[Update Dec 2016: An updated article for vRO 7.x is available here] I’m developing some very large, very complicated workflows for vRealize Orchestrator (vRO/vCO), and as it’s a Java based application it will probably come as no surprise to many that the performance of the client drops off sharply as the client’s RAM usage creeps up. When working on some of the larger workflows, or after long sessions and heavy clipboard use, the client would become (even more) sluggish and in some cases would freeze entirely.
It’s a fairly common requirement when creating a new user to assign a randomly generated password, so during a recent engagement I wrote a little password generator to do that. I wanted to be able to chose whether special characters were used, and the length of the password - typically if the password doesn’t used special characters I would increase the length significantly! Characters should be randomly picked from: a-z A-Z 0-9 (optional) ASCII special characters Inputs passwordLength - the length of the password to be generated (number) excludePunctuation - exclude the use of special characters if TRUE (boolean) Outputs generatedPassword - the generated password (SecureString) The SecureString type prevents the string from being displayed in the workflow attributes - it can be used as a normal string, but will be asterisk’d when displayed.
One of the use cases I’ve been working on with a customer is based on the vRO/vCO multi-node plug-in and involves the master vRO/vCO node calling proxy workflows based on a parameter - in this case the target site. As you can see from this very simple diagram, a Cloud Management System (CMS) calls a workflow on the Master node, which then executes a proxy workflow on the correct site. The trick is getting the Master Orchestrator node to pick the right proxy workflow.
To quote the release notes for the latest version of vCO/vRO Multi-node Plugin: The VMware vCenter Orchestrator Multi-Node Plug-In allows organizations to manage environments with multiple vCenter Orchestrator server instances. As organizations increase their level of automation, they often find the need to deploy multiple Orchestrator instances. With the VMware vCenter Orchestrator Multi-Node Plug-In, administrators have a more efficient way to manage multiple Orchestrator instances from a central point. The plug-in allows administrators to log in to a master Orchestrator server to view the inventories and workflows of remote Orchestrator servers, and to trigger workflows remotely.
To add a Windows Server 2012 R2 PowerShell host using Basic Authentication only, follow these steps. Ensure that the Windows Firewall service is running (it doesn’t matter if the firewall is enabled or disabled, it should always be running! That’s a general rule, not just for this). On the PowerShell host open a command prompt (*NOT* PowerShell console) as administrator and run the quickconfig command - you can re-run it if it’s already been run - but make sure it has.
As a PowerShell fan I find using the vCO PowerShell plugin makes my life a whole lot easier. What isn’t easy however, is the configuration of vCO and a PowerShell jump host. Having done it a few times, this is my method for ensuring a secure working connection using HTTPS and Kerberos. Configure the Orchestrator Appliance Since we’re planning on using Kerberos authentication, we’d better ensure that the time is correct AND syncs to the same source as the domain.
Extending a vCenter Orchestrator (vCO) Workflow with ForEach – Backing up all ESXi hosts in a Cluster
In my previous post Backing up ESXi 5.5 host configurations with vCenter Orchestrator (vCO) – Workflow design walkthrough I showed how to create a workflow to back up host configurations, but it was limited to one host at a time. For this post I’m going to show how to create a new workflow that calls the previous one on multiple hosts using a ForEach loop to run it against each one.
Backing up ESXi 5.5 host configurations with vCenter Orchestrator (vCO) – Workflow design walkthrough
As a little learning project, I thought I’d take on Simon’s previous post about backing up ESXi configurations and extend it to vCenter Orchestrator (vCO), and document how I go about building up a workflow. I’m learning more and more about vCO all the time, but I found it has a really steep entry point, and finding use cases is hard if you haven’t explored capabilities. The steps I want to create in this post are: