Ten Ways a Cloud Management Platform Makes your Virtualization Life Easier

I spent the last decade working with virtualization platforms and the certifications and accreditation’s that go along with them.  During this time, I thought I understood what it meant to run an efficient data center. After six months of working with Red Hat CloudForms, a Cloud Management Platform (CMP), I now wonder what was I thinking.  I encountered every one of the problems below, each are preventable with the right solution. Remember, we live in the 21st century–shouldn’t the software that we use act like it?

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First look at VMware vCloud provider in ManageIQ / CloudForms

With VMworld 2016 US event just around the corner, we thought it would be a good time to look at some of the new features introduced in the ManageIQ community related to our support for VMware.

ManageIQ is the open source project behind Red Hat CloudForms. The latest product features are implemented in the upstream community first, before eventually making it downstream into Red Hat CloudForms. This process is similar for all Red Hat products. For example, Fedora is the upstream project for Red Hat Enterprise Linux and follows the same upstream-first development model.

In this article, we look at the recent development of a vCloud provider in ManageIQ. VMware vCloud becomes the latest addition to the list of supported public cloud providers, joining Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform and OpenStack.

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Getting started with managing VMware with Red Hat CloudForms

The VMworld 2016 US event is approaching and Red Hat will be there to showcase our Management portfolio. This includes Red Hat CloudForms which provides unified management for container, virtual, private, and public cloud infrastructures.

With this in mind, we thought it would be a good time to recap how easy it is to deploy Red Hat CloudForms in a VMware virtualized environment. Deploying CloudForms for VMware is very straightforward and consists of three steps to get to an implemented solution that gives full visibility of your VMware infrastructure.

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RESTapi – A teach yourself lab!

Here is a lab I put together for a recent event, it was well received and I think it is very valuable to the ManageIQ and CloudForms user bases.

In the lab you will GET and POST RESTapi actions. Its a basic look at some common use cases such as,

  • Query a VM’s hardware inventory.
  • Query the VMS for any who are tagged with “Function/Database”
  • Show the tags on a specific VM
  • Create new Category and Tag in the appliance
  • Assign a Category/Tag to a VM
  • Provision a VM
  • Query the status of the Provision request.

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CLOUDFORMS 5.3.0 GEM List

Here is the list of GEMs and their info that are included in the CLOUDFORMS 5.3.0 appliance. I thought it would be useful to post, I need this recently for some work I am doing. It was really easy as most things in CLOUDFORMS usually are I simply wrote some ruby to utilise an existing gem called GEMS, that pulls this data from rubygems.org. I wrapped the code in some file open and close, e.g. I dumped the list of gems in the appliance using “gem list > gems.txt” then had my little nugget of code read that in. Here it is.

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Shell-Shock – Bash Code Injection Vulnerability via Specially Crafted Environment Variables (CVE-2014-6271, CVE-2014-7169)

UPDATED : Video version of this blog…..found here… http://youtu.be/RDcIIyYK044

So this Shell-Shock stuff is hitting the press quite a bit!

Fncy finding out really quickly if your Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.5 systems are patched correctly? Even if they are turned off right now? Wow that is clever not even the virtual infrastructure players can do that…I know…its cool. Here it is..

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Placement Profile – Best Fit Cluster using Tags

CloudFORMS has workflows for many different tasks including approval, quotas and placement to name just a few. This blog entry is going to add to the placement category of workflows. A previous post of mine showed how you could place new workloads NOT_NEAR “Workload Placement by Type (Not Near That)” other workloads which I still think is really cool. This placement workflow is quite simple, it matches template tags against cluster tags. Example;

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Exporting VM (VMware)

This is a really simple export routine for VMware using a custom button.

In an implementation I would maybe wrap this with

  1. A dialog to offer different export locations and naming of the export to include date/time stamp and maybe a checkbox to enable disable the overwrite of existing exports.
  2. Add in the approval system, basically some workloads should require authorisation by a manager to allow the export, we could do this by tag, and capture this in the method.
  3. Some error checking and folder creation stuff in the simple method.

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CloudFORMS CFME on KVM

If you so happen to have the VMware OVF version of CloudFORMs CFME, and you want to convert to run on KVM, this is how.

1. If the OVF is zipped, Unzip the appliance image:

$ unzip evm-v5.1.0.4-r.zip

2. Convert each of the 5 disks from VMDK format to RAW:
$ for i in `seq 1 5`; do qemu-img convert -p evm-v5.1.0.4-r/ovf-disk$i.vmdk disk$i.img; done

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