They say “it takes village to raise a child.”
They say “no man is an island.”
Likewise, no IT monitoring and management tool can do it all.
That’s why we have suites of integrated software tools, like the VMWare vRealize solution from VMware, and multivendor cross-tool integrations, like the VCE Management Pack for vRealize. This recently introduced management pack delivers information about Dell EMC Vblock and VxBlock Systems from the VCE Vision Intelligent Operations monitoring tool to the vRealize Operations tool.
Why is there an Ecosystem?
To do its job, IT Operations requires a complete view of the environment: the virtualized infrastructure that hosts the application components (workloads) and the underlying physical infrastructure that provides resources to the workloads and delivers services to end-users.
But a single tool that does everything just doesn’t exist – and for good reason.
First, not every toolmaker knows everything about everything. So modularity and integration among tools leverages various development teams’ subject matter expertise and the unique innovation that different toolmakers offer.
Modularity and integration gets you to “everything.” In fact, if the right tools with the right perspective and functionality are integrated, you get a framework for executing logical and efficient IT process workflows.
In other words, you get a 360 degree view of the IT environment and great operations and systems administration.
An ecosystem consists of integrated tools, each tool for a different level of the infrastructure, each with a different scope and set of capabilities.
Let’s walk through the ecosystem left to right.
Element Managers (EMs) – tools for compute, network and storage devices. EMs are standard software packages that come from the factory with each device and are necessary for capturing granular meta data and for making configuration changes in devices.
- Examples of these, in Dell EMC converged infrastructure systems are Cisco UCS Manager and EMC Unisphere.
- They communicate directly with the hardware devices that they monitor and manage.
Converged Infrastructure Management – tools with the ability to monitor the compute, storage and network components inside converged (pre-engineered) systems not as separate silos, but together with their relationships as a single object (system) and how they support workloads (virtual machines).
- An example of this is VCE Vision Intelligent Operations software installed on Dell EMC converged systems.
- This tool integrates directly with the underlying EMs and uses various protocols to interface with the physical devices associated with EMs (for collecting meta data, operational status and SNMP MIB data, etc.)
Virtualization Management and Automation – tools that monitor and analyze virtualization-related performance and capacity/consumption metrics and automate the configuration, placement and motion of the virtual machines across hosts.
- An example of this is VMware vRealize Operations, which is integrated with VMware vSphere and is part of a much larger, integrated vRealize suite.
- The suite also includes vRealize Log Insight, vRealize Network Insight and vRealize Business for Cloud.
Converged Infrastructure-Informed Virtualization Management and Automation – the integration of information from Converged Infrastructure Management and with Virtualization Management and Automation. This unifies a view of virtual machine status, infrastructure status and virtual machine control for streamlining operational processes.
- An example of this is the VCE Management Pack for vRealize Operations which can be downloaded at no cost.
- The Management Package delivers predefined Dell EMC Vblock and VxBlock dashboards to the vRealize Operations user interface.
- The Management Pack also populates the dashboard with monitoring date from the VCE Vision software installed in the Vblock and VxBlock Systems.
This level of tool integration gives you a 360 degree view.
Of course the ecosystem is much broader than this snapshot.
In future blogs, I will discuss the extended ecosystem, further development of the new VCE Management Pack for vRealize Operations, and further development and use cases of VCE Vision software for Dell EMC converged infrastructure systems.