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VMware's vCenter Log Insight -- to be renamed vRealize Log Insight before the end of 2014 -- is one of the few tools the company offers as a standalone product. Currently, it's also available as part of the vRealize Operations Insight bundle with vCenter Operations Manager (vCOPs) -- which is also to be renamed to vRealize Operations Manager before the end of 2014.
With all these name changes and also its relative newness -- Log Insight came from the 2012 acquisition of Pattern Insight -- to the VMware portfolio and its update to version 2.0, there is some confusion about its purpose, particularly because some of its troubleshooting functionality appears to overlap with vCOPs.
Log Insight brings in log information -- from the vSphere infrastructure as well as Hyper-V VMs, Windows servers and AWS -- for troubleshooting purposes and for an administrator that wants to set up specific queries to pin in a dashboard -- or to create an email alert -- to head off issues before they flare up.
Michael Eisenberg, senior system engineer at VMware, said vCOPs and Log Insight are "two sides of the same coin" during his session at the Boston VMUG user conference on October 9.
"I've got all this metric data and I've got all this log data. Any one of them can point me to the problem. … The metric data [from vCOPs] will carry me to a point, and then I need to look inside to see what's happening. And that's where the log data [parsed by Log Insight] comes in," Eisenberg said.
He later elaborated on how the tandem of vCOPs and Log Insight helps to sift through the mass of information from all areas of the data center, including firewalls, networking and storage, to pinpoint the root of a problem.
"VCOPs leads you to the place to look. Log Insight gives you that last  yards to be able to say, 'Hey, there it is' … to use a football metaphor," said Eisenberg.
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