VMware Capacity Planner Dashboard

Hello everybody welcome back! Today I would like to talk about Capacity planning for checking eligibility for server consolidation. Also even over the VMTN Community there isn’t quite a lot about this product, So I thought let me make my hands dirty on Capacity Planning.

What is VMware Capacity Planner? 

VMware Capacity Planner is  a windows based application service that enables comprehensive assessments. These assessments will help you make smart decisions when consolidating your datacenter. These are usually performed by VMware Professional Services or VMware Partners.

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Server Consolidation

VMware Capacity Planner is a agent-less collector that gets installed on a Desktop or Server that has access to all other Servers or Desktop that participates in the assessment . Not only it rapidly collects infrastructure data and provides improved visibility of heterogeneous, complex IT environments while delivering critical insights into resource utilization.


How Does VMware Capacity Planner Work?

VMware Capacity Planner has a component called Data Collector which uses an agent-less discovery of servers or desktops, collects all Hardware and Software inventory data. It supports heterogeneous environments like Windows servers, Linux servers etc. This data is organised using Data Manager and it securely sends the data to centralized Information Warehouse where the data is prepared for analysis , this also includes valid industry benchmarks data that can be used to compare our data. Finally the core data analytical engine Data Analyzer will run advanced algorithms and solve complex infrastructure issues and arrives at conclusion which then is comprehensively displayed on the web based Dashboard

 

Prerequisites

Before we can begin the assessment make sure prerequisites are all in place so that we can generate these assessment reports with in a week. We will need a Windows client or server operating systems that has access to every system that is to be monitored during this Capacity Planner assessment, Appropriate Hardware and Networks ports and Domain user credentials are a must. All the servers that are engaged during assessment must be saved as a comma separated file or .csv ,
The format looks like :
Location1, Server1
Location1, Server2
Location2, ServerA

Capacity Planning

As mentioned above capacity planning activity is performed by VMware Professional Services or VMware Partners. They will have access to portal : https://optimize.vmware.com , once logged in they this would be Homepage


Then in the top right hand corner of the page we click “Portal”, we would then see the list of resources . Then click on Product download, Install this ~25 MB file on a windows machine that has access to all machines participating in this assessment. Its a typical windows executable file , it will ask for collector service account generally this is a domain account that has full permissions. After installation open VMware Capacity Planner Data Manager Click Setup wizard

Choose what type of physical machines you would like to assess ie Servers or Workstations .

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Choose Complete collection in the the level of Detail Option, (Sorry about the image as it shows quick collection)

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Accept Defaults , Collector and Dashboard are Synchronized, choose not to alter them

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Provide the Domain Credentials, for setting up connection to all other systems in the domain, For multiple domains try separate instance of capacity planning tool.

 

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Accept Defaults in Logging Details ,


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In the final Step Choose Import From Systems Option and browse the .csv file that we spoke about in Prerequisites. Once the Import is successful , we should begin Test Connection and once this is successful it will take some time before it completes collection of inventory and performance data. After this you should click Register Collector and copy the Database ID and Register this ID in VMware Capacity Planning Dashboard.

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Until now the work is half done and I will now explain the steps carried out during the registeration of the Database ID in the VMware Capacity Planning Dashboard, This is generally performed by by VMware Professional Services or VMware Partners.
Once logged in , We have to first Create a new Project,

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In the New Project Wizard , Provide the Name and Choose Consolidation Analysis . Type Description if you want it

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In Select Company Page , Choose an existing Company or Create a New Company , In this eg I will choose an existing Company.

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Select the list of Systems that needs to be assessed in this page .

1Next we will have to Grant Access to Administrators for accessing these information from the dashboard. Set Role to “Administrator”
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After this Click Finish, and you will be automatically navigated to Enterprise Dashboard Page , From the Dropdown Menu select appropriate Project as seen below and Click Reports > Register Collector and paste the database ID . This will start collecting data from all the systems and will send it back to VMware Capacity Planning Dashboard.

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After this we have to keep the Workstation / Server that has the agent installed powered on for the amount time that we performing capacity planning on them. A minimum of one week is required before we can generate assessment reports and find if these systems support consolidation.

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