When you have several applications or when you have multiple tiers in an application, creating applications using the public APIs or the user interface becomes a long process. vRealize Network Insight Cloud auto-discovers the applications and enables you to add the applications and their tiers automatically, which reduces a lot of manual effort.

vRealize Network Insight Cloud can perform Application Discovery based on:

An example of the application discovery construct

Consider a scenario where you have:
  • Added VMware vCenter server as a data source.
  • Added four VMs in your data center - VM1, VM2, VM3, and VM4.
  • Defined tags (key-value) that defines the application names to which each VMs belong.
  • Defined tags (key-value) that defines the tier to which each VMs belong.
For example, see the table:
VM Name Key-value tags
VM1
  • Application Name: MyApplication1
  • Application Tier: App
VM2
  • Application Name: MyApplication1
  • Application Tier: Web
VM3
  • Application Name: MyApplication2
  • Application Tier: App
VM4
  • Application Name: MyApplication2
  • Application Tier: Web

Discover applications based on tags

vRealize Network Insight Cloud, you can define a grouping criteria for application discovery for these tags.

In this example, based on the defined tags and grouping criteria, vRealize Network Insight Cloud discovers two applications (MyApplication1 and MyApplication2) with two tiers (App and Web) and its related VMs.
Application Tiers and its VMs
MyApplication1
  • App and VM1
  • Web and VM2
MyApplication2
  • App and VM3
  • Web and VM4

Discover applications and tiers based on VM names

If the VM names are defined in the following format:

ApplicationName : Tier : VMName.

For example,
MyApplication1 : App : VM1
MyApplication1 : Web : VM2
MyApplication2 : App : VM3
MyApplication2 : Web : VM4
When you use the following regular expression (regex), vRealize Network Insight Cloud discovers two applications.
  • App Regex: (.*)_(.*)_.*-.*
  • Tier Regex: (.*)_(.*)_(.*)-.*
Application Tiers and its VMs
MyApplication1
  • App and MyApplication1 : App : VM1
  • Web and MyApplication1 : Web : VM2
MyApplication2
  • App and MyApplication2 : App : VM3
  • Web and MyApplication2 : Web : VM4
Note: Randomly defined VM names cannot be grouped for application discovery.

Discover applications based on flows

vRealize Network Insight Cloud uses machine learning and statistical analysis to discover applications automatically and group the VMs into their respective applications and tiers. vRealize Network Insight Cloud analyzes the network flow between the VMs and groups the VMs by identifying the application and the tier boundaries between these VMs.

The system analyzes the flows on multiple dimensions such as density of the flows between VMs, common open ports between VMs, number of incoming against outgoing connections, and so on, and groups VMs with high similarity across these dimensions into a unique application. The process repeats again, but only among the VMs that are already grouped into an application, and to group VMs into their respective tiers.

Note:

To discover applications based on flows, you must match the following minimum requirements:

  • Have at least 10 VMs discovered in vRealize Network Insight Cloud.
  • Have at least 100 VM-VM flows.