Evaluate dependencies for infrastructure and application services that will be included in a vRealize Automation design.
One of vRealize Automations biggest selling points is its ability to provision various services and applications be they single tier services or multi-tier services including load balancers and network isolation via NSX. When you are creating a vRealize Automation design for your customers they will have a number of services and applications in mind that they want to make available for consumption via vRA. You job and the point of this section is that you need to discovery and evaluate all of the required infrastructure and application services required.
This can either be existing infrastructure needed by the applications or due to company policies so for example if you are provisioning multiple machines to test code and then commit it back depending on the success or failure then that existing infrastructure might be something like GIT. Or it might need to be tracked via a CMDB so an existing CMDB needs to be available and able to be communicated with via the infrastructure so that it can be logged and tracked. The infrastructure may also be something that needs to be created as part of the service so something like an NSX edge to isolate a service from existing services every time they are deployed would then need to be created as part of the service.
There are various ways to do this and from my experience doing a few normally allows you to cover it pretty well. These are:
· Interviews with existing service owners to understand how it is done at present (if it is being done at present that is)
· Existing documentation around service design if available.
· Design workshops with the current users of a service offering as well as the companies IT team and project sponsors to understand what they want the vRA offering to offer.
· Via usage of VMware vCenter™ Application Discovery Manager which monitors the existing environments, applications and infrastructure and gives you an overview of what the existing services are actually connected to and using for the service. This is a brilliant tool if you have it at your disposal and can also be used in conjunction with vRealize Infrastructure Navigator.
Create Entity Relationship Diagrams that map service relationships and dependencies.
These diagrams are normally created as part of the service design document you should be creating for each service offering you are planning to make available within vRA and so that it is easier to understand what all the interdependencies are between the various components that make up the service.
Don Ward has done a brilliant blog posting all about creating these relationship diagrams and has even given examples of ones.
For the exam they are most likely going to want you to do some drag and drop or even visio style questions for these diagrams so I would make sure you practice creating these kinds of diagrams in visio or paint for applications within your own environment
Analyze interfaces to be used with new and existing business processes.
This is vRealize Infrastructure Navigator work where VIN scans the environment and gives you a mapping of all interfaces that current services are using. There’s a BRILLIANT YouTube video by VMware that covers not just this heading but also the first heading https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uu0bGB7bc4A
Determine service dependencies for logical components.
For service dependencies you can use VIN again as the tool to determine this. The video mentioned above gives a great example of exchange dependencies.
Include service dependencies in a vRealize Automation logical design.
Personally I like to create separate design document for each service design rather than stick it into the vRA logical design but these can be portrayed either via the relationship diagrams or via flow charts showing the dependencies along with definitions of all the required components that make up the service offering.
Analyze services to identify upstream and downstream dependencies.
Again this can be done via VIN and Application Discovery Manager where you can ascertain what is required in what order so for example you will need a SQL database instance up and running before you can deploy a web services web servers and application servers.
Navigate logical components and their interdependencies and make decisions based upon all service relationships.
I take it they are looking for you to see a whole bunch of logical components and are told of their interdependencies and for you to then put them in the correct order to ensure it is built correctly.
- Datacenter Operational Excellence Through Automated Application Discovery and Dependency Mapping
- vRealize Infrastructure Navigator User-s Guide
- VMware Application Dependencies and Entity Relationship Diagrams MK2
If you think I have something wrong then please let me know as I don’t claim to know everything by any stretch