vROPS 8.6 UI Overview

During VMworld 2021 we announced vRealize Operations 8.6 which now provides allot of new features and capabilities. You can see an Whats New overview here as well as a feature walk through here.

I this post we will focus specifically on the UI enhancements. The UI changes are the same for the SaaS version as well as the on premise release. Lets dive in!

When we used to log on to vRealize Operations in the past we used to have a list of menu items up top as well as the left side example:

The new simplified navigation interface creates a smoother navigation with enhancements like favorites for dashboards, a new administration page, the ability to pin dashboards and views as well as support for expressions in custom groups. With the UI enhancements we now also have the ability to customize the menu for Non-admins in order to provide the end users of the product with only the access they require.

Here is a quick glimpse into favorites as well as the pinning:

From a navigation perspective the side menu automatically collapses while navigating in order to give us more space to navigate through the menus. With the redesigned UI we now have secondary navigation allowing us to navigate through the menu`s allot easier without having to go back and forward to get where we need to

The object browser also allows us to switch to the correlation mapping by just pressing the toggle switch up top. The correlation mapping is allot easier to navigate as well. In the example below i have an example of a correlation mapping spanning from the PDU system which monitors the power as well as the cabinet that can monitor the fan speeds via the Flowgate management pack that can be downloaded from the Marketplace

The home page has received a couple of enhancements as well with a couple of new additions

vCenter upgrade fails with Exception occurred in postinstallHook error

I was recently going through a vCenter upgrade and got stuck at an error Exception occurred in postinstallHook. I tried reverting from snapshot and trying again but i ran through the same issue.

The issue in my case was that the catalina.properties had the wrong permissions. The fix was to change the permissions to perfcharts:cis and then resuming the update in the VAMI interface. The catalina.properties is located /usr/lib/vmware-perfcharts/tc-instance/conf/catalina.properties. The command to fix it is

chown perfcharts:cis /usr/lib/vmware-perfcharts/tc-instance/conf/catalina.properties

Then restart the vmware-perfcharts service by running:

service-control --stop vmware-perfcharts
service-control --start vmware-perfcharts

Upgrading vRSLCM (vRealize Lifecycle Manager) to 8.6

In this guide i will go over the steps of getting an existing 8.x vRSLCM appliance upgraded to the latest 8.6 release. The release notes can be found here

The first step is to lo in to vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager under the Lifecycle Operations section

Go to settings -> System Upgrade

Click on Check for Upgrade

We can see that the check found a new version available for 8.6.0.20

Click on Upgrade

Verify that a snapshot or backup exists in case the process fails. Check the check mark for I took a snapshot of the vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager before I performed this operation. Click Submit

This will fire up the upgrade process and start upgrading packages. The system will automatically reboot on 8.6.0.20 once completed. We can check the version by going to Settings -> System Details

If you get the below error clear the browser cache and try again

Error Code: LCMVSSC10018

If you like me deployed SSC (SaltStack Config) outside of LCM and are now trying to import it under LCM management you probably ran in to the following error:

Error Code: LCMVSSC10018
vRealize Automation SaltStack Config import failed as unable to validate license. Check whether proper license is applied to vRealize Automation SaltStack Config appliance.
Exception while importing vRealize Automation SaltStack Config as unable to validate the license key. Check vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager logs for more information

Ive tried to research the issue but i had no luck. The following steps worked for my environment.

Find the license key for SaltStack under the my vmware portal. It would be labeled vRealize Automation SaltStack Config entitlement ex:

Once you have the key create a file under /etc/raas/something_license

In this file add the key from the my vmware portal

Change the owner of the file to the raas user by running

chown raas:raas /etc/raas/yourfilename_license
systemctl restart raas

Additionally also make sure the license key is available in the lifecycle manager locker. If you need help with the locker you can find instructions on how adding the new key here

You should now be able to import the SSC install into LCM

Usage Report for vRealize Cloud Licenses

In this post i will go over the Usage Report for vRealize Cloud Licenses. I will cover the online method which does the reporting automatically as well as the offline method that requires us to upload the usage manually. The documentation for the Usage Report can be found here. The vRealize Cloud Universal service description EULA and requirements can be found here.

As described the EULA our responsibilities include:

  • Deploy the latest version of vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager in your on-premiseenvironment, and establish a connection between vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager and your VMware customer account.
  • Use vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager to apply the vRealize Cloud Universal license key to on-premise components of the Service Offering and activate these components.
  • Connect vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager to vRealize Cloud Subscription Manager to enable usage reporting to VMware. If the on-premise environment is offline and unable to connect to vRealize Cloud Subscription Manager, you are responsible for periodically exporting a license report from vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager and uploading the report to vRealize Cloud Subscription Manager, but no less than once per VMware fiscal quarter.

We will be spending most of our time in vRealize® Suite Lifecycle Manager. Log in and go to the locker page either from the welcome screen

Or the menu on the top right:

Once in locker we can go to Licenses and search for our subscription license. The license will show up as vRealizeFlex under the license type

If there are no licenses showing up you probably don’t have the my VMware account logged on. You can follow the instructions in my other post here to add the my VMware account.

Now if we click on the 3 dots to right we get to see a menu for things like Usage report, view usage and so on

The online sync option is very straight forward. All we need to do is click on Connect License and provide an API token.

The API token generation instructions can be found in the official documentation here. The next step is to match the license key with a subscription and then setup the reporting frequency. Unfortunately i dont have an cloud subscription that i have permissions to match my key with.

The next option is the offline usage report. Keep in mind that the report will need to be updated multiple times a year as required by the EULA. To create the report we can go to Usage Report in the dropdown menu

Select vRealize Cloud Subscription Manager Billing

Click on download. Once the download is completed you can upload the file in the subscription manager.

vRealize Lifecycle Manager (vRSLCM) enable product and licensing downloads

In order to enable product and licensing downloads in lifecycle manager we need to go to Lifecycle Operations

Settings -> My vmware

Add my vmware account. Make sure the account added has a proper entitlement to perform downloads and patches.

With the releases of 8.x and above we now have a password vault that we need to add the passwords to. When presented with the add my VMware Account Detail screen press on Click here to add a new password

Type in the details for your password and press add

Click on Select Credential and add the new password you created, add the username, click validate and then add

After the process is complete the product will automatically start downloading the licensing information from the my vmware portal and it will also allow us to download binaries from the add binaries page

Upgrading vRA (vRealize Automation) to 8.5

In this post i will go over upgrading my 8.x vRA appliance to 8.5. As a pre requirement we do need to have vRSLCM (vRealize Lifecycle Manager) upgraded to 8.4.1. Instructions can be found here. You will also need to apply the latest Product Support Pack (version 8.4.1.4). The instructions can be found here.

To get started we can go to vRealize Lifecycle Manager -> Lifecycle Operations -> Settings -> Binary Mapping. (If you havent added your My VMware credentials you will need to do that first by going to vRealize Lifecycle Manager -> Lifecycle Operations -> Settings -> My VMware)

Click on Add Binaries under Product Binaries

Select My VMware and click on Discover

We can see a list of binaries that have been discovered. We can select what we need and click on Add

This will create a request and start downloading the package. To view the progress we can click on the Click Here hyperlink

Click on the in Progress button to view the details

We now have to wait for the download to complete

After the download is complete we can go to Environments -> View Details on the environment that includes vRA

Click on Upgrade

An Inventory sync is recommended if the environment has changed since LCM performed the last sync. We trigger the sync from the UI or click on Proceed to continue

Select product Version 8.4.0 and click Next. We can also review the compatibility matrix to make sure the environment is compatible.

Since we already checked the sizing while the download was occurring we can check the check box for I took care of the manual steps above and am ready to proceed and click on run precheck

Run the Precheck to make sure there are no errors

Once the check is complete, click on Next. Review the upgrade details and click on Next. We are taken to the progress screen where we can follow the progress.

The system will get rebooted and once its back up we will be on 8.5

vRSLCM (vRealize Lifecycle Manager) Product Support Pack

In this guide i will go over the steps of getting an existing 8.x vRSLCM appliance to support the latest product releases available. Here is a great blog that goes in to the details about what the Product Support Pack is https://blogs.vmware.com/management/2019/01/vrslcm-pspak.html. Typically the newer Product Support Pack is included part of the upgrade for LCM, however sometimes there are product releases in between releases where product support packs come in handy.

The first step is to log in to vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager under the Lifecycle Operations section

Go to settings -> Product Support Pack

We can see that i recently upgraded to 8.4.1.2 however a new update is available 8.4.1.3. Based on what we can see in the details the new support pack adds support for network insight 6.3.0.

Click on Apply Version

Verify that a snapshot or a backup exists and click Submit

We can view the progress by clicking on the Click Here link after submitting the request

Once the process is complete the system will most likely reboot. To check the status we can go back to settings -> Product Support Pack. As we can see we are now at the updated patch level

If you get the below error clear the browser cache and try again

Patching vRSLCM (vRealize Lifecycle Manager) to 8.4.1.1 Patch 1

In this guide i will go over the steps of getting an existing 8.x vRSLCM appliance upgraded to the latest 8.4.1 Patch 1 release. The release notes can be found here

The first step is to lo in to vRealize Suite Lifecycle Manager under the Lifecycle Operations section

Go to settings -> Binary Mapping

Click on Patch Binaries up top and click on Check Patches Online

We can see that the check found a new patch

Click on download button under Action. We can follow the process by clicking on Click here to check request status

Wait till the download is complete and go back to settings

Go to Settings -> System Patches

Click on New patch on the right side of the screen

Select the newly downloaded patch and click Next

Review the details and click Install

This will fire up the patch process and start the patching.

The system will automatically reboot on 8.4.1.1 Patch 1 once completed. We can check the version by going to Settings -> System Details

If you get the below error clear the browser cache and try again