Workload Optimization enables you to optimize virtual machines and storage across datastore clusters to reduce resource contention and maintain optimum system performance.

Where You Find Workload Optimization

From the Home screen, select Workload Optimization under Optimize Performance in the left pane. From the Quick Start screen, select Workload Optimization in the left-most column.

Table 1. Workload Optimization Options

Option

Description

Select a data center.

Select a data center or custom data center from the carousel across the top of the page. All data following refreshes with information for the selected object.

Note:

If you point your cursor to the lower right of a data center graphic, a tooltip may appear to let you know that the data center is using automated optimization.

ALL DATACENTERS | X

Toggle: click ALL DATACENTERS on the upper right when you want to switch the view to a filtered list of all data centers. Click X to return to a carousel view of data centers.

View:

Filter results to include data centers, custom data centers, vRA-managed custom data centers, or all three. (Option appears if you select ALL DATACENTERS on the upper right.)

Group BY:

Filter results by criticality (most out of balance data centers/custom data centers listed first) or by the vCenter Server to which each data center belongs. (Option appears if you select ALL DATACENTERS on the upper right.)

Sort by:

Options (Options appear if you select ALL DATACENTERS on the upper right):

  • Alarm clock graphic - list data centers/custom data centers by time remaining.

  • Dollar sign - list data centers/custom data centers by potential cost savings with capacity optimization.

  • Scales graphic - Optimized.

Select data center or ADD NEW CUSTOM DATACENTER

Options (Options appear if you select ALL DATACENTERS on the upper right):

  • Select a data center from the carousel across the top of the page. All data following refreshes with information for the selected object.

  • Select ADD NEW CUSTOM DATACENTER to display a screen that enables you to define a custom data center.

Optimization Status/Optimization Recommendation

Appears when you select a data center or custom data center from the top of the screen.

Status:

  • Optimized - indicates that workloads are optimized based on the settings you entered in the neighboring Operational Intent window, with no tag violations based on the settings you entered in the Business Intent window.

  • Not Optimized - indicates that one of the following conditions is true: workloads are not optimized based on the settings you entered in the neighboring Operational Intent window AND/OR there are tag violations based on the settings you entered in the Business Intent window. In the event of tag violations, the offending tags are listed.

Four major Workload Optimization functions are accessed here:

  • OPTIMIZE NOW - runs optimizing actions based on the settings you entered in your Operational and Business Intent settings.

  • SCHEDULE - displays a dialog box enabling you to schedule one or more optimization actions. If schedules are currently set for data center or custom data center optimization, a check mark appears next to the data center or custom data center name.

  • AUTOMATE - continually seeks optimizing opportunities for data center or custom data center, based on the settings in the neighboring Operational Intent window or Business Intent windows. Scheduled optimizations are turned off while automatic optimization is on. Also, automated alerts are not operational when automatic optimization is on. Once you confirm automation, the system displays message, for example, 1) "Workload Optimization is looking for opportunities to automate," 2) "Your workloads are optimized according to your settings." or 3) "No eligible moves were found within the max number of compatibility checks allowed."

    Note:

    To initiate Automation, you must have privileges for Environment -> Action -> Schedule Optimize Container.

  • TURN OFF AUTOMATION - stops automatic optimization. Any scheduled optimizations come back online.

  • Check the History tab above the Recent Tasks under Administration to see what optimization actions have been taken.

Note:

Sometimes an optimizing action may be recommended, for example to consolidate two hosts, but when you run the optimization, the generated placement plan does not show any potential consolidation. The seeming inconsistency results from the fact that recommended optimization actions are based on current conditions, whereas the placement plan logic includes forecasting. If forecasting predicts that consolidation can incur stress in the future, then consolidation is not recommended.

History

Displays a graphical depiction of executed manual and automated optimizations for clusters in the selected data center or custom data center, based on parameters you provide.

  • Selected WLP process - the optimization action whose details you want to display.

  • Last n hours - select the time parameter: last 6, 12, 24 hours or last 7 days.

  • Quick filter - choose a cluster name to search on.

  • Squares graphic - toggle between viewing processes in icon or circle form.

  • Circle - toggle between viewing processes presented in a circle or on a straight line.

  • Back arrow - reset action.

If you point your cursor to a specific cluster as displayed on the screen, the details of the cluster appear in a tool tip. Click the note card icon on the lower right of the tool tip to go to the Details screen for the cluster. When displayed in the circle format, rings in the circle indicate how much CPU and how much memory was used at any given time. For example, if memory usage was higher than recommended based on your policy settings, the memory circle appears red.

Note the timeline across the bottom of the screen. When you choose parameters, for example, WLP process name, time parameter and cluster name, indicators appear along the timeline, showing when processes were initiated.

To zero in on a specific event, choose a process from the drop-down menu. You can also click points on the marker floating above the timeline, which causes a descriptive tool tip to appear, then double-click the 'Double-click to zoom' icon on the lower right.

If the event you choose includes an actual movement of VMs, you see a blue ball containing the number of VMs moved and showing the direction of the move and starting and ending clusters.

Operational Intent

Utilization Objective: indicates the main attribute of your current automation policy settings. Values are moderate, consolidate, or balance.

EDIT - displays the Workload Automation Policy Settings, where you can adjust settings for optimization and cluster headroom.

Business Intent

Allows you to define zones of infrastructure within cluster boundaries. For example, you can ensure that during workload optimization actions, Windows VMs are moved only to Windows-licensed clusters and Oracle VMs are moved only to Oracle-licensed clusters. Alternatively, you can create categories and tags based on VM-to-host relationships.

To edit Business Intent values, you must have privileges for Administration -> Configuration -> Workload Placement Settings -> Edit.

EDIT - displays a workspace where you can select criteria for placement of VMs.

Are your clusters meeting your utilization objective?

Data shows CPU workload, memory workload, DRS settings, and migration threshold for each cluster. Migration thresholds are based on DRS priority levels, and are computed based on the workload imbalance metric for the cluster.

Provides the option to set the DRS automation level for individual objects.

VIEW DRS SUMMARY

Select a cluster in the list, then click this link to display a page containing metrics for DRS performance and cluster balance in the selected data center.

SET DRS AUTOMATION

Select a cluster in the list, then click this link to set the level of the DRS automation for the cluster. Note that clusters must be fully automated in order for workload optimization alerts to run actions set in the policies.

See also Example: Run Workload Optimization