On April 7th 2020, VMware introduced next major release of its Network Virtualization & Security solution. NSX-T 3.0 introduces variety of new features which enhance the adoption of software-defined networking in private, pubic and hybrid-cloud environment.
Following are some of the new features and enhancements that are available in NSX-T 3.0 Datacenter;
Following the first blog post about deployment of vIDM, this post will cover how to configure vIDM and implement NSX-T Role Based Access Control (RBAC) with help of vIDM. As you might noticed, in NSX-T 2.5 and earlier release RBAC cannot be enabled without use of vIDM.
When you login to administration page with vIDM’s admin user account, dashboard would be the fist page you will land. Dashboard contains login information and applications which are used by users and analytics.
To start vIDM configuration click on Identity & Access Management. Here you can join vIDM to Active directory domain, add directory to sync with vIDM and define user attributes which get synchronized from directory service to vIDM.
Since beginning of 2020, we have started our cloud computing journey by actively practicing and studying Amazon Web Services(AWS) public cloud computing services. We choose AWS because of its tight integration with VMware’s private cloud & SDDC offering and also broad usage & service coverage of AWS intentionally.
AWS was founded in 2006 to provide IT infrastructure as a service which now commonly known as Cloud Computing. Initially AWS lunched with Simple Storage Service(S3), Elastic Cloud Computing(EC2) and Simple Queue Service(SQS) service offering. Since then AWS has experienced rapid growth in terms of number of customers, service portfolio and also profitability. AWS also maintained its position as the leader in cloud computing market. AWS interestingly surpass its giant parent company, Amazon, in terms of profitability!
In series of blog posts we will cover AWS wide range of services and also AWS architectural principals.
On March 10th 2020, VMware released VMware Cloud Foundation(VCF) 4.0 along side a refresh on its other SDDC protofolio including vSphere 7.0, vSAN 7.0 and vRealize Suite 2019 latest release. By deploying VCF 4.0, you can take advantage of all the components that are included in the package and there are some features which only available with VCF 4.0. For example Kubernetes capabilities of vSphere 7 are only included as part of VCF 4.0 with Tanzu. Following you can find Bill of Materials(BoM) for VCF 4.0.
One of the new capabilities that have been added to VCF 4.0 is the possibility to use NSX-T in Management workload domains. Before VCF 4.0, Management workload domain had to use NSX-V as networking and security virtualization solution. NSX-T will also used as a defacto network and virtualization solution for VM and container workload. With use of NSX-T we have the option to bring up one NSX-T Management cluster that can serve many workload domains.
VCF 4.0 also supports latest update of vRealize Suite 2019 which includes;
vRealize Automation 8.1
vRealize Opertions 8.1
vRealize Log Insight 8.1
All the above products have the capability to operate based on container workloads beside normal VM workload. VCF SDDC Manage 4.0 together with vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager 8.1 will automate the process of lifecycle management for both VCF core components and also vRealize suite components.
As it mentioned in Introduction to VMware NSX , NSX-T Datacenter is built on three integrated layers of components which are Management Plane, Control plane & Data plane. This architecture and separation of key roles enables scalability without impacting workloads.
NSX-T Management cluster which built from three-node NSX-T managers controller nodes. Management plane and control plane are converged on each node. NSX managers provides Web-GUI and REST API for management purposes. This is one of the architectural difference compared to NSX-V which had to integrate into vSphere Client & vCenter server. NSX Manager is also could be consumed by Cloud Management Platform(CMP) like vRealize Automation to integrate SDN into cloud automation platforms. NSX-T Manager can also connect to vSphere infrastructure through integration with vCenter Server(Compute Manager).
VMware has announced new update to per-CPU licensing model. Ok don’t panic VMware is not going to bring back vRAM licensing model but they added new CPU related license type. Effective from April 2nd 2020, building a server with a processor which has more than 32 cores needs additional license. According to VMware’s website, “Under the new model, one CPU license covers up to 32 cores in a single CPU”. This means, additional license requires to be purchased for every 32 physical CPU cores! So if there is a single-CPU server with up to 32 physical cores, as before, 1 license should be purchased. But if there is single-CPU server with 64 cores, 2 licenses needed because as it said before every license covers a single CPU with up to 32 cores. To get a better view of this change, take a look at below image from VMware.
Fortunately for those who are going to buy servers and VMware licenses till April 30th 2020, there is “Free per CPU licensing” program. According to VMware website, “Any existing customers who purchase VMware software licenses, to be deployed on a physical server with more than 32-cores per CPU, prior to April 30, 2020 will be eligible for additional free per-CPU licenses to cover the CPUs on that server”.
VMware Cloud Foundation(VCF) is VMware’s integrated SDDC platform for private and hybrid cloud infrastructures. This software package integrates VMware’s Compute, Storage and Network Virtualization solutions with a centralized automated lifecycle management tool call SDDC Manager. The core components of VCF are vSphere (Compute), vSAN (Storage) and NSX (Network & Security). VMware vRealize Suite can also be optionally added to VCF to increase the capability of SDDC infrastructure with performance & capacity Management and cloud management. Since VCF 3.8 beside running normal virtual machine workloads, you can also run containers with use of VMware Enterprise PKS.
To start implementing VCF at least seven ESXi hosts is needed, four for Management Workload Domain(WLD) which hosts infrastructure components of SDDC and another three host for running actual infrastructure WLD. These nodes can be vSAN ready nodes or you can take advantage of DellEMC’s VxRAIL platform and run more integrated Hyper-converged(HCI) platform. The Management WLD brought up with use of special virtual appliance call Cloud Builder. This awesome tool brings up four first nodes in management cluster alongside Platform Service Controllers(PSC), vCenter Servers, NSX manager & controllers and vRealize Log Insight. After the initial bring up process VCF infrastructure management will be done through SDDC Manager.
VMware Identity Manager(vIDM), formerly known as VMware Workspace Portal, is VMware Workspace ONE’s identity & authentication component. vIDM aims to mainly achieve two goals increasing security and improve productivity by providing Single Sign-On(SSO). Beyond providing SSO to mobile users in End-User Computing(EUC) and Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) scenarios, vIDM can be used to provide SSO for different VMware products like vRealize suite and NSX. For instance, Configuring Role-Based Access Control (RBAC) in NSX-T Datacenter is only possible through vIDM.
vIDM can be installed on Windows (2008R2, 2012, 2012R2 and 2016) or as an Virtual appliance on Linux (SUSE Linux Enterprise 11). In this post, I am going to describe how to deploy VMware Identity Manager as a virtual appliance and in following post, I’ll describe initial configuration of vIDM.
On January 14th 2020, VMware announced general availability of VMware Cloud Foundation (VCF) 3.9.1. This new release supports new features such as Application Virtual Network (AVN), improvements to Cloud Builder, many resolved issues specially around NSX-T and also BOM updates.
Application Virtual Network (AVN) enables vRealize Suite deployment to use NSX overlay networks in addition to VLAN-backed port groups. New installation of VCF 3.9.1 can use AVNs for vRealize Suite components and if you upgrade VCF from a prior release to 3.9.1 and willing to use AVNs, VMware Support should be contacted. VMware Cloud Builder which is being used for bring-up process of VCF now includes several new workflows and also deployment report of bring-up phase.
Of Material(BOM), VCF 3.9.1 now supports vSphere and vSAN 6.7 Update 3b which
holds many security and bug fixes. If you are using NSX-V in your management or
VI workload domains, you can take advantage of NSX-V 6.4.6 and lastly VDI workload
domain will also upgraded to Horizon 7.10. Those who are using VCF on VxRAIL,
now VxRAIL Manager 4.7.410 is supported with this new release of VCF on VxRail