vCloud Archive

As you have probably seen I’ve been writing a number of articles on the theme of my “vCloud Journey Journal”. The joke I have with may manager is whilst I’m taking a year off sabbatical from writing books, irrepressible as I am – I think I’m kinda writing a book via the medium of the blog! Anyway, I recognise it might be hard to navigate all 47 posts (and growing). So the idea of this page is merely to provide a launch pad to those articles with a brief paragraph explaining what they are all about. I guess the decision I need to make is if I learn something new – do I write a new blogpost about that or merely go back and edit the original. It might be a good idea to do both. For example this week I learned something on the design course about the “Organization” in vCloud Director. I need to go back and fix some comments in my old post – but what I learned is worthy of making a special post for as well.

This launch pad will be available very soon – but it’s obviously going to take me while to put all those links in. For the moment use the vCloud Journal category to filter the posts:


In this period I was mainly focused on vCloud Director and to much less degree vCloud Connector…

Part 1: My vCloud Journey Journal

This post is about the start of the journey and me using the free online resources to train myself up on the principles of vCloud Director, and vShield. 

Part 2: My vCloud Journey Journal – The ProLab Compute

This post talks about how segmented my vSphere Clusters to into different tiers of compute and memory. The segmentation was forced upon me by different CPU types (AMD & Intel) and fact that the ESX hosts had radical different amounts of memory – that would upset DRS to say the least.

Part 3: My vCloud Journey Journal – The ProLab Storage

In this blogpost I examine my storage – initially I started with a large number of different tiers of storage (nearly 7!) but in the end I went for much simpler model of just 4-tiers of storage.

Part 4: My vCloud Journey Journal – The ProLab Network

In this post I talk about how in vSphere5.1 I abandoned the use of the Standard Switch – and opted for two different vSphere Distributed Switches – one for “infrastructure” (or management) and the other for my vCD Virtual Datacenter. I represents a compromise on a design because I don’t have a dedicated management cluster. 

Part 4a: My vCloud Journey Journal – vCD and adding vCenter

In this post I show how to add vCenter, and also enable the “Federation” that allows of single-sign on in the vSphere Client. 

Part 5: My vCloud Journey Journal – vSphere Replication

Finding that I had some spare storage I decided to setup VR between by NetApp and Dell Equallogics storage.

Part 6: My vCloud Journey Journal – Setting up vShield 5.1 for vCloud Director

One of the pre-reqs for vCloud Director is one vShield (or now vCNS Manager) Manager per vCenter. This walks through I how I deployed the appliance.

Part 7: My vCloud Journey Journal – The Organization

In this post I talk about what I think the Organization is in vCloud Director – and how to create one. You should check out my later “design orientated” posts for more stuff like this!

Part 8: My vCloud Journey Journal – vShield Edge Fundamentals Training

vCNS Edge Gateway training has been recently updated – but there’s still free training available on MyLearn. Despite the somewhat “robotic” delivery, its still worth looking at if your new to vCNS and how vCloud Director use it.

Part 9: Join me on the “Deploy & Manage the VMware Cloud”

I was trying to drum up interest in a 1.5 course – but it got cancelled. Three Times!!! In the end I signed up for live on line course in Mar, 2013 based on the vCD 5.1 product.

Part 10: My vCloud Journey Journal – Add a Provider vDC and VXLAN

How to add a provider vDC, and how in vCD 5.1 – vCD assumes you have already configured VXLAN in vSphere. If you haven’t you get two VXLAN network pools created but with errors. 

Part 11: My vCloud Journey Journal – Importing & First Configuration of vCD

I opted for the vCD Virtual Appliance (not for production use!) this walks through the .OVF import process and first welcome pages of vCD – where you set the name, instance ID and so on

Part 12: My vCloud Journey Journal – vCD and adding vCenter

Does exactly what it does in on the tin. Also talks briefly about the relationship between vCD, vCenter and SSO – which is covered in more detail in Part 16.

Part 13: My vCloud Journey Journal – There are more questions, than answers…

My review of the TrainSignal course on vCD Fundmentals. Useful course if you’ve never seen vCD before and you can’t afford the official training.

Part 14: My vCloud Journey Journal – Adding a Provider vDC

Adding a Provider vDC should be a walk in the park if the cluster your adding is blank and has no powered on VMs. vCD assumes you have management cluster – if not you might the vCD Agent doesn’t get installed properly. Fortunately, you just a right-click away from installing the agent. Not a biggy but as 1st experience it can look a bit ugly…

Part 15: My vCloud Journey Journal – Adding Sysprep to vCloud Director

Erm, How to add Sysprep to vCD. Let face it you only running Windows 7/Windows 2008 upwards is really a legacy issue. Right? I mean no-one really runs Windows 2003/XP anymore. Cough….

Part 16: My vCloud Journey Journal – Enabling Federation & SSO

This post focuses on enabling the Single Sign On feature of vCenter Server Appliance with vCloud Director. It’s not mandatory to do this but its can save you time if your a SysAdmin. It means that the login page of vCloud Director (for the SysAdmin) is redirected to the vSphere Web-Client. This generates an SSO Token, which then redirects you back to the vCloud Director pages. It also means if you are browsing the vCenter node in vCloud Director – you can right-click it and ask it open the vSphere Web-Client without challenging you for credentials. Finally, it does allow to use the SSO instance as source for users – although I would have thought most people would use either local users OR LDAP source for that…

Part 17: My vCloud Journey Journal – Is my Storage/Network right?

In this post I have moment of existential doubt – about whether I have been too liberal with the exposing of storage and networks across my clusters. It’s an illustration of how “cloud” changes the way you think about vSphere and virtualization.

Part 18: My vCloud Journey Journal – External Networks (including Dry Bones!)

In this series of post I embark on the primary network configuration. External Networks require manually created portgroups on the DvSwitch – and are intended to give you Organization access to the outside world (the Internet) or to the wider-corporate network – or both…!

Part 19: My vCloud Journey Journal – Network Pools; Personal Summary

This post was all about getting the concept of network pools clear in my head. It’s a really summary of the different pool types (vLAN, Portgroup, vCD-NI and new to vSphere5.1 VXLAN) and their requirements.

Creating Networks Pools:

In these four post I look at the setup of each of the different four network pool types…


Part 24: My vCloud Journey Journal – Thinking about Network Pools in vCloud Director

This post circles back on the whole topic of network pools and sort of analyse my views on each type – the adv/disadv – and talks about the lessons I learned..

Part 25: My vCloud Journey Journal – Adding an Organization with Secure LDAP

In this article I show to setup an Organization, and then setup Secure LDAP as source for authentication

Creating PAYG Organizational Virtual Datacenter:

In this two-part series I create my very first Organization Virtual Datacenter – opting initially for a PAYG type because I thought that was the most natural resource allocation model to use with a Test/Dev environment.


Part 27: My vCloud Journey Journal – Catalogs, OVFs and Media

In this post I show how to create a catalog – and then how to upload a VM in the form of an OVF, as well uploading CD-ROM/DVD .ISOs to the catalog for use for clean installs of guest operating systems and such like.

Part 28: My vCloud Journey Journal – Where Am I?

In this short blogpost I look back on where I’ve come from and where I’m going next in my journey…

Part 29: My vCloud Journey Journal – Opps! DOH!

In this blogpost I fess up to an error of my own making – where I’d incorrectly registered vCD with DNS causing an intermittent problem with the vCD Portal.

Part 30: My vCloud Journey Journal – Organizational vDC (Admission Control)

In this blogpost I document I talk about “Admission Control” – the concept that controls if a VM or vApp can power on given the reservations to it and to the Organizational vDC.

Part 31: My vCloud Journey Journal – Adding Organization vDC (Reservation)

Doubling back to my earlier post about creating my first vDC I look at the reservation and allocation models

Part 32: My vCloud Journey Journal – Creating Organization vDCs (Allocation Model)

Part 33: My vCloud Journey Journal – Adding an Organization Network

Following on from post 18 about external networks, this time I look at at Organization Networks for the first time

Part 34: My vCloud Journey Journal – Multiple Catalogs and Multiple Organizations vDCs

In this post I look at how to make a catalog available across Organizations. It was only later on the Design course that I learn some folks create an “empty” Organization just using its ability to hold a catalog, and publish/share it with others. It’s a bit like having a dedicate management cluster for vCD – a dedicate Org just for sharing catalogs…

Part 35: My vCloud Journey Journal – PowerCLI New Organization vDC

Now I was getting to grips with vCD I fancied having a go at using the new PowerCLI cmdlets for vCloud Director. Pretty good although the Storage Profiles aspect could be better in my humble opinion. This post is quiet old now – and new version of PowerCLI has been released so I should really get round to looking at it again.

Part 36: My vCloud Journey Journal – Importing from vSphere

I discovered when logged in as the SysAdmin you can import VMs/vApps from vSphere into vCD. A little bit later in my journal I did this in anger

(vApp) Networking:

This is a cluster-bomb of networking post – where I to configure every aspect of networking available – in all its (im)possible permutations including VPN, Static Routing, VPN and so on – and in many directions – between two vApps in different Organizations.


Part 48: My vCloud Journey Journal – vCloud Connector 2.0 Private Configuration

In this post I setup the recently release vCC 2.0 (released 21st Dec, 2012). Initially just for private use. A little bit later in my journal I covered its Public configuration and the top features.

Part 49: My vCloud Journey Journal – vApp Customization

Nested ESX and Labs:

In this cluster of blogposts I talk about some ideas I have for how the vCommunity could use nested ESX in the public cloud as replacement for homelabs. I dubbed it vINCEPTION – after that movie where everything is a dream, inside a dream – inside a dream.



Part 54: Deleting Organization Networks in vCloud Director by Mullah Nasruddin

In this blogpost I talk about dependencies and dangers of casual deletes. Using the metaphor of man sat on a tree holding axe…

Part 55: My vCloud Journey – Importing OVFs into the Catalog Problem

In this blogpost I discover how different virtual machine hardware levels can cause problems importing VMs in to the vCloud Director. Sometimes that can be a hard-code incident, other times down to the HW supported by the Provider vDC. 

Part 56: My vCloud Journey – Edge Gateway Load-Balancing Web-Server

In this blogpost I setup the Load-Balancing feature of the vCNS Edge Gateway to distribute the load across two simple web-servers.

Part 57: My vCloud Journey – Edge Gateway Load-Balancing VMware Horizon View

In this blogpost which is a bit of companion to Part 56, I setup load balancing to my VMware Horizon View 5.2 environment.

Part 58: My vCloud Journey – Design Thoughts – External Networks

This a thought piece about the role of External Networks in a vCloud Design… should each Organization share a small number of external networks, or should every Organization get it own unique external network (for security, separation etc)

Part 59: My vCloud Journey – Design Thoughts – Provider vDC

In this design focused post I question the whole “Gold, Silver, Bronze” view of the world – and outline why I think this view point could be dangerous from a technical stand-point.

Part 60: My vCloud Journey: Importing a VM from vSphere

This post looks at the practical hands on task of importing a VM from vSphere into vCloud Director from the portal. Whilst this method works well enough, part of me wonders if using vCloud Connector might be an easier way of achieving the same result – without the need of SysAdmin rights.

Part 61: My vCloud Journey Journal – vCloud Connector 2.0 Public Configuration 

In this post I look at the configuration of vCloud Connector from the perspective accessing a public cloud vendor. I intend to keep this post up-to-date as I add more and more providers to my configuration.

Part 62: My vCloud Journey Journal: Using vCloud Connector 2.0

Finally! I had both a private/public vCloud Connector configuration – so I could use to move VMs, configure Config Sync for the vCD Catalog and also do a stretch deploy of a vApp…

Part 62: My vCloud Journey Journal: Design Thoughts: Organizations & Leases

In this design focused article I talk about my personal confusion around the concept of the “Organization” and how the official design course helped me the logic of this construct clear in my mind. 

Part 63: My vCloud Journey Journal: Installing vCloud Director for Enterprize HomeLabs

At last, I finally get round to documenting a production like installation of vCloud Director – after 6 months of using the appliance – this covers the DB setup (MS-SQL), multi-cell and certificates…

Part 64: My vCloud Journey Journal: Moving a vSphere vApp to vCloud Director

One thing I not looked at was using vCloud Connector to move vApps out of vSphere and into vCloud Director – a private to private move. I’d been so focused on private-to-public, and vice-versa that I hadn’t thought of using it as migration tool.

CHAPTER 2: THE NEXT SIX MONTHS: vCloud Automation Center:

This period started my period getting to grips with vCAC. Although there’s the occasional post about vCloud Director…

Part 65: My vCloud Journey Journal: Pre-Requisites for vCloud Automation Center 5.1

This post looks at the requirements for installing and configuring vCloud Automation Center (vCAC – which I choose to pronounce VC-AC, rather than other less pleasant sounding name!)

Part 66: My vCloud Journey Journal: VMware Cloud Evaluation

Part 67: My vCloud Journey Journal: vCloud Connector 2.0 and the VMware Cloud Service Evaluation

These two posts cover my experiences of using the VMware Cloud Evaluation, and using it as target for playing with vCloud Connector 2.0.

Part 68: My vCloud Journey Journal – Installing vCloud Automation Center 5.1 (HomeLab)

This post is all about installing vCAC to one big single Windows instance. The kind of thing you might do in a PoC or HomeLab to keep the number of VMs down to a minimum. In a production environment a more “distributed” model is used with multiple instances configured with some kind of load-balancing.

Part 69: My vCloud Journey Journal – vCenter Setup with vCloud Automation Center 5.1

This post walks you through the initial configuration of vCAC to make it communicate with vCenter…

Part 70: My vCloud Journey Journal – vCloud Director Setup with vCloud Automation Center 5.1

…whereas this post is all about vCloud Director connections – including public as well as private instances… 

Part 71: My vCloud Journey Journal – Amazon EC2 Setup with vCloud Automation Center 5.1

In this post I look how to add Amazon EC2 as an “endpoint” in vCloud Automation Center

Part 72: My vCloud Journey Journal: Upgrading vCloud Director Appliance…

With the release of vCloud Director 5.1.2 I thought it might be timely to upgrade. Officially upgrading vCD within the virtual appliance is not supported – but I thought I’d give it ago anyway.

Part 73: My vCloud Journey Journal: Windows 2012 HyperV with SCVMM with vCloud Automation Center

Carrying on with the next part of my journey, I added Windows 2012 HyperV with SCVMM to be managed by vCAC… I need to book a trip to the colo to setup a permanent HyperV and KVM configuration…



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