For those who are aware, EMC Avamar now has integration into the vSphere webclient for backup administration. Our aim is to perhaps put something into our current provisioning workflow, that by a "simple" "yes / no" option during deployment, a VM can be added to a backup group / enabled for backups. Has anyone had experience with regards to this or perhaps guide me with suggestion I could go about in doing so?
Your assistance is greatly appreciated
There are two aspects here:
1. How to automate adding the VM to a backup group in Avamar
2. How to trigger that during deployment for a VM
Does Avamar has an API, or even better, a vCO Plugin?
If so, it's quite easy to automate the tasks using vCO. If it's a standard API, e.g. REST or SOAP, you can use the vCO Plugins for that to make the API calls.
If there is no API, some harder work is needed: Find a CLI or any other tool that you can somehow call in an automated matter.
If the VM is deployed from a workflow already (or from vCAC, and you have some vCO workflows in the process) you then can just call your workflows. In vCAC you can add some field regarding backup options to the request form.
If the VM is created manually, you might add an event based alarm in vCenter that calls the vCO workflow (e.g. using SNMP traps as "messenger"). Here you can use custom attributes for the VM to define if the VM should be backed up.
Thanks for the feedback
1) EMC Engineer confirmed that AVAMAR does support REST API but there is currently no vCO Plugin
2) VM is deployed using an existing workflow - perhaps just guidance on how I can amend to call it to add to backup?
Have a look at the REST Plugin for vCO, it might help you to generate the workflows that call AVAMAR. See examples for its usage here:
Once you create a workflow that adds the VM to the backup, you can easily edit the existing workflow that deploys the VM and add a step to call the other workflow.
For everybody interested in this, since vDPA 6 is free with vSphere 6 (vDPA == Avamar), I'd recommand this blogpost: http://velemental.com/2014/07/18/accessing-avamar-rest-api-from-the-vco-rest-plugin/
The guy already developed some vRO workflows ready to use which will use the REST plugin. The install/configuration could be better but it'll do.
Now for everybody wondering if vDPA6 is a "full fledged Avamar" - I researched this and behind tons of marketing bs found some answers (which I verified by testing). Even at EMC >some< guys say "yes" but fact is - as others say - it is not. The REST API - which is a simple additional RPM module in Avamar - is NOT part of vDPA6. My test verify that. However: I didn't run tests on all ports so there is a very small possibility that vDPA is using a port or endpoint different to the one Avamar uses for the REST API. The vDPA documentation has nothing to say on that topic so I guess the case is closed.
Thus you'll not be able to easily automate that thing to the end. The EMC documentation however states that it's possible to buy the REST API RPM. Where? No idea.
But even if you buy it there is no gurantee it'll run on vDPA since other packages that are required may be missing.
Here is a link to the EMC Data Protection plugin for vRealize Automation: https://support.emc.com/downloads/38096_Plugin-for-vRealize-Automation
You'll have to register in order to download it, but it's free.
Here is the product description from the site:
Plugin for vRealize Automation delivers an out-of-the-box integration between EMC Avamar and VMware vRealize Automation. The plugin enables Backup and Virtualization administrators to embed data protection policies in application blueprints and provide self-service backup and restore from vRealize Automation user interface.
Well, yes, this works and I got it working in our lab. The Avamar vRO workflows even come with a couple of workflows which use the vRA plugin to install custom Avamar services and actions into vRA (quite cool idea, never thought about this).
Still you require a real Avamar, VDP won't work as of the latest release.
We've had the plugin working with VDP in the past, but switched to a full Avamar later. Would you mind adding any details on what vRA, vRO and VDP versions you tried? Have you looked in the vCO logs to see if there are any helpful logs there to troubleshoot? It might just be the firewall on the VDP, did you disable it? I'll try to get it running with VDP and see what I run into.
Well that's strange. It's not supposed to be working ( :smileygrin: ) since the REST API is not part of the VDP Avamar "Edition". Atleast that's what EMC told me. I just checked the documented Avamar REST port and found that it was closed. Didn't check the firewall though.
Interesting question would be - since on Avamar you have to license that REST API - if you're allowed to use it (if it's in the VDP package).
Happy to hear about your findings.
The EMC Plug-in for vRealize product doesn't use that Avamar REST API (i.e. the one on port 8543); it accesses MCS SOAP services on the Avamar server, on port 9443 by default, which is what the VDP specific code in VDP (e.g. via the vSphere web client plugin) uses as well, I believe.
So, if port 9443 is open and accessible on your VDP VM (which is an Avamar server), the vRO plug-in should be able to hit it. You'll know right away in vRO since the 'Add data protection system*' workflows will fail if it cannot talk to those SOAP endpoints on the host:port you specify.