1,001 Datacenter objects Oh My!, more fun w/vCenter Server Simulator

A quick post here:

Back in January I saw a post  about vCenter Server Simulator on VirtuallyGhetto by William Lam ( @lamw )

Not only did it sound like a very cool tool, it actually was something I have a use for in my day job to see how a product behaves in environments with large inventory of virtual infrastructures objects.

So, I gave it a try and spun up 4 datacenters, each with 150 or so hosts, each running ~13VMs a piece (The number I got from  vOpenData for avg. VMs/host, again Thanks @lamw ).

That looked like this:

Simulated inventory on VCSIM vCenter Server Simulator w/VCSA vCenter Server Appliance Thx 2 @lamw http://bit.ly/Va9rOa  pic.twitter.com/9qJmlDLl

Simulated inventory on VCSIM vCenter Server Simulator w/VCSA vCenter Server Appliance Thx 2 @lamw http://t.co/XelzxtG1 pic.twitter.com/9qJmlDLl
— Kyle Murley (@kylemurley) January 17, 2013

Around the first of July, a thread on Twitter got me to thinking about using this tool once again.

The thread was started by Gabriel Chapman ( @Bacon_Is_King ), who for whatever reason asked this question (Okay, I know why… he was finally getting around to taking his VCP5 so as not to have his #vDB card pulled 😉 Grat’s on passing buddy!) :

Cody Bunch @cody_bunch, Shane Williford ‏@coolsport00 and I chimed in on the topic with our thoughts.

Cody, who offers ReferenceLibrarian-aaS via the twitters was quick to point very specifically to pg. 8 table 12 of the  Configuration Maximus document from VMware. We quickly realized this however is datastores, not datacenters… “oh, dataSTORES… yeah, I like those!

Key to Gabe’s question though was just that, maximum datacenter objects is not actually spelled out in the Mins/Maxes document from VMware  (BTW  @ChrisWahl, apparently keeps his copy on (in?) the refrigerator… #ProStudyTip)

What ensued on the twitters, was some crowd-sourced maths around mins and maxes of hosts per datacenter/vCenter, clusters, even the necessity of clusters at all and their sizing, etc. all to come up with a theoretical number of 1,000ish datacenters, based on the actual limits placed on the other elements, not the number of datacenters themselves.

So, circling back to vcsim, last night I was again spinning up an instance of the vCenter Server Virtual Appliance to check on something related to inventory management and I thought I’d take our theory a little closer to practice, though still simulated.

Using vCenter Server synthetic inventory, I told the simulator to (p)su(e)do build me 1,001 datacenters, each with 1 host, 1 resource pool, and 1 vm. As you can see from the image below, after a few minutes my WebClient showed me all the datacenters, with their respective inventory objects below them.  (Also fun, checkout the CPU & RAM resources available, wish I had that in my lab!)

Does this actually prove much? Well likely not, but for the exercise and the screenshot it was something fun to do.

Since it is only synthetic inventory and we’re not actually managing those many hosts and VMs, is seems logical to assume that the DB and UI can support displaying this info.

BTW, I am nearly certain that if you did actually try to do this with the VCSA it would be a matter of minutes before you’d fill the embedded DB storage in no time flat, ask Mike Laverick ‏@Mike_Laverick how to fix that! 😉



2 thoughts on “1,001 Datacenter objects Oh My!, more fun w/vCenter Server Simulator

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