A vApp template is a preconfigured container for single or multiple virtual machines. These containers have the necessary base disks and configuration data for virtual servers to allow rapid deployment of either single servers or clusters, for example an Active Directory server and a Remote Desktop server in one vApp deployment.
Each Cloud IaaS service is provided with a managed template catalogue, featuring commonly used operating systems. A copy of this library is stored in each availability zone to speed up provisioning. When selecting a template to deploy, we strongly recommend choosing the template that corresponds to your existing AZ - these can be filtered by entering the shortcode for your AZ in the search field (BNE/ADL/PER).
In addition to the managed library, you also have a private catalogue, which you can add templates to. For example, you may wish to setup a vApp for a web application, which includes a web server and an application server. Once this has been done, you can clone this vApp into a template, which will allow you to rapidly deploy additional nodes if the web application traffic increases.
Creating your Catalogue
From the menu on the left, select Catalogs, then click 'New Catalog'. Provide a name for your catalogue, a brief description (if desired), then select the AZ and datastore for the catalog to reside on. It's important to note that catalogs will count towards your data store quotas, and are charged at your standard rate for disk space in the tier you select.
Adding External Resources
Catalogues allow you to upload OVA files from external sources, either your local machine or from a URL. This can be used to import an existing customer's server, or to upload/retrieve a prebuilt system from a software provider, for example.
You can also use your catalogue to upload ISO images, for example the CD image of a bespoke software package that your customer utilises.
To upload your external resources, navigate to Catalogs and select the catalogue you created previously. Choose the type of data you wish to manage, either vApp Templates for OVAs, or Media for ISO templates, then select Upload. Select the Choose File button to pick the file from your local machine, or (for Templates only) enter File URL of an available published vApp. This process can take some time as, once the upload is complete, the media or template will be copied to your data store, where it will be accessible.
Converting an Existing vApp
You can also convert an existing deployed vApp into a template for rapid redeployment at a later date.
To do so, ensure you've created your catalogue as above, then navigate to vApps, select the Gear icon for the vApp you wish to clone, and select 'Add to Catalog'. Choose the catalog you wish to add it to from the dropdown, select Overwrite if you're updating an existing template, then provide a label and description for your template.
Once done, click Add vApp to Catalog. This will take some time as the existing vApp is cloned and setup into a template.
Deploying From a Catalogue
Your uploaded or converted catalogue items will show under the Templates section in the deploy new vApp wizard. For more information on this, see this article