New vOPS Server Explorer 6.3

dell-vkernelA new version of vOPS Server Explorer is being launched today by vKernel (who were acquired by Quest and subsequently Dell).

The company have a history of releasing free tools to assist vSphere administrators and the new version of vOPS Server Explorer builds on this reputation by bringing in an additional subset of functionality from their commercial product (vOPS Server Standard).

Of course, as a free tool, one of its aims is to prove its value and help generate sales of the full, commercial product. I don’t think that should stop anyone trying it out though – you can’t knock a free tool. I used one of vKernel’s early tools to highlight a growing issue for a customer.

So, what’s new in this version?

Environment Explorer

This is actually a pre-existing component in vOPS Server Explorer but some additional functionality has been added in this release:

  • Potential zombie VMs are highlighted.
  • The savings possible from resizing VMs are now shown (although the costs are pre-configured in this free version).
  • The dashboard has a new tile that highlights the major changes to the infrastructure made over the last week.

environment-explorer

Storage Explorer

This component exists in the commercial vOPS Server Standard already but now some of the functionality is being brought into vOPS Server Explorer. It exists to show consolidated statistics and issues related to storage.

One of the things that I like about this component is that so many different pieces of data are visible and accessible in one place. For example, for each datastore you can easily see both the VMFS version and the path selection policy. Also, hover the mouse over a datastore and you can see useful tootips (for example you might see that 16% of a datastore’s throughput comes from a single VM).

You can also see VM capacity information (as long as your VMs have VMtools installed) and any warnings about actual or potential performance issues. Naturally the warning thresholds are not configurable in vOPS Server Explorer but only in the full vOPS Server Standard product. The free version is also limited to the top 10 datastores.

storage-explorer

Change Explorer

This component is intended to show a history / overview of changes made within a virtual infrastructure. Again, it’s built on functionality available in the full product but provides some useful insights into changes that have occurred.

It contains filtering functionality that allows you to search for actions taken by specific users or for actions taken on particular VI objects. Each change comes with an associated impact risk (that is configurable in the commercial version) to allow you to view the highest impact changes only for instance.

change-explorer

Download

vOPS Server Explorer 6.3 is available for download at: http://www.vkernel.com/download/server-explorer

Chatting with vKernel at VMworld US 2012

Whilst at VMworld 2012 this year, I stopped by our friends at vKernel / Quest to chat with fellow vExpert Mattias Sundling about the show and some of the announcements from VMworld sessions.

If you are viewing on a mobile device, please click here:

http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/25043314

Several other interviews have been posted from the show, check them out here:

http://www.vkernel.com/company/events/vmworld?src=box2

vOPS Server Explorer – New Feature Released

vKernel have released a number of free tools over the years and their acquisition by Quest Software last year hasn’t stopped them.

Today vKernel have released a new version of their vOPS Server Explorer product that has integrated their SearchMyVM tool. So, not only can you have the health of your virtual infrastructure monitored, it’s now easier to search too.

vOPS Server Explorer is a virtual appliance that collects metrics from VMs in a virtual infrastructure. These metrics are analysed so that the performance, capacity and efficiency health of all VMs, datastores and hosts in the environment can be visualised. The SearchMyVM component indexes virtual machines, hosts, clusters, resource pools, files, snapshots, VMware tools, applications, and configuration information. Ad-hoc search terms can be entered to create specialised queries. Take a look at the screenshots below to see some of the new functionality in action.

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Alex Rosemblat – Product Marketing Manager at vKernel – has also put together a quick video that demonstrates the new search features:

vOPS Server Explorer can be downloaded from vKernel’s website. The free version can be upgraded to a trial version of vOPS Server Explorer Standard edition which will allow you to gain more detail on discovered performance issues and also aid you with resolution of those issues.

When I get to spend some time with my lab in the next few weeks I’ll be putting vOPS Server through its paces for sure.

Quest buys vKernel

There’s no doubt about it, Quest have made a lot of acquisitions. I’ve previously worked for a company that was acquired a few years ago (although admittedly it happened after I had left).

I’m still trying to work out how significant this purchase is. Quest undoubtedly have a big presence and their ownership of vKernel will probably help the latter out. I’m going to re-familiarise myself with both companys’ products lines as I’m interested to see if there are any overlaps or where the possible gaps are.

See vKernel’s announcement of the acquisition here.