VMware Brings Virtual Operations to vCenter

by Amy Newman

The virtualization vendor introduces vCenter Operations, making it possible to manage your entire data center stack -- virtual servers, physical servers, storage, networking components and more -- from a single interface.

VMware this week took a major step toward holistic data center and cloud management with the release of vCenter Operations. Most significant about vCenter Operations is that it goes beyond pure virtualization management and looks to manage the data center from end to end -- including servers, storage, networking components and various management tools.

VMware's Rob Smoot, director of product marketing, VMware vCenter Operations, explained to ServerWatch that it is VMware's first foray into the operation's realm and represents a strategy and new solution to simplify and automate how IT organizations manage services in dynamic virtual and cloud environments. The new offering aims to help customers transform IT operations to achieve the agility and economics of cloud computing. Strategically, "it is very much focused on managing highly virtualized cloud environments."

Datamation explains that to do this, vCenter Operations is tightly integrated with VMware vSphere., "Tightly integrated with VMware's vSphere virtualization management software, vCenter Operations 'understands' other management tools in the enterprise and can analyze the millions of data points these systems produce in real-time."

If vCenter Operations does not deliver all of the desired data, enterprises can continue to use vSphere to pull in data from third-party management tools.

Its integration with vCenter enables it to better dive and view into the environment, Smoot said. He explained, the interface to manage user environment is integrated in vCenter via a tab. With all of the aggregate information in one place, an admin can use analytics metric to identify "what's driving the abnormal behavior" and determine what the issue is. Smoot said this makes it easy to see what part of the stack is causing the problem. He also said he believes the solution is superior to the longstanding procedure where a database admin has an isolated et of tools. When performance issues hit, he or she must sort through the collection to and decide which to use and where.

vCenter Operations is actually not a single product but rather a set consisting of products and solutions that will bring together performance, capacity and configuration management capabilities via vSphere. The functionality found in VMware vCenter CapacityIQ, VMware vCenter Configuration Manager and Integrien Alive make up vCenter Operations.

Three editions will be released in late first quarter priced starting at $50 per VM. vCenter Operations Standard will offer performance management with capacity and change awareness for VMware vSphere-virtualized and cloud environments; vCenter Operations Advanced adds more advanced capacity analytics and planning; and vCenter Operations Enterprise offers performance, capacity and configuration management capabilities for both virtual and physical environments as well as customizable dashboards, smart alerting and application awareness.

Amy Newman is the senior managing editor of Internet.com's server vertical. She has been covering virtualization since 2001, and is the coauthor of Practical Virtualization Solutions, published by Pearson in 2009.

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This article was originally published on Friday Mar 11th 2011
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