VKernel’s free OPS Server Explorer provides a wealth of information

Recently, VKernel released a complete suite of free tools. Dubbed the vOPS Server Explorer suite, this free suite includes a number of separate components brought together into a single tool.

  • Storage Explorer. Storage performance and capacity views across datastores and VMs that helps VM admins to get better visibility of their storage environment.
  • Change Explorer. Lists all changes that occurred to datacenters, clusters, resource pools, hosts, datastores and VMs within the previous seven days with associated risk impact.
  • Environment Explorer. At-a-glance statistics of all hardware and virtual objects in an environment, VMs suffering from configuration and performance issues, details on efficiency problems, plus capacity for new VMs.
  • vScope Explorer. Designed to assess the health of a virtualized environment, this utility immediately identifies VMs, hosts and datastores that are suffering performance, capacity and efficiency issues.
  • SearchMyVM Explorer. Based on the award-winning SearchMyVM stand-alone free tool, this utility provides “Google-like” search capabilities into a virtual environment, and allows for export of the resulting reports.

I decided to give the new free suite a shot. It’s now deployed into an environment that I’m already aware requires some remediation, but the suite provides me with additional actionable intelligence that makes it possible to better direct those actions. Sure, I can use the tools built into vCenter, but vKernel makes it orders of magnitude easier.

Deploying the suite is a simple task. Simply download the OVF file (or, download a prebuilt virtual machine for Hyper-V or Xen) and deploy it with vCenter. From there, log in to the client and point it at your vCenter and you’re on your way. If you need to make any configuration changes to vCenter’s logging levels, you will get notification about what to do and how to do it.

Once you’e done, wait for a bit of time to allow statistics to populate and then you’ll start getting information. The suite adds a tab to vCenter, so you can quickly and easily access everything, as shown in the three screenshots below.


This is a look at the overall density of the environment and provides you with information about how far you’ve stretched your resources.


You can search out various aspects of your environment and get high level details about it


And if you want granular, you can get specific guidance about what might be going wrong. Here, you can see that there are clear storage latency issues that should be addressed.

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