As I already annouced at the Dutch FlexVirtual website my colleague Peter Oudman and myself presented at the Dutch VMUG UserCon 2018 earlier this year.
The session was titled: “Howto make an automated clone of your production environment using vRO and NSX”.
We were very excited as this was our first VMUG session. A lot of thanks to the NLVMUG team that accepted our session and for the great support during the day.
And last but not least a great thanks to the people who attended the session, the room was packed!
The session was also recorded and is available at the NLVMUGTV channel:
The session was in Dutch so I will give a short description of what the session was about.
In the session we talked about automating the cloning process of a production environment. Lot’s of companies have test and acceptance environments and most of the time these environments are not exactly the same. In most of the cases this isn’t a problem but sometimes there are situations that require these environments to be exactly equal to the production environment or a part of that. Companies have to live up to high level quality standards and therefor cannot afford the test environment to lag behind. If it does the whole company may be at risk.
Sometimes we see production environments being used to test in, with all risks assiociated with that. Even leading to production issues or outages.
How nice it would be to push a button and have a test environment that’s identical to production ready in minutes?
We showed how we did this using vRealize Orchestrator, VMware NSX and Dell EMC Enterprise manager.
Using an example we showed how the process looks like. In the example we used 4 VMs, but actually the script was build to do much more, for simplicity and understanding we used 4 VMs in the example.
We grouped the workflows based on where the action took place:
- Storage (Dell EMC Enterprise Manager)
- Network (VMware NSX)
Every step in the workflow actually contains scripts that communicates through plugins and REST API calls.
One other thing I want to highlight is the preparation phase, in this phase we performed a feasability study and this step might be the most important step in the whole project. The feasability study described the deliverables in detail. Next we also gathered all the steps possible to reach the goal and decided which route to go. Then every step we wanted to automate was described (inputs/outputs) and manually executed. After completion we had a good view of what to automate and how much time was associated with each step. We then also determined which steps were less important and could be executed manually in times of budget or time constraints.
Using the results of the feasability step you will have another (early) moment in your project timeline to adjust the time- or budget frame you communicated earlier.