Networking and IP Management

This article provides a general overview of Embotics® vCommander® networking.

See also the following articles in the Networking and IP Management category:

Configuring Networks

Configuring and Managing IP Pools

Network Fencing

Integrating BlueCat™ IP Address Management with vCommander

See also the following Knowledge Base articles:

Why Am I Getting an Automatic Private IP Addressing (169.x.x.x) Address?

Why are VMs Deployed with Manual MACs When the Base Image is Automatic?

Network configuration and automated deployment

When manually provisioning a VM (by manually deploying a service request, deploying a template, or cloning), the vCommander administrator has full control over network configuration for the deployed VM.

When you've set up automated deployment, how you configure networking for deployed VMs depends on how knowledgeable your users are and how much control you want to allow them. For example, if you're running a Dev/Test shop, you'd likely want to allow your users to choose the network zone and add adapters as required when requesting a service. You might also want to allow Dev/Test users to reconfigure networking settings for existing VMs. To satisfy these requirements, you would:

assign network zones to networks

add the Network element to the request form, allowing users to choose the network zone and add adapters as required

set up an approval workflow to enable automated deployment for approved requests

create a deployment destination for each of your user groups, with basic networking configuration

Automated deployment then assigns a network configured in the deployment destination that matches the network zone chosen on the request form.

If you're a service provider, on the other hand, your users likely don't know whether the VM they're requesting should be deployed into the DMZ or the Production zone, or whether they need extra network adapters. Instead, you may want to allow requesters to indicate their service requirements by selecting from a drop-down list (such as None, Backup or Monitoring), and then set up post-deployment configuration to handle these requirements. To set up a solution for this scenario, you would:

add a list-type custom attribute to the request form, allowing users to specify what type of services they require

set up an approval workflow to enable automated deployment for approved requests

create a deployment destination for each of your user groups, with basic networking configuration

set up a component-level completion workflow with a conditional step to configure networking based on information specified on the request form

Automated deployment then configures the new VM with the same NICs as the source template; the completion workflow adds a NIC and connects it to the appropriate network.

Viewing network details

For on-premise managed systems, vCommander provides a Networks tab at the following levels of the Operational tree and the VMs and Templates tree:

Managed System

Datacenter

Cluster

Host

NotePencil-smallSCVMM: Only the logical networks are displayed on the Networks tab. VM and virtual networks are not shown, and you can't assign zones to them.

See Network Properties for a description of the properties shown on the Networks tab.

For public cloud managed systems, vCommander provides a Subnets tab at the following levels of the Operational tree and the VMs and Templates tree:

Managed System

Region

Availability zone or affinity group

Virtual Private Cloud or Virtual Network

Database (for AWS only)

See Subnet Properties for a description of the properties shown on the Subnets tab.

VM Network Assignment

You can view the network assignment for individual VMs by adding the Network property to a VM table or to the Details pane in the VM Summary tab. The Network property displays:

For vCenter, the network name

For AWS, the VPC name if the VM is in a VPC; otherwise, the value is blank

For Microsoft Azure, the subnet name

This property is not displayed for SCVMM VMs.

You can also search for VM network assignment by going to Tools > Search and filtering by Network (in the Resources - Network category).

Order of precedence for network selection

The order of precedence for network selection for new VMs is as follows:

Network deployment parameters specified by a request approver, or in a workflow step

Network matching the network zone specified on the request form

Network configured in the deployment destination wizard. When multiple networks are configured in the deployment destination, the first (alphabetically) is used.

Network of source NIC

Configuring network resources in vCommander

vCommander provides several ways to configure networking.

Allowing users to specify networking information when requesting a service

Depending on how you configure the request form, when you add the Network form element, users requesting a VM can:

change the network automatically selected by vCommander based on the deployment destination settings, by selecting a network zone

add network adapters to a requested VM component

The network zones selectable on the form must match those configured for networks added to the deployment destinations available to the requesting user. If the user selects a network zone that isn't available on the target destination, automated deployment will fail.

To learn how to add the Network element to the new service request form, see:

Adding a vCenter Service to the Catalog

Adding an SCVMM Service to the Catalog

Adding an AWS Service to the Catalog

Adding an Azure Service to the Catalog

Note that you need to tag your networks with zones.

Assigning networks to automated deployment destinations

When you configure destinations for automated deployment placement, you configure network assignment for new VMs. You can add multiple networks to a destination.

If multiple networks of the same network zone are valid for a user, the first network is selected (alphabetically, case insensitive) for automated deployment.

Assigning networks after provisioning using completion workflows

You can also configure network assignment in a VM completion workflow. You can configure network assignment in the guest OS and at the hypervisor level.

Assigning networks during the request approval process

Use the $NETWORK<x>=<network>$ deployment parameter to configure the network during the request approval process. Note that this parameter assigns the actual network, not the network zone. Request approvers can enter this parameter when approving a request; this parameter can also be used in scripts.

Assigning networks during manual deployment

Administrators can configure networking during manual provisioning.

Reconfiguring network resources

vCommander users can reconfigure network resources for deployed VMs. Service Portal users can reconfigure memory, CPU and storage resource, but not networking.

Note for CentOS

Some versions of CentOS are not compatible with network customization when the base image includes a network interface. You can resolve this issue by removing the network interface from the base image. For more information, contact support@embotics.com.