Part 1 of 2 of the Implementing Cisco UCS series focuses on installation and initial configuration of Cisco UCS infrastructure. This course is designed for virtualization or datacenter administrators looking to implement, support, or manage Cisco UCS infrastructure for themselves or their clients. This course offers an in depth look at UCS Architecture and Components, UCS Installation, Configuring Connectivity, Routine and Advanced Management, and more. To get the most from this course, you should have experience with server and network administration, and VMware vSphere.
Getting Started Welcome to TrainSignal and welcome to the Implementing Cisco Unified Computing System course. My name is Jason Nash and I'll be your instructor throughout this course so I want to tell you a little bit about myself before we get started and then we'll talk about what we're really going to cover throughout the different lessons that we're going to do. So first, again, Jason Nash. To give you a little bit of information, I've got about 18 years experience in the IT field, which makes me a little bit sad, but it's been a good 18 years. My experience has kind of varies, you know, I started out as a young guy doing consulting, moved into some larger organizations and then as a network manager for a midsize company, kind of managed the data center environment, after that I was a platform architect for a large investment and financial institution, and now I work for a smaller company where I'm much happier to be quite honest and the I'm the data center solutions principal for Varrow and what we do is we are a southeastern based consulting company focused on Cisco VMware and EMC. I handle our data center product and solution sets around Cisco's data center practice, USC, Nexus, Catalyst, those sorts of things, and VMware, vSphere, vCenter operations, site recovery manager, all this sort of ancillary product. So I've got a good idea, you know, of how these things fit together and really that's my passion. I'm an infrastructure guy. I've done infrastructure for a long time. And I love UCS, I mean it's one of the products that I'm most excited about. My sales guys always talk about, when you get Jason in front of a customer and they start asking questions about UCS you can just see that passion come out and that's why I wanted to do this course. I'm really excited to do it. Some other information about me, you know, a little bit of education, I've got a bachelor's degree in networking technology, I've got a master's degree in information security. Certifications, like anybody that's been in the business almost 20 years I've gathered a number over the years, the ones I'm most proud of, VMware and VCDX #49, which to me is a huge accomplishment. I'm also a V expert nominated by VMware the last 2 years and you'll see that I'm a big VMware guy, obviously, but you'll hear more about that in the course and I speak at VMworld, I've spoken the last two VMworlds around distributed switching or virtual switching and Cisco's Nexus 1000V product, so that's kind of what I really, really like to do. Other certifications, Cisco CCMP for a number of years and for some of my information security background and love of that I've had a CISSP for a long time now, along with the other MCSE and stuff that people just get as they go through things. So, you know, other things that I've done, again I speak at VMworld, I speak at a lot of user's groups, so I speak at VMUGS, VMware user groups, EMC user groups, now we're starting to see Cisco UCS user groups, which we started one here in the Carolinas, actually we're starting to see one I believe in Atlanta and several more throughout the country, which I think are really neat, it's an offshoot of the Cisco user's group more focused on UCS, I've done that. Other things are I've written a number of books over the years, it's been awhile since I've done books, I kind of got that out of my system years ago, but I started off doing networking books for the MCSE track, I've done Linux books, Windows server books, things like that. Just kind of focused in that area. So with that, I think we're kind of ready to go start and let's talk a little bit about what you're going to see in this course. For this course, you need to know a few things. So we're not just going to talk servers. We're going to talk a lot about servers and UCS and all that, but it's not completely that. So my recommendation is to have at least a general or base knowledge of networking, thinks like VLANs, know what a VLAN is, know what a port channel is, understand IP addressing, understand the difference between layer 2 and layer 3. That's the extent you'll need to understand the networking piece. Storage is a little different. So you might be someone who's implementing UCS in your environment and you guys are VMware and you use NFS or iSCSI and you may not need a lot of storage knowledge because all that's handled on the network side, but if you're a Fibre Channel user or you plan to sit the exam, you're going to need a bit of storage knowledge, so that's one that kind of gets some people sometimes, you don't have to have a lot. I recommend that you understand the different Cisco switches, which we'll talk about in the lesson anyway, but along that, things like VSANs or virtual storage area networks, understand what an HBA card is, understand what a target, understand what an initiator is, and a lot of this I actually do a primer on Fibre Channel, but it's better to have a little more knowledge, that way it comes as kind of easier for you, but those things are important. And again, if you're going to sit the exam I recommend some VMware knowledge, so right now for that exam you have to be VMware certified to obtain the certification and therefore you're going to need some knowledge there. If you don't plan to do the certification, but you're still a VMware user it's good to have knowledge in that because I'm going to tell you about how we integrate UCS with VMware and vCenter. So with those just basic understandings and the rest should be easy for anyone deploying servers as far as operating systems or drivers or what a network card is or an HBA, that stuff you probably already know. It's only the other little things that you might want to brush up if you're not really familiar with. So in this course we're going to walk you through a complete end to end what it takes to implement, manage, and support a UCS environment. We start with the basics. First we're going to talk about Cisco's data center strategy and the reason I want you to understand that, along with it's probably going to be asked on an exam if you plan to take it is I want you to know the other components that make up a data center that UCS talks to. So it's not just this myopic view of the servers, we've got to talk about connectivities and storage and networking and automation and provisioning. Now we're not going to get real detailed on that, but you need to understand the building blocks and the phases that Cisco kind of envisions for data center. Then we move on into components and we'll talk about UCS as a whole and we'll talk about architecture and I'll answer a lot of questions that I get from customers and users and people just kind of kicking the tires on UCS. Then we dig into component, component by component, top down, what they're for, where they fit, how they function, what do they connect to, and what my options are, you know, blades and interconnects and things like that, there's more than one model, so we talk about all that. And then at the end of that, we do a nice kind of lesson in my lab. So one of my labs we'll be in we'll be going through physically hands on, showing you those components, your options and connectivity so that if you're not able to do that yet or you're still looking at UCS and your gear hasn't arrived, you're not just going to look at pretty pictures and kind of think, I know where things are, I want to show you on real equipment. So from there we just move into configuration. We do an overview of the UCS management environment with the GUI as well as the command line interface and then it's just configuration topics, network connectivity, storage connectivity, basic connectivity or basic configuration on day 1 install that you'll probably do one time and not come back to, but important things that set the groundwork for everything else. And then we get into access control and service profiles, which really give you that stateless nature of UCS, being able to move a server from one blade and one chassis to another blade and another chassis with a simple reboot and you just magically move that server over there, so we talk about that. We talk about how we use pools and logical resources and policies and how we can dictate all this as standards so that your servers are all the same, you know they're the same, they're built the same, they're configured the same, and everything comes together. We'll talk a bit about integrating them with VMware, that's a big thing with Cisco's virtualized data center and, again, if you're going to take the exam for the certification, you're going to need to apply some VMware knowledge, so we'll talk about integrations, what Cisco is doing with what they call their VM-FEX technologies, which is really cool stuff and how that works. And then basic things like troubleshooting, day to day management, and anything else that you need to know to implement and support UCS. So I'm really excited about this course. I love this technology and I love this product and hopefully at the end of this you'll see it the way that I see it. So with that let's get started.