If you are running a business critical workload in a VMware Virtualized datacenter proactive analytics, fast and environment specific remediation and recommendations are one of the key factors come in the first place. VMware is trying to achieve these measures with the innovative support technology and trying to deliver the maximum visibility of the datacenters to their customers.
Recently, VMware released VMware Skyline as one of the best proactive measures to address the above requirements and deliver the break-fixes to these issues before they actually appear in the customer datacenters.
Key benefits of VMware Skyline:
- Proactively identify and prevent problems
- Solve problems, not just symptoms
- Improve reliability and scalability
- Shift IT focus from problem solving to business improvement
- Reduce the problem solving time
This VMware Skyline solution includes components in customer site and the VMware cloud.
Customer Site : VMware Skyline virtual appliance collector collects details such as configuration, features and performance data. Appliance must be registered with the VMware account and limited customer interaction required.
VMware Site: VMware cloud platform receives the data from the collector and performs the analysis such as determine alignments with the VMware best practices. VMware compare the licences and determine whether there are any known issues and bugs in the system and provide the proactive measures before it appear in the customer’s infrastructure.
VMware Technical Support Engineers (TSEs): VMware engineers use these collected data to provide proactive support to the customers along with the best practises.
VMware Skyline Deployment
VMware Skyline Collector deployment is not a big deal and it’s a simple appliance deployment in your in house VMware vCenter and ESXi environment.
Download the VMware Skyline appliance from My VMware download page. Click the Download button to download the appliance.
Once downloaded the OVF appliance deploy it as a generic appliance deployment. I’m not showing all the steps of the appliance deployment in this post, only the important steps are there.
Accept the Licence agreement and click Next
Provide the root password and the IP address configuration
Review the summary and complete the deployment
Open the browser and login to the appliance using http://<IP_ADDRESS>/login to login to the Skyline collector and continue the configuration
Click on wizard to continue the configuration in the dashboard
In the first step of the Registration you can change the password of the appliance
Set the proxy if you have one
Enter My VMware account details and validate the account
Successful validation will give you the collector id , click continue to continue the configuration
You can see the registered validated entitlement in the next window, click continue
You can review the documentation if you want
In the next step you can configure the vCenter server, provide the details such as IP address (host address), vCenter Read-only account (if you don’t have one setup an account with the read-only access), password, SSO admin and STS url, click ADD to add the vCenter server
You can see the details in the dashboard as below and you can follow the same step to add a NSX Manager to the Skyline collector in the same way
This is the sample VMware Skyline report (image courtesy VMware)
Download and installation was really easy, it was just a generic OVF deployment IP address and all the other configuration parameters inserted during the installation as shown in the above screen captures. Once deployed the appliance as a OVF deployment, it was able to connect using the web browser. Configuration wizard ran after that and had to add the My VMware account to validate and check the contract. We were eligible to the BCS support and it was picked automatically.
Still we haven’t got the actual Skyline report from VMware and haven’t got a chance to log a support request from VMware Support, so I’m not able to provide any feedback on the report and the support. So far it was really easy to deploy and configure the appliance. Based on my experience I have rated the Skyline appliance.
Great article Aruna. I agree, the download, install & configure is easy. I would love to hear your feedback once your receive your first OSR.
— Nick Fritsch (@nfritsch) February 19, 2018