Halim Chtourou | February 27, 2013
So far, so good out here in Vegas for VMware’s Partner Exchange. Here is some of the insight I’ve gained thus far…
While a lot of the sessions we’ve attended include NDA materials regarding future product releases that we can’t discuss publicly, the training boot camps have given me the ability to add some significant enhancements to Arraya’s in-house demo lab:
- vCloud Automation Center 5.1
- vCloud Director integration with vCenter Operations Manager
vCloud Automation Center (vCAC), part of VMware’s vCloud Suite, provides automated provisioning and management of cloud resources in our vCloud Director environment. Users can request virtual machines based on a pre-defined service catalog which are automatically provisioned once approved by an administrator. When a request is approved, an email containing connection information to the newly provisioned systems is sent to the user who requested the deployment.
vCAC can allow our customers’ IT organizations to automate the provisioning process for resources not just in a vSphere or vCloud environment but also in non-VMware environments including physical servers, Amazon EC2, and even Hyper-V environments — all through a single easy to use self-service web portal. Arraya can also assist customers in extending the power of vCAC using its powerful extensibility framework which allows for custom workflow automation via vCenter Orchestrator, Powershell, and .NET/C#.
Integrating vCloud Director with vCenter Operations Manager was a rather simple task that gives insight into vCloud Director objects such as virtual data centers and organizations, and how they relate to the underlying vSphere resource objects. Other products we already have integrated in our vCenter Operations Manager environment include VMware Horizon View, vCenter Infrastructure Navigator and EMC VNX integration. We can offer a significant amount of customization and integration with vCenter Operations Manager in customer environments. Custom dashboards can make the product incredibly useful to groups of users outside of a company’s core vSphere team. Potential users of customized interfaces could include help desk support staff, executives, application teams and other infrastructure teams outside of vSphere.
Another session I attended was a technical deep-dive on VMware Horizon Mirage. Technology such as NVIDIA’s GRID cards (which we got to see in action with View desktops first-hand at PEX) enable an even larger percentage of desktop use cases to be virtualized than in the past, however, there will still always be those users that require a physical desktop, whether it is due to extreme resource requirements or frequent lack of network connectivity. Mirage provides a powerful platform for managing physical desktops with single-image layer-based technology. The possibilities for Mirage in the future, for seamless migration of users from existing XP or Windows 7 desktops to tablet devices such as the Surface Pro and other potential use cases, are pretty exciting. There is a lot more coming from the Mirage platform that I unfortunately can’t discuss. I plan to add a Mirage deployment to our demo lab as soon as possible.