One of the most interesting new features in System Center Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) 2012 is the ability to create a private cloud.  

From Creating a Private Cloud Overview in the TechNet Library:

“A private cloud is a cloud that is provisioned and managed on-premise by an organization. The private cloud is deployed using an organization`s own hardware to leverage the advantages of the private cloud model. Through System Center Virtual Machine Manager 2012, an organization can manage the private cloud definition, access to the private cloud, and the underlying physical resources”.

The important thing here, is the ‘underlying physical resources’  thing. This needs to be available and proper configured, and it`s located in the Fabric.

  • Configuring host groups
  • Configuring the library
  • Configuring networking
  • Configuring storage

The host groups:

You can segment your hosts in logical groups. For example by clusters, locations, priority, and others. It`s the host groups that is available during the creation of a private cloud in VMM.

The library:

The library is important, and a well configured library can save you a lot of time and work.
Here is the place to configure services templates, applications templates, VM templates, Guest/Host/HW profiles, and also SQL profiles.
You will be able to assign your private cloud with library resources during the creation.

The networking:

Create logical networks/subnets/VLANs, IP-pools, MAC-pools, and make them available to your private cloud.
You can also create load balancers and VIP templates.
In VMM 2012, you can add supported hardware load balancers to the VMM console (and create associated virtual IP templates).
A virtual IP template contains load balancer-related configuration settings for a specific type of network traffic. For example, you could create a template that specifies the load balancing behavior for HTTPS traffic on a specific load balancer manufacturer and model. These templates represent the best practices from a load balancer configuration standpoint.

For more information, see Configuring Networking Overview (for VMM 2012) in the TechNet Library.

The storage
VMM 2012 provides deep storage integration. For further detailed information, check out Hans Vredevoort`s post here: and Configuring Storage Overview in the TechNet Library. 
After you have configured the underlying physical resources, you can start to create a private cloud.
In VMM 2012 console, navigate to ‘VMs and Services’
Make sure the ‘Home’ tab is selected, and click ‘Create Cloud’.

Type the name of the private cloud as well as the description.
 Assign host groups that should be available for this private cloud. The host groups is created and sorted in the Fabric.
 Assign logical networks that you have created in the Fabric. These networks will be available for this private cloud.
If you are lucky to have a HW load balancer, and have configured it in the Fabric, you assign them in this process.
 VIP profiles. Also created in the Fabric.
 Storage defined in the Fabric will be available for the cloud in this step. (Again, check Hans post)
 Assign the cloud with library resources, that it can use to deploy services, VMs, and so on.
Define the cloud-magic. Configure elasticity.
(You can change the capacity any time you`d like, by navigating to the properties for your private clouds)
Select the Hypervisors that define this private cloud.
ESX, Xen, and Hyper-V


You have now created your private cloud.

 After this, you will be able to deploy VMs, services, and much more to your private cloud.
If you already have VMs that are running on a host group, you need to power off the VM before you can assign them to a private cloud.

This article was written by Kristian Nese ( )