48 hours with VMWare Photon, Powershell-core, PowerCLI-core

Early in my career, I had the privilege to work with .NET framework betas (2000) (has it really been 17 years?!)  I also have a distinct claim of running one of the first sites on the internet to run ASP.NET (PDC 2000).  As well as participating in the ASP.NET beta, I became familiar with .NET framework.  I had the pleasure to work through several Microsoft betas including .NET, ASP.NET and win2003, 2008, 2012 betas.   My career included a brief stint as an Exchange admin, this was the first major product using PowerShell as a user interface as well as automation leveraging PowerShell.

Before Powershell, VBScript or JavaScript were the scripting languages I used.  I started a job in 2008, PowerShell was the main scripting language we used for automation. It took a few months to get accustomed to PS.   Enough reminiscing….

Fast forward to 2015, I took a position being a VMware admin, it was a career change.  After several years of Microsoft betas, 14 years as a MS MVP (ASP.NET / IIS).  The only thing that resembled my previous job was PowerShell / PowerCLI  I was thankful for something that transferred from my previous role, this helped contribute when starting a new position.

In 2017, it’s been approximately three years since become a vmware admin,  VMware released Photon as a minimum Linux distro, mainly as a Docker host.  VMware is also using Photon as an OS for appliances such as vSphere (vCenter).  It boots fast!

I stumbled across a post with some instructions potentially running PowerShell-Core and PowerCLI-core on Photon.  The weather was miserable in MI, so what the heck, time to get my geek on.  I tried PowerCLI-core via a Docker Container as well as installing PowerShell-Core, PowerCLI-core on a Photon host.  I’ve included links below, I used for reference.

I’ve concluded the enhancements are awesome, it’s great for geeking around, For now, I’ll continue using a Windows OS with PowerShell for a PowerShell host and vRealize Automation.  It was awesome to learn, for specific VMware PowerCLI usage,   I can use a Photon Host and either an installation of PowerShell-core, PowerCLI-core or a Docker container.

To get the docker container,  check out the Docs site for PowerCLI core

  • SSH to the Photon instance
  • Run systemctl start docker
  • Run systemctl enable docker
  • docker pull vmware/powerclicore
  • docker run –rm -it vmware/powerclicore

Links to get started with.

I’m impressed to see how far Microsoft has come with opening their systems.  In the early days Scott Guthrie paved the way for a more open Microsoft.  That has accelerated 100 fold and with Jeffrey Snover as Godfather of PowerShell.  Alan Renouf from VMware has championed PowerCLI.

I appreciate all efforts and enjoy the merging of technologies.  End of the day, I can see open source continuing to push forward.  I’ll circle back in a few months and see how things are going with these technologies.

My one takeaway will be to deploy the Docker Container and use on-demand via a vRealize Automation Catalog item.

Here are screenshots

This shows Photon and Powershell installed

capture

This shows PowerShell modules loaded,

The load the VMware modules.

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48 hours concluded!  Time well spent, hope this inspires you to at least try it!

PS – you may wonder why I want MS technologies on a Linux OS, because it’s cool!

Steve Schofield
vExpert 2017

http://vsteve.me