The Virtualization Practice

Tag Archive for Automation

DataCenterVirtualization

Host deployments in a Software Defined Data Center (SDDC): How do you deploy the hypervisors in your company? There are several different choices from installing from a CD, network install and/or PXE, to name a few methods currently available. When there are not a lot of physical hypervisors to worry about the CD installation works just fine and the need for automated installation gets stronger in direct correlation to the number of hosts.

DesktopVirtualization

Data Protection and patch management of virtual desktops, while not a sexy topic, is one that should happen on a regular basis within any organization implementing or working to implement virtual desktops. Recently, we have been testing virtual desktop software and there is a huge difference between patching and protecting data in a small number of instances and 1000s of instances. There are scale considerations as well as ease of use for file level and system recovery as well as issues with patching virtual desktops (not to mention other security issues).

CloudComputing

We at The Virtualization Practice, LLC have migratedg our business critical applications to the cloud. How simple was that task? It was not as easy as we have heard from others, and not as difficult as some have had, but it was not as simple as move my VM and run. Why is this? What are the methods available to move to the cloud? How do they stack up to what actually happens. Theory is all well and good, and I have read plenty of those architectures, but when the shoe leather hits the cloud where are we? Here is a short history, a comparison of methods, and some conclusions that can be drawn from our migration to the cloud.

VirtualizationSecurity

Cloud based security is about securing the data, yet compliance requirements are often about securing the environment, such as PCI’s requirement for web application firewalls, which protect web servers and perhaps applications and imply protection of data. But they do not directly protect data. How can a Software Defined Data Center implement a form of Software Defined Security automatically to meet not only compliance requirements, but security around a particular mote of data?

ITasaService

VMware purchased Nicira, backed the Openflow Community, and is now touting software defined data centers (SDDC). But what is a software defined datacenter? Is it just virtualization or cloud with a software defined network? Or is it something more than that? Given heavy automation and scripting of most clouds, do we not already have SDDC? If not where are we going with this concept? What does SDN add to the mix?

With the announcement of vSphere 5.0, VMware has kept its word on only having VMware ESXi for the physical host operating system. This is the first release of vSphere with just VMware ESXi as an option. I must admit that I was not a big fan of the concept when it was introduced as an option in the 3.x days. I had a very slick automated process in place that was one of my pride and joys at the moment and VMware ESXi was just lagging behind in functionality compared to what I was able to do with VMware ESX. My attitude started to change with the release of VMware ESX 4.1 as presented in an earlier post and now that vSphere 5.0 is announced I must admit that I think VMware has gone about this process of a cutover to ESXi quite well and the functionality that is presented in this release is quite impressive.

When you hear the term “host” when talking about virtual environment, what is the first thing you think of? For me, the answer is simple, a host is an appliance. For years now I have been standing on my soap box and preaching the power and fundamentals of automation in building and configuring your virtual environment. I came across a thread on the VMware VMTN Community Forum where a concerned individual was in a position that he was going to have to rebuild his host from scratch. What he did to get himself into this position was to run a hardening script on the host and then the host became broken and unusable. This person was concerned that he did not have a backup of the host and was looking for a way to rollback.