Introducing the vRealize Network Insight Toolkit

I’m very excited to introduce a new Fling called the vRealize Network Insight Toolkit! This applianced-based Fling deploys into your environment, next to vRealize Network Insight (vRNI), and helps you start using the vRealize Network Insight APIs.

Extract flow data, import applications, and data sources, and more. The Toolkit comes pre-loaded with the PowerShell and Python SDKs, which are ready for use directly after you’ve deployed the appliance. Even better, there are a few features directly built into the Toolkit web interface.

Features

The Toolkit has a web interface to make it as easy as possible to accelerate automation with vRNI. This web interface has a web-based console to get into the PowerShell and Python SDKs so that you can run scripts from your browser. Then, there are the built-in features: the VMware HCX Integration and a Migration Planning data extraction tool. Before diving deeper into the built-in features, here’s a complete list of available features:

  • PowervRNI pre-installed
  • vRNI Python SDK pre-installed
  • All available PowervRNI and Python example scripts
  • Web-console to access SDKs via your browser
  • VMware HCX Integration
  • Migration Planning

VMware HCX Integration

Following up the VMware HCX Integration Fling, which is a PowerShell script, this integration is now available with the web interface of the Toolkit! If you don’t know, this integration synchronizes applications that vRealize Network Insight has discovered in the network to VMware HCX as Mobility Groups. Why? To eliminate manual copying and pasting between vRNI (and the human errors that come with it). Migration planning starts with vRNI and its ability to discover applications and gather requirements for the migration. Then VMware HCX runs the migration itself. Integrating the two saves you time.

Migration Planning

Continuing the migration theme, the migration planning feature is how you extract a ton of data from vRNI to calculate network requirements and design the migration destinations’ network. This topic deserves a dedicated blog post, which I’ll do soon. In the meantime, here’s a brief description.

The Migration Planning logs into vRNI and picks up the maximums, percentiles (50%, 70%, 90%, and 95%) of traffic (bandwidth and packets per second) between, inside, incoming, and outgoing an L2 network. It also uses network groups to group multiple L2 networks. Let’s say you want to migrate based on networks; pick up all VMs in those networks and put them somewhere else (i.e., VMware Cloud on AWS). You need to make sure the destination network can handle the network traffic. You also want to know what to expect; how much east-west traffic will go over the data center interconnect, and how much internet (egress) traffic your VMs will generate.

The data from this migration planner will answer all those questions.

Getting Started

Enough theory; let’s see how to get started! Head over to the Flings website and grab the vRealize Network Insight Toolkit OVA. After that, you can follow the video below for the installation instructions and a quick walk-through of the web interface and features.

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