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vCenter probes and probe parameters

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vCenter probes and probe parameters

vCenter probes scan virtual machines using VMware's vSphere product suite. Each probe scans for different kinds of data, such as networks, NICs, and tags. The VMware - vCenter probe that discovered all vCenter objects in previous releases is deprecated in the Istanbul release and replaced by multiple probes.

Upgrade changes

In upgraded systems, the vCenter process classifier and the vmapp port probe are configured to trigger the VMware - vCenter Datacenters probe. This probe then triggers the probes that discover individual vCenter objects such as hosts, storage, and datastores. The legacy probe, VMware - vCenter, is still in the system but is not triggered to run in the updated instance.

Available vCenter probes and probe parameters

vCenter probe parameters allow you to disable the probes for the objects you are not interested in discovering. You can also reduce the size of the payload of a probe by specifying a page size.
Important: Before disabling a probe, be aware of any dependencies the probe might have. If the probe you disable triggers another probe, the dependent probe is also disabled, and cannot collect data.
Figure 1. Relationship of vCenter elements to probe parameters
Relationship of vCenter elements to probe parameters
These parameters are available for vCenter probes.
Note: By default, these parameters are not set in the platform, except where noted.
Table 1. vCenter probe parameters
Probe Parameters
VMWare - vCenter Datacenters
  • datacenter_only (Cloud Management)
  • debug
  • disable_vm_probe
  • disable_network_probe
  • disable_datastore_probe
  • disable_cluster_probe
  • datacenters_only
  • fixed_credential_id (Cloud Management)
  • disable_vm_nic_probe
  • disable_host_probe
  • disable_host_storage_probe
  • vcenter_timeout: default 10000 miliseconds (10 seconds).
VMWare - vCenter VMs
  • disable_vm_nic_probe
  • disable_vm_nics_vnics (set to false)
  • disable_vm_nic_vdisks (set to true for Discovery only and false when Cloud Management is enabled)
  • disable_vm_tags_probe
  • refresh_state (Cloud Management)
  • page_size (100)
    Note: The settings for the vnics and vdisks parameters preserves the default behavior of vCenter Discovery.
VMWare - vCenter VM Tags* none
VMWare - vCenter VM NICs none
VMWare - vCenter Networks page_size (500)
VMWare - vCenter Datastores page_size (500)
VMWare - vCenter Clusters
  • disable_host_probe
  • disable_host_storage_probe
  • page_size (1000)
VMWare - vCenter ESX Hosts
  • disable_host_storage_probe
  • page_size (10)
VMWare - vCenter ESX Hosts Storage page_size (175)
VMWare - vCenter ESX Hosts License none

*For more information, see VMware tags

Consider the following when setting these parameters:
  • Disable: You disable a probe by setting the parameter in the triggering probe. For example, if you are not interested in discovering storage, set the disable_host_storage_probe parameter to true in the VMWare - vCenter ESX Hosts probe.
  • Page size: Page size parameters control the number of CIs to discover with a single probe. Use this parameter to limit payload size by reducing the number of vCenter elements discovered at a time by any probe. The page size expressed in parentheses is the default in the base system.
  • Debug: Set the debug parameter in the VMWare - vCenter Datacenters probe to allow debugging for all the vCenter probes. Debugging returns the raw vCenter data in each probe payload.

Trigger custom probes with the vCenter Discovery extension

vCenter Discovery extension allows you to collect additional attributes of currently discovered CI types or collect attributes of new CI types by triggering custom probes from an existing sensor.

About this task

vCenter sensor records support triggering custom probes that use conditional scripts for gathering data not typically collected by Discovery or for discovering CI types that you create.

Role required: admin

Caution: The vCenter extension is intended to be used to create a single custom probe that extends existing Discovery functionality. Unless you are a user who is familiar with advanced scripting, do not attempt to configure your new probe/sensor to launch an additional probe.

Procedure

  1. Navigate to Discovery Definition > Sensors.
  2. Select a vCenter sensor record.
    It is important to trigger a new probe at the correct time. For example, if you want to discover additional information about virtual machines in your network, trigger your probe from the VMWare - vCenter VMs sensor. If you trigger your custom probe from the VMWare - vCenter Datacenters sensor, your new probe and the existing VM probe execute in parallel. This might prevent VM records from being created or updated.
  3. Select the Triggers probes related list.
  4. Click New to create a new probe to be triggered by this sensor or Edit to add an existing probe to the list.
    You can also use an existing probe record as a template for your new probe by opening the record and selecting the Insert and Stay option from the context menu.
  5. Click the information icon to the right of the probe name to open the Conditional Probes Triggered by Sensor record.
  6. View the script.
    The script passes the parms and data arguments to the function, using values passed to them from the triggering sensor. The script configures the parms object, from which the probe parameters are derived. The script returns true to trigger the probe or false to cancel it.

    In this example, the VMWare – vCenter Datacenters sensor parms are all probe parameters that are supported by the Datacenters probe. The data argument is an object containing up to 4 arrays, named vm, datastore, network, and cluster.

    Figure 2. Conditional Probes Triggered by Sensor record
    Conditional Probes Triggered by Sensor record
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