1.1 Introduction to PlateSpin Orchestrate

The following sections contain information to help introduce you to PlateSpin Orchestrate:

1.1.1 What Is PlateSpin Orchestrate?

PlateSpin Orchestrate transforms a static, manually operated data center into a highly flexible, automated environment where resources are dynamically allocated based on what is needed by any given business at any given time.

The core strength of the product is the capability to automatically, rapidly, and securely create and scale heterogeneous virtual environments. Its high degree of automation makes manual interventions almost unnecessary. Not only does this dramatically reduce data center operating costs, it also mitigates operating risks by eliminating human error, which is the number one cause of business outages.

The Orchestrate VM Client adds increased functionality to PlateSpin Orchestrate.This client helps administrators, IT operators, and job developers improve and expand the performance of the data center by automating provisioning and by using Virtual Machines (VMs) as resources in the data center computing environment. Better managed VMs can help control associated data center costs by addressing several data center issues, including cooling, space, power usage, and efficient hardware usage. For more information about the VM Client, see the PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.6 VM Client Guide and Reference.

Key Product Features

PlateSpin Orchestrate includes these core features:

  • Creation and management of virtual environments

  • Powerful automation and scheduling engine

  • Support for most commonly used hypervisors

  • Open API promotes extensibility

New in the 2.6 Release

Some of the new features in PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.6 include:

  • Support for ESX 4.1

  • Support for Novell Cloud Manager workload resource change requests

New in the 2.5 Release

Some of the new features in PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.5 include:

  • New Amazon EC2 provisioning adapter

  • New vSphere 4 provisioning adapter with cluster/DRS support and multiple VCenter Server support

  • Windows 2008 R2 Hyper-V provisioning adapter with added cluster support

  • Windows sysprep support for Xen, vSphere 4, and Windows 2008 R2 Hyper-V provisioning adapters

  • vBridge groups (networks), vNICs, vDisks for Xen, vSphere 4 and Windows 2008 R2 provisioning adapters

  • Credential Manager for storing passwords

  • vCPU slots for VM hosts (for Novell Cloud Manager)

  • Integration with Sentinel 6 using a dedicated collector

  • Ability to rename objects with meaningful names

  • SLES 11 SP1 and SLES 10 SP3 support

  • Monitoring system (ganglia) updated to version 3.1.7 to allow for custom monitoring probes

  • Jetty Web services that enable applications like Novell Cloud Manager and Novell Business Service Manager to communicate with PlateSpin Orchestrate

New in the 2.1 Release

Some of the new features in PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.1 include:

  • Provisioning Adapters

    • Support for VMware vSphere 4.0

  • Advanced network configuration of VMs

  • Support for Windows sysprep for vSphere

New in The 2.0.2 Release

Some of the new features in PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.0.x include:

  • Provisioning Adapters

    • VMware Virtual Center

      • Usability improvements for connecting to Virtual Center

    • Xen

      • Improved automatic configuration of SLES VM hosts

  • VM management UI (PlateSpin Orchestrate VM Client)

    • New UI themes

    • Improved list navigation through a “locator pop-up” and a filter field

    • Improved tooltips related to VM life cycle operations

    • Visibility into history of VM life cycle operations

    • Improved event logging (content and format)

    • Improved VM remote connection setup

    • Optional manual VM placement in addition to default automated placement

    • Improved VM remote connection setup

    • Support for PXE-based installation of virtual machines

  • PlateSpin Orchestrate Server

    • Audit database now includes support for historical tracking of VM life cycle operations

    • New events based on RRD-based averaging of monitored metrics

  • New platform support

    • PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.0.2 agents are supported on SLES 11 (32-bit and 64-bit)

    • PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.0.2 VM Client and Development Client are supported on SLED 11 (32-bit and 64-bit)

    • PlateSpin Orchestrate can manage the life cycle of SLES 11 virtual machines (32-bit and 64-bit)

    • Metrics gathering form 32-bit and 64-bit Windows virtual machines (disk I/O, network I/O, CPU, and RAM)

New in The 2.0.1 Release

Some of the new features in PlateSpin Orchestrate 2.0.x include:

  • New Provisioning Adapters

    • VMware ESX

      • No requirement for customers to run VMware Virtual Center (VMware ESXi requires Virtual Center)

      • VMware ESX management is more powerful

    • Microsoft Windows Server 2008 with the Hyper-V role enabled

  • Easy to use new VM management GUI (VM Client)

    • Exposes only VM-related operations (that is, VM creation and management)

    • Incorporates many of the VM functions that were previously done in the ZENworks Orchestrator Console 1.3

  • Authentication using LDAP

    • Active Directory support (in addition to “generic” LDAP)

    • Administrator privilege based on LDAP group membership

  • Enhanced monitoring for disk and net I/O, CPU, and RAM

    • Monitoring of physical and virtual resources

  • Event triggering facility

    • Events can start jobs or alert existing jobs

  • Integration of N_Port ID Virtualization (NPIV) for the XEN 30 hypervisor on SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 10 SP2

    • VMs use virtual worldwide port numbers on the SAN

    • SAN zoning/LUN masking can be done through this port number

    • VMs can migrate freely without losing access to zoned storage

  • Support for Orchestrate Agent installed on SLES 10 SP2 and Windows Server 2008 (32-bit and 64-bit)

  • Support for installation inside virtual machines

    • Initially one (Xen virtual machine)

1.1.2 How Do I Obtain and License PlateSpin Orchestrate?

To download the product for evaluation or purchase, contact an authorized Novell Sales representative or a Certified Novell Partner.

You can evaluate the product before purchase by downloading a trial key, which controls the number of users and managed nodes you can configure. The trial key also sets an expiration date. The trial key is available on the product download site.

For fully supported functionality, PlateSpin Orchestrate requires a purchased license key. Contact your Novell Sales Representative or a Certified Novell Partner for purchase information.

Upgrading the Server from a Trial License to a Purchased License

If you are operating PlateSpin Orchestrate with a trial license key, use the following steps to upgrade to a license key you purchased from Novell:

  1. Stop the PlateSpin Orchestrate Server.

  2. Copy the purchased license file (key.txt) to the /opt/novell/zenworks/zos/server/license directory, overwriting the old license key.

  3. Restart the Orchestrate Server.