installing, upgrading and confguring VMware® vRealize Orchestrator.
This information is intended for advanced vSphere administrators and experienced system administrators
who are familiar with virtual machine technology and datacenter operations.
Introduction to VMware vRealize Orchestrator
VMware vRealize Orchestrator is a development- and process-automation platform that provides a library
of extensible workﬂows to allow you to create and run automated, confgurable processes to manage VMware products as well as other third-party technologies.
vRealize Orchestrator automates management and operational tasks of both VMware and third-party applications such as service desks, change management systems, and IT asset management systems.
This chapter includes the following topics:
- “Key Features of the Orchestrator Platform,” on page 9
- “Orchestrator User Types and Related Responsibilities,” on page 11
- “Orchestrator Architecture,” on page 11
- “Orchestrator Plug-Ins,” on page 12
Key Features of the Orchestrator Platform
Orchestrator is composed of three distinct layers: an orchestration platform that provides the common
features required for an orchestration tool, a plug-in architecture to integrate control of subsystems, and a library of workﬂowsǯ Orchestrator is an open platform that can be extended with new plug-ins and libraries, and can be integrated into larger architectures through a REST API.
The following list presents the key Orchestrator features:
- Persistence – Production grade databases are used to store relevant information, such as processes, workﬂow states, and confguration information.
- Workﬂows and actions that Orchestrator provides
- Custom building blocks created by the customer
- Objects that plug-ins add to Orchestrator
- Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) to sign and encrypt content imported and exported between servers.
- Digital Rights Management (DRM) to control how exported content can be viewed, edited, and redistributed.
- Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) to provide encrypted communications between the desktop client and the server and HTTPS access to the Web front end. Advanced access rights management to provide control over access to processes and the objects manipulated by these processes.
Central management – Orchestrator provides a central way to manage your processes. The application server-based platform, with full version history, can store scripts and process-related primitives in the same storage location. This way, you can avoid scripts without versioning and proper change control on your servers.
Check-pointing – Every step of a workﬂow is saved in the database, which prevents data-loss if you must restart the server. This feature is especially useful for long-running.
Control Center – The Control Center interface increases the administrative efciency of vRealize Orchestrator instances by providing a centralized administrative interface for runtime operations, workﬂow monitoring, unifed log access and confgurationsǰ and correlation between the workﬂow runs and system resources. The vRealize Orchestrator logging mechanism is optimized with an additional log fle that gathers various performance metrics for vRealize Orchestrator engine throughput. processes.
Versioning – All Orchestrator Platform objects have an associated version history. Version history is useful for basic change management when distributing processes to project stages or locations.
blocks for Orchestrator Platform. The scripting engine is enhanced with basic version control, variable type checking, name space management, and exception handling. The engine can be used in the following building blocks:
Workflow engine – The workﬂow engine allows you to automate business processes. It uses the following objects to create a step-by-step process automation in workﬂows:
Policy engine – You can use the policy engine to monitor and generate events to react to changing conditions in the Orchestrator server or plugged-in technology. Policies can aggregate events from the platform or any of the plug-ins, which helps you to handle changing conditions on any of the integrated technologies.
Security – Orchestrator provides the following advanced security functions:
Encryption – vRealize Orchestrator uses a FIPS-compliant Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) with a 256-bit cipher key for encryption of strings. The cipher key is randomly generated and is unique across appliances that are not part of a cluster. All nodes in a cluster share the same cipher key.
Orchestrator User Types and Related Responsibilities
Orchestrator provides diﬀerent tools and interfaces based on the specifc responsibilities of the global user roles. In Orchestrator, you can have users with full rights, that are a part of the administrator group (Administrators) and users with limited rights, that are not part of the administrator group (End Users).
Users with Full Rights
– Orchestrator administrators and developers have equal administrative rights, but are divided in terms of responsibilities.
- Administrators – This role has full access to all of the Orchestrator platform capabilities. Basic administrative responsibilities include the following items:
- Installing and confguring Orchestrator
- Managing access rights for Orchestrator and applications
- mporting and exporting packages
- Running workﬂows and scheduling tasks
- Managing version control of imported elements
- Creating new workﬂows and plug-ins
- Creating applications to extend the Orchestrator platform functionality
- Automating processes by customizing existing workﬂows and creating new workﬂows and plug-ins.
Developers – This user type has full access to all of the Orchestrator platform capabilities.
Developers are granted access to the Orchestrator client interface and have the following responsibilities:
Users with Limited Rights
- End Users – End users can run and schedule workﬂows and policies that the
administrators or developers make available in the Orchestrator client
Orchestrator contains a workﬂow library and a workﬂow engine to allow you to create and run workﬂows that automate orchestration processes. You run workﬂows on the objects of diﬀerent technologies that Orchestrator accesses through a series of plug-ins.
Orchestrator provides a standard set of plug-ins, including a plug-in for vCenter Server, to allow you to
orchestrate tasks in the diﬀerent environments that the plug-ins expose.
Orchestrator also presents an open architecture to allow you to plug in external third-party applications to the orchestration platform. You can run workﬂows on the objects of the plugged-in technologies that you
defne yourself. Orchestrator connects to an authentication provider to manage user accounts, and to a
database to store information from the workﬂows that it runs. You can access Orchestrator, the Orchestrator workﬂows and the objects it exposes through the Orchestrator client interface, or through Web services.
Download a full Installing and Configuring VMware vRealize Orchestrator v7.1 .
One of the questions we occasionally hear is: What is the difference between vRealize Automation and vRealize Orchestrator? This video will help you understand the difference and respective strengths of these two products.
This video is the sixth in a new series of free Webinars that we are releasing in which our Technical Support staff members present on various topics across a wide range of VMware’s product portfolio.
The title for this presentation is “Introduction to VMware vRealize Orchestrator 6”.
This presentation was originally broadcast live on Thursday 30th April 2015.
To see the details of upcoming webinars in this series, see the Support Insider Blog post at http://blogs.vmware.com/kb/2015/02/ne…
NOTE: This video is roughly 40 minutes in length so it would be worth blocking out some time to watch it!