Learn about the different deployment options available for VMs. Learn how to leverage the options presented to make deploying virtual machines easier in your environment.
- [Narrator] Let's take a look at some of the different deployment types we can actually use in our virtual environment. First thing we should do is define a virtual machine. Now, a virtual machine is not emulation. It is software based hardware. So, the software, or code, actually makes up a box, or container, that we can use to put an operating system inside of. Now this software box that we created is going to communicate with the hypervisor on the amount of resources that is required for a virtual machine.
When we configure a virtual machine, what we are doing is we are defining to the software the amount of resources that this virtual machine can use. So when we create a virtual machine, there are four different types of creation we can use. First is from scratch. We're going to build the virtual machine. We're going to add the processors. We're going to add the RAM. We're going to add the software. We're going to add the operating system after all the configuration is done. We are building from nothing, and that is a rare type of creation for a virtual machine.
A much more common creation path for us is to use a template, and a template is nothing more than a virtual machine that was built from scratch. We take that virtual machine. We clone it to a template, so that we can use that template to deploy multiple virtual machine. A good example would be this. Let's say I need to deploy 15 different Windows Servers in my organization, and my organization has a security policy that needs to be put in place.
We also have different services in Windows server that we don't like to have running. So I need to turn off those services. Now if I built this from scratch for every Windows deployment, that's quite the task, isn't it? I have to build the virtual machine itself. I have to install the operating system. I have to implement my security configuration and then I have to turn off those services that we don't use. That's quite a lot of time invested. With a template, I do that one time, just once, and then I clone that configuration to a template.
Then when I need to deploy a virtual machine I deploy virtual machines from that template, so that when I deploy those virtual machines not only is my virtual machine configured how I want it to be, my security settings are completed already, and all those services we talked about that I don't want aren't there. So, I have a base OS template. So now anywhere in my organization, if I am rolling out an application that requires Windows Server, all my organizational policies are in place, and I have a base operating system to work with, and it doesn't cost me 30, 40, maybe even an hour of administrative time, because all this was done already.
We're just copying the configuration. So many small, medium, and large businesses use deploy from a template as their main deployment tool, because it just saves a lot of time. You do the base configuration once. You copy that, and move on. Next, another type of creation we have is cloning a virtual machine. This is going to be a carbon copy of a virtual machine that's running and in place. We want to make an exact copy of that. Now I know some of you, especially networking people, are probably saying that's not going to work, because we're going to have the same MAC address, we're going to have the same IP address.
Well, you get the opportunity to change those configurations while you're cloning. But you're right. Why would we want a carbon copy of a virtual machine that's in place, especially when we have the option for a template already? Much better option. So cloning a virtual machine, why is it useful? Well, one thing it's useful for is testing in your environment. So you have a virtual machine that's acting up in production. Clone that virtual machine, bring it to your lab, see what you can do to fix the issue without creating extra burden or downtime in your environment.
The last type of deployment we can do in our environment is an OVF or OVA template. Now these are often preconfigured templates by third party vendors or VMware itself, and these are often software services or even VMware products that roll out an entire virtual machine with the service implemented, already configured and ready to go in your environment so that it can begin offering services. Cisco uses OVF and OVA templates for some of its virtual machine offering within the VMware world.
So, these are the four different types of VM creation, create from scratch, deploy from a template, clone, and then OVF or OVA templates. By far you'll use templates the most, and then probably OVF to OVA templates. You're only going to create from scratch when you have a new operating system build and you're only going to clone basically when you have a lab or some type of testing that needs to be done. Now we talked a little bit about cloning.
Those aren't our only options with cloning, so let's take a look at some of our other abilities. First, how do we get a template? Well, you have to clone a virtual machine to a template. Like we said earlier, this is great for building a base OS to be distributed throughout your environment with your virtual machines. So if I have a virtual machine, what I do is I create the best security settings for my organization, I make sure that all my organizational policies are being followed by the virtual machine for that operating system.
Once that's done, I clone that virtual machine to a template. That template now allows me to have specific deployments in my environment for that operating system. Moreover, I can have different templates for different areas or specific deployments in my environment. So I can have one for Windows Server 2012 that's running Active Directory. I could have another that's running DNS. I could have another template for those organizations that are using Windows Server for any application they may be putting into place.
So, I could have a different template for each specific deployment. This makes it easier in the long run for me to deploy virtual machines quickly and efficiently in my virtual environment. Now another option we have is the ability to clone a template to a template. Now there's many reasons to do this. One would be a version change. So let's say I have a template, but I don't want to touch that template. Let's say it's Ubuntu 12.0.4, and I want to move up to 14.0 something, and I don't want to touch the 12.0.4 template.
Well what I would do is I would clone that 12.0.4 template into another template, then take that template and convert it back to virtual machine, upgrade that virtual machine to 14.0.4 and then convert it back to a template. So now I have all the configurations I had in that 12.0.4 template. That clone template now has the same configuration. I have upgraded it, so it is completely able to be rolled out as a 14.0.4 implementation, and on the bright side, if it ends up that some of the services or applications that I'm running on that operating system don't work, I still have the 12.0.4 template in my back pocket.
So it's great for version changes. It's also great for testing. If I have a template in production, and something's going wrong with some of the software I have in place or the services I'm running on top of that operating system, I can clone a template to a template, take that other template into my lab environment, and test to see what the problem is. This can also help if I need to roll back an OS build. Now this isn't a snapshot, okay? I want to make sure to put that out there. This is not a snapshot implementation.
But in general, if I have implementations like we said at 12.0.4 and 14.0.4 and some of my 14.0.4 virtual machines are failing for some of my services, I have the ability to quickly redeploy because I kept that 12.0.4 OS in my back pocket, that template. I can quickly roll back and implement those virtual machines and reinstall those services on top of it. So, very useful item. Very useful to understand.
I would recommend playing with it in your environment. So after all these deployment options, right, we had a plethora of stuff we could do. What do we do after deployment? Well, first off, we want to install the VM tools. VM tools allow us great communication and control of the virtual machine. It allows different features to work within VMware. We also install it based on operating system. So there is a VMware tool set for Windows. Ther's a VMware tool set for Linux.
There's a VMware tool set for Mac OS X. It's different per operating system. Next we want to ensure that our options are configured correctly. These are our boot options, our power management options, and we're going to dive in to this a little later on in this course. But make sure that those options are configured so that you can have the configuration all set to where maybe this is where you want to clone to a template or the virtual machine is ready to be put into production.
Instructor Russell Long demonstrates how to configure advanced settings, create and manage a multisite content library, set up and maintain vCloud Air, and deploy vApps. Russell shows how to publish and subscribe to a content catalog, determine which permissions are required to manage content catalogs, and configure a content library to work across sites. He compares automatic sync with on-demand sync. He also takes you through the steps of authentication configuration, VM migration to vCloud Air, and VPN connection verification.
This course is also an exam preparation resource, as it covers the topics in the Administer and Manage vSphere Virtual Machine domain of the VCP-DCV 6 exam.
- Deploying and configuring VMs
- Managing shared USB devices
- Configuring hosts and VMs for passthrough
- Monitoring VM resource consumption
- Taking a snapshot of a VM
- Managing content libraries
- Using content library roles
- Creating a VPN connection between vCloud Air and an on-premises site
- Migrating a VM to vCloud Air
- Deploying and configuring vApps