Brown Bag Cloud Architecture “Eco-System” Notes

So I checked out the Brown Bag over at Cody’s Site. I have to say I was very happy with the Cloud Architecture.  It definitely was a different spin to learn about the “Eco-System” and also listen to some of the questions.  Here are the notes I gathered:

  • vSphere which was once the management layer is now more of an application layer
  • vSphere administrators may not be vCloud
  • Architecture shows best practice to have two vCenters one for the Cloud Service the other for management.
  • Automation and Orchestration is more important
  • Different security levels for Cloud and vSphere Management
  • Scaling the cloud out brings additional complexity to traditional virtual BU/DR technologies
  • Most scale-outs of the cloud involve more of use case versus meeting the vCenter maximums.
    • BU/DR requirements
    • PCI Compliance (Particular Security Use-Case)
  • VCD Database is still not “officially” supported when running Oracle RAC in “Active/Active” only “Active/Standby” Configurations
  • Templates are simply “powered off” VM in VCD
  • Network Copy happens between Clusters (different storage)
  • Cloning has always been Block-File copy between host (VAAI Helps)
  • For VCD deploying vApps to the assigned tenant datastores the vApps will deploy on datastores that has the least amount of “USED” space
  • VCD requires DRS – NEVER disable it
  • Linked Clones do not have mis-alignment on NFS
  • NFS seems to be gaining more momentum for VCD deployments

The following to me seemed to make a lot of sense.  I attempted to sort it out by what I would think is needed versus highly recommended.  Need is more of vCloud is dependent on that technology.

  • High availability of certain components – applications.
    • vShield Manager > FT enabled (Fault Tolerance)
    • vCenter Server > Heartbeat (More critical because VCD uses vCenter)
  • Components Needed to use in the Cloud Architecture (VMware Specific)
    • vCenter (one for management and the other for cloud)
    • vShield Manager
    • vChargeback
  • Components Highly Recommended:
    • vCloud Service Manager
    • vCenter Update Manager
    • vCloud Connector
    • vCenter Orchestrator
  • Future Products that will be vCloud ready:
    NOTE: Due to the different API’s in each Product, VMware is playing catch up on getting some of these products “vCloud Ready”

    • vCenter Ops
    • Infrastructure Viewer
  • Skill and Knowledge increase is also needed:
    • vSphere / ESX
    • Deeper Storage Skills
    • Deeper Networking & Firewall Skills
    • Scripting (PowerCLI)
    • Workflow / Automation
    • Capacity Planning

Note: Prior it was ESX, vCenter and some scripting
it is also more about Infrastructure Management now

Cell Network Considerations:

  • Network Design of Interfaces:
    • HTTP/Console Proxy (Front-End end-user aka Portal)
    • OS Management
    • Database (Oracle or MS-SQL)
    • NFS (Transfer Service Storage L2 Network with Jumbo Frames)
    • vSphere (L2 Network with Jumbo Frames)

Note: This is not referenced in the architecture but just recommendations. These may require static or additional routes. Traditionally this has been 2 interfaces. Use VLANS if possible. The NFS and vSphere are mostly for the cloning process or Import/Export processes of VCD. This would allow the cloud to be even more scalable and efficient.

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***Disclaimer: The thoughts and views expressed on and Chad King in no way reflect the views or thoughts of his employer or any other views of a company. These are his personal opinions which are formed on his own. Also, products improve over time and some things maybe out of date. Please feel free to contact us and request an update and we will be happy to assist. Thanks!~


About Chad King

I am an IT professional working in the industry for over 10 years. Starting in Microsoft Administration and Solutions I was also a free lance consultant for small businesses. Since I first saw virtualization I have always been fascinated by the concept. I currently specialize in VMware technology. I consult daily on many different types of VMware Solutions. I have experience in all domains related to virtualization and cloud solutions. From help desk, administration, engineering, implementation, and design allowing me to provide creative solutions with the understanding and gaps at all levels.

Posted on November 18, 2011, in Cloud and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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