Of all the bits of System Center to come out next year it is Orchestrator (SCO) I am most interested in, as it is one of the enablers to create a private cloud. It’s a new bit of the System Center suite and is the glue that not only integrates the rest of System Center, but also most of the popular non-Microsoft tools in the systems management space e.g. HP, BMC, CA, Symantec and Vmware. It has been developed from the acquisition of Opalis, and if you were familiar with that, Orchestrator is very similar except it is now in .Net and has a much simpler installation process.
Very simply, if you have to do the same task more than ten times then it's probably something that should be automated. For the low level techie this might mean scripting in PowerShell, and although this might work and you might be able to reach all of the moving parts you need to, it is difficult to change, maintain and debug. On the other hand, Orchestrator allows you to map and design the process visually with very little coding:
Creating the right runbooks will transform your data centre into more of a private cloud, for example:
If all that sounds interesting then the beta of Orchestrator is now available to download. If you do plan to evaluate it, here are few things you need to know:
I recorded my installation process here if that helps..
next Saturday I’ll show you how how to design a runbook to interact with virtual machines using the integration pack for System Center Virtual Machine Manager
Does everything (including integration packs) work with 2008 Server R2 now?
Yes all of this was done on Windows Server 2008 R2, with a SQL Server 2008 R2 storing the Orchestrator databases