vCAC – Adding Domain Selection to IaaS Blueprints

So I thought I would take a break from blogging about vCOps and go through some frequently asked questions for vCloud Automation Center  (vCAC). vCAC 6 is shaping up to be a great product and with the power of integrated vCO there is almost nothing 🙂 it can’t do. Before I start going into some of the vCO integration and workflows I though I would address questions I have been fielding lately about OOTB functionality.

The Problem?

How do I allow users to select an AD Domain to join a Windows Blueprint too with creating multiple Blueprints for each domain?

The Answer

There are a few different ways to solve this issue. However I find the easiest is to leverage the CloneSpec custom property with a property dictionary to make it user friendly. This will allow you to use just one blueprint and have the user select the domain from a drop-down list avoiding blueprint sprawl.
More information on Custom Properties can be found in the Custom Property Reference.

So how is it done?


The Solution

1. So the first thing that needs to be done is create vCenter Customization Specifications for each of the domains you want the user to request from. There is nothing special about this step simply create a customization per domain and put the name of each domain in the name of customization so it is clear to the end user.


2. Create your blueprint in vCAC under Infrastructure. This should follow a standard vSphere Windows Clone, however there are few things you want to do a few things different from normal. First leave the Customization spec: field blank as this will be overwritten by the user. Next navigate to the Properties tab and create a new property called CloneSpec and select the Prompt User checkbox. Save the Blueprint.


3. Open the Property Dictionary under Blueprints. Create a new Property Definition named CloneSpec. Enter an appropriate display name and description as well as if the field should be mandatory. Save the property, then select Edit under Propriety Attributes.

4. Create a new Property Attribute and select ValueList as the Type. Enter a Name (the name really doesn’t matter) and for the values enter the name of each vCenter Customization separated by a comma. Save and close the List and Property Dictionary.


5. Your done! Publish the Blueprint to the Catalog and open a request and bam! You can now allow users to select which domain the VM will join to using the OOTB IaaS functionality.


In my next few posts I will cover some more OOTB vCAC concepts as well as using vCO to provide some DaaS (Desktop as a Service) with Horizon View.

Stay tuned…..

Chris Slater out.

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1 Comment

  1. Mike

     /  May 8, 2014

    Great solution!
    My vCAC environment will be a true multi-tenant environment. As such I having global dictionary properties that are visible to all tenants is a huge problem for me. I have got around most of the issues by using vCO. In the case of using CloneSpec, do you have a suggestion for OOTB so one tenant will not have the domain of another tenant visable in the list?


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