Add vCenter Services to the Catalog

You can add new or edit existing vCenter services through the Service Catalog wizard.

vCenter services listed in the Service Catalog can provide the following components:

  • VM and/or virtual services


  • Open Virtual Format (OVF) or Open Virtual Appliance (OVA) templates.

    OVF and OVA templates are open-standard file formats for packaging and distributing VMs or vApps. When a user requests a service that uses an OVA/OVF template, at deploy time, Commander will transfer the virtual machine image specified by the URL for the component to vCenter.

You can add multiple components of the same type (that is, VM and/or virtual service components OR OVA/OVF components) to a service.

vCenter services can also provide custom components that cover non-virtual assets (such as a phone) and tasks that modify existing assets (such as the installation of a database instance on an existing server). You can add custom components to a vCenter service that offers no other components, VM or virtual service components, or OVA/OVF components.

  • The use of multi-cloud templates is suggested for all services in your catalog, for easier maintainability and greater flexibility. For more information, see Add Multi-Cloud Services to the Catalog.
  • You can edit a service at any time by selecting it in the list and clicking Edit. Note that when editing a service, it's not possible to add components to or remove components from a shared VM service.

See Create Services Using Fenced Networks to learn how to create a service for a fenced network.


Configuration > Self-Service

Available to:

Commander Roles of Superuser and Enterprise Admin

To add a vCenter service to the Service Catalog:

  1. Click the Catalog tab.
  2. On the Catalog tab, do one of the following:
    • To add a new service, click Add Service.
    • To copy an existing service, select a listed service, and click the Copy link.

      This option can save time because it copies much of the service's existing configuration.

    • To add a template to an existing service, select a listed service, and click Edit Service.

    When editing a service, it's not possible to add components to or remove components from a shared VM service. For more information, see VM Sharing

    After a service is added to the Service Catalog, you can click Show Details to quickly view information about it. From the service details, you can click the View Source link to go to the source VM, template or virtual service components in the Infrastructure view or the Applications view.

  3. On the Service Description page, set the following display options for the vCenter service, then click Next:
    • Name — The service name to display in the Service Catalog.

      This name is used as the label for the Service section of the Request New Service form. Choose a distinctive service name to help requesters fill out the form.

    • Description — An optional description of the service to display in the Service Catalog.

      Along with the service name, the description is used in Service Catalog searches, so a good description can help users find service catalog entries.

    • Icon — An icon to identify the service.

      To add a custom icon, click Manage Icons. See Manage icons for the service catalog for more details.

    • Categories — An identifying category that may help users find this service in a long list.

      To add a category, click Manage Categories. See Manage Service Catalog categories for more details.

    • If the service-level form elements such as Quantity and Expiry Date don't make sense for this service, you can hide the service portion of the service request form by clearing the Display service form when this service is requested checkbox.
  4. On the Component Blueprints page, you can add VM or virtual service components, OVA/OVF components, or custom components.
    • To add VM or virtual service components:
      1. Click Add and select VM Template, Image or AMI or Virtual Service.
      2. In the dialog that appears, select an available component.

        Use the tree or enter text in the search field to narrow the component list. The search field searches the Name and Guest OS properties for VMs, and the Name property for virtual services.

        All components in a Service Catalog entry must belong to the same cloud account.

      3. To display VMs in the component list as well as templates, enable Allow VMs in Catalog.
      4. Use the Name field to customize the display name for this component in the Service Catalog. This is the component name that a user sees when completing a service request form.
      5. In the Available Templates and VMs or Available Services dialog, select a VM or virtual service and click Add to Service.
      6. If you want to add multiple VM or virtual service components to the service, repeat the immediate steps above for each additional component you want to add to the service.
      7. When you have finished adding components, click Close to return to the wizard.

        The added components are listed under the Component Blueprints.

    • To add OVA/OVF components:
      1. Click Add > OVA/OVF Template.
      2. In the Add OVA/OVF Template dialog, enter one of the following in the URL field, then click OK:
        • A URL to a valid, publicly accessible OVA/OVF template. The URL can begin with "http://" or "https://".
        • A URL to an OVA/OVF template was downloaded to a locally-accessible directory. The URL must begin with "file:///" and provide the full network path. The URL can use drive letters, but it can't use a mapped drive.

          For example:






          • The Commander account that you use must be a directory service user with sufficient permission to read files from the given directory.
          • Only OVF/OVA templates that describe a single VM are supported.

        The added component is listed under the Component Blueprints.

      3. If you want to add multiple OVA/OVF components to the service, repeat the step above for each additional component you want to add.
    • To add custom components:

      Do one of the following:

      • To add a new custom component type to the service, click Add > New Component Type. In the Create New Component Type dialog, provide a name, a description, annual cost, and currency, then click Add to Service.
      • To add an existing custom component type to the service, click Add and select the component type from the drop-down menu.

        If more than five custom component types already exist, you must select Custom Type from the drop-down menu, and in the Select Custom Component Type dialog, select a component from the list.

      • The added components are listed under the Component Blueprints.

  5. Click Next, then customize the component configuration parameters on each of the following tabs that are available for your component type. You should review the configuration parameters for each component that you add.

    When you have completed configuring the added components, click Next to continue editing the service catalog entry.

  6. On the Deployment page, specify deployment options for the entire service, then click Next.

    If your service only includes one or more custom components, many of these options won't be present.

    • Deploy Service As — Choose one of the following options:
      • Virtual Service — The service will be deployed as a vApp; you can manage the service as a whole after the service request has been completed, but Service Portal users will still be able to see and manage individual VMs within the vApp.
      • Individual Components — The service will be deployed as individual VMs.

        When creating a service that contains a single virtual service component, choose Individual Components. Otherwise, the service will be deployed as a virtual service within a virtual service.

    • Deployed Name — If you deploy the service as a virtual service, you can specify a customized name for deployed instances of the service. Select Use default naming format to use the default virtual service naming convention, or specify a customized deployed name.

      Click Configure global text replacement rules to shorten your service names. See also Set up text replacement rules for service names.

    • Deployment/Startup Order or Deployment Order — Applies only to VM and virtual service components. Some components in a multi-tier service may require other components to be started and running before they can start.
      • If you deploy the service as a virtual service, you specify both the order in which the components are deployed and the order in which the components are started.
      • If you deploy the service as individual components, you specify the order in which the components are deployed. The reverse order is used for shutdown.

      There is a 120 second delay between startup and shutdown of each component. There is no delay for deployment, but components are deployed serially, not in parallel.

      An administrator can override the deployment order by manually deploying components in a different order. It's also possible for Commander and Service Portal users with permissions can edit the start order for a deployed vApp.

    • Completion Workflow — If you have set up one or more service-level completion workflows, you can select one from the drop-down. Completion workflows allow you to specify actions to be carried out after deployment.
      • Click Add Workflow to create a new workflow.
      • Click Edit Workflow to edit the workflow that's currently selected in the drop-down list. Note that when you edit the workflow using this link, you're editing the workflow for all of the components or services it's assigned to.
    • Start Deployed Components — By default, VMs are powered on during deployment. If you want to deploy VMs in this service in a powered-off state, clear this option.

      When this option isn't enabled and a customization spec is assigned to a component in the service, if the VM is migrated to a different datastore before its first power on, the customization spec won't run.

  7. On the Placement page, you can configure placement attributes to define the Intelligent Placement requirements for the service.

    When you assign a placement attribute value to a published service, you're identifying the requirements of that published service to help ensure that services are deployed to the best destination. For more information, seeConfigure Placement Attributes.

    To configure placement attributes:

    1. Click Edit Placement Attributes.
    2. In the Edit Placement Attributes dialog, in the Not Required section, select an attribute value that's provided by this destination and click Add to move it to the Required section.
    3. You can click Create Placement Attributes to create a new placement attribute. See Create placement attributes for more information.

    4. Click OK to close the Edit Placement Attributes dialog.

      The placement attribute values you've assigned to this service are displayed on the Placement page.

    5. For a placement attribute with selectable values, use the Up and Down arrow buttons to order the attribute values by preference if necessary. For example, if a service can be deployed on either private or public cloud, but private cloud is preferable, make sure the Private Cloud attribute value is first in the list.
  8. On the Visibility page, select one of the following options to set which users and groups can request this service, then click Next:
    • Do not publish — The service is in the catalog but isn't available for selection (temporarily disabled). See also Permanently remove services from the Service Catalog.
    • Publish - Global — The service is available to all organizations, users and groups.
    • Publish - Specific organizations, users and groups — The service is available to the specified organizations, users and groups. If you select this option, you can assign a single service to both organizations and users/groups.
      • On the Organizations tab, select an organization from the drop-down menu. On the Users/Groups tab, enter the username or email address for one or more users or groups.

        When an organization member requests this service, the deployed service will automatically be assigned to the organization, with the requester as primary owner.

  9. On the Summary page, review the service's configuration details, and click Finish when you're done.

    If necessary, go back to the appropriate pages and make changes.