First Look: CloudPhysics – Knowledge Base Advisor

I’ve been lucky enough to have been early access to a new Card from the guys at CloudPhyics which, at it’s core lets VMware admins quickly and precisely get an overview of issues in their environment linked back to VMware and other Vendor KB articles. CloudPhysics description is below:

So what is it? The new service is called Knowledge Base Advisor. This service matches the virtual datacenter profile of CloudPhysics users to knowledge base articles published by top virtual datacenter vendors including VMware, DELL, IBM and more. We join detailed knowledge of our customers with support content to create filtered, highly relevant and personalized support content for issues which may be present in their environments.
 
As of today the CloudPhysics Web App has had a major make over and now looks even slicker than before. The card its self is shown below, and gives you a brief overview of what’s currently happening in your environment as picked up by the CloudPhysics Probe VAs.
Clicking into the card you are presented with a list of Critical Issues relevant to your environment. It’s worth mentioning that just because an alert has been been detected it’s more of a proactive warning at this point. Obviously everybody’s environments are different and with that, these potential issues manifest themselves under varied conditions with differing trigger points.
Clicking in the alert box will expand to show you the affected hosts as it applies and by clicking on the KB Description are taken to a framed CloudPhysics page that loads up the specified KB Article. In my environment I had 200+ alerts, (16 of which where Critical, 86 High and 104 Medium), so being able to sort through and organise the alerts is crucial. The left hand menu lets you construct your own search queries base on a number of heading options.

The CloudPhysics team are great at reaching out for feedback and I’m proud to report that based on personal feedback the card has enhanced features and options that let you better deal with the initial large number of alerts that are shown. Once you have taken note of the issue you now have three options to deal with the alerts, Problem Fixed, Uninteresting and Not Relevant.

It’s great to see CloudPhysics evolve past numbers and metrics…that isn’t to say that that’s not where it’s greatest strength lies…but the more CloudPhysics can take your collated data and spit it back to you in the form of useful information, the more powerful and invaluable this platform becomes.

Once again, CloudPhysics continue to blow me away with what they have been able to achieve in a little over 12 months since announcing themselves at VMWorld 2012…I look forward to more card releases and how they will continue to assist myself and other operations teams in better understanding and managing their vSphere environments.