Friday Mar 29, 2013

Friday Tips #21

We hope you're having a great Friday! Here is our Friday tip:

Question:
Can I run VDI with just a single server?

Answer by Chris Kawalek, Senior Principal Product Director, Oracle Desktop Virtualization Marketing:
Absolutely! Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure allows you to deploy on a single server for everything you need for a VDI deployment: brokering, running VMs, and storage. Properly outfitted, this single server should be able to support up to 180-190 users. You can read exactly how to do this, what kind of server it requires and more in this new white paper:

Oracle's Single Server Solution for VDI

Another great thing about this solution is that it easily scales. If you add a second server, you can use its own internal storage for HA. And you can add external storage and more servers if you want to scale even higher. And at no point do you have to install a different product or do a massive reconfiguration to grow from a small pilot or departmental deployment to an enterprise one.

We'll see you all next week!

-Chris 

Tuesday Mar 26, 2013

Hot Off The Presses - March 2013 Virtualization Newsletter

We just published the March 2013 edition of the Oracle Virtualization Newsletter. In this issue, you can read about:

  • The latest releases of Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure and Sun Ray Software
  • Oracle VM certification by SAP
  • Our experiences at HIMSS13
  • Information about the upcoming Collaborate conference and call for papers for Oracle OpenWorld 2013 
  • Articles from The Register, Virtualization Review, InfoWorld
  • Upcoming webcasts, events, new white papers, customer stories, and more!

As you can see, this edition is packed with content, so head on over and give it a read:

Oracle Virtualization Newsletter, March 2013 Edition

If you'd like to subscribe so the newsletter automatically shows up in your inbox, you can do so here.

-Chris 

Friday Mar 22, 2013

Friday Tips #20

We hope you've had a good week and happy Friday! It's time for our 20th Friday tip. This one is about installing Oracle VM VirtualBox for use with Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure:

Question:
How do I install VirtualBox to use it with Oracle Virtual Dekstop Infrastructure?

Answer by the Oracle documentation team:
Unzip the VirtualBox software archive, change working directory to the extracted directory, and install the software with the vb-install script, as follows:

# unzip vbox_4.2.zip
# cd vbox_4.2
# ./vb-install

VirtualBox consists of two components, a Base Pack and an Extension Pack. The VirtualBox software archive contains only the Extension Pack. However, the vb-install script downloads the VirtualBox Base Pack, and then installs both the Base Pack and the Extension Pack. If the Base Pack download fails, you must manually download it from here. Make sure you download the release that is bundled and supported with the release of Oracle VDI. Copy the Base Pack to the same directory as the vb-install script, and then run the script again.

The vb-install script prompts you for a user name, a password, and a port number to use for SSL connections.

The user name and password is for the user that runs VirtualBox on the host. On Oracle Linux platforms and Oracle Solaris platforms where root is a user, the root user is used by default. It is best to use the root user on these platforms. On Oracle Solaris platforms where root is a role, you must provide the credentials for a different user.

If the VirtualBox user is root, the SSL port is port 443 by default. Otherwise, port 18083 is used by default. If another process is using the default port, the vb-install script suggests another available port. If you plan to install Oracle Secure Global Desktop software on this host as well and port 443 is selected, choose a different port.

Make a note of the user name and port, you need these later.

After a few minutes, the installation is complete.


The answer to this question is from the Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure Getting Started Guide for Release 3.5. There's lot of great information in there, so have a read through it if you want to get a good sense for how to plan your install.

We'll see you next week!

-Chris 

Take Training to Get the Most from Oracle's Virtualization Solutions

Oracle provides server virtualization products to support x86 and SPARC architectures. Get the most from Oracle VM by taking the related courses. You can take these courses from your own desk as a Live-Virtual Event or travel to an education center for an In-Class Event.

Oracle VM Server for SPARC: Installation and Configuration

In this 2 day, hands-on, instructor-led course you learn to:

  • Plan an Oracle VM Server for SPARC installation
  • Install the Oracle VM Server for SPARC software
  • Configure the control and service domain
  • Create a guest domain
  • Reconfigure Oracle VM Server for SPARC resources
  • Use virtual disks
  • Use virtual networks
  • Manage Oracle VM Server for SPARC configurations
  • Prepare for and perform migration operations

In-class events already on the schedule include:

 Location

 Date

 Delivery Language

 Brisbane, Australia

 20 May 2013

 English

 Prague, Czech Republic

 29 April 2013

 Czech

 Bucharest, Romania

 8 July 2013

 English

 San Jose, CA, United States

 24 June 2013

 English

Oracle VM Administration: Oracle VM Server for x86

In this 3-day, hands-on, instructor-led class you learn to:

  • Install Oracle VM Server for x86 and Oracle VM Manager
  • Perform network configuration for the Oracle VM environment using Oracle VM Manager
  • Perform storage configuration, with NFS and iSCSI, using Oracle VM Manager
  • Create a server pool and add Oracle VM Servers to this pool
  • Create repositories, present them to the Oracle VM Servers, and add resources to these repositories
  • Prepare virtual disks and network interfaces for virtual machines
  • Create virtual machines using various methodologies
  • Manage the virtual machines' lifecycle; Start/stop, pause/resume, edit, migrate
  • Use simple and advanced cloning to create new virtual machines
  • Become familiar with the Oracle VM Manager Policies and Events

In-class events already on the schedule include:

 Location

 Date

 Delivery Language

 Paris, France

 22 May 2013

 French

 Dusseldorf, Germany

 24 June 2013

 German

 Munich, Germany

 29 October 2013

 German

 Budapest, Hungary

 22 April 2013

 Hungarian

 Milan, Italy

 22 May 2013

 Italian

 Windhof, Luxembourg

 15 April 2013

 English

 Utrecht, Netherlands

 25 March 2013

 English

 Warsaw, Poland

 27 May 2013

 Polish

 Bucharest, Romania

 17 June 2013

 English

 Madrid, Spain

 24 April 2013

 Spanish

 Istanbul, Turkey

 17 June 2013

 Turkish

 Singapore

 8 April 2013

 English

 Canberra, Australia

 4 November 2013

 English

 Melbourne, Australia

 12 June 2013

 English

 Sydney, Australia

 8 July 2013

 English

 Wellington, New Zealand

 22 April 2013

 English

 Roseville, MN, United States

 25 March 2013

 English


For more information on these courses, go to http://oracle.com/education/vm

Thursday Mar 21, 2013

New: Oracle VM Podcast Series

Join the Oracle VM product management experts in the new Oracle VM podcast series. Hear from Oracle's Adam Hawley, Ronen Kofman and Jeff Savit on key aspects of Oracle VM including the benefits of application-driven virtualization for a private cloud, the value of integrated and simplified management, and unified management for both x86 and SPARC based solutions from Oracle.

Here is a list of available podcasts in this series.

Hope you find these insightful.

Monday Mar 18, 2013

Brand new VDI and Sun Ray Software releases!

We announced big updates to Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure and Sun Ray Software this morning! The marquis feature in these releases is integration with Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c, which provides a complete monitoring view for your servers, storage, apps, and now, desktop virtualization. In addition, there are features for high availability for smaller deployments, updates to "Personal Hard Drives", a new "Application Hard Drive" type, and much more. Read more here:

Press release: Oracle Introduces Comprehensive Management for Desktop Virtualization

And over at the Fat Bloke blog, there is a great post going into a lot of detail about what's new in Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure 3.5.

Download Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure 3.5 or Sun Ray Software 5.4.

-Chris

Friday Mar 15, 2013

Friday Tips #19

Happy Friday!

In our Friday tip #12, we had a discussion on how to use the Oracle VM command line interface. This week's tip follows up on that with a very nice video from Greg King, Principal Best Practices Consultant, Oracle VM Product Mangement. In this video, Greg shows you how to get started with the command line interface:

Tech Tip - How to Get Started with the Oracle VM Command Line Interface

We'll see you next week for our first (modest) milestone, the 20th Friday tip blog!

-Chris 

Friday Mar 08, 2013

Friday Tips #18

Happy Friday, everyone! Our question this week is on Oracle VM Server for SPARC. Jeff Savit from the Oracle VM product management team was kind enough to answer it on his blog.

Question:
What is "console logging" in Oracle VM Server for SPARC and how do I use it?

Read the answer by Jeff Savit, Principal Technical Product Manager, Oracle.

See you next week!

-Chris 

Thursday Mar 07, 2013

Enabling Private Clouds events in Canada

If you're looking at implementing a private cloud, we have a live seminar series that could be really helpful for you. Over the next couple of weeks in Calgary, Vancouver, and Toronto, you can attend a free seminar that will help you learn about Oracle's complete cloud infrastructure solution, including Oracle Linux and Oracle VM.

One really unique thing about these seminars is that they are divided into morning and afternoon sessions. In the morning, you'll get a complete overview of the solution with use cases, deployment ideas, architecture discussion and so on. And if you are a hands-on technical type, you can stay for the afternoon session which features a hands-on lab of Oracle Ksplice on Oracle Linux and a live demo of Oracle RAC deployed using an Oracle VM Template.

These should be fantastic events, please attend if you are in the area and available!

-Chris

Wednesday Mar 06, 2013

Final Day of HIMSS13

We're just getting ready to wrap up the booth at HIMSS13. Like a lot of Oracle shows, every single demo of Oracle Applications was done using Oracle desktop virtualization. I sat down with Adam Workman, Principal Consultant with Oracle, to talk about the booth deployment. Adam and team were responsible for designing and implementing the demo infrastucture for the booth.

Why is Oracle using desktop virtualization instead of laptops at the demo pods?
One of the philosophies we have at Oracle is we have the entire stack to run the infrastructure. So we like to show our customers that we can do that, and that's why we bring the infrastructure to the show.

The other reason why we do it, quite frankly, is because it makes our lives a lot easier. It allows us to bring in an infrastructure that can support dozens of applications without needing to configure individual laptops. We don't have to worry about all the infrastructure and administration to bring in dedicated PCs, which makes things much easier.

What is the server backend required to support the show?
Interestingly enough, we can actually run the show on a single Oracle Sun Server X3-2. But we want to provide an enterprise solution, so we bring a second server to make sure everything will  stay up if we had a hardware fault, etc., This year, since we want to give people a real world visualization of what it would take to bring this into their organizations, we brought a real rack and hardware that would be similar to a customer deployment, and it lets you run over 500 desktops. That's more capacity than we need for this show, but it's more typical of a real deployment.

This is your 3rd year doing this show, were there any different challenges this year versus previous years?
The move to a "real world deployment" actually made the show even easier. In years past, we would ship the hardware, set it up onsite, get it all ready for the demo people to use. By moving to a larger real world infrastructure, it changed our setup a little and allowed us to rack and stack all the servers prior to the show and made our setup a lot easier.

Do the customers even know they are seeing a "virtual" desktop when they are looking at Oracle Healthcare applications on the booth?
From a performance standpoint, they have no idea that they're not looking at a notebook or a hidden PC. The reason the customer knows is that the demo staff point out the Oracle Sun Ray Clients on the desks and show the customers the servers that are running in the booth.

Is the end user experience is the same as it would be if you were using laptops?
It's the same or better, and from a demo staff perspective, they actually prefer when we do this. They used to have to bring laptops or preconfigure a laptop before the show, keep track of it, maintain it, and so on. With desktop virtualization, they can just show up and know that things are going to work.

Were there any Oracle Applications that weren't compatible or didn't work with the booth setup?
There are no applications that we we're demonstrating here that were incompatible or didn't work. Oracle's browser based applications are certified to work with Oracle desktop virtualization and everything we've had here has worked great.

Have you had any downtime?
We've had no downtime whatsoever, the system just hums along and runs.

How long did it take you to do the set up before the show?
It takes approximately one work week - 40 hours - to build the infrastructure. There were three of us, so it happened very rapidly, over the span of a couple of days. We had one person who physically racked and stacked the servers. We then made sure all the servers and the storage array had the latest firmware on them, and from there, things go really fast. We just install the operating system, install Oracle Virtual Desktop Infrastructure, which takes maybe 15 minutes, and from there, we just load the official Oracle golden template that comes from our global IT operations.

And how will teardown go?
The teardown is actually ridiculously fast. We just have to walk around and power off the Sun Ray Clients, we give the servers the shutdown command, and unplug them, and that's it. So, literally, 15 minutes and we'll be done. And the convenience going to the whole setup is that it literally rolls back into a crate and goes back to Oracle.


How easy is it to reuse this setup for anther show?
We designed the the servers, storage, and rack as a reusable component, so it's just a refresh between the shows if an update comes out. You always have to update the Windows golden image before it goes out for security reasons, but it's very easy to get it ready for the next show.

Was there anything healthcare specific you had to do for the booth deployment?
There's aren't settings in the software that I would say are specifically for healthcare, but there any many features we take advantage of with healthcare. One of the features we talk about a lot is caregiver mobility. And one of our newer features related to that is location awareness. So, as a doctor or nurse moves inside a facility, the applications need to know where the person updating the record physically is and we've added a flexible software feature so that the EMR and applications know that they've changed locations. So we're showing that today.

-Chris 

Monday Mar 04, 2013

HIMSS 2013, Day 1

We just wrapped up day one of HIMSS13 in New Orleans. HIMSS is always a really important event for us because so many healthcare organizations leverage Oracle technologies. And desktop virtualization lends itself perfectly to healthcare, especially with "caregiver mobility." This simply means that doctors and nurses can move from place to place and retain secure access to patient data. In our case, it also means desktop mobility between PCs, iPad and Android tablets, and in-room mounted thin clients.

We're here with some really amazing folks from the Oracle Healthcare team and the Oracle desktop virtualization team, and we're going to get some videos up for you over the next few days shot live on the show floor.

And if you're here, please stop by and say "hi" to us! As usual, the entire Oracle booth is being hosted with Oracle desktop virtualization, and we'll go into more detail on that in our next post.

-Chris

Friday Mar 01, 2013

Friday Tips #17

Happy Friday, everyone! We're busy getting ready for HIMSS13 in New Orleans (we'll be posting during the show next week, so please stay tuned for that), but that won't stop us from doing our Friday tip. This week's question focuses on Oracle Secure Global Desktop:

Question:
How do I setup an LDAP server using the command line option within Oracle Secure Global Desktop?

Answer by Mohan Prabhala, Product Management Director, Oracle:
The ‘–login-ldap-url’ command line option was removed since Oracle Secure Global Desktop version 4.6. So using the ‘–login-ldap-url’ option when running the ‘tarantella config edit’ command will not work. You must use a service object which is a group of directory services configuration settings used for SGD authentication mechanisms. So the commands below should be the way to make this work: 

tarantella config edit --login-thirdparty 1 
tarantella config edit --login-ldap-thirdparty-profile 1 
tarantella config edit --login-ldap 1 
tarantella service new --name generated --type ldap --url "ldap://<server hostname>" 

It is important to note that authentication mechanisms such as LDAP are used by Oracle Secure Global Desktop to login into the webtop. By default, Oracle Secure Global Desktop does not query LDAP during the launch of an application (once in the webtop). It is possible to pass through LDAP credentials to authenticate applications at launch time using the Authentication Configuration Tool (authconfig).

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