This post covers the configuration of remote collectors for vRealize Operations Manager, and explains how they are leveraged for the Enterprise Hybrid Cloud solution.
The vRealize Operations Manager remote collector node is an additional cluster node that allows vR Ops to gather more objects into its inventory for monitoring. Unlike the vR Ops data nodes, the remote collector nodes only perform the collector role of vR Ops. These remote collectors do not store data or process any analytics, rather they collect and forward the data back to the primary vR Ops.
In the EHC solution, vR Ops remote collectors are placed as close as possible to the vCenter Server endpoint in the Advanced Management Platform (AMP) of VxBlock (see end of post for diagram).
A standard vR Ops appliance installation, with a single node, once fully configured might look as follows in the vR Ops admin UI (e.g. https://vropsFQDN/admin).
Here we see just a single vR Ops node in the vR Ops cluster, where this node is currently responsible for all vR Ops collection, processing and presentation of data.
So, onto the deploy and config of these vR Ops Collectors …
The deployment, for me, was completed across 4 different UIs in total:
- The vCenter web client UI (initial appliance deployment)
- The new vR Ops Collector appliance UI
- The vR Ops Master Node admin UI
- The main vR Ops UI
Once the additional/new vR Ops appliance has been deployed from vSphere, with it’s relevant details, browse to the FQDN or IP address of the appliance.
From the Get Started screen, select “Expand an Existing Installation”
This opens up another getting started page where we can see a graphical view of vR Ops cluster expansion. Adding a remote collector is considered an expansion of the vR Ops cluster.
Click Next and we can then enter details for:
- Node name (friendly): for example ‘vrops-collector01’
- Node type: Remote Collector
- Master vR Ops node: Enter IP address or FQDN e.g. vrops.ppsilver.lab.local
Once you enter the master vR Ops node FQDN, click Validate, which will pull the vR Ops certificate. If all is as expected, click the Accept this Certificate checkbox, and click Next.
This next screen prompts for the vR Ops cluster admin password.
Enter the password for the vR Ops cluster admin user, and click Next.
The next and final screen of this wizard presents us with another pretty topology screen, almost the same as before, where we click Finish.
And that’s it for the first part of this configuration of the vR Ops remote collector (there’s more, so keep reading!).
The admin UI for this new appliance will soon after refresh to display the following information displaying the initial configuration of this new node for it’s first use:
From here I jumped over to the admin UI for the vR Ops master node to see how this all looked from that perspective, as follows:
From there we could see that the new ‘vrops-c1’ node was in the process of being added into the cluster.
This turns out to be a 2-step process, as once this initial node is finished deployment, the user needs to manually finish the cluster expansion process, as highlighted below:
Click Finish Adding New Node(s) and we can then move onto the final step of this process.
Click OK, and once complete, our cluster status and nodes should look as follows:
The final piece of this configuration of a vR Ops remote collector is completed in the main vR Ops UI <https://vropsFQDN/ui>, where we can specify which vCenter Server the collector is responsible for.
Go to Administration > Solutions , select the VMware vSphere solution line item and click the Configure icon at the top of the screen
This brings us to our vCenter Server being monitored by vR Ops.
Expand the Advanced Settings section, and from the drop-down menu of Collectors/Groups, select the new vR Ops Collector which should be identified by it’s friendly name e.g. vrops-c1
Final step is to click Save Settings, and we.are.done! Repeat this procedure as for any additional vR Ops Collectors.
In the case of multiple vCenter Servers being used, where additional vR Ops Collectors must be deployed, repeat all of the steps above, up until the final section in the vR Ops UI where the collector must be configured specific to the additional vCenter Server. For example, above our primary vCenter server is ‘cloudvc01’, so where a remote vCenter Server must be collected from, e.g. ‘cloudvc02’, configure a new vCenter adapter instance in vR Ops to which the new collector can be assigned.
- vCenter 01 Instance – cloudvc01 : vropsCollector01
- vCenter 02 Instance – cloudvc02 : vropsCollector02
In terms of the Enterprise Hybrid Cloud (EHC) solution, where vCenter Server is used as the Private Cloud endpoint for vRealize Automation (vRA), these vCenter:vROps relationships would look something like the following diagram:
A standard architecture is applied for the EHC solution on Converged Infrastructure, where the following is always true:
- vCenter server always resides in the VxBlock/VxRack AMP cluster
- True for all sites (primary, secondary, or remote sites)
- vR Ops Collector(s) also reside in the AMP
- vR Ops Master resides in the Automation cluster
- In DR architectures, the vR Ops appliance is protected and recovered to secondary/DR site
That’s it for configuration of vR Ops collectors, hope that helps!