Showcasing Virtual Datacenter Capacity using vCenter Operations Manager Dashboards.

A few months back, I wrote about the capabilities of vCenter Operations Manager around Capacity Management in this article – vCenter Operations Manager – Solving Performance, Capacity and Configuration Problems!!. With this article I wanted to take a step further and showcase how you can use vCOps in a real world scenario to monitor the capacity of your Virtual Datacenter in an automated manner.
If you read my last 2 articles on vCenter Operations Manager, you would notice that custom dashboards in vCenter Operations is an amazing way to showcase a lot of important data which is collected,analysed & computed by vCOps Patented Analytics and Capacity engine. In this article I will share a Custom Dashboard which in a single pane can showcase multiple facets of Capacity & Consolidation in your Virtual Datacenter. 
To begin with let’s have a look at the dashboard and then we will break down the discussion on how to create it using the custom dashboard widgets.
Executive Capacity Dashboard
Well that is colorful, isn’t it. As complex as it looks, if your approach towards creating this dashboard is correct, this should be a matter of few minutes. I will not go into step by step of how I created it, I would rather ask you to get your hands dirty and learn how to create such dashboards.
Here are a few pointers on this dashboard, which will help you create one on your own:-
a) The over all dashboard is a 2 column and 8 widget dashboard.
b) Each widget used is a Score Board Widget.
c) No super-metric used here. Each widget uses metrics which are already populated by default vCOps collection.
Let’s look at each part horizontally.
Part 1 – Datacenter Capacity and Consolidation Ratios

Here the widget on the left uses a scoreboard widget to show the capacity of 2 data-centers  DC 1 and DC2.  I have used the Datacenter as the Resource tags here shown the “Summary” of each Datacenter such as number of Clusters, Datastores, ESXi Hosts and Virtual machines in a DC.
The widget on the right uses the scoreboard widget to show the consolidation ratios of both the virtual data-centers by using the Datacenter as the resource tag and  “Density” ratios to populate the following vCPU to pCPU, VMs to Hosts and vMem to pMem. This can give you the density of your Datacenter in a snap.

Part 2 – Capacity & Time Remaining in Each DC/Cluster 
This takes the capacity information to the next level. This section talks about, how many VMs can be deployed, how many VMs are deployed currently and the number of days remaining for VMs to be deployed (from left to right). I have done this for one cluster in each Datacenter as this is what I have in my lab. I used Score Board Widgets, Datacenter/Cluster as Resource Tags and “Capacity Remaining”, “Time Remaining” and “Summary” as the metric providers for these scoreboards.
Note:- The number of days are a weird looking number since there has been no deployment in this cluster after installing vCOps. vCOps does not have a deployment pattern in this case, using which it can suggest you the approximate amount of days remaining.
Part 3 – Resource Wise Capacity Remaining

This part also uses 2 scoreboard widgets for each Datacenter/Cluster and this breaks down the part 2 of this dashboard further down to tell which which is the most constraining resource due to which you have given number of virtual machines which you can deploy in your Datacenter/Cluster. Again I have selected Datacenter as the “Resource Tag” and used “Capacity Remaining” resource wise such as CPU, Disk Space, Disk I/O, Memory and Network and showcased, ho many VMs you can deploy as per each individual resource.

Part 4 – Resource Wise Time Remaining



Coming to the last part of the dashboard. This again is made by using the Scoreboard widget and tells you how many days would a resource last with your deployment pattern of creating new Virtual Machines in each Datacenter/Cluster. Again I have selected Datacenter as the “Resource Tag” and used “Time Remaining” resource wise such as CPU, Disk Space, Disk I/O, Memory and Network and showcased, how many VMs you can deploy as per each individual resource.
Note:- The number of days are a weird looking number since there has been no deployment in this cluster after installing vCOps. vCOps does not have a deployment pattern in this case, using which it can suggest you the approximate amount of days remaining.
Having said this before, it is your creativity & need which can take you to heights with vCOps customization. I prefer this way of dash-boarding rather than seeing what is available out of the box in a lot of other products, as this gives the power to create in my hands, rather that being dependent on the manufacturer of the product.
I will close this article now, feel free to reach out if you have questions around the discussed topic. 

Don’t forget to Share and Spread the Knowledge. 


Published by Sunny Dua

Sunny Dua works as a Senior Product Line Manager for VMware’s Cloud Management business. His charter is to deliver Multi-Cloud solutions to reduce cloud complexity by leveraging data analytics and artificial intelligence. His 16+ years of experience include technical and strategic roles for Hewlett Packard, Capgemini, and VMware. He is a hands-on Product Manager with deep knowledge of Cloud and Enterprise technologies. His current charter includes driving product strategy and roadmap for VMware’s vRealize portfolio within the VMware’s Multi-Cloud strategy.

6 thoughts on “Showcasing Virtual Datacenter Capacity using vCenter Operations Manager Dashboards.

  1. You have to select the average number of vs per host metric under the summary drop down and mention :1 in the measurement unit field for getting a ratio value…

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  2. Hey Stephon,If a dashboard is not using Super Metrics, then it can be exported and imported… Another important thing to keep in mind is the construct of an environment. The dashboard I show above has 3 vCenters, hence it would map to an environment if it has 3 vCenters… D1, DC2 and DC3…

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