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ITS vCenter v6.5

These instructions show how to login to the ITS vCenter infrastructure. vCenter is the software the manages hypervisors on multiple host machines (actual hardware) and provides an interface to the guest virtual machines (VMs).

vCenter 6.5 has two web interfaces each type allows slightly different actions. As this time VMWare is vigorously developing the HTML 5 interface as their primary interface. However, at this time there are several key features that are only available via the Flash interface. Detailed below are some of those differences. When in doubt use the Flash interface.

Flash - Edit guest VM hardware
            Create new VMs (Datastore selection dialog has some issues in HTML 5)
            View the Guest VM console in a browser tab

HTML 5 - Much faster and works on most modern browsers
            - Allows for VM administration and interaction.
            - A Remote Console application (Win, OSX, Linux) can be installed to allow console access to VM Guests

Client Machine Prerequisites:
  • Chrome 51 (or later?) download from Google
  • (Optional? See notes above) Flash 11.5.0 or higher download from Adobe
  • (Optional) VMware "Enhanced Authentication Plugin" (EAP): the download link is at the bottom of the vCenter login screen.
    • Installation of EAP plugin is short and does not require a reboot.
    • Used with AD joined machines to allow pass-through auth. (Mostly Windows users).

1. Open https://vcenter.its.ohio.edu in a browser. When connecting you may receive a warning telling you that "Your connection is not private". Accept the self-signed security certificate for that server by clicking on the Advanced button in the lower left and then clicking on "Proceed to itsvc1.its.ohio.edu (unsafe)" (Chrome screen is shown below. Firefox has a similar screen.)

2. From here choose either the vSphere Web Client (Flash) or vSphere Client (HTML5). Each web client will be used for different tasks (see notes above).

3. The following examples are be done using the Flash interface. However, the HTML5 interface is similar. Use OHIO ID and password – username format is: "OHIO\my123456" (the red rectangle at the bottom of the screen shot added to highlight the download the optional Client Integration Plugin).
Plugin NOT installed
  Plugin installed

3. After login you will be at the "Hosts and Clusters" screen. Click on the "VMs and Templates" icon (highlighted with a red rectangle).

This will open the main screen, and leave you at the top of a folder tree. Clicking on the black triangles to the left of the text will open the folder. Drill down the tree to the container you need.

6. Selecting a specific VM will change the screen to give a a number of options the VM; in most cases you do not want to do that unless you know exactly what you are doing. Also, you can access other persons machines, so make very sure that the one you are working is the one you intended to point at. Depending on your settings you may be on a tab with general instructions. Make sure to select the "Summary" tab to get the information shown below.

7. To access the console of a VM guest. Click on "Launch Console" option (see below screenshot). This will open a new tab or window that connects to the machine as if sitting in front of the physical monitor of the VM.

8. The "Actions" menu contains commands that are used to modify the the VM, most notably you can start, stop, restart and snapshot the VM. The options available will vary depending on the level of administrative rights you have. Options in gray are not available.