Web resource links for VMware NSX: Install, Configure and Manage [6.4] class

As an instructor, I like to have all the material referenced in a class manual available as I prepare for the class and/or when I am preparing to implement the “stuff” we cover in class. So I have gone through the manual and created a page with all the online resources, papers or articles mentioned in the VMware NSX: Install, Configure and Manage [6.4] course in one place.

New vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 elearning courses available

This morning VMware Education announced the availability of two new free self-paced vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 elearning courses: VMware vRealize Operations Manager Fundamentals [V6.0] and vRealize Operations Manager What’s New [V6.0] Fundamentals.

The first course is an overview of the new features, architecture, key features and management packs for vROPS 6.0. The course is targeted at people who are familiar with VMware technologies and datacenter virtualization, but not necessarily vROPS or previous versions of vCOPS.

The “What’s New” course also covers an overview of vROPS 6.0, new features, architecture and new management packs. Additionally, this course includes information on integration with VMware’s vRealize Log Insight and presents potential use cases illustrating how vROPS 6.0 aligns with customer needs. VMware does suggest familiarity with the previous vCOPS 5.x products as a prerequisite for this course.

Each course contains about 2 hours of content and registration gives you a year of access to the course.

The registration links and outlines are below.

VMware vRealize Operations Manager Fundamentals [V6.0]

Outline:

1. Course Introduction

2. Introduction to vRealize Operations Manager 6.0

3. Architecture and New Deployments of vRealize Operations Manager 6.0

4. Key Functionalities of vRealize Operations Manager 6.0

5. Interoperability and Resulting Solutions

 

vRealize Operations Manager What’s New [V6.0] Fundamentals

Outline:

1. Course Introduction
– Course Overview
– Navigation
– Course Objectives

2. VMware Cloud Management Platform
– Cloud Management Platform Overview
– Evolving Customer Challenges
– Evolving VMware Cloud Management
– Portfolio Positioning
– Benefits of VMware Cloud Management
– Market Opportunity
– vSphere Optimization Assessment
– vOA Benefits
– vOA Execution

3. Key Features of vRealize Operations Manager 6.0
– New Features and Enhancements in vRealize Operations Manager 6.0
– Unified User Interface
– Alerting and Remediation
– Alerting Components
– Fixing an Issue
– Integrated Compliance Framework
– Analysis – Compliance Tab
– Customization of Views, Reports, and Dashboards
– Capacity Planning
– Projects
– Policies
– New Group UI and Features
– New Initial Setup Wizard
– User Access Controls
– Access Control Authentication
– Access Control – Object Model
– Mapping Features to Editions

4. Platform and Architecture of vRealize Operations Manager 6.0
– New Platform
– New Single vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 Virtual Machine
– Scalability and Scale Out
– GemFire – Shared Memory Cluster
– High Availability and Resiliency
– Upgrade and Migrations
– Remote Collectors
– Deployment Options

5. vRealize Operations Manager 6.0 Management Packs
– Solutions Exchange
– Operations Manager Management Packs
– Hyperic Management Pack Updates
– Management Pack for Storage Devices
– vRealize Automation Management Pack
– Tenant Overview Dashboard
– Top N Tenant Dashboard

6. Use Cases for vRealize Operations

App Volumes Hands On Lab is now available

Today VMware announced the public availability of

HOL-MBL-1458 -Application Management with VMware App Volumes and Horizon 6

Here is the description of the lab from the announcement:

Get an introduction on App Volumes working in conjunction with Horizon 6, how you can manage and deploy applications, and the benefits it provides with your virtual desktops. This lab will provide you with an introduction to App Volumes when used in conjunction with Horizon 6 with View desktops and RDS hosts. You will find out the benefits of utilizing containers for application management and the simplicity of deploying applications based upon individual users, groups, departments, and company wide as well.

Modules

1. Introduction to App Volumes

2. Application Lifecycle & Delivery

3. User Installed Applications

4. Local Profile Delivery

5. ThinApp Integration

6. Remote Desktop Hosted Apps

7. Rapid Application Deployment

PUBLIC LAB LINKS:

VMware Hands On Labs End User Compute catalog: http://labs.hol.vmware.com/eucsolutions/catalogs/catalog/177

VMware Hand On Labs Main page: http://labs.hol.vmware.com/

Save 15% off VMware vSphere V5.5 Training and get a Free VCP Exam Voucher and a Free Gift

As a VCI, I regularly get asked about free exam vouchers or course discount deals… VMware education has a promotion running now through June 20, 2014 that includes a free VCP exam voucher, a 15% discount on a qualifying course and an additional gift.
If you have been waiting for a “deal” to afford the VCP certification, now is the time to save an get certified!

Save 15% off VMware vSphere V5.5 Training and get a
Free VCP Exam Voucher and a Free Gift

VSAN Deploy and Manage links

Here is a collection of links for resources mentioned in the VMware Virtual SAN: Deploy and Manage [V5.5] Train the Trainer class I am attending this week. Thanks to John Krueger for starting this list and sharing it with us! I plan to add to this list as we go and based on recommendations.

vSphere storage Guide – http://pubs.vmware.com/vsphere-55/topic/com.vmware.ICbase/PDF/vsphere-esxi-vcenter-server-551-storage-guide.pdf
vSphere Installation and Setup Guide – http://pubs.vmware.com/vsphere-55/topic/com.vmware.ICbase/PDF/vsphere-esxi-vcenter-server-551-installation-setup-guide.pdf

VMware Compatibility Guide for VSAN – https://www.vmware.com/resources/compatibility/search.php?deviceCategory=vsan

Virtual SAN Datasheet – http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/products/vsan/VMware_Virtual_SAN_Datasheet.pdf
VMware® Virtual SAN™ Design and Sizing Guide – http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/products/vsan/VSAN_Design_and_Sizing_Guide.pdf
VMware Virtual SAN Proof of Concept Guide – http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/products/vsan/VMware_Virtual_SAN_POC_Guide.pdf
VMware Virtual SAN Quick Monitoring & Troubleshooting Reference Guide – http://www.vmware.com/files/pdf/products/vsan/VMware_Virtual_SAN_Quick_Monitoring_Reference_Guide.pdf
Virtual SAN YouTube video playlist – https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL9MeVsU0uG65kM9iszj5KmNj01PiAWgvf
Virtual SAN (VSAN) Beta Webinar – How to Install, Configure & Manage: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cLfbeFoSQaI
How To Monitor Virtual SAN (VSAN) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHofTkK6K40

HOL-SDC-1308 – Virtual SAN (VSAN) and Virtual Storage Solutions – http://labs.hol.vmware.com/HOL/#lab/562

VMware Product Walkthrough for VSAN – http://featurewalkthrough.vmware.com/VSAN/

Cormac Hogan’s Blog – http://cormachogan.com/vsan/
Rawlinson Rivera’s Blog – http://www.punchingclouds.com/
Duncan Epping’s Blog – http://www.yellow-bricks.com/virtual-san/ – Duncan has collected a terrific compilation of blog posts related to VSAN!
Essential Virtual SAN (VSAN): Administrator’s Guide to VMware VSAN (VMware Press Technology) – pre-order for Aug. 29, 2014 release

FREE VMware e-learning course on VSAN

Around the office and with customers, I have had a lot of questions about VMware VSAN. VMware Education just released a free online e-learning class for VSAN:

 

 

VMware Virtual SAN Fundamentals [V 5.5]https://mylearn.vmware.com/mgrreg/courses.cfm?ui=www_edu&a=one&id_subject=55806

 

VMware Virtual SAN Fundamentals [V 5.5] is available to customers free of charge.

 

After completing this course, you should be able to:

* Introduce concepts related to the architecture and features of VMware virtualized storage.

* Articulate Virtual SAN benefits

* Identify the primary issues associated with Virtual SAN configuration and management

* Understand the primary use cases and customer situations when Virtual SAN is best used, including high level technical qualification criteria.

* Identify VSAN elements

* Enlist the prerequisites needed to configure Virtual SAN.

 

This training would be valuable for any engineers, salespeople or anyone else who wants a solid foundation for understanding VMware VSAN.

New VMware VCP Recertification Policy

Today, VMware Certification announced a change to the VMware Certified Professional (VCP) program with the institution of a recertification policy. The recertification policy is posted here:

http://mylearn.vmware.com/mgrReg/plan.cfm?plan=46667&ui=www_cert

In the policy post, it states that any VCP certification earned before March 10, 2013 needs to be recertified by March 10, 2015. Here are the three options for recertification:

  1. Take the current exam for your existing VCP certification solution track. For example, if you are a VCP3, you could take the current VCP5-Data Center Virtualization (VCP5-DCV) exam.
  2. Earn a new VCP certification in a different solution track. For example, if you are a VCP-Cloud, you could recertify by earning VCP5-Desktop (VCP5-DT) certification.
  3. Advance to the next level by earning a VMware Certified Advanced Professional (VCAP) certification. For example, if you are a VCP5-DCV you could earn VCAP5-DCA certification.

As is described in the recertification policy, VMware has added a note to our Mylearn transcripts:

VMware_Certification_transcript_note

In my case, I earned my VCP5-DCV in September of 2011, so I need to recertify within the next year. My transcript shows the expiration date:

VMware_Certification-recert-date

Here are use cases for recertification that were provided by VMware education:

Overview_Slides_-_Recertification_pptx

I also have a VCP5-DT and a VCAP4-DCD that were earned in 2011. For me, I am looking at this as motivation to get my VCAP-DCD updated and make good on a goal of getting a VCAP-DCA before March 2015.

I support this kind of recertification requirement and appreciate the value of keeping in touch with the current technology.

 

New VMware vSphere Blog post on ESXi console lockdown

This week I am back in the classroom teaching a vSphere 5.5: Install, Configure and Manage class for VMware in Sacramento, CA. During the first few sections of the class, the ESXi user interfaces and basic configuration tasks are presented, including an overview of the tasks that can be accomplished with DCUI (Direct Console User Interface). The topic of lockdown mode is mentioned as well as how to configure an ESXI host to use Active Directory for user authentication and a little advice on user account best practices. As part of the discussion, I bring up the use of an “ESX Admins” group in Active Directory, the treatment of the Root user password as an “in case of emergency” item to be tightly controlled and the use of lockdown mode.

Today when I was leaving class, I was happy to see a new blog post from Kyle Gleed of VMware entitled: “Restricting Access to the ESXi Host Console – Revisiting Lockdown Mode” and in particular his 5 step recommendation on restricting access to ESXi with version 5.1 or later:

1. Add your ESXi hosts to Active Directory. This not only allows users to use their existing active directory accounts to manage their ESXi hosts, but it eliminates the need to create and maintain local user accounts on each host.

2. Create the “ESX Admins” Group in Active Directory and add all your admins as members to this group. By default, when an ESXi hosts is added to active directory the “ESX Admins” group is assigned full admin privileges. Note that you can change the name of the group and customize the privileges (follow the link for information on how to do this).

3. Vault the “root” password. As I noted above, root is still able to override lockdown mode so you want to limit access to this account. With ESXi versions 5.1 and beyond you can now assign full admin rights to named users so it’s no longer necessary to use the root account for day-to-day administration. Don’t disable the root account, set a complex password and lock it away in a safe so you can access it if you ever need to.

4. Set a timeout for both the ESXiShellTimeOut and the ESXiShellInteractiveTimeOut. Should you ever need to temporarily enable access the ESXi Shell via SSH it’s good to set these timeouts so these services will automatically get shutdown and idle SSH/Shell sessions terminated.

5. Enable Lockdown Mode. Enabling lockdown mode prevents non-root users from logging onto the host console directly. This forces admins to manage the host through vCenter Server. Again, should a host ever become isolated from vCenter Server you can retrieve the root password and login as root to override the lockdown mode. Again, be sure not to disable the root user . The point is not to disable root access, but rather to avoid having admins use it for their day-to-day activities.

Terrific advice and I appreciate the timing, I will definitely refer to this in class this week and in the future!

 

Over 50 Free Instructional Videos from VMware

Earlier this month, VMware launched a new site, VMwarelearning.com with 50+ technical videos. These videos offer tips, design guidelines, best practices and product feature knowledge from VMware technical experts. This is a terrific way to get valuable information and technical expertise for FREE!