Embotics® vCommander manages both your private infrastructure and public clouds, acting as a hub for these and other systems that comprise your entire vCommander ecosystem. This article examines the vCommander ecosystem using a high level, layered view that helps new and experienced administrators think about the interconnections between the systems.


Public Clouds


vCommander supports popular public clouds providers, and we add support for new platforms in each major release. vCommander is focused on providing business value on any cloud without locking you into a particular vendor’s technology.

As of this writing, you can use vCommander to manage and provision workloads in Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure.


For more information on how to manage public clouds, and the differences between public and private clouds, refer to the following sections in vCommander’s Online Help or User Guide:

 

Firewall


Depending on your installation requirements, you may need to publish various services, such as vCommander, the Service Portal, and the Console Proxy to the Internet or other networks.

 

vCommander


The number of servers you use to deploy vCommander depends on many factors, including your expected occupancy, or how many hypervisors, public clouds and VMs you expect to manage. At a minimum, you can deploy vCommander as a single application server including a local PostgreSQL database, although most customers are better suited to installing against Microsoft SQL Server on another server. Refer to Scaling vCommander Hardware Requirements for assistance in determining appropriately sized resources and server counts for your needs.

In addition to the vCommander application server and database server, the vCommander VM Access Proxy is available as a virtual appliance for VMWare and Hyper-V. The VM Access Proxy allows users outside your firewall to establish console and RDP connections to VMs on the inside, without exposing any sensitive infrastructure to the Internet.


Self-signed security certificates are installed on vCommander and the VM Access Proxy by default, but Embotics recommends purchasing certificates from a Certificate Authority so that web browsers outside your firewall will trust the connections.

Private Infrastructure


vCommander supports management of vCenter and Hyper-V (via SCVMM) as local hypervisors. Additional hypervisor support is expected to be added in the future, depending on market and customer demand.


Integrations


vCommander integrates with many systems to introduce new or compliment existing features:

  • Directory Services
    You can integrate vCommander with Active Directory or LDAP so that your users can use existing credentials to login to either the admin console or the service portal.

  • SMTP Server
    vCommander uses an SMTP server, such as Microsoft Exchange, to deliver outbound email notifications.

  • Splunk
    Splunk integration provides complimentary performance data from within the Guest OS which is reviewed alongside information from the hypervisor when vCommander makes rightsizing recommendations.

  • BlueCat
    vCommander’s Configure Networking workflow step is able to create host records or DHCP reservations in the BlueCat IP Address Management system.

  • Puppet
    Integrating with Puppet offers you greater flexibility for how and when VMs are customized, and allow you to reduce the number of services in your catalog while multiplying the kinds of VMs deployed from them.

  • Chef
    Integrating with CHEF means requested VMs can be deployed as Chef nodes and receive customized roles and recipes from your Chef servers.

  • Scripting
    vCommander workflow steps introduce the opportunity to execute any script or program. Pre-deployment scripts are run directly on the vCommander application server, and support any scripting language for which an interpreter has been installed (by default powershell, vbscript and batch are supported by Windows). You can also execute scripts or programs on the VMs themselves once they have been deployed. The workflow steps and vCommander API expose an enormous amount of information to the integrated scripts or programs, and mechanisms allow you to use any output to feed subsequent steps. Professional services are available if you have custom needs and lack development resources.