The vSphere DSC – Just another perspective

In the last couple of weeks, I have done rounds of meeting with our customers and discussed ways to automate ESXi build and configuration. The most common piece which I found in each of the environment was vSphere auto-deploy. Today, most of our customers deploy ESXi hosts using auto-deploy and post configuration tasks via host profiles. Majority of question or concerns which I got were related to the host profile. My understanding says that customers tend to find host profiles difficult to understand, which is not the case in reality.

Host profiles are excellent. It’s just you need to fine-tune them initially. You rarely get any issue if you have cracked the host profiles successfully. The key here is to set up a reference host and extracting the host profile from it.

Having said that, let me bring you another perspective on doing the post configuration tasks. Today many of you love to do Infrastructure as a Code and believe in a configuration management ecosystem. When you look around all the configuration management tools, you will find that vSphere Desired State Configuration (DSC) is very close to being a complete solution for vSphere configuration management.

vSphere DSC is an open-source module that provides PowerShell DSC resources for VMware. PowerShell DSC resources follow declarative code style, like most configuration management tools, and allow you to document infrastructure configurations. The module has 71 resources that cover most of the configuration aspects of vSphere infrastructure.

We shouldn’t be looking at vSphere DSC in isolation and rather look at complimenting it with vSphere auto-deploy. Think about this, PXE boot ESXi hosts from vSphere auto-deploy and let vSphere DSC do all the post configurations for you, isn’t that cool!

When you extract the host profile, you get all the configurations of an ESXi host, and at times you need to trim down the configurations to ensure that you have control over it. 

vSphere DSC is just the opposite of this approach. You can start with an empty configuration file and keep adding the resource definitions to it as and when required. vSphere DSC configuration gives a complete picture of configurations that you want to Ensure and allows you to quickly replicate the same in other environments.

Just take a look at the below snippet and a demo of my Lab configuration which does range of things on vCenter and ESXi host.

Concluding this, I would say that vSphere DSC just opens up another way of automating the infrastructure builds and config. The project has come a long way now and has done significant improvements in terms of resource coverage.

Stay tuned with the vSphere DSC project and soon you will get new updates from the VMware PowerCLI team.

Learn More about vSphere DSC: https://github.com/vmware/dscr-for-vmware/wiki



vLeaderConnect EP1: In conversation with Joe Beda

vLeaderConnectQuote_LinkedIn

Hello and welcome everyone,

“There is always a first time for everything,” #vLeaderConnect was the same experience for us at VMUG Pune. I proposed this idea to all the committee members during one of our internal discussion. The sole objective of vLeaderConnect was to get an insight into how the technical leaders carry themselves, personally and professionally. It was also an opportunity for us to bring some brilliant minds on the VMUG Pune forum and let the community experience their thoughts and wisdom.

We considered Joe Beda as our first guest. There were two reasons for it: First- Kubernetes is making its way into the VMware ecosystem with VMware’s recent product releases. Second- Joe Beda himself is the co-creator of Kubernetes, and he is into the center of all the magic which is happening at VMware. We reached out to Joe, and without taking time, he agreed to discuss it with us.

On the other side of the preparation part, all the community leaders scrambled themselves and explored the possibility of making it happen. We reached out to the community members, got their feedback to understand what are the things which they want to discuss with Joe. It was heartening to see the response we were receiving from the community members across the globe. We sent the invites to our friends from VMUG Romania, VMUG France, VMUG Japan, VMUG Argentina, and other VMUG communities. I must say they were appreciative of the efforts which we have put in and turned up on the day of the Event irrespective of the time zone.

The event,

My Post (5)We expected a turn around of 100+ participants, and we did receive the expected response from the community members. It was very clear from our part that we will not have a scripted conversation with Joe, We did brief him on what topics we will be discussing upon, but the questions, follow-up, and the discussions were impromptu. Joe was very supportive during the entire conversation. He was candid in his thoughts, spoke out of his mind, and, most importantly, he was speaking on his own without carrying his big credentials on his sleeves. We are really thankful to those who have joined the event and shown their support to us. If you couldn’t join the event, then below is the recording session for you guys to go through.


Highlights: 

Evolution of Kubernetes, 

Borg was a ten-year-old project written in C++, and it was internally used at google. The experience with Borg gave an understanding that there were other ways to manage and deploy software beyond starting a VM or a Server. This was all possible because of the benefits coming out of the containerized workloads. Borg really gave us essentially a roadmap for how these things could work into the future, and having that roadmap was very instructive for Kubernetes. The next challenge was, with GCE google was very late in the public cloud market so it was a discussion within google about how we can we shake things up so that we can actually create opportunities for Google to really sort of reset things and move the conversation to a place where Google can compete on a more level playing field with GCP versus AWS. The solution to that was to have a containerized workload offering to google customers by turning an internal product to an external one. 

Language Selection while writing Kubernetes, (C++ vs. GO)

We wanted to make Kubernetes an open-source project. At that time, the docker and GO community was shaping up really well. So asking open source communities to contribute to the Kubernetes project became much simpler with GO. Also, GO is really sort of a sweet spot in terms of being low-level enough that you can write system software in it but high-level enough that you know you can remove a lot of the complexity which you get with C or C++. 

Tanzu Portfolio

It’s a portfolio of products that work well together, not a platform. You can pick the products that work for you but it isn’t VMware only. We live in a multi-vendor world. You can still manage container workload running elsewhere. 

Message to vSphere Admin

View this as an opportunity, not a threat. VMware wants the conversation to be vSphere AND cloud (not or). Use these tools for change in your organization.

I am sure there is a lot more to what I have shared in the highlight section, I would like to highly recommend you to watch the complete video to understand more.


Love recieved from the community

I am just highlighting some of the responses we received from the VMUG community.


I know it was our first ever attempt to host something like this at VMUG Pune. Stay tuned with us and keep supporting us.


visit vmug.com and be part of a larger tech evangelist group around you.

Thanks,