deliver a highly-differentiated experience. The most used and most familiar feature of the VxRail HCI System Software is the VxRail Manager (available now as a vCenter plugin), which is the primary deployment and element manager for VxRail. As shown in Figure 9, starting on the left, VxRail HCI System Software also includes backend connectors to infrastructure components like vSAN, PowerEdge servers, and networking to manage VxRail clusters. From these communication channels and the metrics gathered from these components, Dell EMC has developed automation and orchestration services for cluster management and end-to-end lifecycle management. For local cluster management, customers use the VxRail Manager to access these capabilities. For cloud service deployment solutions, cloud orchestration software utilizes the private and RESTful APIs to leverage these value-add HCI capabilities provided by VxRail. The VxRail HCI System Software includes a new analytics software called VxRail ACE (Analytical Consulting Engine) that provides peak performance and improves service uptimes through machine learning-based insights driven by customer data and industry best practices. VxRail ACE also creates unique update packages to match cluster configurations ensuring only the required software is delivered, allowing Edge clusters to be maintained efficiently.
VxRail HCI System Software architecture is shown in Figure 10. When used for a cloud deployment use case, the VxRail HCI System Software sits in between the infrastructure layer and cloud orchestration software. Local management features include vCenter Plug-ins, LCM, Serviceability via eServices and SRS, and Health Alerts. The extensibility of VxRail HCI System Software is available to VMware SDDC solutions like Cloud Foundation including Orchestration APIs for VMware SDDC solutions, VxRail ACE (Cloud Based), and open REST APIs for configuration management solutions (i.e. Puppet, Ansible).
Figure 10. VxRail HCI System Software architecture
VxRail Manager delivers automation, lifecycle management, support, and serviceability capabilities integrated with SDDC Manager and vCenter to extend the Cloud Foundation management experience and simplify operations. VxRail Manager functionality is available in vCenter through an HTML5 plugin. The initial deployment of VxRail clusters uses the native VxRail Manager process. VxRail lifecycle management is accomplished using a fully integrated and seamless SDDC Manager orchestrated process that leverages VxRail Manager to execute it natively.
VxRail Manager operations include:
Figure 11. Dell EMC VxRail Manager
VxRail Manager functionality is accessed seamlessly in vCenter through an HTML5 plugin. Complete VxRail cluster management from the vCenter HTML5 client provides:
The VxRail Manager functionality visible through the HTML5 vCenter plugin can be illustrated with the following screenshots. Figure 12 displays a vCenter view showing the Cloud Foundation management domain and workload domain built on VxRail clusters.
Figure 13 displays navigating to the vSAN cluster level, choosing the Monitor tab and selecting Appliances to get to the link to open the VxRail Manager provided physical view for this cluster.
The top level four node management cluster VxRail Hardware view is displayed in Figure 14.
Figure 14. VxRail cluster physical view
Drilling down on the physical views can present additional detail including the display shown in Figure 15 of a hardware view used for instance for disk hardware replacement.
Figure 15. VxRail disk hardware replacement screen
Detailed VxRail hardware component level events and alerts are collected by VxRail Manager and displayed in vCenter as part of the integrated vCenter HTML5 plugin. This provides holistic, system-level health awareness within the SDDC management framework. Failure events are passed to vCenter. Alarms from VxRail start with the prefix ‘VXR’. Figure 16 shows an example in vCenter displaying VxRail hardware alarms.