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VMware vCloud Director Installation with High Availability

VMware vCloud Director (vCD) is deployment, automation and management software for virtual infrastructure resources in multi-tenant cloud environments. VMware vCloud Director provides role-based access to a Web console that allows the members of an organization to interact with the organization’s resources to create and work with vApps and virtual machines.

In this blog we will do the deployment of vCloud Director Appliance with high availability. I have already created a blog on standalone vCloud Director deployment and please reffer this before you start with clustered deployment.

Prerequisites

vCloud Director can be installed on Linux server or you can install as an appliance, in this blog we are doing the appliance installation and configuration

  • Verify that you have access to the vCloud Director .ova file, you can download the same from this VMware Downloads.
  • Each vCloud Director server must support two different SSL endpoints. One endpoint is for the HTTP service. The other endpoint is for the console proxy service. These endpoints can be separate IP addresses, or a single IP address with two different ports. You can use IP aliases or multiple network interfaces to create these addresses.
  • DNS entry for both the appliance.
  • As we are running multiple vCloud Director cells to make high availability function fully we need to configure these cells and console proxy behind load balancer. You can use NSX load balancer or any other Load Balancers.
  • For compatibility between vCloud Director and other VMware products, see the VMware Product Interoperability Matrixes.
  • The vCloud Director appliance includes an embedded PostgreSQL database. The embedded PostgreSQL database includes the Replication Manager (repmgr) tool suite, which provides a high availability (HA) function to a cluster of PostgreSQL servers. You can create an appliance deployment with a database HA cluster that provides failover capabilities to your vCloud Director database. As we are installing vCD with HA which include primary and standby node, we need two networks for both eth0 and eth1 adapters. It is possible to deploy non-DB HA architecture with just the primary and cell nodes, however for production the DB HA is recommended and requires minimum of 3 nodes. One primary and two standbys. The reason for the need of two standby is, that now the replication is configured, PostgreSQL database will not process any write requests as it is not able to synchronously replicate them to at least one standby node.
  • Transfer Server Storage, To provide temporary storage for uploads, downloads, and catalog items that are published or subscribed externally, you must make an NFS or other shared storage volume accessible to all servers in a vCloud Director server group, he vCloud Director appliance supports only NFS type of shared storage. The appliance deployment process involves mounting the NFS shared transfer server storage. Below is the /etc/exports entry for this deployment and please use this link to Preparing the Transfer Server Storage.
  • The vCloud Director appliance includes an embedded PostgreSQL database. The embedded PostgreSQL database includes the Replication Manager (repmgr) tool suite, which provides a high availability (HA) function to a cluster of PostgreSQL servers. You can create an appliance deployment with a database HA cluster that provides failover capabilities to your vCloud Director database. You can deploy the vCloud Director appliance as a primary cell, standby cell, or vCD application cell. To configure HA for your vCloud Director database, when you create your server group, you can configure a database HA cluster by deploying one primary and two standby instances with embedded database of the vCloud Director appliance.
  • Deploy one or more instances of the vCloud Director appliance as vCD Application cells(optional). The embedded databases are not used. The vCD Application cell connects to the primary database.
One primary cell, two standby cells, and N vCD Application cells

Plan Installation or Upgradation

You create a vCloud Director server group by installing the vCloud Director software on one or more Linux servers, or by deploying one or more instances of the vCloud Director appliance. During the installation process, you perform the initial vCloud Director configuration, which includes establishing network and database connections.

  • The vCloud Director software for Linux requires an external database, whereas the vCloud Director appliance uses an embedded PostgreSQL database.
  • After you create the vCloud Director server group, you integrate the vCloud Director installation with your vSphere resources. For network resources, vCloud Director can use NSX Data Center for vSphere, NSX-T Data Center, or both.
  • When you upgrade an existing vCloud Director installation, you update the vCloud Director software and the database schema, leaving the existing relationships between servers, the database, and vSphere in place.
  • When you migrate an existing vCloud Director installation on Linux to the vCloud Director appliance, you update the vCloud Director software and migrate the database to the embedded database in the appliance.

Primary Cell Installation

Login to vSphere Web client and right click on the cluster where you want to deploy the primary appliance

Here you can either provide the download URL or you can provide the location of OVA local file which is already downloaded.

Select the Virtual Machine Name and Folder

Select the Compute Resource and Click Next

Review the details of vCloud Director

Read and Accept the EULA of vCloud Director and Click Next

Choose the type of deployment according to your infrastructure, you can verify the respective description details of each deployment. Click Next

Note: – Use the Standby option to deploy the secondary node when you configure with High availability

Select the data store where you want to store the vCloud Director Appliance and you can select the virtual disk format.

Starting with version 9.7, the vCloud Director appliance is deployed with two networks, eth0 and eth1, so that you can isolate the HTTP traffic from the database traffic. Different services listen on one or both corresponding network interfaces. As we are planning for clustered deployment with database high availability, we will go with different subnets on both interfaces.

Note: – Both eth0 and eth1 should be on different network if you design to configure vCloud Director in Primary-Standby mode.

Select the Destination Port Group for the Appliance and Click Next

Configure the Network Settings like IP Address, Subnet Mask, Gateway, DNS, Time zone, Transfer Server Storage, Database Password etc.

Review the configuration you have done and Click Finish to start the Deployment

In the Recent Task tab, you can see the deployment status

Once the deployment is completed Power On the appliance and wait to completely initialize the vCloud Director

Once you get the above screen the appliance is successfully initialized, and you can access or manage the appliance by https://IP Address of FQDN:5480.

Once you login with the Appliance root password provided during installation, the database appliances currently provide very simple user interface showing the cluster state with the only operation to promote standby node and that only if the primary is failed.

To access the vCloud Director(vCD) use the following link https://IP Address of FQDN/provider

To login to vCD use the administrator username and password provided during installation

Note:- If you face any issue in accessing URL with FQDN, please refer VMware KB

Standby Cell Installation

Now we have completed the primary appliance deployment and will continue with secondary one now.

Login to vSphere Web client and right click on the cluster where you want to deploy the primary appliance

Here you can either provide the download URL or you can provide the location of OVA local file which is already downloaded.

Select the Virtual Machine Name and Folder

Select the Compute Resource and Click Next

Review the details of vCloud Director

Read and Accept the EULA of vCloud Director and Click Next

Choose the type of deployment as Standby-small as we are deploying second node. Click Next

Select the Datastore where you want to store the vCloud Director Appliance and you can select the virtual disk format.

As we are planning for clustered deployment with database high availability, we will go with different subnets on both interfaces.

Note: – Both eth0 and eth1 should be on different network if you design to configure vCloud Director in Primary-Standby mode.

Select the Destination Port Group for the Appliance and Click Next

Configure the Network Settings like IP Address, Subnet Mask, Gateway, DNS, Time zone, Transfer Server Storage, Database Password etc.

Review the configuration you have done and Click Finish to start the Deployment

Once the deployment is completed Power On the appliance and wait to completely initialize the standby vCloud Director

Once you get the above screen the appliance is successfully initialized, and you can access or manage the appliance by https://IP Address of FQDN:5480.

Once you login with the Appliance root password provided during installation, the database appliances currently provide very simple user interface showing the cluster state with the only operation to promote standby node and that only if the primary is failed. Here you can see now both primary and standby vCD node details on both appliance management URLs.

Now same way we need to deploy the third standby appliance cell to enable the

Once the deployment complete you can see one primary cell and two standby cells in appliance management URL

Also, you can see all Cloud cells details in vCD Web UI also like below screenshot

In upcoming blogs, we will discuss more on VMware vCloud Director. To make this vCD series more understandable, I am splitting this into multiple blogs

Part 1 – What is VMware vCloud Director

Part 2 – VMware vCloud Director Standalone Installation

Part 3 – VMware vCloud Director Installation with High Availability

Part 4 – VMware vCloud Director – Install and Configure RabbitMQ Cluster

Part 5 – VMware vCloud Director Cell Certificates & Load Balancing

Part 6 – VMware vCloud Director Cell Role Switchover

Part 7 – VMware vCloud Director Basic Configuration

Part 8 – VMware vCloud Director Virtual Data Center

Part 9 – VMware vCloud Director Org vDC Configuration

Thanks, 😊

If you have any comments, please drop me a line

Published inCloudvCDVirtualizationVMware

2 Comments

  1. Yes Simon, correct.

  2. Simon Sparks Simon Sparks

    The way you entered the route data into the additional networking properties for the OVA deployment is INCORRECT. It should be the gateway IP followed by the CIDR notation for a network.

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