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VMware Hybrid Cloud Extension (HCX) Installation for VMware Cloud on AWS
VMware HCX abstracts on-premises environments versus cloud notions and presents capabilities to Virtual Machines as a continuous hybrid cloud.
VMware HCX enables:
In this demonstration, we will look at the installation and description of HCX components in an on-premises environment.
HCX Components - Overview
HCX Cloud/HCX Target
This is the first component necessary to be enabled from within the SDDC in VMware Cloud on AWS. There’s another demonstration that walks you through how to get HCX Activated and deployed in your SDDC.
HCX Manager Appliance
HCX Manager is the main virtual appliance deployed by the downloaded OVA that gets deployed on the local vCenter.
It automates the deployment of peer appliances when a service like VMware Cloud on AWS is enabled at the source site. Once it’s successfully deployed in the local vCenter, it will register and add-in from within that vCenter Server.
HCX Interconnect Appliance
The HCX WAN Interconnect (AKA as HCX-IX / CGW / Cloud Gateway) service appliance is deployed when migration and/or DR services are enabled. This component automatically tunnels to its peer at the remote site (VMware Cloud on AWS) and provides an encrypted service path for migration services.
HCX WAN Optimization Appliance
The HCX WAN Optimization (HCX-WAN-OPT) service appliance is deployed when WAN Optimization services are enabled for a site pair. The WAN Optimization component only communicates with the HCX-IX, it does not make direct connections to its peer.
HCX Network Extension Appliance
The HCX Network Extension Appliance (HCX-EXT / L2C) is deployed when Network Extension services are enabled. This component automatically tunnels to its peer at the remote site and provides an encrypted service path for migration services.
HCX services are enabled on the source/on-premises site using the HCX Plugin from within the local vCenter Server.
Peer HCX service appliances in VMware Cloud on AWS are automatically deployed in the destination SDDC using the deployment steps as outlined in this demonstration.
On-premises installation of HCX Components
In this step you must choose a Name for the VM that will deployed for HCX Manager, the name has already been entered for you.
Leave the defaults for compute resource.
Keep in mind that all HCX components should be installed in the same Management Network where vCenter and other VMware components are installed. Assigning HCX Appliances to a different network is supported as long as the HCX appliances have unrestricted access to the Management Network where vCenter/ESXi servers are installed.
Also please keep in mind that network where HCX appliances are installed, CANNOT be the network selected to be stretched to VMware Cloud on AWS if you plan to stretch networks to VMware Cloud on AWS.
HCX Manager needs and ‘admin’ and ‘root’ user passwords created as these users are assigned to the appliance once deployed for administrative/configuration purposes.
This is the IP address from the Management Network on-premises where your HCX Manager appliance will connect to.
As you can see the deployment is in progress. This progress is accelerated on your behalf, but you can typically expect anywhere around 10 minutes for this process to complete.
After HCX Manager powers on for the first time, it usually takes anywhere between 5-15 minutes for all the web services within it to become available. At this point, open another browser tab to log in to the HCX Manager Administrative Console.
Address for HCX Manager is https://ipaddress:9443
Enter admin for user and the password you set during the install.
At this point you are ready to activate HCX. As listed in pre-requisites section, TCP 443 access from the HCX Manager appliance to https://connect.hcx.vmware.com should be available.
For embedded PSC, the FQDN and/or IP should be the same as your vCenter Server, the URL entered here should look like this:
EMBEDDED PSC: https://vcenterIPorFQDN:7444/lookupservice/sdk
EXTERNAL PSC: https://pscIPorFQDN:7444/lookupservice/sdk
At this point the HCX Manager appliance is ready to be restarted to complete its configuration. If you are logged in to vCenter through the vSphere Web Client, you will need to log out and log back in, the HCX add-in should now appear in your vCenter server after the appliance restarts.
If successfully deployed, your HCX interface should look somewhat this way. At this point, you are ready to connect your VMware Cloud on AWS environment by doing what is called a Site Pairing.
In this step, the Site URL from the VMware Cloud on AWS HCX deployment should be entered along with the firstname.lastname@example.org user name and password.
This process usually takes a couple of minutes. If the process is successful you should see the site pair successfully completed.
You can see the sites are now successfully paired: On-premises vCenter with vCenter in VMware Cloud on AWS.
Now it’s time to deploy the rest of the HCX Appliances.
Remember this preferably must be from the Management network on-premises.
At this point you may choose to give this appliance the name of your choice, this has been pre-filled for you.
In the WAN Optimization Service, you can limit the amount of bandwidth the appliance should use. It defaults to 10,000 Mb/s.
In the Network Extension Service options, select a Distributed Switch first. If the network(s) that you plan to stretch to VMware Cloud on AWS exist in more than 1 Distributed Switch, each vDS will need to have a Network Extension Appliance deployed.
At this point you may choose to give the appliance any name of your choosing.
Here you will see the progress of the deployment. Normally this step takes about 15-20 minutes to complete. Upon completion you should see not only the additional HCX appliances successfully deployed but also the Tunnels Active and Up, both from the HCX Interconnect and HCX Network Extension Service.
Now that the HCX appliances have been deployed, we are ready to Extend our first network into VMware Cloud on AWS.
After a few minutes the exercise of stretching the network to VMware Cloud on AWS should complete.
UNSTRETCHING A NETWORK
This is to only illustrate how un-stretching of a network happens within HCX.
What this is referring to is the fact that doing a network stretch, the default gateway for that network always stays on the on-premises side. During the unstretching of such network, you have the option to select for this default gateway to be moved to the VMware Cloud on AWS side, during this option, the former stretched network, now becomes a local network on the VMware Cloud on AWS side.
Here you have a view of your HCX environment, Site Pairings, Active Migrations, Past Migrations, Alerts, etc.
In this view you can see the additional components of HCX deployed as well as the status of the Tunnels and/or appliances.
In this view you can see all networks that have been stretched, you can also extend additional networks if desired.
In this view is where you would select to Migrate Virtual Machines, it also gives you a view to past migrations that have occurred.
HCX also has a Disaster Recovery option. HCX leverages vSphere Replication to replicate VM’s for Migration, but it can also leverage the technology to protect such VM’s versus migrating them.
This view is where you would see any updates available to HCX if they were available. Also this is the place where you can collect audit logs in the event of troubleshooting.
In the event you may need support, our support engineers may ask some information from this view.
You have completed this exercise, thanks for your interest in VMware Cloud on AWS.