Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 & vCenter Customization Specifications

While on a vRealize Automation 6.2 engagement, the customer wanted to be able to deploy Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7 VMs from a blueprint. The customer has prepared a RHEL 7 Template for me to use for deployment. I have created as well a vCenter Customization Specification to customize the VM and apply the desired IP Address & Host Name to VMs as they get deployed. While VMs deployment worked smoothly,  I have noticed no customization was carried out. I have tried to deploy VMs from the template directly using vCenter to test my vCenter Customization Specification and that did not work either, which eliminated vRA of being the source of the issue.

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As many others can still face the same issue with or without vRA, as its a vCenter Customization Specification related issue rather than vCloud Automation Center, I have decided to document what we had to do to fix it:

1- Make sure you are running vSphere Components (vCenter/ESXi/VMware Tools) versions that support your version of Red Hat Enterprise. For RHEL 7 the guest customization started being supported at vCenter 5.5U2 as per VMware Guest OS Customization support in vCenter Document.

2- Make sure to install VMware version of VMware tools.Read More

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization RHEV-M Demo

It seems Red Had is shifting their focus from Xen as their virtualization platform to KVM. Their new Red Hat Enterprise Virtualizaiton solution is based on KVM. It seems that Red Hat Enterprise Virtualizaiton Solution, when combined with their new management tool called RHEV-M will offer many advanced features.

Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Solution seems to successfully copy many of VMware and other Virtualization vendors features like:

1- Live Migration
2- Load Distribution
3- Clustering & High Availability
4- Memory over Commitment
5- Transparent Memory Page sharing
6- Virtual Machine Snapshot
7- Host maintenance mode & many other feature.

If you have been using VMware for a while all these features should be familiar to you, though Red Hat are promising that their pricing model will be much cheaper than VMware. I have not got to see Red Hat pricing yet, and it will be too early to compare the two products pricing. Before sharing a video of Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization with you, I believe its worth to mention that reading Red Hat data sheet of the product as well watching their marketing demo video make Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization seem too good to be true for the kind of pricing Red hat is promising to offer.… Read More

Redhat announces a change in Virtualization Strategy

Redhat has announced an interesting change in their virtualization strategy. They seems to dump Xen for KVM in their upcoming releases. This will be a happy news for a lot of open source lovers. As Citrix & Microsoft are controlling the way Xen is evolving, they would rather a real open source alternative. Redhat has a good announcement found at Red Hat Sets Its Virtualization Agenda clearing up the confusion of their Virtualization Strategy after they had obtained Qumranet in the last quarter of 2008.

A brief of the planned changes quoted from Redhat annoucement is below:

  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux: Red Hat’s strategic direction for the future development of its virtualization product portfolio is based on KVM, making Red Hat the only virtualization vendor leveraging technology that is developed as part of the Linux operating system. Existing Xen-based deployments will continue to be supported for the full lifetime of Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5, and Red Hat will provide a variety of tools and services to enable customers to migrate from their Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5 Xen deployment to KVM.
  • Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager for Servers: A new, richly featured virtualization management solution for servers that will be the first open source product in the industry to allow fully integrated management across virtual servers and virtual desktops, featuring Live Migration, High Availability, System Scheduler, Power Manager, Image manager, Snapshots, thin provisioning, monitoring and reporting.
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