VMware has announced General Availability of VMware Cloud Director Availability 4.5 last November.
VMware Cloud Director Availability is a powerful solution used by VMware Cloud Providers to offer simple, secure, and cost-effective onboarding, migration, and disaster recovery as a service to or between multi-tenant VMware clouds.
What are the core capabilities of VMware Cloud Director Availability?
Intuitive disaster recovery as a service protection and wizard-driven workflows to protect virtual machines (VM) or vApps. Replication and recovery of VMs and vApps between VMware Cloud Director (cloud to cloud) or on-premises to VMware Cloud Director and vice versa. The offering is now available for on-premises vSphere to protect and migrate workloads from dedicated on-premises vCenter site to Cloud vCenter.
Single on-premises appliance installation for ease of deployment and simplicity for customers replicating to provider vCenter or VMware Cloud Director cloud endpoints. Supports a migration path and DR functionality from vSphere 7.0.
The capability of each deployment to serve as both source and recovery endpoints (synchronous sites). There are no dedicated source and destination sites; symmetrical replication flow can be started and managed from either the source or the recovery site, meaning the UI can be accessed from anywhere with the correct context.
Migration, protection, and control over retained replications (stored instances) as well as flexible RPO policy controls for providers to apply to one Virtual Data Center (VDC) or individual replications via predefined or flexible SLA policies. This helps to control storage costs and provide tiered services to customers. With the latest release, providers have the option to enable 1-minute RPO for mission-critical applications. Since 4.4, the RPO compliance reporting feature has been introduced to keep cloud providers informed about RPO violations to allow both parties to track, monitor, and audit RPO best practices and aid troubleshooting.
Cold or warm migration to provider VMware Cloud Director-based cloud from on-premises via vSphere plugin or via VMware Cloud Director Availability interface in the provider cloud. Cloud providers and tenants can carry out a fast-track migration with the new 1-click migration feature that automatically replicates using static, basic replication settings.
Warm one-way migration from vSphere plugin or VMware Cloud Director provider cloud to VMware Cloud on AWS SDDC under Cloud Director service management.
Layer 2 stretch networking for simpler migrations (and/or disaster recovery) from on-premises to VMware Cloud Director as well as VMware Cloud on AWS.
Secure tunneling through TCP proxy, between sites with built-in encryption and optional compression availability. Cloud to cloud replicant encryption is also supported using Cloud Director encrypted storage policies at the target.
Multi-tenant support native within the VMware Cloud Director hierarchy and in-context DRaaS providing administrative simple views and actions directly in VMware Cloud Director. In case of vSphere (V2V) DR and migration, multi-tenancy will be offered in the future. For the moment, this is supported for dedicated vCenter endpoints only.
VMware Cloud Director Availabil- Use Cases
On-premises to cloud migration (and vice versa*), on-premises to cloud DR (and vice versa), cloud to cloud DR, cross-version VMware Cloud Director migration.
*Vice versa not available from/to Cloud Director Org VDC on VMware Cloud on AWS; this is a one-way migration only.
Cloud providers using VMware Cloud Director Availability can protect and migrate dedicated on-premises vCenter workloads to vSphere cloud (and vice versa).
VMware NSX Migration for VMware Cloud Director 1.4.1 was released with new features:
External Networks directly connected to NSX-T Tier-1 Gateway: VMware Cloud Director version 10.4.1 or higher allows connecting an NSX-T overlay or VLAN-backed external network to a gateway via service interface connection. VLAN segment-backed external network can be connected to only one edge gateway (a single network can be connected to a single edge node per VLAN Id). The migration tool will create necessary static routes when the default gateway is towards the external network that is directly connected to the edge gateway.
Support for Transparent Load Balancing: You can migrate edge gateways with load balancer service having transparent pools configured with VMware Cloud Director version 10.4.1.
Support for Load Balancer VIP (IPv4) from Org VDC Network Subnet: You can migrate edge gateways with load balancer virtual service VIP and load balancer pools using IPv4 address from Org VDC network subnet with VMware Cloud Director version 10.4.1.
Edge Gateway Assessment Reports: The migration tool in addition to the existing Assessment and Summary reports will also create an Edge Gateway detailed report and a Load Balancer detailed report when they run in V2T assessment mode. These reports contain a detailed analysis of edge gateways and load balancer services enlisting the Objects (Name/ID) causing possible blockage of migration.
NAT service Enhancement: From VMware Cloud Director version 10.4.1 onwards, Org VDC networks on which NAT rules are applied will be migrated as Non-Distributed networks. When such NAT rules are created on the NSX-T edge gateway, they will be applied to their respective Non-Distributed Org VDC network interface as per their NSX-V counterpart. NAT rules will also be applied to segment-backed external network in case of NSX-T edge gateway uplink connected to it via the service interface.
Firewall Service Enhancement: From VMware Cloud Director version 10.4.1 onwards, firewall rules on NSX-T backed edge gateway will be applied to the Org VDC network to which they are scoped. The scope of firewall rules will be determined from the NAT rule using the firewall rule IP address. In case if no NAT rule using the firewall rule IP address, then the firewall rule will be applied to all edge gateway interfaces.
Enhancement to reduce downtime during migration and rollback: Modified the workflow of migration and rollback to reduce downtime during N-S network switchover.
Workaround to fix network connectivity loss issue after NSX-T to NSX-V vMotion: For NSX-T to NSX-V migration, when migrating a workload VM back to NSX-V, the network connectivity might not work because the distributed firewall filter in NSX-T is always higher than in NSX-V. The workaround is to place the workload VM in the NSX-T exclusion list before vMotion
VMware Cloud Director 10.4.1 has an entirely new user interface where providers can create, manage and assign themes for their tenants and the provider portal.
In the past VMware Cloud Director 10.4.1 theming and branding was API based, now with this new release customisation can be done directly from the user interface (UI), which allows making VMware Cloud Director look and feel like Cloud Provider brand and company portal for customers.
Changing the look and feel of the provider and the tenant portal VMware Cloud Director 10.4.1 allows sharing of Cloud Provider branding message.
To enable this new features go to Administrator Tab, Settings, Features Flags and enable Branding API
After Branding API is enable, navigate to the Customize Portal Section (under more tab) and select Themes
By default there are two default theme (Base dark and Light).
For the creation of a new theme select Create Theme
Two options will appear Light or Dark themes. Pick one and Create Theme
In this option you can create the new theme, picking color heather, adding Logo, etc. A preview will be available at any time.
Note: Upgrading to VMware Cloud Director 10.4.1 is recommended from 9.7 to 10.4.1 versions but with stages.