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Thursday, July 31, 2014

New Virtual Machine Manager Host and Virtual Machine Dashboard

 

Are you interested on new dashboard to monitor your Hyper-V environment? Microsoft has just released a new management pack “System Center 2012 R2 Management Pack for Virtual Machine Manager Host and virtual machine which provide a new dashboard to view the health of your virtualization infrastructure.

Requirement before import the management pack:-

  • Operation Manager 2012 R2 with Update 2
  • Integration with VMM and SCOM

After import the management pack, the following dashboard are available:-

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Sample Virtual Machine Dashboard

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Sample VMM Host Dashboard

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To get the MP, please download from here

Backup Hyper-V Host Using Windows Azure Backup

 

Do you have any remotes site? Most of my customer has a remote site with probably 1 or 2 Hyper-V host. They may not want to invest heavily on backup solution. Once of the solution is using Windows Azure Backup to protect your virtual machine to the cloud.

At the moment of writing [dated- 31 July 2014], the backup pricing for SEA region cost about

Compressed data stored per month Price
First 5GB / month FREE
Greater than 5GB / Month $0.28 per GB per month

For other region, please check price here. The price is cheap and yet provide a protection to your remote site Hyper-V Host. Interest to configure, do check out below configuration

Process:-

  • Create Vault
  • Create & Upload Certificate
  • Install Backup Agent
  • Configure Backup

Create Vault

1. Create new backup Vault on Microsoft Azure Management Portal

Click +NEW | Data Services | Recovery Services | Backup Vault

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Create & Upload Certificate

2. Create client certificate by using makecert on the server

C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\8.1\bin\x64>makecert.exe -r -pe -n CN=AzureBackupCert -ss my -sr localmachine -eku 1.3.6.1.5.5.7.3.2 -len 2048 -e 01/01/2016  AzureBackupCert.cer

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3. Upload Certificate that you have created on step 2 into Management Portal.

On the vault | Click Manage Certificate | Upload the certificate

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Install Backup Agent

4. Install Windows Backup features on Hyper-V Host

Use Server Manager to add Windows Backup features

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5. Download and Install backup agent on the Hyper-V host. Link is available on the Vault dashboard

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Select “ Agent for Windows Server & System Center”

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After install the agent, open Windows Backup. Click on Windows Azure Backup and register your server.

Click Register Server on the action pane

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Select your certificate and vault that you’ve created on earlier step

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Generate Passphase key and store in safe location

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Configure Backup

Last step to protect your remote Hyper-V Host is configure Backup Schedule

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Select your Virtual machine

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Configure when backup to start and time

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Click on Change Properties to define throttling bandwidth.

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Set retention range. You can define 7, 15 or 30 days retention range

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Backup in progress. You can monitor from windows backup console.

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VM has backup to cloud. Backup data is compressed to reduce storage usage in Azure.

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Meanwhile, on Azure Management Portal indicated 1 server is protected and total of 5+ GB data is stored

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View Protected Items history such as recovery point and when last backup.

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Click on Servers, to view server which has protected by Windows Azure Backup. You can register or remove from the Azure.

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Well, that’s all for now. Windows Azure Backup provide an alternative and inexpensive solution to protect your workload to Azure. Do check out our previous post:-

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Capacity Planning for Hybrid Cloud

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In our previous post, we have talked about Veeam Hyper-V Management Pack. During our exploration, we found that this MP also included with Veeam Capacity Planning that help you to evaluate on-premise virtual infrastructure and estimate the resources needed to run these workload in the Microsoft Azure Cloud.

The report analyzes VM configuration and historical performance (CPU, storage and memory resources consumed by VMs and VM templates running on vSphere/ Hyper-V hosts) and provides estimation of the Windows Azure hosting options required to support workload in the cloud.

The calculation is based on Microsoft Azure VM specification.

These are the report included for Capacity Planning:-

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Once the report has generated, you can view the following information:

Summary – describe our on-premise infrastructure.

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Required Infrastructure output for Azure –show the spec of azure VM with number of VM that you need to deploy in the cloud to run your workload.

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.Example:- Total our environment consist of 6 VMs on a stand alone Hyper-V host. Out of 6 VMs, there are 4 VM can assign to Extra Small profile and 2 VM assign to Medium profile. To further identify which VMs fall under which profiles, you can click on the number and report display aggregates historical data and shows performance counter values for selected infrastructure object over time

VM Virtual Processor CPU Usage Mhz

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Dynamic Memory VM Physical Memory

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VM Used Storage GB

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Monday, July 28, 2014

Veeam Hyper-V Management Pack

 

Veeam has just released a new Hyper-V Management Pack. Veeam Hyper-V MP is license per CPU socket (number of cores on a physical CPU is not a factor in Veeam MP licensing).

Veeam MP supports two tier licensing:- Enterprise and Enterprise Plus Edition. The following table explain differences between both edition

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Currently Veeam is running a promotion: Free product license including one year of free Standard maintenance for Hyper-V environment up to 100 sockets. This offer is available for Enterprise edition only and end 31 Dec 2014.

The Veeam Hyper-V MP provides the following advanced features for virtualized systems and the associated network and storage fabric:

  • Discovers complete Hyper-V infrastructure topology, including System Center Virtual
    Machine Manager (if present), Hyper-V failover clusters, Hyper-V hosts, VMs, and related network and storage resources
  • Provides customizable dashboards views for monitoring the configuration, resource
    utilization and health state of the virtualized systems
  • Includes a set of performance and status monitors that diagnose the state of Hyper-V hosts, virtual machines, and associated storage and network fabric
  • Includes an extensive knowledge base to speed up root-cause diagnosis and reduce
    resolution time for detected issues
  • Allows on-demand realtime analysis of key performance counters for Hyper-V hosts and running VMs in a ‘Task-manager’ style view
  • Includes analysis and capacity planning reports for forecasting resource utilization and planning a hybrid cloud environment

Requirement to install Veeam Hyper-V MP:-

  • Operation Manager agents must be installed on every Hyper-V Host
  • Hyper host must running at least Windows Server 2012 or 2012 R2 Hyper-V
  • Operation Manager server must be SCOM 2012 SP1 or SCOM 2012 R2
  • Operation Manager Reporting Server and Data Warehouse must installed
  • Support only SQL Server 2008 SP3, SQL Server 2008 R2 and SQL Server 2012 SP1 Reporting Services

Lets have a quick walkthrough on what’s available on Veeam Hyper-V.

Comprehensive View available under the Veeam for Hyper-V – consists of views for alerts, performance, state and diagrams.

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Topology views: Compute, Network & Storage

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State view:- showing the state and properties of discovered Hyper-V infrastructure components and services.

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Performance view – showing the performance of discovered Hyper-V Cluster, Host and virtual machines.

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Analysis dashboard – help you quickly drill down into the root cause of a problem and speed the troubleshooting process.

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There are several state available:-

  • green = healthy
  • yellow = warning
  • red = critical

The dashboard will act like traffic light and change the state color. Sorry folk, at this moment, my entire infrastructure is healthy. Smile

Heatmap dashboard – compare two dimensions of performance metric values for object and represent data as a heatmap. Heatmap object are represented both by size of each heatmap tile and by the colour of each tiles.

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Example:- 1 host. It will display multiple tile when you have more monitor Hyper-V in the environment.

The size of or each tile represent the available CPU or memory for each host, and the colour of the tile represents the %usage of CPU or memory.

Capacity Planning dashboard – allow to forecast resource utilization for Hyper-V infrastructure object. Calculation is based on analyzes historical performance data for specified period in the past, calculates the performance utilization trend and predict the outcome. At this moment, these dashboard only good when your environment is running Hyper-V cluster.

All these above widgets can be customized.

Veeam Task Manager for Hyper-V

Next, we found “Veeam Task Manager for Hyper-V”. As we all know that Task Manager on server is not useful when running Hyper-V roles. We need to know the CPU and memory usage for host and virtual machine. This is where Veeam Task Manager for Hyper-V come into picture to provide a unique real time view of host and VM compute resources, embedded into Operation Manager as on-demand dashboard. Example show CPU and memory usage for a Hyper-V host:-

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Let move on to view reports.

Reports

There are 2 report included in the Veeam Hyper-V management pack:-

  • Veeam Hyper-V Analysis Reports

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  • Veeam Hyper-V Capacity Planning Reports

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Here is one of the sample Configuration tracking and alert correlation report . We make some changes on the vm and look like our action (with date, time & changes) has recorded in these report.

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Sample VM Idle

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With these in our environment, it make monitoring our Hyper-V infrastructure more easier. Interested to get free Veeam Hyper-V MP and try it out, please feel free to click here.