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Advanced Technical Design Guide - Technical Book

Advanced Technical Design Guide - Technical Book

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Published by: Bryon on Feb 21, 2010
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12/17/2012

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VirtualCenter is really made up of 5 unique components. Each of the
following components interact with each other to give you a usable
interface for managing the ESX environment:

•VirtualCenter Client

•VirtualCenter Server

•VirtualCenter Database

•VirtualCenter Agent

•VirtualCenter Web Service

Let’s review each of these separately to understand their place in the
VC infrastructure:

VirtualCenter client

The VC Client is an application that provides the user interface to
VirtualCenter. The client can be installed on a Windows workstation
or server and interacts with the VirtualCenter server.

VirtualCenter server

The VC Server is really a service that is installed on a Windows serv-
er within your environment. This service accepts commands from the
VC client, and interacts with the ESX hosts. It basically acts as a clear-
ing house for all commands/tasks bound for the ESX hosts or VMs
and gathers performance data from ESX hosts for storage in the VC
database.

VirtualCenter database

The VC database is an ODBC compliant database that stores all
VirtualCenter information. Data stored here will include information
about the hosts, the VMs, VM configurations, VirtualCenter security,

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VMware ESXServer

performance data, tasks, and VM permissions. The database is
installed at the time of the VirtualCenter installation and is used by
the VC Server. You can gather detailed information about the data
map for this database in the VMware document: Using VirtualCenter
Database Views.

Since the VC database is ODBC compliant you have 4 supported
options for your database: Microsoft Access, Microsoft MSDE,
Microsoft SQL (7 or 2000), or Oracle. Due to its inherent limita-
tions, Access is not recommended for anything other than demo or
proof of concept usage. If you wish to keep away from SQL or ora-
cle and want to use a locally installed database, MSDE may be your
best choice. In either case the database configurations and setup are
well documented in the VC admin and installations guides available
on VMware’s web site. Please check their site for the most up to date
installation steps.

VirtualCenter agent

The VC agent is installed on each ESX server that is to be managed.
Once installed the agent coordinates the actions received from the
VirtualCenter server. So if you issue a new task from the
VirtualCenter client, it is accepted by the Server, then the server
delivers the commands to the agent on the targeted hosts.

VMware VirtualCenter Web Service

The web service is an optional component of VirtualCenter that
exposes VirtualCenter functions to third party applications. Most
vendors that are developing tools for Vmware today are using the
web service to allow their functionality.

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