VMware Hands-on Labs - HOL-1811-03-SDC

Lab Overview - HOL-1811-03-SDC - vSphere with Operations Management: Advanced Topics

Lab Guidance

Note: It will take more than 90 minutes to complete this lab. You should expect to only finish 2-3 of the modules during your time.  The modules are independent of each other so you can start at the beginning of any module and proceed from there. You can use the Table of Contents to access any module of your choosing.

The Table of Contents can be accessed in the upper right-hand corner of the Lab Manual.

You are about to embark on a hands-on journey  to learn about Advanced Topics in vSphere with Operations Management.  This lab will walk you through step-by-step, so basic vShere with Operations Management experience  is not necessary, but it is helpful. If you would like to learn the  basics, VMware recommends also taking our lab titled "HOL-1811-02-SDC - Getting Started with vSphere with Operations Manager."

Explore five advanced modules that dive deeper into the exciting  capabilities of vSphere with Operations Management. A wide range of  topics are covered, including Content Library, Distributed Switches,  Auto Deploy, vRealize Operations, and more!

vSphere  with Operations Management adds new architecture options that can  improve availability and manageability. See how advancements in storage and  networking capabilities leave the competition generations behind!

The lab is divided into 5 Modules which can be taken in any order:

Lab Module List:

 Lab Captain:


This lab manual can be downloaded from the Hands-on Labs Document site found here:


This lab may be available in other languages.  To set your language preference and have a localized manual deployed with your lab, you may utilize this document to help guide you through the process:



Location of the Main Console


  1. The area in the RED box contains the Main Console.  The Lab Manual is on the tab to the Right of the Main Console.
  2. A particular lab may have additional consoles found on separate tabs in the upper left. You will be directed to open another specific console if needed.
  3. Your lab starts with 90 minutes on the timer.  The lab can not be saved.  All your work must be done during the lab session.  But you can click the EXTEND to increase your time.  If you are at a VMware event, you can extend your lab time twice, for up to 30 minutes.  Each click gives you an additional 15 minutes.  Outside of VMware events, you can extend your lab time up to 9 hours and 30 minutes. Each click gives you an additional hour.



Alternate Methods of Keyboard Data Entry

During this module, you will input text into the Main Console. Besides directly typing it in, there are two very helpful methods of entering data which make it easier to enter complex data.



Click and Drag Lab Manual Content Into Console Active Window

You can click and drag text and Command Line Interface (CLI) commands directly from the Lab Manual into the active window in the Main Console.  



Accessing the Online International Keyboard


You can also use the Online International Keyboard found in the Main Console.

  1. Click on the Keyboard Icon found on the Windows Quick Launch Task Bar.



Activation Prompt or Watermark


When you first start your lab, you may notice a watermark on the desktop indicating that Windows is not activated.  

One of the major benefits of virtualization is that virtual machines can be moved and run on any platform.  The Hands-on Labs utilizes this benefit and we are able to run the labs out of multiple datacenters.  However, these datacenters may not have identical processors, which triggers a Microsoft activation check through the Internet.

Rest assured, VMware and the Hands-on Labs are in full compliance with Microsoft licensing requirements.  The lab that you are using is a self-contained pod and does not have full access to the Internet, which is required for Windows to verify the activation.  Without full access to the Internet, this automated process fails and you see this watermark.

This cosmetic issue has no effect on your lab.  



Look at the lower right portion of the screen


Please check to see that your lab is finished all the startup routines and is ready for you to start. If you see anything other than "Ready", please wait a few minutes.  If after 5 minutes your lab has not changed to "Ready", please ask for assistance.


Module 1 - Advanced Storage Features (30 minutes)


This Module contains the following lesson:

Storage Policy-Based Management and Control

VMware vSphere Storage Policy Based Management is a key part of implementing Software Defined Storage, which in term is essential to a Software Defined Datacenter. Storage IO Control is one of the tools you have to help enable and build the policies that will allow you to automate common storage management tasks. Storage IO control monitors the end to end latency of your datastores. When the latency is higher than a configured value, this is seen as latency. Storage IO Control then uses the rules and policies you define to throttle back low priority VMs that may be using excessive IO. This allows you to make sure that high priority VMs that need access to storage will get it.

In practice, Storage IO control works in the same way as Resource Shares do for memory and compute. Turning on Storage IO Control without adjusting the shares means all your VMs will have equal access to storage. VMs that have a higher share value will get greater access to the storage. As with Resource shares, these SIOC shares are proportional. For example, a VM that has 1000 shares will get access to storage twice as often as VM with 500 shares, but half as often as one with 2000 shares.

This module will cover some new policy-based management integration with Storage IO Control. Through this integration you can define IO limits, reservations, and shares as part of your storage policies and apply them to your virtual machines.

In this lesson you will go through some of the key screens for these new functionalities and become familiar with these new capabilities.

You will create three storage policies and then configure a VM to use a policy.


Open Chrome Browser from Windows Quick Launch Task Bar


  1. Click on the Chrome Icon on the Windows Quick Launch Task Bar.



Log into vCenter


Log into RegionA vCenter

  1. Click on RegionA vCenter in the bookmark toolbar.
  2. Check the Use Windows session authentication checkbox.
  3. Click the Login button.



Gain screen space in Chrome by zooming out


  1. Select the Options menu in Chrome.
  2. Click the '-' button to zoom out to 90%

Note that this will provide more viewing space while still allowing you to read the text. This is necessary because of the lower than normal resolution we must use in the lab environment to support various devices and to accomodate large-scale events.



Navigate VM Storage Policies


  1. Click on Home Icon
  2. Click on Policies and Profiles



Create Storage IO Control Policies


In this task you will create a storage policy for Storage IO Control. You will be repeating these steps to create three storage policies named:

  1. Select vcsa-01a.corp.local in the vCenter Server drop down box.



Provision a Virtual Machine with "Standard IO" Policy


Use the policies that were created:

  1. Click on the Home Icon on top of the page
  2. Click on VMs and Templates



In this module you were able to create three storage policies with different settings and apply one of those policies to a newly created VM. These policies are the foundation for Storage Policy-Based Management and Control, which is a key way to reduce your operations overhead when managing storage.


You've finished Module 1

Congratulations on completing Module 1.

If you are looking for additional information on storage, VSAN, or Storage-Policy Based Management, try one of these:

Proceed to any module below which interests you most.




How to End Lab


If this is the last module you would like to take in this lab, you may end your lab by clicking on the END button.    


Module 2 - Advanced Networking Features (30 minutes)


This Module contains the following lessons:

vSphere Standard Switch (vSS, vSwitch) vs vSphere Distributed Switch (vDS, dvSwitch)

There are two types of virtual switches in vSphere, vNetwork Standard Switch (vSS) and vNetwork Distributed Switch (vDS).

There are two ways to license the vNetwork Distributed Switch (vDS):


vSphere Standard Switch (vSS, vSwitch)

The configuration of each vSwitch resides on the specific ESXi/ESX host. Administrators have to manually maintain consistency of the vSS configuration across all ESXi/ESX hosts to ensure that they can perform operations such as vMotion.

vSS are configured on each ESXi/ESX host independately.




vSphere Distributed Switch (vDS, dvSwitch)

The configuration of vDS is centralized to vCenter Server. The ESXi hosts that belong to a vDS do not need further configuration to be compliant.

Distributed switches provide similar functionality to vSwitches. A dvPortgroup is a set of dvPorts. The dvSwitch equivalent of portgroups is a set of ports in a vSwitch. Configuration is inherited from dvSwitch to dvPortgroup, just as from vSwitch to Portgroup.

Virtual machines, Service Console interfaces (vswif), and VMKernel interfaces can be connected to dvPortgroups just as they could be connected to portgroups in vSwitches.

Administrative rights are required to create these virtual adapters on each ESXi/ESX host dvSwitch in vCenter Server:



Comparing vSphere Standard Switch with vSphere Distributed Switch

These features are available with both types of virtual switches:

These features are available only with a Distributed Switch (vDS, dvSwitch):



Video:VMware vSphere Distributed Switch (3:13)

Here is a short video on the benefits on the vNetwork Distributed Switch


Introduction to NSX

VMware NSX is the leading network virtualization platform that delivers the operational model of a virtual machine for the network. Just as server virtualization provides extensible control of virtual machines running on a pool of server hardware, network virtualization with NSX provides a centralized API to provision and configure many isolated logical networks that run on a single physical network.

Logical networks decouple virtual machine connectivity and network services from the physical network, giving cloud providers and enterprises the flexibility to place or migrate virtual machines anywhere in the data center while still supporting layer-2 / layer-3 connectivity and layer 4-7 network services.

Below are some great labs that will dive into NSX and its features and use cases

HOL-1803-01-NET - Getting Started with VMware NSX - VMware NSX is the platform for Network Virtualization. You will gain hands-on experience with Logical Switching, Distributed Logical Routing, Dynamic Routing, Distributed Firewall and Logical Network Services.

HOL-1803-02-NET - VMware NSX: Distributed Firewall with Micro-Segmentation - In this lab we will explore use cases around VMware NSX and Micro-Segmentation, including more in depth reviews of the Distributed Firewall and Service Composer UI.

HOL-1803-02-NET - VMware NSX Operations & Visibility - In this lab we will explore use case topics around Operations and Visibility in VMware NSX. You will gain hands-on experiance with NSX tools such as Traceflow, CentralCLI, Flow Monitoring, and Application Rule Manager and End Point Monitoring.

HOL-1805-01-SDC - Site Recovery Manager - Data Center Migration and Disaster Recovery - Learn how to minimize risk and reduce downtime for your applications and services with Site Recovery Manager (SRM) and NSX.

HOL-1820-01-EMT - Introduction to VMware Integrated OpenStack - Learn how to deploy a production grade implementation of OpenStack with VMware Integrated OpenStack (VIO) on vSphere.

HOL-1825-02-NET - VMware NSX Advanced Consumption - This lab covers advanced NSX topics and builds on the basics learned in the "Getting Started with VMware NSX (HOL-1803-01-NET)" lab.  

HOL-1803-01-NET - vRealize Network Insight - Getting Started - This lab explores the functionality of vRealize Network Insight (vRNI) Discover how vRNI helps with micro-segmentation, compliance, optimizing network performance across networks, ensuring health and availability of NSX, and management of AWS networking.

HOL-1826-01-NET - VMware NSX-T: Introduction to NSX-T - This lab explores VMware NSX-T, our multi-hypervisor platform for building developers clouds and hosting next-gen apps.

HOL-1822-01-NET - Securing Native Workloads in AWS using VMware NSX - In this lab we will explore how VMware's NSXaaS on Public Clous (AWS) provides micro-segmentation to native instances running in AWS.


This module explained the various ways that you can enable networking features and functions in a virtual enviroment. This ranged from the simple with the vSphere Standard Switch, to the full featured vSphere Distributed Switch, and then to the Enterprise-Grade NSX.


You've finished Module 2

Congratulations on completing Module 2.

If you are looking for additional information on networking, try one of these:

Proceed to any module below which interests you most.




How to End Lab


If this is the last module you would like to take in this lab, you may end your lab by clicking on the END button.    


Module 3 - Cross vCenter vMotion (15 minutes)


This Module contains the following lessons:

Migrating Virtual Machines from vCenter to vCenter

Cross vCenter vMotion

The use of Cross vCenter vMotion (x-vC-vMotion) allows for migration of VM's between vCenters that are in the same or different datacenters. This feature allows administrators to easily move VM's between vCenters without down time. The vCenters can be in the same data center or another data center with no mare than 150 milliseconds of latency between the datacenters.

Requirements for Migration Between vCenter Server Instances


Open Chrome Browser from Windows Quick Launch Task Bar


  1. Click on the Chrome Icon on the Windows Quick Launch Task Bar.



Login to vCenter Server


Launch a browser of your choice. Firefox and Chrome are loaded in addition to Internet Explorer.

  1. Select the "RegionA vCenter" from the bookmark bar.
  2. Check the box "Use Windows session authentication" This will use the Windows credentials Administrator@corp.local to log you in.
  3. Click Login



Start the Migration Wizard


  1. Right click linux-micro-01a.corp.local.
  2. Select Migrate... from the context menu that appears.

This will start the migration wizard where we can select where we want to place our VM. Also note that the list of VMs you see may vary based on which other labs you have done. Also, note that this is the same option you would use if you were performing a vMotion with a vCenter or cluster. You use the same regardless of what your vMotion destination is.



Select Migration Type


  1. Select Change both compute resource and storage option and leave the default Select compute resource first
  2. Click Next



Select Host


  1. Expand the tree under vcsa-01b.corp.local, RegionB01, and RegionB01-COMP01
  2. Select host esx-01b.corp.local
  3. NOTE: The wizard will check the compatibility of the host to verify that it meets a set of requirements to migrate. Additional information on what is being checked can be found in the VMware vSphere 6.5 Documentation Center.
  4. Click Next



Select Storage


  1. Select the storage RegionB01-iSCSI01-COMP01
  2. Click Next

The vMotion will migrate the VM to a new datastore that is available on the new host. This allows VM's to be moved between clusters, vCenters, or datacenters that do not have shared storage.



Select Folder


  1. Select RegionB01
  2. Click Next



Select Networks


  1. Select the VM-RegionB01-vDS-COMP network.
  2. Click Next

This will change the port group the VM is associated with. There are no changes within the VM to the IP or network configuration. Your network must be setup in a way that allows the VM to move to this new port group without these changes. Network Virtualization is a way to extend the layer 2 network across Layer 3 boundaries. Please see the NSX Labs “HOL-1803-01-NET Getting Started with VMware NSX” and “HOL-1825-02-NET VMware NSX Multi-Site and SRM in an Active-Standby Setup” for more information.

Note that depending on which other modules you may have done, you may see an additional screen in the wizard asking you to set a vMotion Priority. If you see this screen, leave the default settings and click Next.



Review Migration


  1. Review the settings that vCenter will use to perform the vMotions, and click Finish



Watch Progress in Recent Tasks


We can view the progress of the operation in the Recent Tasks pane at the bottom of the screen.

Note that if you do not see the Recent Tasks pane, you may need to expand it by clicking on Recent Tasks on the right side of the screen.




Migration Complete


That's all there is to it. In the left navigation pane you can now see the linux-micro-01a VM has been moved to the RegionB01-COMP01 Cluster, which is in the vcsa-01b.corp.local vCenter. As with any other vMotion, this is done with no downtime. The ability to vMotion VMs between hosts, clusters, vCenters, and virtual switches give you even greater flexibility than you had before when managing your workloads.

Note: If you plan on continuing and taking other modules in this lab, please use the same process to vMotion the VM back to the RegionA vCenter. Use the following information to assist with this:




Migrating VM's between vCenters is a very simple process. Cross vCenter vMotion allows an Administrator to easily move workloads between vCenters that are in the same data center or different data centers without down time. This reduces the amount of time spent during migrations and consolidations. Storage is also migrated allowing for migrations between different types of storage and removing the need for storage replication and downtime. The network must be available on both ends of the migration to prevent the VM from losing its network connection. This can be done through Layer 2 stretching or Network Virtualization.



In this module you learned the requirements for Cross vCenter vMotion and performed one yourself. This feature opens a number of oppurtunities to organize your VMs as you need to without giving up the flexibility that vMotion brings you.


You've finished Module 3

Congratulations on completing Module 3.

If you are looking for additional information on cross vCenter vMotion, try one of these:

Proceed to any module below which interests you most.




How to End Lab


If this is the last module you would like to take in this lab, you may end your lab by clicking on the END button.    


Module 4 - Creating and Managing a Content Library (30 minutes)


This Module contains the following lessons:

Create, Add Content and Deploy Content From a Content Library

Content libraries are container objects for VM templates, vApp templates, and other types of files. vSphere administrators can use the templates in the library to deploy virtual machines and vApps in the vSphere inventory. Sharing templates and files across multiple vCenter Server instances in same or different locations brings out consistency, compliance, efficiency, and automation in deploying workloads at scale.

You create and manage a content library from a single vCenter Server instance, but you can share the library items to other vCenter Server instances if HTTP(S) traffic is allowed between them.

If a published and a subscribed library belong to vCenter Server systems that are in the same vCenter Single Sign-On domain, and both the libraries use datastores as backing storage, you can take advantage of optimized transfer speed for synchronization between these libraries. The transfer speed optimization is made possible if the libraries can store their contents to datastores managed by ESXi hosts that are directly connected to each other. Therefore the synchronization between the libraries is handled by a direct ESXi host to ESXi host transfer. If the datastores have VMware vSphere Storage APIs - Array Integration (VAAI) enabled, the library content synchronization between the published and the subscribed library is further optimized. In this case the contents are synchronized by a direct datastore to datastore transfer.

Each VM template, vApp template, or other type of file in a library is a library item. An item can contain a single file or multiple files. In the case of VM and vApp templates, each item contains multiple files. For example, because an OVF template is a set of multiple files, when you upload an OVF template to the library, you actually upload all the files associated with the template (.ovf, .vmdk, and .mf), but in the vSphere Web Client you see listing only of the .ovf file in the content library.

You can create two types of libraries: local or subscribed library.

Local Libraries

You use a local library to store items in a single vCenter Server instance. You can publish the local library so that users from other vCenter Server systems can subscribe to it. When you publish a content library externally, you can configure a password for authentication.

VM templates and vApp templates are stored as OVF file formats in the content library. You can also upload other file types, such as ISO images, text files, and so on, in a content library.

Subscribed Libraries

You subscribe to a published library by creating a subscribed library. You can create the subscribed library in the same vCenter Server instance where the published library is, or in a different vCenter Server system. In the Create Library wizard you have the option to download all the contents of the published library immediately after the subscribed library is created, or to download only metadata for the items from the published library and later to download the full content of only the items you intend to use.

To ensure the contents of a subscribed library are up-to-date, the subscribed library automatically synchronizes to the source published library on regular intervals. You can also manually synchronize subscribed libraries.

You can use the option to download content from the source published library immediately or only when needed to manage your storage space.

Synchronization of a subscribed library that is set with the option to download all the contents of the published library immediately, synchronizes both the item metadata and the item contents. During the synchronization the library items that are new for the subscribed library are fully downloaded to the storage location of the subscribed library.

Synchronization of a subscribed library that is set with the option to download contents only when needed synchronizes only the metadata for the library items from the published library, and does not download the contents of the items. This saves storage space. If you need to use a library item you need to synchronize that item. After you are done using the item, you can delete the item contents to free space on the storage. For subscribed libraries that are set with the option to download contents only when needed, synchronizing the subscribed library downloads only the metadata of all the items in the source published library, while synchronizing a library item downloads the full content of that item to your storage.

If you use a subscribed library, you can only utilize the content, but cannot contribute with content. Only the administrator of the published library can manage the templates and files.


Log In To The vSphere Web Client


  1. Click on the Chrome Icon on the Windows Quick Launch Task Bar.



Create A New Content Library



Add Content To The Content Library

We have created a new Content Library that is accessible in the Site A vCenter. Next we will add some content to our newly created Content Library.



Create A Virtual Machine From the Content Library

Now that we have added some content to the Content Library, let's use the content.



Lesson Conclusion

We were able to create a new local content library where Templates, ISOs and other files can be stored. Content libraries provide a central repository for all of your necessary files. We then cloned a VM to our new Content Library and we uploaded an .iso image to our Content Library.

Continue to the next lesson to learn how to share and subscribe to this content with other vCenter Servers.


Subscribe to Content Library from another vCenter

Now that we have created a library in the vcsa-01a.corp.local vCenter Server we need a way to share the library content with our other vCenter Server. vSphere Content Libraries provide a mechanism to consistently share templates, ISOs and files between vCenter Servers.


Navigate To The Content Library Page



  1. Navigate to Home
  2. Click Content Libraries



Select the Shared Library


In the previous lesson, we created a Content Library called "Shared Library" on the vcsa-01a.corp.local vCenter Server. We will configure that Content Library to be shared.

  1. Click the Shared Library that was created in the previous lesson



Access The Configuration Settings


  1. Click the Configure tab
  2. Click Edit



Publish Content Library


In order to publish the Content Library to other vCenter Servers, we need to enable sharing and get the URL for the library.

  1. Check the Publish this content library externally checkbox
  2. Click the Copy Link button. This will copy the URL link to the clipboard.
  3. Click OK

Note that you can also enable user authentication if you wanted to limit access to the shared Content Library.



Return To The Content Libraries Page


  1. Click the Home icon.
  2. Click Content Libraries to return to the main Content Libraries page.



Create a new Content Library On The Other vCenter Server


Now we will create a new Content Library on the vcsa-01b.corp.local vCenter Server and have it subscribe to the Content Library that we created on the vcsa-01a.corp.local vCenter Server.

  1. Click Create a new content library.



New Content Library Wizard


  1. Type in the name for the new Content Library: Shared Library B
  2. Select  the vcsa-01b.corp.local host from the drop down to specify that you want this Content Library created on that vCenter Server.
  3. Click Next



Configure Content Library


Instead of creating a local Content Library, we want to subscribe to the library that we created on the other vCenter Server.

By selecting the option to download the content immediately the Content Library will fully sync any time there is a change to the source. By selecting "Download library content only when needed" will only download the content at the time it is selected to be used. The second option would reduce the amount of space that needed on the second vCenter Server but a user would have to wait for the content to be synchronized when they needed the content.

  1. Click Subscribed content library.
  2. Click in the URL box and paste the link that you copied in the previous step using the Ctrl-v key combination. It should have the same format as what is in the screen shot but the hex string will be different. (Note that you can use the onscreen keyboard if you have trouble with the Ctrl-v key combination on an external keyboard)
  3. Click Download all library content immediately
  4. Click Next



Select a datastore


  1. Select the RegionB01-ISCSI01-COMP01 datastore as the location for the Content Library.
  2. Click Next



Review The New Content Library Details


  1. Click Finish



View The Shared Library


  1. Click on the new Shared Library B library.
  2. Select Templates and Other Types tabs to see the content that we placed in the Shared Library on the other vCenter Server.
  3. Notice that the content is stored locally on this vCenter Server because of the option we chose when creating the Content Library.

The content is now synchronized and is available in the Region B vCenter Server.



Lesson Conclusion

vSphere Content Libraries provide a way to easily store templates, ISOs and other files to a datastore. Shared library's content can be synced between a source vCenter and subscriber vCenters.



The Content Library is a great way to share content across multiple vCenters. This module introduced the Content Library and showed you how to populate it with ISO images and templates. You then used those resources to create a VM, and then shared those resources to a second vCenter.


You've finished Module 4

Congratulations on completing Module 4.

If you are looking for additional information on Creating & Managing Content Library, try one of these:

Proceed to any module below which interests you most.




How to End Lab


If this is the last module you would like to take in this lab, you may end your lab by clicking on the END button.    


Module 5 - Host Lifecycle Management (45 minutes)


This Module contains the following lessons:

Getting Started with Update Manager

VMware vSphere Update Manager is a tool that simplifies and centralizes automated patch and version management for VMware vSphere and offers support for VMware ESX hosts, virtual machines, and virtual appliances.  

With Update Manager, you can perform the following tasks:

  1. Upgrade and Patch ESXi hosts.
  2. Upgrade virtual machine hardware, VMware Tools, and Virtual Appliances.

vSphere Update Manager is installed and running by default in the vCenter Server Appliance. Each vCenter Appliance will have a single vSphere Update Manager paired with it.


Open Chrome Browser from Windows Quick Launch Task Bar


  1. Click on the Chrome Icon on the Windows Quick Launch Task Bar.



Log into the vSphere Web Client


Using the Chrome web browser, navigate to the URL for the Web client.  For this lab, you can use the shortcut in the address bar.

  1. Click on bookmark for Region A vCenter
  2. Check the Use Windows session authentication box
  3. Click Login

Alternatively, you could use these credentials

  1. User name: corp\Administrator
  2. Password: VMware1!

Please Note: All of the user credentials used in this lab are listed in the README.TXT file on the desktop.



Navigate to Update Manager


Navigate to the Update Manager interface

  1. Click the Home link
  2. Click Update Manager



Select vcsa-01b.corp.local


We are going to create a baseline on the vcsa-01b vCenter Server.

  1. Click the vcsa-01b.corp.local hyperlink



Baselines and Baseline Groups


Baselines can be upgrade, extension, or patch baselines.  Baselines contain a collection of one or more patches, extensions, or upgrades.  

Baseline groups are assembled from existing baselines, and might contain one upgrade baseline per type of upgrade baseline, and one or more patch and extension baselines.  When you scan hosts, virtual machines, and virtual appliances, you evaluate them against baselines and baseline groups to determine their level of compliance.

By default, Update Manager contains two predefined dynamic patch baselines and three predefined upgrade baselines.

We are going to create a new baseline, which we will then use to remediate a vSphere host so that we can make sure that it has the patches we want.

  1. Select the Manage tab.
  2. Click Host Baselines
  3. Click the + icon to create a new patch baseline.



Return to Clusters and Hosts


Next, we are going to attach the baseline we just created to a host. This makes sure that scanning and remediation happens for the host.

  1. Click on the Home Icon
  2. Select Hosts and Clusters



Attach Patch Baseline to Host



  1. Expand vcsa-01b.corp.local vCenter Server --> RegionB01 Datacenter --> RegionB01-COMP01 Cluster
  2. Click on the esx-01b.corp.local Host
  3. Select the Update Manager tab.
  4. Click on Attach Baseline



Select the Baseline


In the new window that opens,

  1. Click on HOL Host Baseline - this is the new Baseline that we just created
  2. Click on OK to continue



Select the object to scan in the vSphere Web Client


Before remediation, a scan should be initiated on an object against the attached baselines and baseline groups. For the purposes of this lab, we have chosen to scan a single host.  We could also scan a datacenter or a cluster as well.

  1. Click Scan for Updates
  2. Click OK in the pop-up that appears.



Remediate Host


The host has now been scanned against the patch baseline we had previously attached. In this case, the host is compliant with the baseline.

However, the screen shot shows what a non-compliant scan result would look like.

  1. Notice the compliance status of "Non-Compliant"
  2. Notice the details in the summary pane.

If our lab host was out of compliance, we could remediate the host (apply the patch) by clicking:

  1. The Remediate button. A wizard would launch to step you through the remediation process.

Please note that in our actual lab environment, the host is already in compliance because this particular patch was made obsolete by the ESXi host version so you will not complete a remediation action.



Video: Upgrading VMware Tools Using vSphere Update Manager (5:14)

vSphere Update Manager can also be used to update the VMware tools on a virtual machine.  The following video outlines the process.


Hands-on Labs Interactive Simulation: Deploying a Host using Autodeploy Graphical User Interface (GUI)

Let's take a look at vSphere Auto Deploy.


Auto Deploy


Auto Deploy has been configured through a Command Line Interface in the past. These featues have been added to the vCenter Web Client in the latest version of vSphere. 

With the vSphere Auto Deploy ESXi feature, you can provision and reprovision large numbers of ESXi hosts efficiently with vCenter Server.

When you provision hosts by using Auto Deploy, vCenter Server loads the ESXi image directly into the host memory. Auto Deploy does not store the ESXi state on the host disk.

vCenter Server makes ESXi updates and patches available for download in the form of an image profile. Optionally, the host configuration is provided in the form of a host profile.

The first time you provision a host by using Auto Deploy, the host PXE boots and establishes contact with the Auto Deploy server, which streams the image profile and any host profile to the host. The host starts using the image profile, and Auto Deploy assigns the host to the appropriate vCenter Server system.

When you restart the host, the Auto Deploy server continues to provision the host with the appropriate image and host profile. To provision the host with a different image profile, you must change the rule that specifies the image profile, and perform a test and repair compliance operation. To propagate changes to all hosts that the rule specifies, change the rule and perform the test and repair operation. The ability to propagate changes to multiple hosts makes Auto Deploy an efficient way to provision and reprovision large numbers of hosts, and to enforce compliance to a master ESXi image.

This environment has already been configured with the DHCP settings and TFTP server. We will not cover the configuration of these components in the simulation.

This portion of the lab is presented as a Hands-on Labs - Interactive  Simulation. This simulation will enable you to navigate the software  interface as if you are interacting with a live environment.

The following simulation will go through each stage to deploy ESXi using the Autodeploy GUI.

  1. Click here to open the interactive simulation. It will open in a new browser window or tab.
  2. When finished, click the "Return to the lab" link or close the windows to continue with this lab.


Hands-on Labs Interactive Simulation: Updating an ESXi image for Production

The Updating a Host using Autodeploy process consists of three stages:

This portion of the lab is presented as a Hands-on Labs - Interactive  Simulation. This simulation will enable you to navigate the software  interface as if you are interacting with a live environment.

This simulation will go through each stage to Update an ESXi host.

  1. Click here to open the interactive simulation. It will open in a new browser window or tab.
  2. When finished, click the "Return to the lab" link or close the windows to continue with this lab.

Hands-on Labs Interactive Simulation: Deploying Software to a Specific Host

The Deploying Software to a Specific Host process consists of two stages:

This portion of the lab is presented as a Hands-on Labs - Interactive  Simulation. This simulation will enable you to navigate the software  interface as if you are interacting with a live environment.

This simulation will go through each stage to Update an ESXi host.

  1. Click here to open the interactive simulation. It will open in a new browser window or tab.
  2. When finished, click the "Return to the lab" link or close the windows to continue with this lab.


Host Profile Configuration

Auto Deploy provides a great way to quickly deploy a consistent software version to all the hosts but there is more needed to configure an ESXi host than just the initial hypervisor deployment. There are many configuration options that must be set on each host. These many options can lead to inconsistencies that cause problems if not configured in an automated way across the environment. For instance, a vSwitch with different names can keep vMotion from working or a misconfigured log server could prevent logs from being collected. These inconsistencies can be minimized with the use of Host Profiles.  


Prepare the Lab Environment For The Lesson


Later in this lab, we will be putting a host into maintanance mode. Since this host is the only host in a cluster, and it has running VMs on it, we will not be able to put it into maintainance mode without turning off those VMs. We will walk you through turning off those VMs now, as they are not required for this lab.

  1. Click on the Home icon.
  2. Click on Hosts and Clusters.



Extract And Save A Host Profile

We are going to extract the profile of an existing host and save it. We will use the new Host Profile to check the same host to see if it is in compliance with the profile and of course it will be in compliance since we will have just extracted the profile from that host. Next we will change a setting and again check the host and find that it is no longer in complaince with the Host Profile because of the changed setting. We will then use the remediation feature of Host Profiles to bring the host back into compliance with the profile.



Attach the Host Profile to The Host

We have extracted the profile of an existing host and saved it. Now we will use the new Host Profile to check the same host to see if it is in compliance with the profile and of course it will be in compliance since we will have just extracted the profile from that host.



Check the Host Against the Host Profile

We have attached the Host Profile that we created to the original host. Since the profile was created from this host and no configuration changes have been made, the host should be in compliance with the Host Profile. Let's verify.



Change a Host Setting

Now we will change a setting on the host (the NTP Server address) in order to make the host configuration differ from the Host Profile.



Check Compliance Against the Host Profile

Now that we have made a configuration change on the host, we will check compliance against the Host Profile again. This time, we will expect the status not to be compliant.



Remediate the Host

Now that we created a Host Profile, made a change to the host configuration to force it out of compliance with the Host Profile and then verified that the host is no longer compliant, we can remediate the host to bring it back in compliance with the Host Profile.



This module introduced two ways to manage the lifecycle of an ESXi Host. First it introduced you to Update Manage, a great tool for patching and updating hosts that have ESXi installed locally. Then you learned about Autodeploy, which allows you to easily and quickly deploy and update hosts without having to go through the install process. Finally, you explored Host Profiles that allow you to manage the configuration of your ESXi hosts.


You've finished Module 5

Congratulations on completing  Module 5.

If you are looking for additional information on Host lifecycle management, try one of these:

Proceed to any module below which interests you most.




How to End Lab


If this is the last module you would like to take in this lab, you may end your lab by clicking on the END button.    



Thank you for participating in the VMware Hands-on Labs. Be sure to visit http://hol.vmware.com/ to continue your lab experience online.

Lab SKU: HOL-1811-03-SDC

Version: 20170920-123000