Its no news that IT operations are transforming with the help of software. VMware talk about the Software Defined Datacenter and how everything is becoming Software Defined. What do this mean in a storage context and how does EMC ViPR integrate with the SDDC to further extend on its capabilities. One of the questions being talked about a lot today is about storage being turned into software based appliances. With EMC ViPR we can deliver the best of both worlds and adapt as the market transform.
When adding physical storage to your SDDC today there are different questions that need to be answered before the storage resource end up being consumed by your SDDC. A lot of the questions need interaction with several different teams which in the end mean you lose valuable time before the ordered resources can be utilized.
If we break down the process into storage related tasks one quickly understand that the provisioning task is not as easy as it may sound like. The administrator of the SDDC order storage resources and then have to answer a few questions sent back from the storage team and architects. When that´s done several different configuration tasks need to happen in different physcial hardware, switches, array etc.
A substantial part of this interaction between different teams and personnel can be automated with EMC ViPR meaning operations resources is relieved from repetitive manual tasks instead automated by software pushing speed of delivery as well as quality up substantially while at the same time standardizing storage operations, reporting and more.
With the ViPR vCenter Orchestrator plugin we can deliver full storage lifecycle management into your own SDDC. Instead of opening a storage provisiong request, waiting, answering questions, waiting ,likely answering more questions and waiting we can integrate the storage provisioning process directly into vCenter WebUI with approval processes and automatic provisioning.
Below is an example of how this could look like from a VM admin perspective when in the need to add additional datastore to the cluster named “homecluster”.
We click on “Add physical datastore” and follow the vCO workflow wizard.
Here we can choose storage type, FC, NFS and decide on size of datastore and name.
Next we choose which virtual storage array and pool to consume resources from.
Click finish and wait for your ordered storage resource to appear in your vSphere cluster. Depending on if there is an approval process attached in viPR to this resource it may take shorter or longer before your can start to consume the new resource.
Below is how this workflow look like. I will add another post later covering the details behind the workflow as well as how additional functionality can be added that extend your SDDC functionality further.