LEVERAGE VBLOCK SYSTEMS FOR Esri s ArcGIS SYSTEM

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1 Leverage Vblock Systems for Esri's ArcGIS System Table of Contents LEVERAGE VBLOCK SYSTEMS FOR Esri s ArcGIS SYSTEM August

2 Contents Executive summary...3 The challenge...3 The solution...3 Scope...3 Audience...3 Terminology...4 Feedback...4 Technology overview...5 VCE Vblock Systems...5 Esri ArcGIS System...5 ArcGIS system components...7 Vblock system logical components...7 Vblock system automation...7 Service profiles...8 Service profile templates...8 ArcGIS configurations on a Vblock system...9 Ad hoc GIS analysis...9 Highly available GIS services...10 On demand GIS servers...11 Conclusion...13 Next steps...13 Further reading

3 Executive summary Organizations are pursuing virtualization initiatives to deliver better IT services quickly, reliably, and at a lower cost than traditional data center models. Improved technology provides increased efficiencies, cost reductions, and faster processes that enable you to overcome challenges and to take advantage of opportunities. Understanding the benefits of virtualization, Esri has teamed with VCE to validate the ArcGIS System on Vblock Systems, a converged infrastructure environment optimized for cloud computing. The Vblock solution enables ArcGIS administrators to take advantage of the benefits of virtualization and converged infrastructure technology provided by three industry leaders Cisco, EMC, and VMware. Through these technologies, administrators can manage their environment using service profile templates and an automation engine specifically designed for the Vblock system, which greatly simplifies provisioning and configuring ArcGIS instances on blades and servers. These simplified provisioning options allow administrators to focus on adapting ArcGIS to respond to business demands instead of focusing on infrastructure deployment. After deploying ArcGIS in a virtual environment, administrators can focus more of their time increasing availability, improving performance, and finding better and more creative solutions to drive the business. The challenge Geographic information system (GIS) data is being used for increasingly more purposes from generating maps to facilitating data integration. The increased use of GIS data also drives the increased collection of data. This growth of GIS data and its use has made the limitations of artifact systems evident. Building and maintaining computer clusters to perform computations and adding physical devices to store data is costly, inefficient, and potentially limits data sharing. The solution Simplified provisioning enables administrators to rapidly provision new ArcGIS instances on blades and servers. Using the VCE solution described in this paper, administrators can manage their ArcGIS landscapes in a virtualized environment and quickly adjust to meet business demands. Scope This document provides: An introduction to the Vblock system and ArcGIS technology A description of common ArcGIS deployment methods on a Vblock system Audience This paper is intended for ArcGIS architects, administrators, and other individuals tasked with evaluating, acquiring, managing, operating, or deploying ArcGIS in a virtualized data center environment. 3

4 Terminology Term Converged infrastructure Process automation Service profile templates Virtual machine Definition An integration of Information Technology (IT) components, such as storage, network, compute, and virtualization, into a single optimized computing system. A model to improve performance and provide cost savings by automating redundant tasks to drive value for the business and its customers. Logical representations of desired physical configurations and infrastructure policies. A tightly isolated software container that can run its own operating systems and applications as if it were a physical computer. A virtual machine behaves exactly like a physical computer and contains it own virtual (that is, software-based) CPU, RAM, hard disk, and network interface card (NIC). Feedback To suggest documentation changes and provide feedback on this paper, send to Include the title of this paper and the name of the topic to which your comment applies. 4

5 Technology overview Together, VCE and Esri offer a robust, best-of-breed solution using technologies that enable enterprises to present GIS offerings to business users on a converged infrastructure. VCE Vblock Systems Vblock systems are enterprise- and service-provider class IT infrastructure units that are pre-engineered, tested, and validated with pre-defined performance, capacity, and availability service levels. The standardized converged infrastructure of Vblock systems is a foundational building block for cloud computing that helps customers to realize the benefits of applications running in a virtualized environment. Vblock systems are characterized by: Repeatable units of construction based on matched performance, operational characteristics, and discrete requirements of power, space, and cooling Repeatable design patterns that facilitate rapid deployment, integration, and scalability An architecture that can be scaled for the highest efficiencies in virtualization and workload mobility An extensible management and orchestration model based on industry-standard tools, APIs, and methods A design that contains, manages, and mitigates failure scenarios in hardware and software environments Vblock systems provide pre-engineered, production-ready (fully tested) virtualized infrastructure components, including industry-leading technology from Cisco, EMC, and VMware. Vblock systems are designed and built to satisfy a broad range of specific customer implementation requirements. Note: Refer to the VCE Vblock Systems Series 300 Architecture Overview for detailed information on the Vblock system architecture. Esri ArcGIS System Esri ArcGIS is a complete system for designing and managing solutions through the application of geographic knowledge. ArcGIS provides the kind of deep analysis, understanding, and high-level decision-making that users and their organizations have come to depend upon for their desktop, mobile, and server GIS solutions. ArcGIS for Desktop provides tools for spatial analysis, geographic data management, and high-end cartography. Desktop is used to produce geographic content (maps, models, tools) that can be distributed and optimized for mobile and web solutions. ArcGIS for Mobile delivers GIS capabilities and data from centralized servers to a range of mobile devices. Mobile users can collect, edit, and update GIS data in real time and share information with colleagues promptly. 5

6 ArcGIS for Server (Figure 1) connects people with the geographic information they need. Organizations use ArcGIS for Server to distribute maps and other GIS capabilities provided by Web mapping applications and services to improve data management, planning and analysis, field worker optimization, visualization, and constituent engagement. With ArcGIS for Server, you can: Publish fast, intuitive Web maps tailored to your audience Geographically enable your IT investments Centrally manage your geo-data Simplify access to large volumes of imagery Figure 1. ArcGIS for Server 6

7 ArcGIS system components ArcGIS 10.1 for Server includes the following components: ArcGIS for Server Enables multi-user access to GIS resources such as map-services, globeservices, and locator-services. The GIS Server distributes GIS requests across the computing resources available on a single or multiple servers. Web Application server Acts as a gateway between the core GIS services and clients. The ArcGIS Web Adaptor is deployed in this tier to integrate with the Web server. It forwards requests to the GIS Server participating machines. Typically, ArcGIS for Server is configured to have access to: Vblock system SAN, which serves as the store for imagery, read-only vector data, and map caches Databases, running in virtual machines or on bare metal within the Vblock system, or running outside in physical servers ArcGIS for Desktop machines are usually configured within the Vblock system to facilitate authoring of GIS resources such as maps and geoprocessing tools that are published to ArcGIS for Server as GIS Web Services. Vblock system logical components IT staff can manage the Vblock system using standard management tools, such as Unified Infrastructure Manager/Provisioning (UIM/P). UIM/P manages the configuration, provisioning, and compliance of a single Vblock system and pools of aggregated Vblock systems, simplifying deployment and integration into IT service catalogs and workflow engines. It simplifies Vblock system deployment by abstracting the overall provisioning of the Vblock system while offering granular access to individual components for troubleshooting and fault management. Vblock systems have an open management framework that allows organizations to integrate them with their current management tools if they prefer. IT can manage the workloads running on the Vblock system with VMware management solutions such as VMware vcenter Server and vcloud Director. Vblock system automation Automation on the Vblock system occurs through storage, network, and compute element manager applications. These element managers provide automation and virtualization of individual elements without requiring a specific end-to-end business solution. Using APIs for each of the element managers, the automation engine can perform a number of endto-end provisioning steps on the Vblock system allowing you to aggregate and simplify complex tasks, including: Selection of self-service portal choices (service offering, cost/capacity usage) Allocation of compute resources (service profiles, policies) 7

8 Allocation of storage resources (devices, capacity) Configuration of network resources (VLAN, SAN) Configuration of ESXi Server and cluster (ESXi installation, cluster configuration) Allocation of virtual machines (template cloning, operating system, and ArcGIS for Server configuration) Element managers drive standardization, agility, and operational efficiency, allowing agile business process definitions. Service profiles Service profiles are instances of a template used to specify attributes to configure various aspects of a server s functionality such as: UUID vnic and vhba MAC address VLAN WWNN and WWPN Policies Server assignment After creating a service profile, you associate it with a blade to set that blade s attributes. In this way, you can deploy multiple blades in your environment with the same configuration. Service profile templates Service profile templates enable the rapid deployment of multiple service profiles using the same policies, pool attributes, number of vnics and vhbas, and other settings from an initial service profile. Before creating a service profile template, you need to consider how you want to use the template as two categories of service profile templates exist: initial and updating. You can use either type of template to create a new service profile; however, the type of template that you use sets the conditions for how changes are propagated to the service profiles created from that template as follows: Template Type Initial Template Updating Template Changes to Service Profiles Not automatically propagated to service profiles created from that template. Any changes you make to the template, you must also make to any service profile created from that template because the service profile is not connected to the template. Automatically propagated to service profiles created from that template because the service profiles remain connected to it. 8

9 ArcGIS configurations on a Vblock system This section shows several typical ArcGIS configurations as deployed on a Vblock system. A typical deployment of ArcGIS on a Vblock system uses the following virtual machine templates: Virtual Machine Template One Machine Deployment Multiple Machine Deployment Web Tier Desktop Management Includes ArcGIS for Server and ArcGIS Web Adaptor ArcGIS for Server only Web Server and ArcGIS Web Adaptor ArcGIS for Desktop only After creating these templates, you instantiate and configure them as needed to support business demands. This section shows the following typical configurations: Ad hoc GIS analysis Highly available GIS services On demand GIS servers Ad hoc GIS analysis In this configuration, a Desktop Management virtual machine that includes ArcGIS for Desktop manages a cluster of ArcGIS for Server virtual machines for a very large GIS analysis task such as: Building a large map cache to display maps on the web quickly Precomputing derived GIS layers such as slope or aspect from a digital elevation model Running spatial data analysis for workforce optimization This configuration provides high data throughput to storage and high computing resources, and is applicable to data management, planning and analysis, workforce optimization, and constituent engagement pattern of use. Generally, you create this configuration temporarily for the duration of the job. Once the job is completed, you may terminate the ArcGIS for Server virtual machines and use the output on a separate ArcGIS for Server configuration optimized for publication. For example, once a map cache is built, it is sufficient to use a modest ArcGIS for Server failover configuration to publish the map tiles. 9

10 Figure 2. ArcGIS Ad Hoc GIS Analysis Highly available GIS services This configuration uses a redundant ArcGIS for Server fronted by a load balancer. You create this configuration using virtual machine templates that include ArcGIS for Server only. On the Web Tier, use the virtual machine templates that include the Web Server and the ArcGIS Web Adaptor. An ArcGIS Server site with built-in redundancy points to a common repository of data (shown as a SAN in Figure 3 but could also be a database). Failover is managed on two levels. First, ArcGIS Web Adaptor polls your ArcGIS site at regular intervals to learn which ArcGIS for Server virtual machines have been added or removed. The Adaptor then forwards traffic to the currently participating virtual machines. In addition, ArcGIS for Server virtual machines within a site keep track of each other. If one machine is busy handling a request, the request is forwarded to a virtual machine that can process it. 10

11 Figure 3. ArcGIS Highly Available GIS Services On demand GIS servers This configuration allows you to respond to an unanticipated load on a particular application or web service. Vblock platform automation allows you to create ArcGIS for Server virtual machine templates and then add more virtual machines to the ArcGIS Server deployment on demand. Figure 4 shows four ArcGIS for Server virtual machines configured to power an average workload. It also shows how, using the Vblock system and ArcGIS Server Administrator API, you can dynamically allocate two additional virtual machines when required. You can use this configuration to add virtual machines to ArcGIS at scheduled times or as needed depending on the load of the system. 11

12 Figure 4. On Demand GIS Servers 12

13 Conclusion The Vblock solution enables ArcGIS administrators to manage their resources in a converged infrastructure environment and take advantage of the benefits of virtualization. This paper provides an administrator an understanding of the components that make up a Vblock system and Esri ArcGIS, and the concepts of creating and using service profiles and service profile templates for provisioning a new server or blade in a Vblock system environment. Although this paper discusses provisioning new ArcGIS instances on a server, any component that uses the Vblock system follows the same model of using service profile templates and automation engines to rapidly provision new application instances on a Vblock system. For this use case, using service profile templates and the automation engine designed for the Vblock system dramatically simplifies the provisioning process for new ArcGIS instances on blades and servers. Where the time it takes to provision a new ArcGIS instance without virtualization is normally measured in hours, this is now reduced to minutes. These templates allow administrators to quickly respond to changing business needs and requirements, while also maintaining operational efficiency and agility. Combining ArcGIS for Server with the Vblock system provides the following benefits: Compute, networking, storage, and virtualization resources from industry leaders A fully virtualized environment with the flexibility to move resources from one virtual machine to another Reduced complexity, preconfigured and centralized IT resources leading to standardized IT services Predictable performance and operational characteristics Ability to scale up and down on demand to meet peak and valley requirements Load sharing and balancing of resources among multiple users for higher efficiency and utilization Improved GIS service and operations Next steps To learn more about this and other solutions, contact a VCE representative or visit 13

14 Further reading VCE Vblock Systems Series 300 Architecture Overview (http://www.vce.com/pdf/solutions/vcevblock-series-300-architecture-overview.pdf) Driving Value with Vblock Systems (http://www.vce.com/pdf/solutions/vce-vblock-businessvalue-whitepaper.pdf) Vblock Solution for Trusted Multi-Tenancy: Technical Overview (http://www.vce.com/pdf/solutions/vce-trusted-multi-tenancy-white-paper.pdf) Esri ArcGIS - (http://www.esri.com/software/arcgis/index.html) ArcGIS for Server Functionality Matrix white paper (http://www.esri.com/library/brochures/pdfs/arcgis-server-functionality-matrix.pdf) GIS in the Cloud: The Esri Example, by David Chappell (http://www.esri.com/library/whitepapers/pdfs/gis-in-the-cloud-chappell.pdf 14

15 ABOUT VCE VCE, formed by Cisco and EMC with investments from VMware and Intel, accelerates the adoption of converged infrastructure and cloud-based computing models that dramatically reduce the cost of IT while improving time to market for our customers. VCE, through the Vblock system, delivers the industry's only fully integrated and fully virtualized cloud infrastructure system. VCE solutions are available through an extensive partner network, and cover horizontal applications, vertical industry offerings, and application development environments, allowing customers to focus on business innovation instead of integrating, validating and managing IT infrastructure. For more information, go to ABOUT ESRI Since 1969, Esri has been helping organizations map and model our world. Esri s GIS software tools and methodologies enable these organizations to effectively analyze and manage their geographic information and make better decisions. They are supported by our experienced and knowledgeable staff and extensive network of business partners and international distributors. A full-service GIS company, Esri supports the implementation of GIS technology on desktops, servers, online services, and mobile devices. These GIS solutions are flexible, customizable, and easy to use. THE INFORMATION IN THIS PUBLICATION IS PROVIDED "AS IS." VCE MAKES NO REPRESENTATIONS OR WARRANTIES OF ANY KIND WITH RESPECT TO THE INFORMATION IN THIS PUBLICATION, AND SPECIFICALLY DISCLAIMS IMPLIED WARRANTIES OR MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. Copyright 2012 VCE Company, LLC. All rights reserved. Vblock and the VCE logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of VCE Company, LLC and/or its affiliates in the United States or other countries. All other trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.

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