The Consumer \ Correct it? dashboard complements the main VM configuration dashboards by displaying the actual VMs, with their relevant information. The dashboard is designed for vSphere administrators and the platform team, to facilitate follow-up action with the VM owners. The Consumer \ Correct it? dashboard is one of the eight dashboards that check the environment for optimization opportunities.

Design Considerations

The dashboard is designed to focus on VMs that need attention. Lists are used to keep it simple, and show actual objects. The lists can be tailored using the filter and the custom group. The lists can also be exported for an offline discussion.

The dashboard is extendable, reflecting the reality that different customers have a different set of settings to verify. Since the dashboard layout is a collection of tables (List View), you can extend it by adding more tables. You can add more List View widgets to verify the VM configurations that your operations require.

How to Use the Dashboard

The Consumer\Correct it? dashboard is a collection of tables (List View), which can be reviewed independently. Click the object name to navigate to the Object Summary page to view more configurations. There can be valid reasons why specific configurations are not followed. It is recommended that you discuss best practices with VMware.

  • Tools Widgets:
    • Using VMware Tools has multiple benefits. For the list of benefits, refer to KB 340.
    • VMware Aria Operations uses VMware Tools to retrieve Guest OS metrics. Without this, right-sizing VM memory can be inaccurate, because the hypervisor metrics (VM Memory Consumed and VM Memory Active) are not designed to measure Windows or Linux memory utilization. ESXi VMkernel does not have visibility into the Guest OS for security reasons.
    • Independent software vendor (ISV) support is the most common reason that VMware Tools is not installed. The ISV vendor might claim that no additional software is installed in their appliance unless they have certified it. For more information about VMware Tools, see the VMware Tools documentation.
    • If VMware Tools is installed, there might be reasons why the application team deactivates it. The Infrastructure team should inform and educate their application team, and document the technical recommendations about why VMware Tools is recommended to be running all the time.
  • CPU Limits and Memory Widgets:
    • It is recommended that you do not use memory and CPU limits as it can result in an unpredictable performance. The Guest OS is not aware of this restriction as it is at the hypervisor level. It is recommended that you shrink the VM instead.
  • Guest OS Counters Missing Widget:
    • There is no visibility into the Guest OS performance counters because the requirements are not met. The memory counter is especially important as VM Consumed and VM Active are not replacements for Guest OS counters. See KB 55675 for more details.
  • Old Snapshot Widget:
    • Ensure that the snapshot is removed within one day after the change request. If not, it might result in a large snapshot and impact the performance of the VM.

Points to Note

  • Add a banner summary to the top of this dashboard so that you can verify if there is an incorrect confirmation. Add a scoreboard and select the World object and then collapse all the tables below. Create a super metric for each summary and apply it to the World object.
  • In a large environment, create a filter for this dashboard to help you to focus on a segment of the environment. Group it by a class of service such as, gold, silver, and bronze. Default the selection to gold, your most important environment. In this way, your monitoring is not cluttered with less critical workloads.
  • There are other VM configurations that maybe relevant to your environment. Review the list of VM settings that you might want to add to this dashboard.
  • For context, add a property widget that lists the selected VM properties. In this way, you can check the property of your interest without leaving the screen. Multiple List View widgets can drive the same property widget, so you do not have to create one property widget for each List View.
  • If your operations require it, add a list of VMs that do not have these three key performance counters: CPU Run Queue, CPU Context Switch, and Disk Queue Length.