials to optionally monitor a single Organization), the credentials friendly name, the administrative Username and Password.

After you’ve added the credentials, you can test the connection clicking the “TEST CONNECTION” button, then close the Info windows that inform you about the connection test result clicking the “OK” button.

The last action for this task is to click the “SAVE SETTING” button, then the “OK” button to close the Info window and finally the “CLOSE” button. This concludes the Management Pack installation and configuration.

The next step is to deploy the Tenant vApp. Browse to the location where you’ve saved the file vROps-Tenant-App-for-vCD-1.0.0.0-6413280_OVF10.ova you’ve downloaded from the VMware Solution Exchange site and click the “next” button.

Review the Appliance details and click the “Next” button.

Read and accept the EULA, then click the “Next” button.

Select the Name to assign to the vApp and the containing Folder, then click the “Next” button.

Select the target Datastore and the Virtual disk format, then click the “Next” button.

Choose the Network (Port Group) where you want to VM to be attached and click the “Next” button.

Configure all the required properties (Hostname, IP address, DNS etc.) and click the “Next” button.

Review the configured settings, optionally set the flag to Power on the vApp after deployment and click the “Finish” button. If you don’t set the “Power on after deployment” flag, you’ll have to manually power on the VM after deployment.

After the deployment, the vApp Console instructs you regarding the URL to point to access the Portal.

You can now open a Web Browser and point to the Tenant App URL.
As a System Administrator, you must use vRealize Operations Manager administrative credentials to access the Portal. You can subsequently create specific users for each Tenant from inside the Portal.

Once accessed the Portal as vROps admin, you’re presented with the Provider Dashboard.
The System (Provider) Administrator can immediately see the summary of configured Organizations, Virtual Datacenters, vApps and Virtual Machines.
You can also find a Capacity Overview dashboard for the configured Provider VDCs and the list of all Critical alerts, Immediate issues and Warnings.

Scrolling down the Provider Dashboard you have an overview of all the configured Organizations.
You can click the “User” icon for a specific Organization to create a new User.

To create a new User, you then need to click on the “+ USER” button.

Provide the Username, Password, Name, Surname, email address, then click the “Save” button followed by the “Done” button.

The new User is shown in the Organizations Overview.
Note: the User is actually created in vRealize Operations Manager with a limited “Tenant Admin” role. This role has not the privilege to interactively logon into the vROps UI granted to it, and has a limited read-only view of the subset of objects provided by the vCloud Director adapter corresponding to its vCloud Organization.

After a User has been created for an Organization (ACME in my example), the ACME Tenant User can access the Portal. The User is presented with its Organization Dashboard.
The Dashboard shows the summary of all Virtual Datacenters, vApps, VMs and Powered On VMs.
There’s the view of all the Allocated Resources to all Organization Virtual Datacenters. The default view is the combined view of all the VDCs.
In the System Status section the Tenant can see all the Critical alerts, Immediate issues and Warnings for its Organization objects.

The alternative view for the Organization VDC Capacity Overview is the split view, that shows the details about each Organization VDC resource consumption.

Scrolling down the Organization Dashboard you can find the Summary of the Top-5 consumers VDCs and vApps for Compute, Memory, Storage.

On the left “Troubleshooting” Menu, the Tenant can choose the Organization VDCs section to see the list of all the Organization VDCs available in its Organization.
Clicking on any of the VDCs provides the Summary View of the VDC.

In the Organization Virtual Datacenter Summary, the Tenant has a detailed view of the VDC configuration (CPU Limit, Memory Limit, Storage Limit, vApp Count, VM Count and IP addresses used).
The Capacity Overview for the VDC provides details on CPU, Memory, Storage used and available.
The lower section provides a list of all the vApps instantiated in the VDC. You can click on a vApp to obtain the detailed view of its configuration.

The next available section in the Troubleshooting Menu is the “vApps” section. You can click on a vApp to open its detailed summary.

The VM Summary provides all the resources configuration details, the status of the VM, the snapshot size if present (remember that vCloud Director support only  single snapshot per vApp/VM), the list of all the VMs contained in the vApp and some performance counters.

The available CPU Performance counters are CPU Usage (MHz) and CPU Usage (%). You can pinch the chart to zoom in for a more detailed and granular view.

The available Memory Performance counters are Memory Usage (MB) and Memory Usage (%).
The available Storage Performance counters are Average Read Request and Average Write Request.

The available Network Performance counters are Packets Dropped (Count) and Network Rate (KBps).

The VMs section in the Troubleshooting Menu provides the list of all the VMs available in the Organization.

The Alerts section in the Troubleshooting Menu provides the list of all Critical, Immediate and Warning alerts for the Organization.
In the screenshot below you can see an example of an extremely important warning for a Tenant. The Critical Alert provided tells the Tenant that the available CPU resources for the Virtual Datacenter ACME-AP is nearing capacity.

The last available section for the Tenant is the Metric Selector. This is an extremely powerful tool that empowers the Tenant with the capability to obtain the performance graph for any available Metric provided by vRealize Operations for the configured vCloud Director instances. You can filter on Resource Type, Resource Name, Start and End Date to obtain a detailed and granular view of the performance for the selected Metric.

Back to the Provider Dashboard, I want to highlight the main differences in the Menu and available sections, related to the Tenant view. The Provider have the capability to see all the Organization and related objects.
In the Troubleshooting Menu, the Provider has two additional sections: Resource Pools and Provider VDCs. The reason why there are specific sections for Resource Pools and Provider VDCs is that each Provider VDC can be backed by more than one vSphere Resource Pool (usually a Cluster), so it makes sense to have a separate view of these objects.

The Organization Summary gives the Provider a list of all the Organizations and the option to create Users for a Tenant.
Like all the other lists provided by the Portal, you can export it as a comma separated file.

The Resource Pool section provides the list of all vSphere Resource Pools and the related Provider VDCs. As said, a Provider VDC can be made by more than one vSphere Resource Pool. The percentage of utilized resources is provided for each Resource Pool.

The Provider VDCs section provides the list of the available Provider VDCs, with the related vCloud Director instance and the details about resources (CPU, Memory, Storage) limit and percentage of over-allocation.

Clicking on a Provider VDC opens the VDC Summary. A Capacity Overview is provided for CPU, Memory and Storage.

The Provider VDC summary also provides the list of all the contained Organization VDCs and the list of all the Resource Pool that backs the selected Provider VDC.

This concludes this overview of the installation and configuration process for this new tool.
In my opinion this new Tenant App fills an important gap and empowers both Service Providers (to offer) and Tenants (to consume) an IaaS Public Cloud with a powerful monitoring and capacity planning functionality, strictly integrated with the tools and the platform already in place.
This also confirm the big commitment of VMware to the VMware Cloud Provider Program (formerly vCloud Air Network).