Archive for the ‘Lifecycle Manager’ Category

VMware Lifecycle Manager – Demo Video

January 11, 2009

Here is a demo video of VMware Lifecycle manager I created.  It gives a very basic overview of what LCM can do.  Almost all fields and processes can be customized in the product.  This gives the administrator very granular control over who can request and create different types of VM’s within an ESX environment.  LCM can essentially automate the VM process from birth to death with little or no administrator intervention.  For larger ESX enviroments this can save the IT staff lots of time.  In addition, it provides a reporting function so you always know who created or requested a VM, when and for how long they need it.  If your company has a helpdesk tool such as Remedy or other ILM tools, LCM can be customized and integrated into those tools.

VMware Lifecycle Manager Podcast

November 2, 2008

I’ve been trying to find a good demo video of VMware’s Lifecycle Manager product without any luck. It looks like I’ll have to make one of my own in the next few weeks. During my search I did come across a good LCM podcast from VMware which gives a great overview of the product and its capabilities. You can link to the podcast here:

VMware Lifecycle Manager: Essentials (overview)

October 24, 2008

I am currently in the process of going through VMware’s Lighthouse certification for Lifecycle Manager. For enterprises with large numbers of VM’s this product really has a lot of potential to easy the load on System Admins using automation and process flow. LCM can be tied in to existing service desk systems using API’s and Plug-ins.

A very basic example of how LCM could be used is:

  • Developer requests a VM via a web interface and selects from several administrator configured choices for memory, processor, drive space, physical site location etc.
  • Depending on the type of VM an approval e-mail is sent to an approver(s) for review and approval.
  • Once approved the VM is automatically created and placed in the environment or sent to IT for manual placement.
  • An e-mail is sent to the requestor to notify them the VM is ready for use.

This is a very basic example but LCM has many options to suit all kinds of businesses and their different processes.

Below is a brief summary of some of the product features:

Key benefits:
– Best practice for tracking, controlling and approving vm’s
– Provides automation and eliminates manual tasks.
– Reduces costs.
– Leverages VirtualCenter, DRS, HA
– Minimizes/Eliminates VM sprawl and unauthorized VM’s
– Helps eliminate compliance issues
Product Architecture:
1) VMware Lifecycle Manager Application
2) VMware Orchestrator Platform (Currently only available via purchase of LCM)

Delivery Options:
– Packaged Product
– Customization not enabled
– No customer interaction
– Packaged product
– Customization is enabled
– For larger customers
– Must purchase the “Standard” product plus a “Custom” License (one time fee)

Lifecycle Manager Roles:
IT Administrator
o Policy based deployment
o Security policies
o Network settings (IP Pools)
o Infrastructure management
o Self Service Portal
o Request VM
o Manage VM’s
o Approve or Reject (e-mail notifications)
o Dashboard view for all pending/approved VM requests
IT Staff
o Allows manual placement of VM’s and customization
Technical User
o Request VM
o Customize VM

** LCM and VMware Orchestrator run separately from VirtualCenter but communicate with it.
Infrastructure Requirements:
– VC 2.0x or 2.5x
– ESX 3.0 or 3.5
– Datastore
– DRS Cluster
– VM Folder (not Root)
– VM Template
– VM Network
– Resource Pool (not Root)
– Storage Space
– VC Web service running

Physical Infrastructure Requirements:
– 2 CPU
– 2 GB RAM
– 10 GB HDD
– VMware Server 1.0.3+, Workstation 6.0+, or Fusion
– Free fixed IP

OS Support:
– XP Pro
– W2K, W2K3
– Redhat Linux 5 and SUSE Linux 10.3
o 1 GB RAM, 5 GB HDD, 32-bit OS
– SQL 2000/2005
– Oracle 9i & 10g
Browser Support:
– IE 6 or 7
– Firefox 2.0 +
Access Control:
– AD authentication / AD service account
– SMTP account
– Shared account to communicate with VC
– Rights:
o VC 2.x – Administrator
o SMTP E-mail Relay
o General User for AD