SOVLABS

New Features in Sovlabs Property Toolkit: Entity Assignment

By Chip Zoller |  Dec 5, 2018  | vra, sovlabs, all tags
It’s no secret that I’ve been a huge proponent of the SovLabs Property Toolkit module. So much so that my new motto is, “don’t leave home without it.” I’ve written fairly extensively about some of its power in articles here and here, but today I’m really excited. No, SUPER excited because the guys and gals at SovLabs have just added a whole bunch of new features that make this indispensable to anyone running vRA.
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Veeam Backup-as-a-Service, Part 1

By Chip Zoller |  Aug 2, 2018  | veeam, sovlabs, vra, vrealize, all tags
Today I want to introduce and provide a walk-through on how to use what I think is one of the coolest modules SovLabs has produced to date for vRealize Automation: Backup-as-a-Service (or BaaS for short). BaaS is one of those pie-in-the-sky dreams for many CMP owners and operators and, frankly, the aim of lots of other companies hoping to give a real self-service-type experience to users inside a CMP. Unfortunately, due to the complexity of it, they all come up pretty short—until SovLabs entered the game, that is.
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Making vRA Email Easy with Custom Notifications

By Chip Zoller |  Mar 21, 2018  | vra, vrealize, sovlabs, all tags
Email is one of those things that most of us take for granted these days. We just expect email works, that it is flexible, and that it’s adaptable to our situation. Within vRA, we can also get email in and out based on a variety of scenarios. But when it comes to customizing how that looks and works, it’s a little tricky. As a result, many folks don’t even bother mucking around with it because of how complex it is what with manually uploading new email templates to the appliance, restarting services, customizing XML files, or writing vRO code and event broker subscriptions and doing all the plumbing work yourself.
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SovLabs Property Toolkit Part 2: Dynamic Custom Property Assignment

By Chip Zoller |  Mar 21, 2018  | vra, vrealize, sovlabs, all tags
Welcome back to another installment of the exploration of the SovLabs modules! A while back, I went through and introduced the Property Toolkit module via a use case of dynamically building custom properties based on the presence of other custom properties. I illustrated this in the form of placement in vCenter folders. In this article, however, I want to dive into another feature of this amazingly powerful module: dynamic property sets.
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What is Sovlabs?

By Chip Zoller |  Mar 18, 2018  | vra, vro, vrealize, sovlabs, all tags
I realized that although I have covered several of the SovLabs modules already with some fine use cases, I might have jumped the gun a little and not fully explained what this SovLabs business is and how I got to those points. I often receive the question “is it a vRO plug-in?” and so realize a little introduction is in order. To answer that question, the answer is Yes* but also No*.
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Automating vSphere Tagging in vRA with SovLabs

By Chip Zoller |  Dec 31, 2017  | sovlabs, vra, vrealize, all tags
vRealize Automation is a very metadata-driven system through capabilities called custom properties. These properties—which are nothing more than key-value pairs—can be applied at multiple levels throughout vRA and cause it to behave in different ways. The same sort of metadata drives a lot of decision within vSphere which are external to vRA. But applying these tags at a vSphere level has been somewhat of a challenge in the past when driven through vRA because there is no out-of-the-box support for vSphere tags.
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Custom Naming in vRA with zero custom coding

By Chip Zoller |  Oct 2, 2017  | vra, sovlabs, vrealize, all tags
Everyone’s got one, everyone needs them, and most people struggle with them. I’m talking about custom machine names, of course. Just like organizations themselves, naming schemes can be, and are about, as varied as possible. Some companies have fairly straightforward names with maybe two elements while others have extremely dynamic requirements that factor in five or six elements. Whatever your naming scheme might be, anyone who has used vRealize Automation (vRA) appreciates the difficulty of getting their naming scheme out of deployed machines.
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vRA and The Problem of the vCenter Folder

By Chip Zoller |  Sep 18, 2017  | vra, vrealize, sovlabs, all tags
Between speaking with customers, architecting and deploying solutions, and helping others out with their issues on the VMware Communities forums, I encounter a lot of problems and get a lot of info on how customers do business with their CMPs. One of the requests that keeps coming up over and over again is how to deal with putting vRA’s workloads into the correct folder structure that has already been established in an enterprise.
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