The first email I saw this morning in my inbox was from my good pal, Alan Renouf. Alan is our product line manager for APIs, SDKs, CLIs and Automation Frameworks (congrats on the promotion Alan). Anyway, Alan was announcing the General Availability of VMware vSphere PowerCLI 6.5 Release 1. There are a whole bunch of improvements in this release, and much kudos must go to the PowerCLI team. However from a vSAN perspective, things look really cool. [Update] This version of PowerCLI also works with vSAN 6.2 and 6.0, so there is no need for customers to upgrade to vSAN 6.5 to leverage these new features of PowerCLI.
I’ve been liaising with one of our customers in the UK who is currently evaluation vSphere Integrated Containers in a very large vSphere infrastructure. In this infrastructure, a single vCenter Server is managing lots and lots of vSphere clusters, and very many distributed switches (DVS) and distributed portgroup. There were some issues encountered when trying to select the correct compute resource and correct distributed portgroup for a particular Virtual Container Host, which I will highlight in this post.
I’ve talked a lot recently about the various VMware projects surrounding containers, container management, repositories, etc. However one of the most popular container cluster managers is Kubernetes (originally developed by Google). To use an official description, Kubernetes (or K8S for short) is a “platform for automating deployment, scaling, and operations of application containers across clusters of hosts”. So this begs the question about how easy is it to deploy K8S on vSphere. I have already documented how K8S can be deployed on Photon Platform. But can you easily deploy Kubernetes on a vSphere infrastructure. The answer now is that it is relatively easy. This necessary scripts are now included in K8S version 1.4.5, which went live recently (October 29th). Let’s look at the steps involved in deploying Kubernetes on vSphere in more detail.
As I prep myself for some upcoming VMUGs in EMEA, I realized that I hadn’t made any mention on a new product that we recently introduced in the CNA (Cloud Native Apps) space called Admiral. In a nutshell, Admiral is a Container Management platform for deploying and managing container based applications, intended to provide automated deployment and life cycle management of containers. Now, while Admiral can be used to deploy container directly to virtual machines that are running docker (e.g. Photon OS), it can also be used with vSphere Integrated Containers, and you can deploy containers via the VCH (Virtual Container Host). On top of that, Admiral can also be used with Project Harbor container repositories that you may have deployed in your environment. This gives a very nice end-to-end story when using containers with vSphere. Let’s take a closer look.
The answer is an emphatic yes. One can absolutely use storage policies with vSphere Integrated Containers (VIC). However, there is currently no way to specify a policy at the docker CLI when creating a container (at this time). Therefore one would have to deploy the VCH, then deploy the container, and then finally modify the storage policy as appropriate. My understanding is that consideration is being given to a way to do this at deployment time, but at the present, it involves a number of steps. Let’s discuss them in turn.
A quick note to let you know about some upcoming VMware User Group appearances in Italy and Denmark. On November 15th, I will be appearing at the Italian VMUG UserCon. This will be held in the Hotel NH Milano Congress Centre, Strada 2a, 20090 Assago Milan. Then towards the end of the month, I will be back once more at the Nordic VMUG UserCon in Copenhagen. This is on November 30th and will be held in the Scandic Hotel, Vester Søgade 6, 1601 København, Denmark.
On both occasions I will be discussing various VMware projects in the Cloud Native Apps space, in particular vSphere Integrated Containers and Photon Platform. I will also be looking at how vSAN can form the basis for persistent storage for your containers in each case.
Hope to see you there.
Well, that’s it for another year. VMworld is over, and I must say, it just seems to get better and better. I had a really great show this year. I thought I would jot down a few of my experiences on what I thought was an excellent show in Barcelona.