I recently worked with a client who was had to bring their own Windows OS image from VMWare onto PureApplication System. They exported the OS image as an .ova file from VMWare, but could not get it to work. There is some confusion in terms of the process that should be used, so I put together the different options to import an .ova file into PureApplication below. The key message here is that from PureApplication 126.96.36.199 onwards, option (3) is the only supported and recommended approach today.
- Export .ova from VMWare and import as virtual image
Even though you can import the actual .ova as a new virtual image, the imported virtual image will not have the IBM Activation Engine installed. As a result, you will not be able to use this virtual image for your pattern deployments.
- Use IBM Image Construction and Composition Toolkit (ICCT) to import .ova from VMWare
ICCT has been around for many years and can directly import a virtual machine as a virtual image and install this in PureApplication. However the use of the IBM OS Toolkit has been the preferred mechanism for some time now. From PureApplication 188.8.131.52 onwards, ICCT is no longer supported.
- Export .ova from VMWare, import as Virtual Appliance and use IBM OS Toolkit to create virtual image
This is the recommended and supported approach. The use of the IBM OS Toolkit is required in order for the IBM Activation Engine to be installed in the image. It will also help ensure that the OS meets the requirements for the IBM Activation Engine. You can find more details about the IBM OS Toolkit in the Knowledge Centre for for Linux and Windows. The diagram below illustrates the process.
Finally a word of warning. You should always download the IBM OS Pattern Kit from the links in the PureApplication console, as shown below. An old version of the IBM OS Pattern Kit is also available here on ibm.com, but you should avoid using that. However you will need the metadata OVA file file from that link!