In this guide we will show you how to implement custom naming using a single user driven custom property on your blueprint.



  • Have the SovLabs modules licensed and installed



Configuring a numbering sequence

  1. From your vRA catalog, search for naming (1), and click on request (2) under Add Naming Sequence – SovLabs Modules
  2. Provide a label for your Sequence (1) and select the sequence type (2). 

    Sequence type example: Can be set to any of the selected, it will come down to what your organisation uses as their standard.  Most organisations stick to a decimal sequence ie 01, 001.

  3. Decide if you want to reuse numbers (1), Place a max sequence length (2), select the initial value to use (3) and the padding of your values to use (4)

    Reuse sequence values example:  If you have 5 servers built and they are sequences 01 → 05, and, you destroy server number 03.  The next server you build that matches this server name will be built as 03 and not 06.  So it helps reduce the white space / gaps in the sequence. If not selected, it will build server 06 as the next server.

    Max Sequence Length example:  You can set this to 1 → 99.  What that means is that it will generate a sequence of length of the number you select.. If you select 1.  You can build server 1 → 9.  If you select 2, you can build server 1 → 99 and so forth.

    Initial Value example: This is the first value set for building.  You could set this to what ever number you like depending on your sequence length.  Logically you would start with 1. 

    Sequence Padding example: This is a dummy value to put in front of the sequence number if the length of your sequence is not met.  If you select your Max Sequence Length to 2, and you deployed your first server and you set the padding as a 0 (zero), it would put your sequence as 01, the next would be 02 and so forth until it reached 10, then, the server number would be 10, then 11 and so on.

  4. Enter a Unique key


    Unique Key example: A unique key is a value you want to track against the number sequence.  This is particularly handy if you are wanting to build multiple environments from the same blueprint, or, building multiple operating systems from the same blueprint or any other ways you wish to keep separate your numbering sequence. What would happen is if you had the letter P for production as part of your server name and it was its own selectable field in your blueprint, and you wanted to make sure that all production servers had their own sequence that was different to Test servers and Dev Servers, you would put the name of the field as the unique key.  You could have multiple fields that make up the unique key if you wanted to.  In this how to guide, we will keep it simple and use the complete server name.

  5. Click on submit



Creating a naming standard

  1. From your vRA catalog, search for naming (1), and click on request (2) under Add Naming Standard – SovLabs Modules
  2. Provide a label for your naming standard
  3. Place a check next to the naming sequence your naming standard will utilize.  You should see the one you created just before
  4. In the Template section, enter the template properties for the name you want to use.  


    The layout you will use will depend on the sequence of your name.  You could have multiple different values that make up the name of your server such as location, environment and type and the naming sequence (Number sequence) could be anywhere in that name.  What this field requires is the name of those values you would have on your blueprint.  For my example I will append the numbering sequence at the end, so you must enter with the squiggly brackets {{sequence.<YOURNAMINGSEQUENCE>}} at the end (the word “sequence” is case sensitive).  I will put {{servername}}{{sequence.Beginner_Naming_Sequence}}.  So i will have the servers name followed by a number.  Please be mindful, if you put a space anywhere outside of the squiggly brackets, it will translate this to a literal space.  You can also put other letters in the name and this will be static.  if you had prod-{{servername}}{{sequence.Beginner_Naming_Sequence}}.  All the servers using this naming standard will have prod- in front of the name.

  5. Click on Submit

Adding the naming standard to your blueprint

  1. Open your blueprint and click on Properties (1), Property Groups (2) and click on Add (3)
  2. Locate the naming standard you created.  It will begin with SovLabs-NamingStandard-<tenantName>_<Naming Standard Name> (1). Place a check next to this and click OK (2)
  3. Under properties (1), click on Custom Properties (2) and then click New (3)
  4. In the Name field, type in the value you set in both the naming sequence and naming standard. 


    Name example:  In my example I set the server name as “servername”.  This is case insensitive so I typed it in the Name field.  This will be what is passed into the servers name

  5. Place a check in Show in Request


    This will show the field in your blueprint so you can type in a value

  6. Click on OK
  7. Click on Finish

Deploying your blueprint

  1. I will deploy 3 servers so we can see how the naming sequence works, this will deploy 3 servers with the same name, however, the naming sequence will take care of making sure that they are all unique.
  2. You can see on your blueprint the custom property we created for ServerName
  3. You can also check vRO workflow SovLabs → Naming → Custom Naming machineBuilding. You will notice 3 machines with the same name but with different numbers on the end.  This reflects the examples of {{servername}}{{sequence.Beginner_Naming_Sequence}}. Also you can see the leading 0 before the 1, which means the padding number is being inserted since we have not reached a double digit number.


Additional information

SovLabs Custom Naming  : http://docs.sovlabs.com/latest/vRA/7.6/modules/platform-extensions/custom-naming/

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