vCenter Storage Administrator permissons


In order to use various 3rd party vendor storage plug-ins, I need to gain an understanding of the "Storage Administrator" privileges under Roles. This primarily centers around assigned rights not following the standard. I am on ESXi and vCenter 5.5 Update 2. Storage plug-ins include Dell, Netapp, and Compellent.

1. Is it true that this permission can only be assigned to users, in order to be effective?

2. Rights assigned at a higher level are trumping rights assigned at a lower level. (Read-Write below is losing to Read-Only above)

I did not find any documentation from VMware on the privilege.
The storage vendors had some information, but not enough.

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Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
You do not have to assign any storage rights to your Storage Admin team, they can prepare the storage for Dell, NetApp and Compellant without using any of these tools....

These tools are usually used as a half-way house so VMware Admins do not need to get their hands dirty using the NetApp, Dell or Compellant tools. (e.g. direct connection to the SANs).

the biggest issue with ALL these plugins, is they assume they are being run by VMware Administrators, and are awful, trying to work out, what actually permissions they need to run in isolation.

So, who needs access to the plugins?

e.g. who has asked, because they should be able to do everything via, their SAN tools....

and let you get on and manage the VMware environment...where there is more of a cross over from VMware Admin to Storage Admin, than the other way....

and I know for a fact, that Dell and NetApp especially, will not even entertain, running the plugins as non-VMware Admins, with restrictive permissions.

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VireneAuthor Commented:
Hi Andrew, and thanks for the quick response.

Access to the plug-ins would be any ESXi admin who needs to see the underlying storage.

I am leaning towards just using the plug-ins for read-only access - easy to get to without having to open the native tools. I agree that the native storage tools are best suited for performing write operations.

Using Read-only solves most of this. I am curious about (per Dell) the storage administrator rights can only be assigned to users.
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
Are these Web Plugins or vSphere Client Plugins ?

When using Dell Plugins, you need to enter the username and password of an account which is defined in the Storage.

They do not use the username and password of the logged on vCenter User, in fact all these plugins are, fancy http:// and JAVA functions to the existing SAN.

So you can grant or deny access to them, via vCenter, but the actually plugin operates in a vCenter http frame, with it's own access. (nothing to do with vCenter)
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VireneAuthor Commented:
The Dell is a vCenter client plug-in, and I see where it operates just as you say - you can see the redirect. I will be installing the Netapp and Compellent later, so have not seen them in action, but again, what you say makes sense.

I think I'm good, so thank you, and I'll mark your answer as the soluton
Andrew Hancock (VMware vExpert / EE MVE^2)VMware and Virtualization ConsultantCommented:
NetApp integration is much better...(if it works! let me see it took NetApp Support, 7 months to get it working for our clients!)
VireneAuthor Commented:
At least I have a target to beat :)
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