Documenting vCenter Privileges with PowerCLI

A customer that I'm working with at present asked this week if the minimum privileges required for vRA to access a vSphere Endpoint could be documented. As someone who isn't a fan of unnecessary wheel re-invention, my initial response was to direct them to the relevant VMware documentation (vRA 7.3 vSphere Agent Requirements). Then they explained why that wouldn't quite cover their requirement. I won't explain exactly why, but they wanted a matrix that showed exactly what privileges each of the vRealize products (and associated management packs) needed in vCenter to provide to their security team. Somewhere in the…

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Automating vSphere VM disk zeroing with vRA7 and vRO

A long time ago, on a project far back in time, the team that I was part of was given a requirement to zero the disks of VMs before they were deleted by vRA / vRO (or vCAC and vCO as they were called back then). One of my colleagues on the project, Jonathan Medd, devised an approach for doing this using an “experimental” PowerCLI feature and wrote it up on his blog. Fast forward nearly two and a half years and I'm looking at an upgrade for this platform and wondering if there's a way to accomplish the…

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New vRO and PowerCLI Automation Training

A lot of the projects that I work on have an element of automation to them and I've been asked a few times by customers if there is a training course available that will help them get started in understanding vRO and VMware's PowerCLI cmdlets and how they can be used. Whilst there have been courses available in the past, there is a new one that reads a bit like “Doing my job 101”. It goes by the catchy title of “Data Center Automation with vRealize Orchestrator and vSphere PowerCLI“. Looking at the outline, the important…

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Review: Learning PowerCLI

Unless you’re new to vSphere, you’ll probably have heard about PowerCLI. You may already be using it regularly or perhaps you’ve found the occasional use for it and used one or more of the many excellent scripts that can be found on the internet. Either way, unless you’re an advanced user (or even a guru) of PowerCLI, there’s a book that’s been released recently that could be worth a look. “Learning PowerCLI”, by Robert van den Nieuwendijk, was released just a few weeks ago from publishers Packt Publishing. The author has posted many…

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vOpenData - Shared Virtual Infrastructure Statistics

Whether you love or loathe VMware and their products, one area that you can't fault is the community that's built up around them. In that community blood, sweat, tears and a dash of brilliance have produced many amazing things. vOpenData looks like it could be one of them. vOpenData is the brainchild of Ben Thomas and was built with William Lam and assistance from several other VMware community members. Essentially it is a public database of VMware Virtual Infrastructure statistics / configurations. Users download a script that collects some anonymous data about their infrastructure. Once uploaded and added to the database,…

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Do my ESXi hosts have the same VLANs?

In a small vSphere environment that I've recently been working on, I started to notice that some of my VMs were disappearing off the network from time to time. Reboots of the VM didn't seem to fix the issue but a quick vMotion of the VM to another host did. If you haven't figured it out yet, one of my hosts was missing a VLAN and VMs connected to a certain portgroup were affected whenever they ran on the host. vSphere will warn you if a host that you're trying to migrate a VM to doesn't have the right portgroup…

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PowerShell Primer

A few times in the last few weeks I've been asked if it's worth learning PowerShell. My answer is always “yes”. Rather than repeat myself too often I thought I'd make a post out of it. But first, an apology. I met a chap at vBeers in London about 6 weeks ago. His background was more UNIX than Windows but he recognised that PowerShell was something that he'd have to learn a bit about. At the time I did promise to send him a few useful links to get started. As you might have guessed, I didn’t…

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Review: VMware vSphere PowerCLI Reference

It's difficult to be objective when you know (and like) some of the authors. Fortunately it's not a problem in this case since I don't have anything bad to say about their work anyway so I don't need to be diplomatic! Of course it could be argued that anything I say here might not be totally impartial but I leave it to you, the reader, to make that decision – I just wanted to be open and clear from the start. “Clear” is definitely a word I'd use when describing the book. With a subject like this, which…

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