Oct 272009

Sheesh, hard to keep up with all the VMware updates today.  Chargeback 1.0.1 was released today and can be downloaded from here.

Some nice updates included in the release notes:

vCenter Chargeback 1.0.1 provides the following new features:

  • Support for Windows Authentication
    This release of vCenter Chargeback supports Windows Authentication for SQL Server databases. If you are using SQL Server for the vCenter Chargeback database or for the vCenter Server database, then you can configure the application to use Windows Authentication instead of SQL Authentication.
  • New computing resource and billing policies added
    This release of vCenter Chargeback introduces a new computing resource, vCPU, and two new billing policies,vCPU Count and Memory Size and Fixed Cost and vCPU Count and Memory Size. These policies enable you to calculate cost based on the number of virtual CPUs and the amount of memory allocated to the virtual machines.
  • Resource Summary section lists rolled-up usage data for all entities
    The Resource Summary section of the chargeback reports show the rolled-up usage data for all the entities.
  • Global fixed cost history is retained
    This release of vCenter Chargeback lets you to set different cost values for different time periods on the same global fixed cost. The old values are retained and not overwritten.
  • Ability to undo to the most recent operation on the chargeback hierarchy
    The most recent operation on the chargeback hierarchy can be undone. This undo feature is available for entities that are added or moved in the hierarchy. The undo option is not available for rename and delete operations.
  • Ability to use the vCenter Chargeback APIs
    vCenter Chargeback APIs provide an interface to programmatically use the various features of vCenter Chargeback. As an application developer, you can use these APIs to build chargeback applications or integrate vCenter Chargeback with your internal billing systems and compliance policies. Please do note that the APIs released with this version of vCenter Chargeback are only for a technical preview.
Oct 272009

It must be desktop virtualization day at VMware.  Fusion 3.0 was release today.  You can find the download in the download section here.

Here’s the giant What’s New setion from the release notes:

Optimized for Snow Leopard

  • New 64-bit native core engine leverages power of Snow Leopard.
  • Support for both 32-bit and 64-bit Snow Leopard kernels.

3D Graphics Improvements Continue reading »

Oct 272009

The oldest product in the VMware lineup was just updated to 7.0.  This one is a pretty big release.

You can find the download in the download section here.

Here’s the what’s new section from the release notes:

This release of VMware Workstation adds the following new features and support:

New Support for 32-Bit and 64-Bit Operating Systems

This release provides support for the following host and guest operating systems: Continue reading »

Oct 202009

You all know the religious argument: whether you should run vCenter in a VM or not.  We’ve discussed in the past some of the pros and cons of doing so.  Today I was running thru the KB digest from the guys in the knowledge base department and came across an interesting scenario I had not thought of yet:

How do you enable EVC (Enhanced vMotion Compatibility) in a cluster that is running vCenter?  On vCenter4, as long as the CPU baseline does not change from what the CPUs are running at currently, you should be able to do this while vCenter is running.  But what if your on 3.5 (which requires all VMs to be down to enable EVC) or if you need to change the baseline from the current when you enable EVC (which also requires the VMs to be down)?

Yes it can be done (if you have enough hosts). All the details can be found in KB article 1013111.  It becomes a “shell game” of moving hosts and VMs.  You basically start a new cluster with no hosts.  Turn on EVC on the new cluster.  Put one of your hosts into maintenance mode and remove it from it’s current cluster.  You can then add that host to the new cluster.  Then you can shut down vCenter and remove it from the inventory (note the storage location) and re-add it into the new cluster and power it on.  You can then balance moving VMs to the new cluster.  This may be able to be done live, unless the baselines are off which will require the VMs to be cold-migrated.  As hosts are emptied of VMs, you can then migrate them to the new cluster.

I don’t believe this should be a major impact on whether to run vCenter in a VM, just one thing to remember if you do.

Oct 192009

Many have waited for a long time for this one.  The forecasting tool for your existing virtual platform.  When will I need more CPU?  When will I need more RAM?  Capacity IQ will assist in predicting it for you.  Since this is a 1.0 release, there is no What’s New section in the release notes.  There is a nice summary in the Key Features Section:

Capacity Awareness

  • View and analyze past, present, and future capacity states at-a-glance with dashboard graphs and tables.
  • Eliminate costly routine monitoring and management tasks through automation using customized capacity thresholds and alerts.

Capacity Optimization

  • Reclaim excess capacity from idle, oversized, or powered-off virtual machines.
  • Size and allocate capacity for each virtual machine based on historical and future needs.
  • Place virtual machines in the most optimal clusters to eliminate further waste.

Capacity Prediction

  • Simulate one-time business events to quantify potential business impact.
  • Identify the timing of potential capacity shortfalls based on trends and forecasts.
  • Purchase and provision capacity as and when needed.

There is one important thing to note from the release notes: “CapacityIQ supports VirtualCenter 2.5, Update 4 and Update 5, managing hosts running ESX Server 3.0.2 through 3.5. CapacityIQ 1.0 does not support VMware vSphere 4.0 or vCenter 4.0.

You can find the download in the download section here.