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vRealize Automation Lego Brick Icon Changer

Today is the first time in 7 years I release another VMware tool. Recently on twitter I asked the question can you still not change the blue lego brick icon in vRealize Automation that is used for the root level services icon.

Tim Hynes @railroadmanuk actually corrected me and showed me in the vRA doc that you can do that now as of v7.2. It consists of a bunch of REST calls. So I went  about trying to understand how to make a .Net tool to change said icon… as it was, Tim beat me with a Python script to make the change but I felt it still had merit in building a Windows tool to do the same.

 

So here it is. Click to download: vRA Lego Icon Changer (25) 

 

NOW BEFORE YOU USE THE TOOL BACKUP YOUR VRA VMS WITH ALTARO or VEMBU BACKUP.

I’M NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY DAMAGE.

YOU NEED VRA 7.2 OR GREATER

 

Instructions:

  1. Load an icon into the tool that you wish to upload to vRA
  2. Provide vRA details
    1. vRA Appliance hostname or IP address
    2. Admin account for the default tenant vpshere.local
    3. Password for that admin account
  3. Click Upload

If you mess up there is a revert button to bring back the lego brick.

 

For now its not the prettiest UI but in v2 I will gloss it up… I just need feedback.

UPDATE: DON’T PANIC IF CHANGES HAVE NOT OCCURRED AS QUICKLY AS YOU LIKE. IN MY LAB I NOTICED THAT ITS NOT INSTANT AND A QUICK CLEAR OF YOUR COOKIES WILL SPEED UP THINGS!

 

Watch this animated gif showing how it works. Just Click on the picture below to to play the video!

vRO Active Directory Plugin needs LDAPS

Recently I rebuilt vRealize Automation in my home lab gearing up for some internal sessions on home labs. I wanted to show usual stuff like provisioning a VM and some admin orchestration like user management. What I noticed, however, is in vRealize Orchestrator that the Active Directory workflow to change a user’s Active Directory password would not work, and the error alluded to a certificate error. After doing some digging about, I found out it’s because I wasn’t authenticating to Active Directory over LDAPS (Ldap over SSL) . Now in a vRealize Automation and a vRealize Orchestrator setup that would be configured in 3 places. 1) In the vRealize Orchestrator appliance to authenticate vRealize Orchestrator against Active Directory over SSL. 2) As a directory setup in vRealize Automation. 3) When registering the Active Directory plugin in vRealize Orchestrator against Active Directory. In my opinion, I followed the best instructions on the web I could find to achieve this as VMware documents are lacking proper instructions but failed with 1) and 2) .

 

I tested Active Directory over SSL (LDAPS) using the Microsoft tool ldp.exe and Apache LDAP Studio without fail, so I knew from the Active Directory side all was good.

 

I’m sure it’s something I’m doing wrong with how I’m inputting the parameters on in the vRealize Orchestrator appliance and within vRealize Automation Directories but to be honest for my purposes I only needed the vRealize Orchestrator Active Directory Plugin operational, and I managed (with a little help from @railroadmanuk ) get it working… So here’s what to do based on a Windows 2012 Active Directory:

 

First, you need to make sure you have Active Directory certificate services working, and you do that by making sure you have added the role of Active Directory certificate services and certificate authority.

Pick Enterprise CA

And Root CA

Then Create a Private Key.

I changed the hash algorithm based on reading an article I found.

Default the rest of the configuration by click Next.

This will install your Active Directory certificate bits… you can check to see if this works by running LDP.EXE.. however, make sure you use localhost or FQDN in the connection string as it won’t work.

Now if you open up MMC and add-in the Certificate snapin on point at Computer Account > Local Computer. Open the Personal Node and Certificates you’ll see your cert here.

Now it’s time to export this certificate to import later in the vRealize Orchestrator appliance.

Click Next

Click Next

Provide a filename, but please copy this certificate to somewhere that can be uploaded to the vRealize Orchestrator appliance.

 

Now in your vRealize Orchestrator Control Center Click on Certificates

 

Now import the certificate you exported earlier.

Now if you open up the vRealize Orchestrator Client you can add an Active Directory server using SSL by running the following workflow

 

Add in your parameters for you Active Directory Server making sure you specify port 636 and to use SSL.

The mistake I made for a while was not using a UPN style naming convention when inputting my user credentials.

 

Now after all of the above I was then able to run the Active Directory workflows that require LDAPS connection… well after all we cannot have passwords sent in clear text can we? 😉

Some resources I find along the way:

https://goo.gl/SLEIhl

https://goo.gl/HFdBZq

https://goo.gl/wsjMSM

 

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