At BlueLock we not only provide vCloud Director as a service, we also use it internally to provision and host our own applications. One reason I have become such an advocate of vCloud Director is because it has made my work of architecting, designing and deploying infrastructure tons easier and less error-prone. Earlier we discussed how vApps make infrastructure management easier, but of course provisioning is just one aspect of managment. Once we have our servers running we need to keep an ever watchful eye on them to ensure we have sized our virtual machines correctly and quickly diagnose problems.
One level of visibility that we felt was missing from vCloud Director was the ability to see resource utilization, not just resource allocation. For example, I wanted the ability to watch my HTTP server's memory usage over the past week or view CPU consumption by my message broker over the course of the day. Not only does this help me determine if I have any resource bottlenecks, it also helps me ensure applications will scale correctly.
Since this view was missing from vCloud Director, BlueLock has added metered resource utilization in our CloudConnector product and within our upcoming VitalSigns portal. This allows you to not only view resource consumption on a virtual machine level, it also aggregates this data for vApps or entire vDC's. Now you can very easily drill down on performance metrics and find trouble spots or areas of improvement.
With the above view I can trend resource consumption over the past month and guesstimate on how I might scale for the holiday shopping season... or find out that someone just provisioned a 10 TB disk within a VM... or see that some vApp has an abnormally high amount of network traffic.
Now that vCloud Director is multi-tenant you can grant multiple people within your organization the ability to login and manage your virtual infrastructure. We need a way to keep track of everyone's actions however, both for compliance needs as well as keeping track of possible issues. vCloud Director offers an event logging view, but we may want to delve even deeper for our audit logging.
BlueLock has created several "wiretaps" into the communications layer underneath vCloud Director so that we can inspect and store the actions that are taking place within your VMware cloud. This way every failed login or power operation can be tracked, timestamped and associated with a user.
These are just a few of the features BlueLock was excited to demonstrate at VMworld 2010. There is a lot of innovation surfacing as part of VMware's vCloud strategy, and we are happy to tie these innovations together to better equip you with managed cloud hosting!
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