Monitoring and Cost Reporting for a Government Service Provider

Advanced VMware Integration in Public Services

This unit of the Dutch government, operates an extensive VMware landscape across two primary data centers and several subsidiary ones. Not only do they utilize diverse hardware, but they also deploy a range of tools, including the MS SQL Server, Oracle, and others.

This institution manages these IT services and applications; at the center of their management is the infrastructure department, which supports all groups as a service provider and oversees the VMware environment.

The Challenge

The organization sought to consolidate monitoring, not merely for the vSphere environment, but for all services operating on it. Having extensively tested Aria Operations and Aria Operations for Logs, they found themselves lacking the internal expertise to lead the project. Moreover, they aimed to introduce cost calculations to attribute expenditures to respective departments. At this juncture, they sought guidance from comdivision's Aria expert, Alain Geenrits. Alain boasts a wealth of experience with VMware Aria Operations, especially in cost reporting.

The Solution

"Given the desire for comprehensive service stack visibility, we assembled a project team comprising various infrastructure roles," Geenrits recounts. We started with a number of workshops to educate theinfrastructure department on Aria Operations and Aria Operations for Logs. After determining all the requirements, I created an architecture solution with proper sizing. To transfer the knowledge on the solutions, we installed the products together. Besides the core product, we also deployed the management packs for different solutions like NetApp storage, UCS servers, and Oracle databases. For custom applications, the Management Pack Builder was used to build a custom management pack for Commvault backup. Using comdivision’s excellent contacts inside VMware engineering, we were able to resolve all challenges during that project.

Concurrently, governemnt institution’s purchasing department embarked on their independent cost calculation project. "Following a workshop, where I illuminated the nuances of Aria Operations’ cost calculations, they undertook the task of entering all prices from their contracts with suppliers automatically. Their meticulous use of Aria Operations' cost functionality is truly unparalleled," Geenrits contended.

With cost data integrated into Aria Operations, the purchasing department can now showback the true infrastructure costs to internal departments, thereby ensuring fiscal transparency.

Additionally, they have implemented an extensive system of vSphere tags throughout the infrastructure, which is employed for both monitoring and cost calculation.

The Result         

After numerous collaborative sessions spanning six months, the monitoring was progressively extended to an increasing number of departments. Given the architecture's scalability, comdivision could augment the Aria Operations environment to accommodate the growing data volume.

Regarding their in-house expertise and capability to operate Aria Operations, Geenrits remarked, "I'm immensely proud to showcase a dashboard that their team independently crafted to monitor vSphere clusters in their department.



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