This is the second book that I have written on the subject of vRealize Orchestrator, the first being the vRealize Orchestrator Cookbook. The cookbook covers a lot of ground and is pretty full on. So we came to the conclusion to write a book that covers more of the essentials of Orchestrator and helps novices get an easy start.
This book focuses on the basic skills that you need to learn to use Orchestrator. When you've worked through it, you will know enough to create workflows and use them productively as well as share them with the rest of the community. In this book, I tried to keep the focus on the essential skills, and I will explain about backgrounds as much as possible. The book can be regarded as a training class where we build up our skills from one chapter to the next. We will develop a new workflow and then constantly improve it to understand and implement new topics.
Please note that VMware vRealize Orchestrator was renamed from vCenter Orchestrator in late 2014 and is not a new product. In this book, we will just use the name Orchestrator.
This book has been written with vRealize Orchestrator 6.02, but almost everything discussed in this book is applicable to the older versions as well. The following table gives you an overview of what won't work in which version:
vCenter Orchestrator (vCO)
No Web Client integration
No debug mode
General improvements in usage
General improvements in usage
vRealize Orchestrator (vRO)
Switch workflow element
The book is based on this version
The best approach towards this book is to start at the beginning and work your way towards the end. I also recommend that you try out each example, as this will not only increase your skill, but also your understanding.
Chapter 1, Architectural Overview, covers all the questions regarding the sizing, connection ability, and plug-ins of Orchestrator.
Chapter 2, Deploying and Configuring the Orchestrator Appliance, shows you how to install and configure the vRO Appliance.
Chapter 3, Integrating Orchestrator with vSphere, deals with connecting and using Orchestrator with vSphere Web Client.
Chapter 4, Working with Workflows, is an introduction to how to start and schedule a workflow as well as deal with the outcomes.
Chapter 5, Combining and Modifying Workflows, shows you how to build your own workflows by using the existing ones from the huge library that is a part of the product.
Chapter 7, Improving Workflows with Presentation, shows you how to make workflows not only more user-friendly, but also less prone to error entries.
Chapter 8, Errors, Logs, and Debug Mode, introduces you to the usage of logs and error handling. We also discuss the Orchestrator debug mode.
Chapter 9, Packing It All Up, looks into the creation, export, and import of packages and workflows.
This book has been written with vRealize Orchestrator 6.02 Appliance. However, as mentioned earlier, you can also use the vCenter 5.5 Appliance.
If you have a valid VMware vSphere or vCenter standard license, you automatically own Orchestrator. You just have to download the appliance.
To use this book, you will need a VMware vSphere vCenter. You can use the trial version that is available for download at www.vmware.com. Please note that at the time of writing this book, the vSphere 6 trial version gives you no access to vRealize Orchestrator.
This book is aimed especially at Orchestrator novices. You should be a reasonably experienced vSphere administrator. A basic understanding of the VMware vSphere terms and concepts will be helpful.
We made sure that the book is especially suitable for beginners. The team of technical reviewers consisted of not only the two most respected people in the world of Orchestrator, but also a total novice in Orchestrator.
In this book, you will find a number of styles of text that distinguish between different kinds of information. Here are some examples of these styles, and an explanation of their meaning.
Code words in text, database table names, folder names, filenames, file extensions, pathnames, dummy URLs, user input, and Twitter handles are shown as follows: "Click here to start the Orchestrator Java Client. You can also access the Client directly by browsing to
https://[IP or FQDN]:8281/vco/client/client.jnlp."
A block of code is set as follows:
var myOutput = new Number(); myOutput = 5;
New terms and important words are shown in bold. Words that you see on the screen, in menus or dialog boxes for example, appear in the text like this: "It's always a good idea to read the Release Notes to understand changes to the current version."
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