iland Secure Cloud is a self-service cloud infrastructure, built on VMware vCloud and Cisco Powered technology and accessed through the iland Secure Cloud Console. iland Secure Cloud is designed to support a variety of workloads with disaster recovery, backups, security and compliance needs.
With iland Secure Cloud, you can easily manage all of your virtual data center resources such as compute, storage and complex networking, view detailed performance information, restore from backups, replicate data to other iland secure clouds, access billing information and more. This guide will help provide reference material to understand how to manage your iland Secure Cloud environment.
Within your iland Cloud environment, there are a few specific terms you need to be familiar with in order to understand the topography and navigation within your environment. The Organization (Org), Virtual Datacenter (VDC), Virtual Application (vApp), and Virtual Machine (VM) views each offer a different set of features that can be implemented at their specific levels. While there are some actions that you can take at any level, some are specific to that piece of the structure.
In the left navigation menu from top to bottom, objects are grouped into sections:
In iland Cloud, your company's Org is the container for assets in a physical datacenter. If you have multiple Orgs, they will be displayed in the navigation menu under the location of the physical datacenter they reside in. Selecting one of your orgs in the navigation menu on the left side of the Console will display the Dashboard with all of the information specific to that Org, as well as allow you to view the Networking, Catalogs, Continuity, Security, and Billing tabs for the Org you select. These tab options will change based on the level entity such as Org, vDC, vApp, or VM combined with your access permissions.
The Organization Dashboard is only viewable by a user with Org level permissions. If you have assigned more specific roles to other users in the environment, they will not be able to view or interact with the functions on this page.
Your Organization Dashboard contains usage information for your environment:
Since this is also the administrative Dashboard for your Organization, you are able to perform the following admin functions here located within the Actions menu drop down list:
The next tier of the iland Cloud IaaS structure within the Org is the Virtual Datacenter. vDCs allow you to have multiple, separated environments within your Org, while sharing resources like networks and catalogs, if you so choose. By default, each VDC is isolated from anything else at iland, even your other environments. You can, however, share networks across a single organization, and use VPNs to connect to VDCs across multiple physical locations, Orgs, and any of your production environments.
On the other hand, each VDC can not only have its own completely isolated networks, catalogs, and configuration, but, since the type of environment you purchase from iland is determined at the VDC level, you can also have environments that are billed differently as well. If you choose to go with a multi-VDC environment, you can take full advantage of each of the 3 resource models we offer at iland: Burst (formerly known as "pay as you go"), Reservation (Res), and Reservation + Burst (Res plus Burst). Since we are focused on the structure of your environment in this guide, and not the specifics of the models, you can find that information here: https://success.iland.com/docs/secure-cloud/types-of-virtual-datacenters
Since we use the Resource Pool Model, your Virtual Datacenter will typically be identified by the type of resource model you have chosen in your contract for each VDC. Resources for your VMs are determined at the VDC level, which is why we are able to offer different environment styles within the same organization. When you signed your contract, the resource amounts you agreed to, and the style in which they will function, determined the type of VDC and its configuration.
Each VDC type will display slightly different billing and resource information on it's Dashboard. Because of the variation across billing models, we won't get too far into the specifics here. If you are looking for more information about the specifics of your VDC type, see these articles on billing models and the available information for each***add Link***. There are, however, a few things that are consistent about the information found on the VDC Dashboard regardless of type. The VDC Dashboard allows you to:
There are several things you can do at the VDC level to customize your environment. VDCs allow you to:
*For example, if you know that you will be hosting certain machines with us full time, you could purchase a Reservation (RES) VDC for those machines, with set limits on resources. This works perfectly for static environments. For an environment that will see frequent changes, or if you know that you will have varying usage, our Burst VDCs are usually a better fit. In iland Cloud, it is possible to have both types of VDCs, and manage them all from one central place. The VDC structure allows for this to be done within a single Org, and our Console makes this management even easier by putting them all together into one list on the side of the page.
Note: Customers who use iland's Secure Disaster Recovery (DR) solution will already have at least two VDCs by default, one for replication and one that is pre-configured and ready in case of a DR event.
The next tier below vDCs within the iland Cloud structure is the vApp. vApps are logical containers for VMs, and are made to make grouping VMs quick and easy for a more organized environment. How you choose to use them in your environment is up to you. vApps can be used to group machines that share a single purpose (for example: all the servers that make up one of your hosted applications), or to separate, say, your application servers from your databases. Some users make each machine in its own vApp, while others only have one single large vApp with all their machines side by side. vApps are flexible, and vApp management is what you make of it.
This tier is a little different than the others, because it's usefulness and feature set really only come into play depending on how you choose to use it. You can use vApp properties to configure things like the order in which your machines power back on, or other automated tasks. This works great for things like Domain Core-Service clusters, or Application clusters.
One not so obvious benefit of a good vApp structure, that customers have loved, comes into play when you combine this structure with the billing element of our iland cloud console. If you group your machines according to the apps they service, for example, you can see, at a billing and usage level, exactly what resources that application is using, and more importantly, how much it costs to keep it running! That level of granularity can be a huge benefit if used correctly, and is definitely something to keep in mind as you build your environment.
The vApp Dashboard allows you to view the following information at a glance:
The vApp Dashboard also allows you to manage some of the more granular control and configuration options on a vApp by vApp basis, as well as allowing you to perform certain administrative tasks. Here, you can:
vApps are a very important part of the Resource Pool based model. They allow you to control and segregate your environment within each VDC, while still being able to fine-tune the way all of your machines interact as a whole. Every user case is different, and the benefits of a solid vApp structure will vary from environment to environment, but it is important to always keep in mind these management options, and whether they might benefit you and your organization. iland strives to provide you with as many options and features as possible; it is up to you to do with them what you will!
Virtual Machines (VMs)
At the VM level, you can fine-tune and customize specific VMs in your environment, as well as access the machine directly through the VM console. This is where the majority of interaction with your virtual machines will be done, such as reboots, hardware and resource changes, and any other actions performed on a single machine in your environment. Also, this is the level of the iland cloud console that allows you to access VM backups to perform restores yourself should they ever be necessary.
iland's Console allows you incredibly granular access to usage and performance information for your VMs. Not only do we provide up-to-date data from our infrastructure, but we also provide historical performance data that can be critical for important administrative tasks like troubleshooting a VM experiencing performance issues, or inspecting performance and usage history to truly right-size your VMs for better allocation of your resources. This is what cloud computing is all about, after all. iland's Cloud Console provides the transparency you need to make these decisions, and to make your environment function at peak efficiency.
The VM Dashboard allows you to quickly view the following Performance, Billing, Usage, and Configuration information on a per-VM basis:
The VM Dashboard contains the most granular and specific management and configuration options of any of the pages in the Dashboard. The following is just an overview of all the configuration and management options available to you on the VM Dashboard: