Preparing Photon OS for deploying frameworks on Photon Controller

PHOTON_square140With the release of Photon Controller v0.9, there were a lot of nice new features. My colleague Sarge has a good bit of detail on the new features in his blog post. One of the interesting additions, in my opinion, is the introduction of support for kube-up and kube-down for deploying Kubernetes frameworks (I will have a blog post on this ready to go shortly). If you are a regular reader, you might remember that we had another, more photon controller-centric way of rolling out K8S on Photon Controller that I wrote about here. That was using the “cluster” concept in Photon Controller. This new functionality is natively built into K8S, so if you’ve deployed K8S in the past, then the user experience should now be pretty identical when deploying the framework on Photon Controller. Anyhow, as I said I will write more about this shortly. The purpose of this post is to tell you about the additional tooling that you might need if you wish to drive this deployment of K8S on Photon Controller via Photon OS. Of course, you can do this from other OS releases too since we support photon controller CLI on various distros, but I thought I would try to do all of this via VMware’s own Photon OS, and highlight what you need to achieve it.

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Kindle version of Essential Virtual SAN (6.2) is now available!

2 years after the first edition, it’s finally here. The second edition of “Essential Virtual SAN (VSAN)”, the book I co-authored with Duncan Epping, is now available.

book-edition2The folks over at vmusketeers did a rather nice review of the book here. Feel free to take a look at what they think of the book beforehand if you wish. If you do decide to purchase a copy, we’d love to get your feedback/review on Amazon.

At the moment, it is only the kindle version that is available. The hard copy of the book should be available at the end of this month. [Update} As of June 27th, the paper back version of the book is also available on Amazon. These are the ISBN details if you wish to order it locally.

  • ISBN-13: 978-0134511665
  • ISBN-10: 0134511662

You can also order it through Amazon. I hope you enjoy it, and find it useful and informative.


Docker Volume Driver for vSphere – short video

I created a short, 5 minute video to highlight the different parts of the docker volume driver for vSphere “tech preview” to accompany the blog post I created earlier.

It will show what is needed on the ESXi host, and on the VM running containers.

Hope you find it useful.

Kubernetes on Photon Controller

kubernetesAnother container framework that VMware customers can evaluate on Photon Controller is Kubernetes, developed by Google and now open-sourced. Kubernetes is another popular framework that allows customers to automate, manage and scale containers. Just like my previous article on Mesos and Docker Swarm, the Photon Controller and Kubernetes deployment steps are very similar. While I will show the additional steps required to get Kubernetes deployed, I wanted to focus once again on the “what do I do now?” question as this is pretty much the most common question from folks who have gone through the deployment of the Photon Controller and the creation of a container framework/cluster. For this post, I am going to show you how to use the “kubectl” CLI utility, and show how to get started with some K8S containers (K8S is short-hand for Kubernetes).

*** Please note that at the time of writing, Photon Controller is still not GA ***

*** The steps highlighted here may change in the GA version of the product ***

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Docker Volume Driver for vSphere

dockerThis is a really cool development. There is now a docker volume driver for vSphere which we just made public last night, and is now available for tech preview. This will allow customers to address persistent storage requirements for Docker containers in vSphere environments. Basically, it allows you to create a VMDK, and use this VMDK as a persistent storage volume for containers. In the following posts, I will outline the steps involved in getting started with Docker Volume Driver for vSphere. In essence, there are 4 steps:

  1. Install the docker volume plugin on ESXi host. I was running ESXi 6.0U2.
  2. Deploy Photon OS VM (although you can also use Ubuntu)
  3. Install the docker VMDK plugin on VM
  4. Create docker volume and run container to consume it

All the pieces to get you started are available on github here.

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Mesos on Photon Controller

mesosAnother framework that can be very quickly stood up on Photon Controller is Mesos. Apache Mesos is yet another cluster framework for container orchestration and availability (yes, there are many). The steps for deploying the Photon Controller Installer, deploying Photon Controller and creating the tenants, resource tickets and projects are identical to those outlines in steps 1,2 and 3 of my Docker SWARM on Photon Controller post. There is no point in repeating all of the steps here. I will highlight some of the other steps involved in deploying Mesos on Photon Controller, but I don’t really want to focus on those as they are a repeat of what is in the SWARM article, though slightly different. Instead, I want to show you what you can do after Mesos is deployed – a sort of “what do I do now that I have Mesos deployed?” approach. William Lam also showed you how to get started with Mesos and Photon Controller here, but did not have the resources to show Mesos in action. Since I have the resources to show you how to run apps/containers via Mesos, that’s what I will demonstrate in this post.

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Docker SWARM on Photon Controller

PHOTON_square140Continuing on my journey of getting familiar with all things “Photon Controller” related, I wanted to take you through the process, step-by-step, of getting Docker SWARM running on top of Photon Controller. Now, my good pal William Lam has already described the process in a lot of detail over on his virtually ghetto blog. I thought I might try to expand on that a bit more, and highlight where things might go wrong (if you are a newbie like me to this stuff). I also wanted to do everything from the Photon CLI, rather than going through the UI for any of the steps.

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