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Using the ONTAP Select Deploy VMware vCenter Plug-in

David Peterson

ONTAP Select Deploy is the administration utility used to deploy and manage ONTAP Select clusters. Beginning with ONTAP Select 9.5 and Deploy 2.11.2, you have the option of using the VMware vCenter plug-in through vSphere instead of the native Deploy web user interface. The plug-in is tightly integrated with vCenter so you can seamlessly navigate among the resources managed by Deploy and vCenter.

How to get up and running

It’s easy to install and begin using the Deploy vCenter plug-in. At a high level, there are three main steps. See the VMware vCenter Plug-in User Guidefor more details.

Planning and preparation

First, you need to make sure your runtime environment can host the vCenter plug-in. The plug-in has the following software requirements:

  • ONTAP Select Deploy 2.11.2 or later
  • VMware vSphere 6.5 GA or later
  • VMware vSphere HTML5 user interface
  • ESXi 6.5 U2 or later

There are additional limitations regarding cluster size and AutoSupport. You’ll also need to create the vCenter accounts used to manage and access the plug-in.

Installing the plug-in

The vCenter plug-in is packaged with the Deploy administration utility. After installing Deploy, you need to install the plug-in to a vCenter server using Deploy. You can only install one instance of the plug-in at each vCenter server.

Accessing the plug-in

After installing the plug-in, you can sign in to vCenter through the vSphere interface. The plug-in user interface is equivalent to the native Deploy web interface, however there are a few features that are not supported. For example, you can only install and manage the plug-in through the native Deploy interface.

Overview of the Deploy vCenter plug-in architecture

There are two paths to the Deploy administration utility through the vSphere user interface:


Center plug-in GUI component

The Deploy plug-in is downloaded from the vCenter server and runs within the vSphere browser environment. It communicates with the associated back end plug-in component at the vCenter server using a VMware API.

Deploy GUI component

The Deploy server GUI component that’s part of the native Deploy web interface is also downloaded and used for certain tasks. It communicates directly with the back end Deploy server component through the Deploy REST API.

ONTAP Select Deploy functionality exposed through vSphere

After launching the vSphere HTML5 client and signing in to vCenter, two options are available under the Global Inventory Lists pane on the left side of the page.

ONTAP Select Clusters

This option is equivalent to the functionality provided through the Clusters tab in the native Deploy web user interface. You can perform the following tasks:

  • Deploy an ONTAP Select cluster
  • View cluster details and event messages
  • Take a cluster online and offline
  • Delete a cluster
  • Launch System Manager
  • View the VMware resources used by ONTAP Select clusters

ONTAP Select Deploy

This option is equivalent to the functionality provided through the Hypervisor Hosts and Administration tabs in the native Deploy web user interface. It provides functionality arranged in three tabs:

  • Summary
  • Host
  • Administration

ONTAP Select Deploy and vCenter integration

The vCenter plug-in integrates the ONTAP Select Deploy and VMware environments. This is a major benefit when using the plug-in because it allows you to clearly see the relationships among the resources in the two domains. The navigation is generally in one of two directions:

  • Deploy to vCenter resource
  • vCenter to Deploy resource.

Here are two examples illustrating the integration in each direction.

ONTAP Select Deploy to VMware vCenter

You can navigate from an ONTAP Select cluster to the VMware resources it uses. Under Global Inventory Lists in the vSphere interface, click ONTAP Select Clusters and a list of clusters is presented. After selecting a cluster and clicking the More Objects tab, the four categories of VMware resources associated with the cluster are displayed.

VMware vCenter to ONTAP Select Deploy

You can navigate from a VMware resource to the ONTAP Select resources it is associated with. Under the Menu option in the vSphere interface, click VMs and Templates and a list of ESXi virtual machines is presented. After selecting a VM and clicking the More Objects tab, the VM hosting the ONTAP Select node is displayed along with the associated ONTAP Select cluster. You can click the cluster to get additional information as needed.

Get started now!

To get started using the ONTAP Select Deploy vCenter plug-in, begin by reviewing the NetApp ONTAP Select Resources page for guides, technical reports, and other resources. The VMware vCenter Plug-in User Guide provides details about planning, installing, and using the plug-in. Also see the video Deploying an ONTAP Select cluster for an example of using the vCenter plug-in.

Please feel free to share you feedback in the ONTAP Select community discussion.

David Peterson

David Peterson is a senior technical writer at NetApp where he currently focuses on REST API and automation documentation. He also wrote the complete documentation for several products including ONTAP Select and worked on a variety of other projects such as StorageGRID and the ONTAP Python client library. In addition to writing, he contributed several Python utilities to assist with the ongoing documentation migration and modernization efforts. Before joining NetApp, he spent many years as a software engineer as well as a technical instructor and curriculum developer. In his spare time, David enjoys golf and running. He holds a degree in electrical engineering from Virginia Tech.

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