Default FlashArray Connection With PowerShell

In the VMware Pure PowerShell module (PureStorage.FlashArray.VMware) there is a default array connection stored in a global variable called $Global:DefaultFlashArray and all connected FlashArrays in $Global:AllFlashArrays. The VMware/Pure PowerShell module automatically uses what is in the “default” variable.

The underlying “core” Pure Storage PowerShell module (PureStoragePowerShellSDK) does not yet take advantage of global connections. So for each cmdlet you run, you must pass in the “array” parameter. For example to get all of the volumes from an array:

Kind of annoying if you are interactively running commands and only have one array connection you care about (or one that you primarily care about).

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Pure1 REST API Authentication Made Easy

I’ve been working with the Pure1 REST for about a year now and have really enjoyed what it brings. I’ve integrated it into a few things: PowerShell. vRO. vSphere Plugin. One of the “tricky” things about it though is the authentication. Instead of a username and password it requires the use of a RSA256 public/private key pair. This is inherently more secure, but of course requires a bit more know-how when it comes to pair generation.

I simplified a fair amount of it in PowerShell, but didn’t quite get to the finish line. The generation of the key pair could be done but it came in the form of a PFX–which basically combines the public key and private key into one file. Unfortunately, Pure1 requires the them to be separated as all it needs is the public key, not your private key. While this is “better” it does leave Windows users at a bit of a disadvantage–there is no built in mechanism to generate this without installing OpenSSL directly. The process could not be done entirely in PowerShell. Or so I thought…

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Generating the default VVol Storage Container ID

A VVol datastore, is not a file system, so it is not a traditional datastore. It is just a capacity quota. So when you “mount” a VVol datastore, you aren’t really performing a traditional mounting operation as there is no underlying physical storage to address during the mount. So instead of mounting some storage device, you are mounting what is called a storage container. This is the meta data object that represents the certain amount of capacity that can be provisioned from a given array. An array can have more than one storage containers, for reasons of multi-tenancy or whatever.

In a VMFS world, when you go to create a new datastore, you pass it the serial number of the storage you want to format with VMFS. You know that serial, because, well, you created the storage device. When you “mount” a VVol datastore, instead of a device serial, you supply the storage container UUID. It comes in the form of vvol:e0ad83893ead3681-b1b7f56a45ff64f1. Of course the characters will vary a bit.

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Mounting a VVol Datastore with PowerCLI

I’ve been making a lot of updates to my PowerShell module around VVols recently and this was the last “table stakes” cmdlet I wanted to add. There are certainly more to come, but now we definitely have the basics. In 1.2.2.1 release of the PowerShell module I added a cmdlet called Mount-PfaVvolDatastore.

As of today we support a single VVol datastore–though we are working on adding support for more than one.

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Registering VASA with PowerShell

Registering VASA providers is the first step in setting up VVols for a given vCenter, so automating this process is something that might be of interest to folks. We currently have this process in our vSphere Plugin, as well as in our vRO plugin, and of course you can do it manually. What about PowerShell? Well we have that too!

In our PowerShell Pure/VMware module there are three new cmdlets:

  • new-pfavasaprovider
  • get-pfavasaprovider
  • remove-pfavasaprovider
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Assigning Read Access to Windows Private Key

I have written about authenticating with the Pure1 REST API, and my PowerShell module in the past:

https://www.codyhosterman.com/2019/01/using-the-pure1-rest-api-part-i-powershell/

NOTE: This workaround is not really needed anymore with the default behavior of the module. See this post: https://www.codyhosterman.com/2019/12/pure1-rest-api-authentication-made-easy/

One of the issues is that if you followed my default instructions, you would need to run the PowerShell window as an admin to be able to create the connection. The answer–now that I think about it is fairly obvious: non-admin users (or admins not running in admin mode) don’t have security rights to it. Duh!

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Revamped PowerShell Module for Pure and VMware

About 6 months ago, my esteemed colleague Barkz blogged about our path forward with PowerShell. We have an official PowerShell SDK for managing the FlashArray–but it is limited to that: doing stuff to the FlashArray.

So to add value and make managing it within context of the layers you actually manage your infrastructure from (VMware, Microsoft, etc.) we created some value-add PowerShell modules to make it easier. Barkz talks about them here:

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Pulling Performance Statistics from Pure1 with PowerShell

I have written a few posts recently on using the Pure1 with PowerShell, like below:

I made a PowerShell module you make it easy for you to use, which can be installed via install-module from the PowerShell gallery. Details here:

https://www.codyhosterman.com/scripts-and-tools/pure1-rest-api/pure1-powershell-module/

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Using the Pure1 PowerShell Module

Recently I wrote a blog post on how to authenticate and connect to Pure1 via PowerShell. You can find that here:

I have made authentication MUCH easier:

https://www.codyhosterman.com/2019/12/pure1-rest-api-authentication-made-easy/

But it is fairly involved, so I made it easier for you (and me) by writing a PowerShell module and posted in on the PowerShell Gallery.

https://www.powershellgallery.com/packages/Cody.PureStorage.Pure1/

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Using the Pure1 REST API Part I: PowerShell

In my last post, I spoke about the ins and outs of using the Pure1 REST API–but it was a fairly manual process. Which of course is not how you really want to use a REST API. So the first part of this series will be using it with one of my favorite tools: PowerShell!

I will separate this into five parts:

  1. Creating your certificate
  2. Adding your public key into Pure1
  3. Creating your JWT
  4. Authenticating with Pure1
  5. Making REST calls after authentication

UPDATE!!!! I made this much easier, you can use my module to connect to Pure1 which is on the PowerShell gallery.

You can find more information on it here:

https://www.codyhosterman.com/scripts-and-tools/pure1-rest-api/pure1-powershell-module/h

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