Archive of 2019 What’s new

Contents

December 2019 What’s new

The December 2019 release includes:

General availability of Skytap in Microsoft Azure

Skytap announces another virtual first. For the first time in the history of the cloud, AIX, IBM i, and the power of Skytap VMware x86 virtualization are available in Microsoft Azure.

skytap regions

The addition of Skytap to Microsoft Azure unlocks Skytap’s IBM i and AIX capabilities, allowing you to define environments that can contain any combination of IBM i and AIX LPARs, side by side with Linux and Windows VMs.

Skytap on Microsoft Azure is now available for customer accounts in US-Virginia-M-1.

Simplified pricing model

We’ve simplified our pricing model. By default, all accounts consume resources on a pay-as-you-go basis. Customers with predictable recurring workloads can purchase reserved capacity.

We’ve also changed how usage is calculated. The new unit of billing is Metered RAM, which is based solely on the amount of RAM used by the VMs in your account.

Throughout the Skytap interface, some common terms have changed.

Old term New term
Bursting Pay-as-you-go
Subscription Reserved capacity
SVM Metered RAM

current usage

Notes

  • The amount of RAM (in GB) must be equal to or greater than the number of CPU cores.
  • The amount of RAM (in MB) is rounded up to the nearest multiple of 1024 MB.
  • At the time of the release, exported CSV reports may still display “subscription” instead of “Reserved” or “reserved capacity.”

To learn more about billing and usage, see How usage is calculated.

Course Manager schedules

Take the worry out of event resource management.

Course Manager schedules help you automatically manage your event resources. When you create an event, Course Manager automatically schedules the event environments to start before the event begins to help make sure your everything is ready to go when the event starts.

After your event is complete, the schedule cleans up those environments, freeing up account resources.

Single event schedule

For more information about Course Manager schedules work, see Using event scheduling with Course Manager.

October 2019 What’s new

Visibility of attached licenses

For environments and templates that have attached licenses (such as SPLA or IBM i), Skytap has added the Attached license display, as well as filters for the Environments and Templates pages.

SPLA VMs

For instructions about viewing and managing attached licenses, see Managing attached licensed titles FAQ.

Filtered Environment list

To filter the list of environments to display IBM i or SPLA-licensed VMs, see Filtering a list of environments.

To filter the list of templates to display IBM i or SPLA-licensed VMs, see Filtering a list of templates.

Additional features for IBM i in Skytap

We’ve added new capabilities for IBM i in Skytap.

IBM i System reference code display

When you start an IBM i VM in Skytap, the VM tile in the Environment Details page displays system reference codes (SRCs) for the VM.

IPL SRC

For more details, see Viewing system reference codes for an IBM i VM in Skytap.

IBM i Boot mode selector

Now you can choose alternate IPL sources and operating modes for IBM i VMs in Skytap to permit administrative tasks, such as applying fixes or installing programs.

Supported IPL types:

  • A Mode side – IPL source A
  • B Mode side – IPL source B
  • D Mode side – IPL source D

Supported operating modes:

  • manual mode (attended)
  • normal mode (unattended)

For information about selecting alternate IPL sources and operating modes, see Boot mode.

Added tags to Course Manager

You can use tags to help provide more detail for Course Manager reports and also help you organize and optimize search results for Course Manager resources.

You can apply tags to Users, Courses, Events, and On-demand labs.

For more details see Using tags with Course Manager.

Added reporting to Course Manager

Course Manager administrators can generate CSV Comma-Separated Values – A text file that uses the comma (,) character to delimit between values. CSV files can import directly into a worksheet application, such as Microsoft Excel. reports to see details about Course Manager usage.

For more details, see Course Manager Reporting.

Added password reset for Shared Drive

Administrators can now generate a new SFTP password for the shared drive with a single button click. For more details, see Managing account-wide settings.

September 2019 What’s new

The August 2019 release included the following:

Reporting details for enterprise subscription accounts

For enterprise subscription accounts, we’ve added a Pay-as-you-go graph that displays usage in excess of reserved capacity for the selected report type.

graph

Now enterprise subscription administrators can see at a glance which days the account exceeded limits, for both x86 and Power.

For more information, see Viewing usage data.

Routing between sibling networks in an environment

Skytap has added an option to enable hosts within an environment on different subnets to be able to communicate with each other when at least one is connected to a 0.0.0.0/0 route-based VPN.

For additional details, see Connecting an environment network to a VPN or Private Network Connection.

Password complexity settings

Administrators can configure password complexity requirements for all users in an account.

password complexity

For instructions about configuring password complexity requirements, see Password policy options.

IBM i Main Storage Dump

For in-depth troubleshooting of an IBM i VM, you can initiate a dump of main storage for the LPAR. For instructions, see Main Storage Dump.

July 2019 What’s new

The July 2019 release included the following:

General availability of IBM i in Skytap

Skytap announces the general availability of IBM i in the public cloud. For more details about our IBM i general availability announcement, featuring supported partners, and our focus on leading Power Systems to the cloud, see the IBM i General Availability announcement.

For the first time, you can upload your IBM i workloads to the cloud.

Skytap’s IBM i capability lets you define environments that can contain IBM i LPARs side by side with AIX, Linux, and Windows VMs.

IBM i is now available for customer accounts in the following regions:

  • US-West
  • US-Central
  • EMEA

For a detailed list of capabilities available in each region, see Skytap service limits.

To learn more about IBM i in Skytap, see the IBM i FAQ.

ibmi-vmtile

Storage units selector

Administrators can now set user and department storage unit limits in either GB or TB. For more details about setting user and department storage limits, see Setting usage limits.

storage units

June 2019 What’s new

The June 2019 release included the following:

Report delegation

If you’ve set up your Skytap account to use a lot of departments, keeping track of usage and auditing for each department can be an administrative challenge.

Administrators can now give non-administrator users the ability to generate reports. Now, administrators can let department heads generate reports for their own departments. For more details, see Enabling other users to generate reports.

department report

UEFI boot mode

We’ve added the ability for users to choose a firmware boot mode for x86 VMs. Now you can import UEFI VMs into Skytap, activate UEFI boot mode, and put the VM to work right away.

Available options are BIOS (default) or UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface). For more details, see Boot Mode.

Webhooks

The Skytap webhook service adds usage data to stream Skytap account usage data in real time to a URL that you choose. Because the data is streamed continuously, you don’t need to query Skytap for updated information.

usage webhook

You can use the webhook service to create custom applications and reports. For example, if your organization uses scripts or other automation to add and remove VMs to a DNS server or Active Directory Domain server, the auditing webhook} can provide environment data that the scripts can consume to automate these tasks.

See more about the Usage webhook and the Webhook API.

May 2019 What’s new

The May 2019 release included the following:

New Skytap region

We added the following new Skytap region:

  • APAC-2 (Singapore, SGP)

For more details, see Understanding regions.

New Skytap user interface design

We updated the visual design of the Skytap user interface to help provide clarity and focus to your content and workflows.

dashboard

Enabled Private Network Connections (PNC) for US-Central

We enabled Private Network Connections for the Skytap US-Central region. You can now establish a dedicated connection between your primary corporate data center and US-Central.

For more information, see Overview of Private Network Connections and VPNs.

Enabled expanded storage for Power VMs

We expanded storage for Power VMs to allow large storage expansion for VMs already in Skytap and for importing large Power VMs (LPARs) into Skytap.

For details about the expanded regions, see Skytap service limits.

April 2019 What’s new

The April 2019 release included the following:

Multi-select delete for Assets

We added the ability to select and delete multiple files from the Assets page. For more information, see Deleting files from the Assets page.

New Skytap public templates

We added the following templates to the Skytap Templates library:

Windows
  • Windows Server 2012 R2 Standard with SQL Server 2012 (Sysprepped)
  • Windows Server 2016 Standard with SQL Server 2016 (Sysprepped)
  • Windows Server 2019 Standard with SQL Server 2017 (Sysprepped)

March 2019 What’s new

New Skytap public templates

We added the following templates to the Skytap Templates library:

Windows
  • Windows 10 Enterprise, version 1809
  • Windows 10 Pro, version 1809
  • Windows 10 Home, version 1809
Linux
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 12 SP4 Firstboot
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 12 SP4 Firstboot

February 2019 What’s new

The February 2019 release included:

Webhooks

The Skytap webhook service streams Skytap account audit data in real time to a URL that you choose. Because the data is streamed continuously, you don’t need to query Skytap for updated information.

You can use the webhook} service to create custom applications and reports. For example, if your organization uses scripts or other automation to add and remove VMs to a DNS server or Active Directory Domain server, the auditing webhook} can provide environment data that the scripts can consume to automate these tasks.

See more about the webhook} service and the webhook} API.

New reporting page

Skytap has updated the Reporting page to provide a visual display of usage for your account.

reporting

Skytap administrators can now see current account usage or usage over time. Additionally, the new reporting page can be customized to display different report types, different platforms (if your account supports multiple platforms), and different usage types.

For more details, see Viewing usage data.

Advanced Import Appliance v1.0.0

The Skytap Advanced Import Appliance has been updated to version 1.0.0. In addition to a few minor UI updates, the new version fixes fixes an intermittent error, which caused some VMs to not import correctly.

When you update Advanced Import Appliance to v1.0.0, you must either delete any existing database (sqlite3) file in [PATH_TO_SUPPORT_DIR] or choose a different [PATH_TO_SUPPORT_DIR]. You will then have to reconfigure Advanced Import Appliance.

Terraform Provider

The Skytap Terraform provider helps you automatically provision and manage Skytap environments, templates, networks, and VMs.

For more details, see Using the Skytap Terraform provider.

Copy to region for Power VMs

Skytap has enabled copy to region for Power VMs. If you have Power VMs enabled in multiple regions, you can now copy Power VMs to other Power-enabled regions.

For more details, see Copying an environment to another region.

New Skytap public templates

We added the following templates to the Skytap Templates library:

Windows
  • Windows Server 2019
AIX
  • AIX 6.1 TL9 SP12

January 2019 What’s new

The January 2019 release included the following:

Terraform Provider

The Skytap Terraform provider helps you provision and manage Skytap environments, templates, networks, and VMs.

For more details, see Using the Skytap Terraform provider.

New Skytap public templates

Linux
  • AIX NIM Master with SPOTs
  • Zevenet CE 5.02 Load Balancer

IBM i Technology Preview Program

We’re still accepting nominations for the Skytap Technology Preview Program for IBM i. This is a first-to-market, public cloud capability, available exclusively from Skytap.

During the technology preview access period, Skytap works closely with organizations who are interested in moving their IBM i applications into the cloud. Program participants provide direct feedback to Skytap product managers, help shape the product, test features of Skytap, and ensure that their IBM i application runs successfully in Skytap.

The Technology Preview Program access period extends through January 2019.

Skytap provides:

  • A preview program buddy for each customer.
  • A weekly checkpoint call (30 min).
  • Technical support and a private Slack channel for communication.
  • Cloud resources and assistance with moving IBM i applications into Skytap.
  • A Skytap account for each participating company for the duration of the Technology Preview Program access period.

A participants provides:

  • One or more IBM i applications to be tested during the Technology Preview Program access period (must be IBM i 7.3).
  • One or two resources for approximately 5-8 hours per week.
  • An agreed-upon schedule to demonstrate shared progress through the Technology Preview Program.
  • Quotable text and willingness to act as a reference upon successful completion of the Technology Preview Program.

There is no cost for customers to participate in the Technology Preview Program but participants must agree to the program terms.

During the technology preview period, each customer Power VM can be configured to use a maximum of four (4) vCPUs.

Submit your nomination here.


For 2018 Skytap release notes, visit Archive of 2018 What’s new. For older release notes dating back to 2011, contact mailto:support@skytap.com.