vRA 7.3 AD Integration with a Disjointed Namespace – Part 2

In part 1 of this blog post, I demonstrated the impact of configuring vRA Directories Management using IWA in a disjointed namespace. In this blog post, I will now cover the procedure to remediate and recover vRA to an operational state.

The high level steps required to remediate vRA are listed in order below:

  1. Take a snapshot of all vRA nodes
  2. Change the Master vRealize Automation Appliance Host Name – Change the Master vRA Appliance Host Name
  3. Change a Replica vRealize Automation Appliance Host Name – (if applicable) (on all replica nodes) – Change a Replica vRA Appliance Host Name
  4. Reset RabbitMQ cluster from the primary vRA appliance VAMI – Reset RabbitMQ
  5. Re-install the vRA IaaS management agents on each vRA IaaS node

 

I will assume readers of this blog know how to take a snapshot of all the vRA nodes and detail from step 2 onwards.

Change the Master vRealize Automation Appliance Host Name

Ensure your DNS A and PTR records are updated if required. In my use case, I did not need to update any DNS records.

Go to the vRealize Automation master appliance management console by opening a connection using its FQDN:

Example: https://vratestlab01.testlab.com:5480/

Log in with the root username and password.

2.0.1

Select Network > Address and enter the required FQDN of the master vRA appliance in the hostname field

Click Save Settings

2.0.2

Logon to the console of the master vRA Appliance and run the following script:

/usr/lib/vcac/tools/change-hostname/change-hostname.sh old-master-FQDN new-master-FQDN

Example:
/usr/lib/vcac/tools/change-hostname/change-hostname.sh vratestlab01.offprem.cloud.test.group vratestlab01.testlab.com

Validate the hostname change by entering hostname -f after the script completes

2.0.3

Logon to the console of all replica vRA Appliance and run the following script:
Note: This script is only executed on all replica nodes and not the master/primary node.

sed -i “s/old-master-FQDN/new-master-FQDN/g” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/10-psql.cfg” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/20-vcac.cfg”

Example:
sed -i “s/vratestlab01.offprem.cloud.test.group/vratestlab01.testlab.com/g” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/10-psql.cfg” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/20-vcac.cfg”

2.0.4

Change a Replica vRealize Automation Appliance Host Name

Ensure your DNS A and PTR records are updated if required. In my use case, I did not need to update any DNS records.

Go to the vRealize Automation replica appliance management console by opening a connection using its FQDN:

Example: https://vratestlab02.testlab.com:5480/

Log in with the root username and password.

2.0.5

Select Network > Address and enter the required FQDN of the replica vRA appliance in the hostname field

Click Save Settings

2.0.6

Logon to the console of the replica vRA Appliance and run the following script:

/usr/lib/vcac/tools/change-hostname/change-hostname.sh old-replica-FQDN new-replica-FQDN

Example:
/usr/lib/vcac/tools/change-hostname/change-hostname.sh vratestlab02.offprem.cloud.test.group vratestlab02.testlab.com

Validate the hostname change by entering hostname -f after the script completes

2.0.7

Logon to the console of all other vRA Appliances in the cluster, including the master and run the following script:

sed -i “s/old-replica-FQDN/new-replica-FQDN/g” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/10-psql.cfg” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/20-vcac.cfg”

Example:
sed -i “s/vratestlab02.offprem.cloud.test.group/vratestlab02.testlab.com/g” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/10-psql.cfg” “/etc/haproxy/conf.d/20-vcac.cfg”

2.0.8

Reset RabbitMQ Cluster

Go to the vRealize Automation master appliance management console by opening a connection using its FQDN:

Example: https://vratestlab01.testlab.com:5480/

Log in with the root username and password.

2.0.9

 

Select vRA Settings > Messaging

Click Reset RabbitMQ Cluster

Click OK to confirm

2.0.10

2.0.11

Restart the master vRealize Automation appliance.

Restart all replica vRealize Automation appliances, one at a time.

Re-install the vRA IaaS management agents on each vRA IaaS node

Logon to the first vRA IaaS node and open a browser.

Navigate to the vRealize Automation IaaS Installation page at https://<vra-appliance-fqdn&gt;:5480/installer

Click Management Agent Installer

2.0.12

Browse to the local directory where you saved the installer, on the IaaS node.
Note: You will need to uninstall the vRA IaaS Management Agent first.

Right click on the vCAC-IaaSManagementAgent-Setup.msi file and select Install.

When the setup wizard opens, click Next.

2.0.13

On the End-User License Agreement screen of the Management Agent Setup Wizard, check the box I accept the terms of this agreement.

Click Next.

2.0.14

On the Destination Folder screen, select a destination folder by clicking Change, or accept the default installation path.

Click Next.

2.0.15

On the Management Site Service screen:

In the vRA appliance load balancer address text box, specify the vRealize Automation appliance URL, for example: <https://vra-portal.testlab.com:5480&gt;

In the Root username text box, enter the vRealize Automation appliance username <root>.

In the Password text box, enter the vRealize Automation appliance <password>.

In the Management Site Service certificate SHA1 fingerprint text box, click Load.

Select the I confirm the fingerprint matches the Management Site SSL Certificate check box.

Click Next.

2.0.16

Enter the AD domain service account details for the vRA Management Agent, for example, testlab\svc_vra_mgr01

Enter the password for the AD service account

Click Next.

2.0.17

 Click Install

2.0.18

Once the installation has completed successfully, click Finish to exit the Management Agent installation wizard.

2.0.19

Verify the VMware vRealize Automation Management Agent is running on the primary IaaS Web Server in Server Manager by going to Tools > Computer Management > Services.

Verify the Logon as Service account is configured to use the vRealize Automation Service Account, for example, testlab\svc_vra_iaas01.

2.0.20

Verify the vRealize Automation Management agents config file is updated to the changed FQDN for the vRealize Automation appliance nodes in the deployment.

The file is located at: <install_path>\VMware\vCAC\Management Agent\VMware.IaaS.Management.Agent.exe.Config

2.0.21

Re-install the vRA IaaS Management agents on all remaining vRA IaaS nodes, verifying the endpoint addresses are updated to the required FQDN on each node.

Go to the vRealize Automation master appliance management console by opening a connection using its FQDN: https://vratestlab01.testlab.com:5480/

Log in with the root username and password.

Navigate to vRA Settings > Cluster and verify the configuration. Expand the Host / Node Name to validate the roles assigned to each node.

Verify all nodes now appear are in a healthy state by checking their Last Connected time from the VAMI of the primary vRA appliance

 

  • Ensure the IaaS nodes have a last connected time of less than 30 seconds
  • Ensure the vRA appliances have a last connected time of less than 10 minutes

2.0.23

Navigate to vRA Settings > Database and verify the configuration.

Ensure the replication mode is Asynchronous

Check the Connection Status is CONNECTED

Verify the primary vRA appliance is the MASTER node and the secondary vRA appliance is the REPLICA node.

Ensure both Postgres DB nodes have a status of Up

2.0.24

Navigate to Services and confirm all services have a status of REGISTERED.

Note: Verify the vRA Appliance services on all vRA nodes.

Navigate to vRA Settings > Messaging

Verify the Connection Status is CONNECTED

Verify the RabbitMQ Process is Running

Verify the status of the RabbitMQ Cluster and all nodes are Connected

Note: Reset the RabbitMQ Cluster from the master vRA Appliance if you have errors.

2.0.26

Login to the vRA portal, navigate to Administration > Directories Management > Directories

Verify directory synchronisation is now successful.

Verify you are now able to login to the vRA portal with an Active Directory account.

2.0.27

This concludes the blog post and whilst I appreciate this may be a corner case, hopefully, you have found this information useful. I’m expecting the public VMware documentation to updated for this use case, although, there are not any guarantees.

 

 

vRA 7.3 AD Integration with a Disjointed Namespace – Part 1

During a recent vRA 7.3 enterprise deployment at a customer site, I was required to configure vRA Directories Management to support AD user authentication. The customer had the following constraints, which impacted the expected outcome of this configuration.

  • Non-Windows machines were not allowed to register their DNS A or PTR records in the Active Directory integrated DNS domain.
  • Active Directory integration must be configured using Integrated Windows Authentication if the product supports IWA and LDAP is not permitted
  • Computer objects will be pre-staged in the Active Directory domain
  • vRA appliances and vRA IaaS nodes DNS records were located in different namespaces

This meant we needed to configure an Active Directory IWA to support user authentication using the Directory Management feature however, the AD domain name and DNS zone was a different namespace to the FQDN of the vRA appliances.

In this blog post, I will recreate this use case using the domains below to demonstrate the impact of configuring vRA Directories Management using IWA in a disjointed namespace. I will cover the procedure to remediate the configuration in a part 2.

For further information on disjointed namespaces, please refer to the Microsoft article: Disjoint Namespace

  • vRealize Automation appliances and vRA IaaS nodes are using an AD domain named testlab.com. All these host are configured as <hostname>.testlab.com and name resolution is provided by AD integrated DNS. The vRA IaaS Windows servers are members of the testlab.com domain.
  • vRA is required to support user authentication from an Active Directory domain named offprem.cloudtest.com, as such, considering the constraints, vRA Directories Management will be required to use offprem.cloudtest.com as an identity source for synchronisation

Configure a vRA Active Directory over IWA Connection for Directories Management

Login to the vRA default tenant as a local user with Tenant Administrator privileges

1.9.1

Select Administration > Directories Management > Directories

1.9.2

Click Add Directory and select Add Active Directory over LDAP/IWA.

1.9.3

On the Add Directory page, specify the following:

Enter a Directory Name for the AD domain in the Directory Name text box.

Select the Active Directory (Integrated Windows Authentication) radio button

Select the primary vRA appliance as the Sync Connector from the dropdown list

Do you want this Connector to also perform authentication? Select the Yes radio button

Select sAMAccountName  as the Directory Search Attribute

Enter the name of the AD domain to join and the domain admin credentials.

Enter the Bind User Details in UPN format

Click Save & Next

1.9.4

1.9.5

On the Select the Domains page, select the domains which should be associated with this AD connection.

Click Next

1.9.6

The Directories Management attributes are mapped to the Active Directory attributes. Review and update as required.

Click Next

1.9.7

Select the groups you would like to synchronise from Active Directory

Click Next

1.9.8

Select the users you would like to synchronise from Active Directory

Click Next

1.9.9

Review the page to see how many users and groups will be syncing to the directory.

Click Sync Directory

1.9.10

1.9.11

1.9.12

Symptoms of Configuring Active Directory IWA with a Disjointed Namespace

Configure Directories Management for High Availability

When configuring Directories Management for High Availability, you add the secondary connector to the identity provider, save the settings successfully but the configuration does not remain persistent.

Select Administration > Directories Management > Identity Providers

1.9.13

Click the Add a Connector drop-down list, and select the connector that corresponds to your secondary vRealize Automation appliance.

Enter the appropriate password in the Bind DN and Domain Admin Password fields.

Click Save.

1.9.14

1.9.15

The connector configuration is not saved. This could but just be a UI issue but is an observed symptom I have only witnessed in this use case.

vRA Appliance Hostname

The vRA Appliance hostname in the VAMI network tab has been updated to use the short name.

1.9.17

The hostname of the appliance in the OS has been updated with the FQDN of the IWA AD domain, which in my use case is not resolvable.

1.9.18

vRealize Automation VAMI Cluster

When viewing the vRA Cluster information in the VAMI, the node list is empty.

1.9.19

vRA IaaS Management Agents

The vRealize Automation Management agents config file is updated to the changed FQDN for the vRealize Automation appliance on every vRA IaaS node in the deployment.

The file is located at: <install_path>\VMware\vCAC\Management Agent\VMware.IaaS.Management.Agent.exe.Config

1.9.20

In part 2 of this blog, I will demonstrate how to remediate this use case, and complete the configuration of vRA Directories Management using Active Directory with Integrated Windows Authentication in a disjointed namespace.