Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Hmm...We need to reorganize our clusters

This isn't first time that growth has yielded a desire to repurpose or rename a cluster in my virtual environment (VI3.5 currently), but this is the first time I was determined to use Powershell to perform the task.

The goal? I need 2 clusters in an organization folder named "Production" of our Raleigh Datacenter with the names "Windows Cluster" and "Production Cluster". I already have a "Production Cluster" that is getting repurposed in the near future so it must be renamed. I will then need to create a new cluster and name it "Production Cluster" for our new production servers.

1. Log into PowrCLI and connected to my vCenter server with

Connect-VIServer -Server

2. Change the name of the current cluster "Production Cluster" to "Windows Cluster":

-Name "Production Cluster" | Set-Cluster -Name "Windows Cluster"

This requires user acceptance of the change. Just hit enter or type Y and enter to accept.

3. Create new cluster Named "Production Cluster" and enable DRS, HA, make DRS Fully Automatic, and set HA so that it will not power on VM if it will exceed resource availability limits.

Get-Datacenter -Name "Raleigh Datacenter" | Get-Folder -Name "Production" | New-Cluster -Name "Production Cluster" -DrsEnabled -HAEnabled -DrsAutomationLevel FullyAutomated -HAAdmissionControlEnabled

Hit enter and in a couple of moments you have a brand new Cluster named "Production Cluster" in the correct Datacenter and Organization folder with DRS and HA initially configured. Always a good idea to check your configurations, but all looked well.

Note: vSphere (ESX4) has additional features (VM Monitor and fully supported Power Management) to manage on your cluster. I will update this post once I get some testing on that environment.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Dying Datacenter?? Not likely folks.

The virtualization world is going nuts talking about cloud computing and how it is going to destroy the datacenter. The possibilities are intriguing but I'm pretty sure that it could easily be a decade before people think of the cloud the same way that they look at virtualization in genenral.

I just came across this scream stream at FierceCIO.com simply mentioning the possiblity and with nothing to truly back it other than a slightly obscure report from UC Berkeley. This is certainly premature and I seriously doubt that too many CIOs and CTOs are going to ever feel very comfortable handing their datacenter over to a 3rd party regardless of the cost savings. I'm still waiting to see the Fax machine and paper disappear from the corporate world. We will continue to hold onto corporate datacenters for the same reasons. On the same note, even in the cloud your servers will be in a datacenter... Just someone else's. Read the article and my response below.


My Comment:
I'd say it is premature to say that the cloud is going to kill the datacenter. What I expect we will see are some organizations taking advantage of this, primarily those who need space and have already consolidated into a virtual (VMware) environment. The cloud services as mentioned here would then allow them to upload their existing application servers that they feel comfortable with having offsite, and comfortable meeting SLAs. The corporate datacenter will go away about the same time that fax machines and paper will go away. People like things that they can touch. It makes these things more tangible and comforting when you can open the door and see the lights and hear the fans. Semantics can come to play and we can say that having servers off-site isn't part of the "traditional" datacenter, but let's check back in 3-5 years and see where this has gone. My bet is that the cloud will be used like storage rental facilities; great for when you're moving or you just need a little extra space.