Understand the settings and options that you can configure for a vSphere machine component in the vRealize Automation blueprint design canvas.

General Tab

Configure general settings for a vSphere machine component.

Table 1. General Tab Settings
Setting Description
ID

Enter a name for your machine component, or accept the default.

Description

Summarize your machine component for the benefit of other architects.

Display location on request

In a cloud environment, such as vCloud Air, this allows users to select a region for their provisioned machines.

For a virtual environment, you can allow users to select a data center location at which to provision a requested machine. A system administrator must add data center information to a locations file. A fabric administrator must edit a compute resource to associate it with a location.

See Scenario: Add Datacenter Locations for Cross Region Deployments and Scenario: Apply a Location to a Compute Resource for Cross Region Deployments.

Reservation policy

Apply a reservation policy to a blueprint to restrict the machines provisioned from that blueprint to a subset of available reservations. Only the reservation policies that are applicable to the current tenant are available.

For information about creating reservation policies, see Configure a Reservation Policy.

Machine prefix

Machine prefixes are used to name provisioned machines. If you select Use group default, machines are named based on the default machine prefix for your business group. If you do not specify a prefix, one is generated for you based your business group name. Only the machine prefixes that are applicable to the current tenant are available.

If your fabric administrator configures other machine prefixes for you to select, you can apply one prefix to all machines provisioned from your blueprint, no matter who the requestor is.

For information about creating machine prefixes, see Configure Machine Prefixes.

Instances: Minimum and Maximum

Configure the maximum and minimum number of instances users can request for a deployment or for a scale in or scale out action. Entering the same value in the Minimum and Maximum fields configures exactly how many instances to provision.

XaaS components are not scalable and are not updated during a scale operation. If you are using XaaS components in your blueprint, you might create a resource action for users to run after a scale operation, which might either scale or update your XaaS components as required. You can disable scaling by configuring the number of instances to allow for each machine component.

Build Information Tab

Configure build information settings for a vSphere machine component.

Table 2. Build Information Tab
Setting Description

Blueprint type

For record-keeping and licensing purposes, select whether machines provisioned from this blueprint are classified as Desktop or Server.

Action

The options you see in the action drop-down menu depend on the type of machine you select.

The following actions are available:
  • Create

    Create the machine component specification without use of a cloning option.

  • Clone

    Make copies of a virtual machine from a template and customization object.

  • Linked Clone

    Provision a space-efficient copy of a virtual machine called a linked clone. Linked clones are based on a snapshot of a VM and use a chain of delta disks to track differences from a parent machine.

    Before you provision linked clone VMs, power off the VM snapshot.

  • NetApp FlexClone

    If your reservations use NetApp FlexClone storage, you can clone space-efficient copies of machines.

Provisioning workflow

The options you see in the provisioning workflow drop-down menu depend on the type of machine you select, and the action you select.

  • BasicVmWorkflow

    Provision a machine with no guest operating system.

  • ExternalProvisioningWorkflow

    Create a machine by starting from either a virtual machine instance or cloud-based image.

  • ImportOvfWorkflow

    Allows you to deploy a vSphere virtual machine from an OVF template in the same manner as a CloneWorkflow allows you to deploy a vSphere virtual machine from a virtual machine template. You can import to a vSphere component in a machine blueprint or to an Image component profile for a parameterized blueprint.

  • LinuxKickstartWorkflow

    Provision a machine by booting from an ISO image, using a kickstart or autoYaSt configuration file and a Linux distribution image to install the operating system on the machine.

  • VirtualSccmProvisioningWorkflow

    Provision a machine and pass control to an SCCM task sequence to boot from an ISO image, deploy a Windows operating system, and install the vRealize Automation guest agent.

  • WIMImageWorkflow

    Provision a machine by booting into a WinPE environment and installing an operating system using a Windows Imaging File Format (WIM) image of an existing Windows reference machine.

When using a WIM provisioning workflow in a blueprint, specify a storage value that accounts for the size of each disk to be used on the machine. Use the total value of all disks as the minimum storage value for the machine component. Also specify a size for each disk that is large enough to accommodate the operating system.

Clone from

Select a machine template to clone from. You can refine the list of available templates by using the Filters option in each column drop-down menu.

For Linked Clone, you only see machines that have available snapshots to clone from and that you manage as a tenant administrator or business group manager.

You can only clone from templates that exist on machines that you manage as a business group manager or tenant administrator.

Clone from snapshot

For Linked Clone, select an existing snapshot to clone from based on the selected machine template. Machines only appear in the list if they already have an existing snapshot, and if you manage that machine as a tenant administrator or business group manager.

If you select Use current snapshot, the clone is defined with the same characteristics as the latest state of the virtual machine. If you instead want to clone relative to an actual snapshot, click the drop-down menu option and select the specific snapshot from the list.

Note: Use of the term snapshot can be confusing. If you select an existing snapshot, the option creates a new disk that is parented by the snapshot. The Use current snapshot option has no base disk to use as a parent and silently performs a full clone action. As a workaround, you can create snapshots on the base disk, or use a vRealize Orchestrator workflow to create a snapshot and then clone immediately from the snapshot.

This option is only available for the Linked Clone action.

Customization spec

Specify an available customization specification. A customization spec is required only if you are cloning with static IP addresses.

You cannot perform customization of Windows machines without a customization specification. For Linux clone machines, you can perform customization by using a customization spec, an external script, or both.

Machine Resources Tab

Specify CPU, memory, and storage settings for a vSphere machine component.

Table 3. Machine Resources Tab
Setting Description

CPUs: Minimum and Maximum

Enter a minimum and maximum number of CPUs that can be used by provisioned machines.

Memory (MB): Minimum and Maximum

Enter the minimum and maximum amount of memory that can be used by provisioned machines.

Storage (GB): Minimum and Maximum

Enter a minimum and maximum amount of storage that can be used by provisioned machines.

When using a WIM provisioning workflow in a blueprint, specify a storage value that accounts for the size of each disk to be used on the machine. Use the total value of all disks as the minimum storage value for the machine component. Also specify a size for each disk that is large enough to accommodate the operating system.

Storage Tab

You can add storage volume settings, including one or more storage reservation policies, to the machine component to control storage space.

Table 4. Storage Tab Settings
Setting Description

ID

Enter an ID or name for the storage volume.

Capacity (GB)

Enter the storage capacity for the storage volume.

Drive Letter/Mount Path

Enter a drive letter or mount path for the storage volume.

This option is used during provisioning in association with a guest agent. It cannot be changed after machine provisioning. If you are not using a guest agent, this option is ignored.

Label

Enter a label for the drive letter and mount path for the storage volume.

This option is used during provisioning in association with a guest agent. It cannot be changed after machine provisioning. If you are not using a guest agent, this option is ignored.

Storage Reservation Policy

Enter the existing storage reservation policy to use with this storage volume. Only the storage reservation policies that are applicable to the current tenant are available.

Custom Properties

Enter any custom properties to use with this storage volume.

Maximum volumes

Enter the maximum number of allowed storage volumes that can be used when provisioning from the machine component. Enter 0 to prevent others from adding storage volumes. The default value is 60.

Allow users to see and change storage reservation policies

Select the check box to allow users to remove an associated reservation policy or specify a different reservation policy when provisioning.

Network Tab

You can configure network settings for a vSphere machine component based on NSX network and load balancer settings that are configured outside vRealize Automation. You can use settings from one or more existing and on-demand NSX network components in the design canvas.

For related information, see Configuring Network and Security Component Settings in vRealize Automation and New Blueprint and Blueprint Properties Page Settings with NSX in vRealize Automation.

Table 5. Network Tab Settings
Setting Description

Network

Select a network component from the drop-down menu. Only network components that exist in the design canvas are listed. Only the network profiles that are applicable to the current tenant are available.

The network you select determines network type and also whether the cluster to be deployed on the network is managed by NSX for vSphere or NSX-T.

Assignment Type

Accept the default assignment derived from the network component or select an assignment type from the drop-down menu. The DHCP and Static option values are derived from settings in the network component.

Address

Specify the IP address for the network. The option is available only for the static address type.

Load Balancing

Enter the service to use for load balancing.

Custom Properties

Display custom properties that are configured for the selected network component or network profile.

Maximum network adapters

Specify the maximum number of network adapters, or NICs, to allow for this machine component. The default is unlimited. Set to 0 to disable adding NICs for the machine components.

Security Tab

You can configure security settings for a vSphere machine component based on NSX settings that are configured outside vRealize Automation. You an optionally use settings from existing and on-demand NSX security components in the design canvas.

The security settings from existing and on-demand security group and security tag components in the design canvas are automatically available.

For information about adding and configuring NSX network and security components before using security tab settings on a vSphere machine component, see Configuring Network and Security Component Settings in vRealize Automation.

For information about specifying NSX information that applies to all the vSphere machine components in the blueprint, see New Blueprint and Blueprint Properties Page Settings with NSX in vRealize Automation.

Table 6. Security Tab Settings
Setting Description

Name

Display the name of an NSX security group or tag. The names are derived from security components in the design canvas.

Select the check box next to a listed security group or tag to use that group or tag for provisioning from this machine component.

Type

Indicate if the security element is an on-demand security group, an existing security group, or a security tag.

Description

Display the description defined for the security group or tag.

Endpoint

Display the endpoint used by the NSX security group or tag.

Properties Tab

Specify custom property and property group information for a vSphere machine component.

You can add individual and groups of custom properties to the machine component by using the Properties tab. You can add also custom properties and property groups to the overall blueprint by using the Properties tab when you create or edit a blueprint by using the Blueprint Properties page.

You can use the Custom Properties tab to add and configure options for existing custom properties. Custom properties are supplied with vRealize Automation and you can also create property definitions.

Table 7. Properties > Custom Properties Tab Settings
Setting Description

Name

Enter the name of a custom property or select an available custom property from the drop-down menu. Properties only appear in the drop-down menu if your tenant administrator or fabric administrator created property definitions.

Value

Enter or edit a value to associate with the custom property name. For example, set the value as true to allow entitled users to connect to VMs by using SSH.

Encrypted

You can choose to encrypt the property value, for example if the value is a password.

Overridable

You can specify that the property value can be overridden by the next or subsequent person who uses the property. If you select Show in request, users can edit property values when they request catalog items.

Show in Request

You can display the property name and value to users when they request machine provisioning. Select the overridable option if you want users to provide a value.

You can use the Property Groups tab to add and configure settings for existing custom property groups. You can create your own property groups or use property groups that have been created for you.

Table 8. Properties > Property Groups Tab Settings
Setting Description

Name

Select an available property group from the drop-down menu.

Move Up and Move Down

Control the precedence level of property groups in descending order. The first-listed property group has precedence over the next-listed property group and so on.

View Properties

Display the custom properties in the selected property group.

View Merged Properties

Display custom properties in the order they appear in the list of property groups. Where the same property appears in more than one group, the property appears once in the list based on when it is first encountered.

Profiles Tab

Component profiles provide a means of parameterizing blueprints. For example, rather than creating separate blueprints, you can create a small, medium, and large capability in a single blueprint. You can select a blueprint size during deployment. Component profiles are designed to simplify your catalog.

If you have created value sets for the supplied vRealize Automation component profiles Size and Image, you can configure those machine component settings in the blueprint. You can also select a different value set when you deploy the catalog item.

Component profiles are only available for vSphere machine components.

A component profile overrides settings on the machine component, such as number of CPUs and storage.

The component profile value set is applied to all vSphere machines in a cluster.

You cannot reconfigure machines by using the Size or Image component profiles. The range of CPU, memory, and storage is calculated from the profile remains available for reconfigure actions. For example, use a small (1 CPU, 1024 MB memory, and 10 GB storage), medium (3 CPUs, 2048 MB memory, 12 GB storage) and large (5 CPUs, 3072 MB memory, 15 GB storage) Size value set. The available ranges during machine reconfiguration are 1-5 CPUs, 1024-3072 memory, and 1-15 GB storage.

For more information, see Understanding and Using Blueprint Parameterization.

For more information, see Defining Component Profile Settings.

Table 9. Profiles Tab Settings
Setting Description
Add Add the Size or Image component profile.
Edit Value Sets Assign one or more value sets for the selected component profile by selecting from a list of defined value sets. You can select one of the value sets as the default.
Remove Remove the Size or Image component profile.