Deploy your first SDDC in VMware Cloud on AWS

Gilles Chekroun
Lead NSX Systems Engineer - VMware Europe
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On-boarding process

So you went ahead and talked to VMware about running the full stack SDDC in AWS.
Great !!
The on-boarding process is very simple but need a little bit of preparation.

Create or use your AWS VPC

Before we start with VMware Cloud on AWS on-boarding process we need to prepare the AWS environment that will be linked to VMware VPC running the SDDC Stack. To do that, create or use a VPC in the AWS region where you are going to deploy your SDDC.
In this example, I will create a new VPC and give it a CIDR of 172.16.0.0/16

Create Subnets in each Availability Zone

Log into your VMC dashboard

VMC dashboard is at : https://vmc.vmware.com/console/sddcs - login using your VMware ID credentials

Create SDDC

Step 1 - Link your AWS account with Cloud Formation Template

This step gives VMware permission to set up networking correctly for your SDDC on your AWS infrastructure using cross-account rules.

Step 2 - Setup your SDDC properties

Choose the AWS region you want to deploy to and give a name to your SDDC.
Choose the number of hosts in your Cluster. Today min number is 4 hosts. this will change in future releases.

Step 3 - VPC and Subnets

Select the VPC created earlier...
Select one Availability Zone 

Step 4 - Configure the management Network

IP range for the management Network can not be changed once the SDDC is deployed. Make sure you give a mask large enough to accommodate your needs.
SDDC deployment for 4 hosts takes about 2 hours. The complete SDDC stack is installed automatically including vSphere, NSX, vSAN and vCenter,
and after 2 hours . . . 

Configuring Basic FireWall rules

On a freshly deployed SDDC, there are no FW rules in place.
Select the Network Tab. Note the dotted lines to the Internet.
Let's create some basic rules to access the Management part: Allow HTTPS to vCenter.
vCenter is now connected to the Internet. Note the blue solid line.
Let's open the Compute part to the Internet as well. You may want to limit the port access but for this lab, I will open all ports.
The Source will be our DEFAULT Logical Network sddc-cgw-network-1 at 192.168.1.0/24
Our Compute part is now Internet connected.
At this point, we have a working environment.

Connect to vCenter

On SDDC screen Select "Connection Info"
Click on vCenter URL and use userID = cloudadmin@vmc.local, password can be seen by clicking on the little eye or copied to the clipboard.
And this is our VMware Cloud on AWS vCenter

Next Steps

The obvious next steps would be to configure the VPN to on-prem Data Center for the Management and Compute part. (probably another blog article)

At this stage we can start deploying VMs directly from our PC or eventually from an AWS S3 bucket as described in a previous blog article here.

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