Evaluating RHEV 3.0 in a test environment

RHEV 3.0 offers enterprise-grade features at low price point. To see if it’s right for your IT shop, you can build a small RHEV 3.0 test environment.

Running RHEV 3.0 in a test environment is a great way to evaluate the virtualization platform before making any costly decisions. With RHEV 3.0’s minimal hardware requirements and Red Hat offering a free 30-day trial, you shouldn’t have any trouble assembling a small test lab.

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RHEV 3.0 test environment: The requirements
A Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization (RHEV) 3.0 test environment requires at least one host and an administration portal, which consists of a machine that runs the management software. You also need storage, but the test environment does not require a storage area network; local storage will do just fine.

Next, you must install RHEV 3.0 on top of Red Hat Enterprise Linux, both of which require a current subscription. (You can find the free evaluation subscription on Red Hat’s website.) The RHEV administrative portal requires, at minimum, adual-core processor with 4 GB of RAM, 25 GB of free disk space and a 1 Gbps network connection. Also, at the moment, U.S. English is the only supported language on the management software.

The hypervisor host must have at least a dual-core processor with 4 GB of RAM and 10 GB of storage and one 1 Gbps network interface. Note that 4 GB of RAM will not allow you to run more than two virtual machines, but it will suffice for a test environment.

Installing and configuring RHEV-M
Before you can install RHEV 3.0, you need to register the server with the Red Hat Network and install RHEV-M on the host. Use rhn_register to begin that process. After registering the server with the RHN, log in at http://rhn.redhat.com, and click Systems. Then, register your server with the following channels:

  • RHEV Manager (RHEV-M)
  • JBoss Enterprise Application Platform
  • RHEL server supplementary

Click the Change Subscription button to finalize changes.

As the root, use yum -y install rhevm to install Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager. Once installed, run rhevm-setup to configure RHEV 3.0.

The installer now asks several questions. For most of these, you can just accept the default answers. Don't worry about configuring the default storage type, which you only need for setting up a data center or cluster. It is not necessary for the basic test environment.

Now that RHEV-M is up and running, log in to the RHEV administration portal using the username admin and the internal domain. In a full RHEV 3.0 environment, you should connect RHEV to a directory service, such as Active Directory. For the purpose of the test environment,  however, the internal domain suffices.

The RHEV 3.0 installation process
Now that you’ve installed the RHEV 3.0 management software for the test environment, it’s time to install the hypervisor on the host. To do this, you need to download the hypervisor package, which comes in the form of an ISO file from the Red Hat Network. Burn the ISO file, named rhev-hypervisor, to the medium you want to use for the hypervisor installation (e.g., DVD-ROM, thumb drive). Then, boot the hypervisor host from that medium and follow the self-explanatory installation procedure.

Connecting to Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization Manager
Once you’ve installed all the required components for the back end, you can set up a Windows client with a Web browser as the front end to connect to RHEV-M. You'll need to perform a few, minimal configuration steps:

  • On the Windows machine, install the .NET 4.0 framework.
  • Disable Internet Explorer’s enhanced security configuration.
  • Make sure that the RHEV administration portal is added as a trusted site.

You're now ready to connect to the RHEV-M administration portal. Use the following URL to connect: https://yourserver:8443/RHEVManager. Log in with the username and password that you configured earlier.

At this point, you're ready to add virtual hosts to the RHEV 3.0 management environment. After that, you can create your first virtual machines. The Red Hat Enterprise Virtualization 3.0 Evaluation Guide contains more information on this process, as well as a few lab exercises.

This was first published in March 2012

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