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When working with new integrations that utilize the vCenter Orchestrator (vCO) REST API you may want additional logging on the vCO side to see what is happening. I came across this need on a recent project. By default, vCO is logging workflow and webview activities but not API calls. This short article walks you through the steps necessary to enable such logging.

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vCloud Automation Center is the VMware hybrid cloud self-service provisioning portal. It can be customized to extend its OOTB functionality. The following tutorial shows how from the vSphere web client create a menu operation to run a program in a guest or how to do it automatically once the VM has been provisioned. This does not involve any scripting !

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vCloud Automation Center has several constructs such as blueprints, business groups, reservations to manage the virtual machines lifecycle and governance policies.

While most customers will use vCloud Automation Center out of the box some have several use cases for automation and integration. This is where vCenter Orchestrator comes into the picture.

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It seems everyday the interest in vCenter Orchestrator (vCO) is growing. I love this because it brings more and more use cases to our attention. One such use case is the need to call vCO workflows via its REST API. In order to keep this article generic, but useful, I will work with the free RESTClient plug-in/add-on for Firefox as the client. The general process here will be similar to what you may need to do from your software or portal to integrate with vCO's REST API.

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On a recent project, I was having trouble figuring out why invoking a SOAP operation kept failing with the vCO SOAP plug-in. The inputs I was providing appeared to be correct and worked just fine with soapUI. This short tutorial will teach you how to use the SOAPInterceptor to display the Header and Body that the SOAP plug-in is sending.

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A vCO workflow wrapper is a set of workflow tasks that are added at the beginning of a workflow in order to take string values and look up a more complex data type or pre-defining inputs using attributes. You may have done these in the past already in vCO. Some examples would be finding a virtual machine by name or finding an Active Directory user by email address.

If you're running the vCO workflow from within the vCO client or vSphere web client, you probably don't need to worry about this as both of those tools understand the complex data types that come with plugins. On the other hand, if you're calling the vCO workflow from a tool like vCAC, it becomes extremely important to make it so that the vCO workflows only require strings as inputs--meaning that you need to add a vCO workflow wrapper to convert these string values to their more complex data types.

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VMware announced vCenter Orchestrator 5.5 : a major release including a lot of important new features. No more excuses to not orchestrate !


vCO Plug-in