Proactive management of VMware vSphere environment using vPV reports

If an application can’t generate your required reports, you have two options: spend hours generating them yourself or find a new application that offers what you need. Thankfully this is not a concern with HP Virtualization Performance Viewer (HP vPV) because it offers a number of out-of-the-box reports to make your job easier.

 

The reports offered by vPV can be broadly categorized as:

 

  • Inventory and configuration
  • Operational status
  • Trends of usage and activity
  • Top and bottom utilization
  • Distribution and summary among many others

They report on the infrastructure (compute, storage and network) of the monitored virtualized or cloud environments. The reports can be easily launched from the workbench function of vPV which was specifically designed for vSMEs with quick time-to-value and ease of use traits. These reports come pre-packaged and are available for short term review periods—when you simply need reporting for the last day, week or month.

 

A few reports that would aid in managing the VMware vSphere environment:

 

Thin provisioning allows you to provision more than the available datastore capacity for virtual machines. This employs the notion that all the virtual machines do not fully use the allocated space. It drives higher efficiency but because it takes advantage of the idea of over-subscription, but you still need to look out for out-of-space conditions. If provisioned space percentage is higher than 100 percent and the space usage is also high with an upward trend, some virtual machines might soon stop working due to a disk-space crunch, even if their disks are showing free space remaining.

 

vpv-datastore-space.jpgA trend chart that shows the usage and allocation over a period of time would certainly help to proactively manage such symptoms. The Datastore Utilization report for VMware vSphere environments provides an easy to comprehend view of the trends in disk space usage, free space availability and the provisioned space percentage for the datastore. The report essentially helps to assess the usage trend and plan for storage capacity.

 

Now, what if you could see this information for all the datastores in a datacenter? Then the Storage Overview Cross Tabulation report available for a VMware datacenter might interest you. This report accounts the storage space used and provisioned; it aggregates it for the datacenter as well as reports the capacity, utilization and provisioned percentages for the all datastores individually.

 

One of the pertinent questions for many VMware administrators is how to ascertain the efficiency of a cluster. Administrators want to know if the cluster can accommodate more virtual machine workloads. Can the cluster be optimized by removing hosts which can then be used elsewhere? How can the load be balanced among the hosts in the cluster? Is there a holistic view to check on the CPU and memory utilization and also the disk and network IO rates of the hosts that make up the cluster? The Host Distribution report for a VMware vSphere Cluster comes in handy during this situation. You can use this report to determine if the VMware cluster is under or over-utilized and to balance the workloads. This article gives you an in-depth explanation to determine the efficiency of a cluster.

 

vpv-cluster-host-distribution.jpg

 

Among the many responsibilities of a vSphere administrator, one best practice is to install and keep VMware Tools up-to-date in all the virtual machines. The many benefits of VMware Tools include optimized network, SCSI and graphic drivers, and enhanced memory management by reclaiming unused memory and overall VM performance improvement. When upgrading VMware Tools in all the VMs becomes a periodic exercise for any administrator, you can look into the VMware Tools Status report to check on its status in the virtual machines of a datacenter. This report gives you a list of the virtual machines on which the VMware Tools utilities is out-of-date (as well as a list of those up-to-date). More importantly, the report also includes the PowerCLI commandlet that you can run to update the VMWare Tools in each of the virtual machines.

 

vpv-vmware-tools-status.jpg

 

 

vpv-popular-vm.jpgConsidering that you are managing a self-service environment, it will be valuable to know the types of virtual machines that are prevalent and popular in the environment. This gives a glimpse into:

 

  • Understanding the growth and VM deployment patterns
  • Assessing resource requirements
  • Designing standardized templates
  • Enforcing guidelines to bring in consistency in the virtualized environment

 

The “VM configurations chart” available in the Datacenter Summary report for a VMware vSphere environment, provides the statistics of all the virtual machine configurations available in the datacenter, based on its vCPU and memory allocation. In this sample distribution chart, you can see that the majority of the virtual machines have a configuration of 4 vCPU and 8 GB memory.

 

The report also tables the distribution count across the guest operating systems like Linux and Windows and also the top 5 virtualized operating systems in the datacenter.

 

vpv-vm-os-count.jpg

 

 Here’s a video that takes you through many of the out-of-the-box reports provided by vPV:

 

 

 

HP Service Health Reporter content pack for HP Virtualization Performance Viewer

 

There have been requests from customers for customizable, long term reports. With the content pack that was recently released you get all of this and more. The ETL content pack integrates with vPV and extends the reporting capability into SHR for you to inspect the availability, health and performance of the virtualized environment. With SHR, you get to produce cross-domain reports, generate reports in multiple formats (PDF, MS Excel, CSV) based on a schedule and automatically email them. You can customize the existing reports and create your own Web Intelligence reports. The content pack works in both BSM RtSM based topology source deployment scenario as well as independently. The content pack can be downloaded from SHR’s Virtualization Performance Content space in HPLN.

 

You can download HP vPV here.

 

You can download SHR here.

 

Get more information

 

HP Virtualization Performance Viewer – hp.com/go/vpv

 

HP Virtualization Performance Viewer Forum – hp.com/go/vpvforum

 

HP Service Health Reporter – hp.com/go/shr

 

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About the Author
Pranesh Ramachandran is a Software Engineer working in HP Software’s System Management & Virtualization Monitoring products’ team. He has ex...


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