vCloud Air: External Catalog Publishing

I am running my lab on top of vCloud Air and I have 2 organizations created in vCloud Air, one in Australia and one in US. I have all lab components running in Australia location and was setting another environment in US which will be exact replica of Australia.

I have my vApp templates and ISO media files uploaded in catalog at Australia location, and in order to setup everything from scratch, I needed to upload everything again in US location.

I was looking for a solution where I can share resources from one location to another in vCloud Air and then came across a cool concept of “External Catalog Publishing”. This feature was introduced in vCloud Director 5.5

Let’s see how to share contents from one Datacenter to another within vCloud Air.

The very first requirement for this is that your Org should be enabled for either Publish or Subscribe to a catalog. You need this to be enabled on both org (source and destination datacenter)

To do so, login to vCloud Director and select your organization and right click on it to open the properties of the organization.


Select the “Allow sharing catalogs” and “Allow publishing external catalogs” option and hit OK.


Navigate to your catalogs and select the catalog which you want to share to destination location. Right click on your catalog and select Publish/Subscribe Settings.


Go to External Publishing tab and select “Enable Publishing”. Optionally supply a password for sharing. You  need to enter this password when you will be subscribing to this catalog at the destination org. Hit OK to finish the task.


Once again open the properties of catalog and navigate to External Publishing tab. You will see a URL generated there. Copy this URL by clicking on Copy Link. You need to supply this URL at the destination while creating a new catalog.


on your destination datacenter, create a new catalog in your org. Go to Catalogs tab and click on green ‘+‘ button to add a new catalog.


Provide a name for the catalog and select Subscribe to external catalog and paste the link of the URL which you copied in above steps. Also supply the password which you entered while allowing Publish Catalog at your source datacenter.

If you want all vApp templates/Iso files should be downloaded from source catalog to destination catalog, check mark the “Automatically download content” box. Hit next for remaining steps of creating catalogs.


Now select your catalog and click on vApp Templates. You will see all your templates getting synched at your destination datacenter.


If you have any iso files at your source catalog, those will be synch’ed too


The only gotcha in above method is size of transfer area on vCloud’s Cells.

During the synchronization, the templates are first exported to vCloud’s Cell transfer area then copied to the datastore of the destination. Your transfer area should be big enough to accommodate all your vApp templates/ISO files.

In my case I had plenty of space available in transfer area on my vcloud cell:

[root@vcd-a transfer]# df -h
Filesystem Size Used Avail Use% Mounted on
12G 6.5G 4.5G 60% /
tmpfs 7.8G 0 7.8G 0% /dev/shm
/dev/sda1 485M 32M 428M 7% /boot
vcd-nfs:/share/my-share 493G 8.8G 459G 2% /opt/vmware/vcloud-director/data/transfer

I hope you enjoyed reading this post. Feel free to share this on social media if it is worth sharing. Be sociable:)


About Alex Hunt

Hi All I am Manish Kumar Jha aka Alex Hunt. I am currently working in VMware Software India Pvt Ltd as Operations System Engineer (vCloud Air Operations). I have around 5 Years of IT experience and have exposure on VMware vSphere, vCloud Director, RHEL and modern data center technologies like Cisco UCS and Cisco Nexus 1000v and NSX. If you find any post informational to you please press like and share it across social media and leave your comments if you want to discuss further on any post. Disclaimer: All the information on this website is published in good faith and for general information purpose only. I don’t make any warranties about the completeness, reliability and accuracy of this information. Any action you take upon the information you find on this blog is strictly at your own risk. The Views and opinions published on this blog are my own and not the opinions of my employer or any of the vendors of the product discussed.
This entry was posted in vCloud Air, Vmware. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to vCloud Air: External Catalog Publishing

  1. Tomas Fojta says:

    Normal vCloud Air user does not have vCloud Director system administrator access and cannot enable catalog publishing.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s