Automate Visio Diagrams from vCenter!

I had to share this awesome script I found on GitHub about vcenter visio.

All credit goes to:

File Name	: vDiagram_2.0.8.ps1
Author		: Tony Gonzalez
Author		: Jason Hopkins
Based on	: vDiagram by Alan Renouf
Version		: 2.0.8

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vDiagram 2.0: A Comprehensive Procedure

Introduction

vDiagram 2.0 is a GitHub repository that provides a PowerShell script designed to capture and visualize a VMware infrastructure in Microsoft Visio (vcenter visio). The project is an extension of Alan Renouf’s original vDiagram and is currently maintained by Tony Gonzalez and Jason Hopkins. The script is particularly useful for administrators who need to document their VMware setups in a visual format.

Pre-requisites

  1. PowerShell: Download and install the Windows Management Framework 5.1 from here.
  2. PowerCLI Modules: Open PowerShell and run the command Install-Module -Name VMware.PowerCLI –Scope CurrentUser.
  3. Microsoft Visio: Ensure that Microsoft Visio is installed on your system.

How to Run the Script

  1. Launch PowerShell: Click on the start button in Windows, type PowerShell, and select “Run as administrator” from the search results.
  2. Navigate to Script Directory: Use the cd command to navigate to the directory where you’ve unzipped the vDiagram files. For example, cd c:\Users\<your user name>\Downloads\vDiagram_2.0.X.
  3. Execute the Script: Type the name of the PowerShell script, such as vDiagram_2.0.X.ps1, and press Enter.
  4. Follow Usage Notes: Adhere to the directions listed in the “Usage Notes” section below.

Usage Notes

  • Unblock File: Ensure to unblock the downloaded file before unzipping it.
  • Run as Administrator: Execute the script with administrative privileges.
  • Required Files: Make sure you have PowerCLI or PowerShell 5.0 with PowerCLI Modules installed, an active connection to vCenter, and MS Visio installed.
Tabs in the Script
  1. Prerequisites Tab: Verify that all prerequisites are met.
  2. vCenter Info Tab: Enter the name of your vCenter and login credentials.
  3. Capture CSVs for Visio Tab: Select the items you wish to capture data on and specify the output folder.
  4. Draw Visio Tab: Validate the presence of required files, select the drawing you’d like to produce, and specify the output folder.

Execution Steps

  1. Connect to vCenter: Click on the “Connect to vCenter” button after entering your vCenter information.
  2. Collect CSV Data: Click on this button to start capturing data.
  3. Draw Visio: Click on this button to start drawing the Visio diagram.
  4. Open Visio Drawing: Click on this button once the drawing is complete to open the Visio file.

Change Log

The script has undergone several updates, including the addition of new features and bug fixes. The most recent update, v2.0.12, added the option to choose between vDiagram Visio Shapes and VMware Validated Design Shapes.

vDiagram 2.0 offers a robust solution for capturing and visualizing VMware infrastructures. By following this detailed procedure, you can efficiently utilize this tool to create comprehensive Visio diagrams of your VMware setup.

Alternatives to vDiagram 2.0 for VMware Infrastructure Visualization

RVTools

RVTools is a Windows .NET 4.6.1 application that uses the VI SDK to display information about your virtual environments. It provides a tabular view of various components of your VMware infrastructure, such as vCPU, memory, data stores, and more. While it doesn’t offer Visio integration, it does allow for exporting data to Excel, CSV, and HTML formats.

Lucidchart

Lucidchart is an online diagramming tool that offers various templates for network diagrams, including those for VMware infrastructures. It provides real-time collaboration but lacks the automated data collection feature that vDiagram offers. You would need to manually input or import your VMware data.

NetZoom

NetZoom focuses on data center design and documentation and offers Visio stencils for various hardware components from multiple vendors, including VMware. It’s more comprehensive but also more complex compared to vDiagram. It’s suitable for larger enterprises that require detailed data center documentation.

SolarWinds Virtualization Manager

This tool provides comprehensive visualization and analytics for VMware as well as Hyper-V environments. It offers various views, including a “Sprawl” view to identify wasted resources. While it doesn’t export to Visio, it does offer robust reporting features.

Veeam ONE

Veeam ONE provides deep, intelligent monitoring and reporting for vSphere and Hyper-V environments. It offers customizable dashboards, but like SolarWinds, it doesn’t have Visio export capabilities. It’s more focused on real-time monitoring and analytics rather than documentation.

Conclusion

While vDiagram 2.0 offers the unique advantage of automated Visio diagram creation based on real-time VMware infrastructure data, there are several other tools in the market that offer different strengths. Your choice would depend on your specific needs—whether it’s real-time monitoring, detailed analytics, or collaborative diagramming.

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Richard.Bailey

Richard Bailey, a seasoned tech enthusiast, combines a passion for innovation with a knack for simplifying complex concepts. With over a decade in the industry, he's pioneered transformative solutions, blending creativity with technical prowess. An avid writer, Richard's articles resonate with readers, offering insightful perspectives that bridge the gap between technology and everyday life. His commitment to excellence and tireless pursuit of knowledge continues to inspire and shape the tech landscape.

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