vRealize Automation Reference Application


This is a sample project that demonstrates how to create a simple self-service portal for vRealize Automation using only RESTful APIs. You are encouraged to view the source code to see how the use cases are accomplished and to adapt this application for your own needs.

The reference application demonstrates all consumer-facing aspects of the vRealize Automation API, including:

  • Authentication
  • Viewing and requesting catalog items
  • Tracking request status
  • Viewing machine details and performing day 2 actions

Login PageCatalog Item ListRequest FormMachine Details

vRealize Automation Compatibility

This reference application works with vRealize Automation 7.0.1 or later.


Get the code from https://github.com/vmware/vra-ref-app. You can host this application on any HTTP server, such as Apache HTTP Server, Apache Tomcat, or Nginx.

For a lightweight deployment, you can use Node.js http-server to host this application (requires Node.js). See:

  1. Download and install node.js and npm from the Node.js website.
  2. From a terminal window or command prompt, install http-server globally (you might need to use $ sudo if you are using Linux or OSX) $ npm install http-server -g
  3. Change to the vRealize Automation Reference Application directory (for example: {download-location}/vra-ref-app-{version}/app).
  4. Issue the following command: $ http-server

You are now hosting your vRealize Automation Reference Application on port 8080 on your machine. You can use the -p option to change the default port.

Getting Started

Client side

You need to configure the application to point to your vRealize Automation instance in the conf/conf.js file.

For example, if your vRealize Automation server has the domain name vra.com, add the domain to the conf object as follows:

var conf = {
  vraDomain: 'vra.com'

Server side

SSL certificate

This application uses Ajax to send background HTTP requests to the vRealize Automation server. If you are using a self-signed certificate, instead of displaying an unsecure connection warning in the browser window with the option to accept the certificate, the application reports a network error in the console or browser network monitor.

To trust the certificate, browse to the vRealize Automation portal and accept the certificate using the browser or export the certificate and install it locally.


In order to support CORS (Cross Origin Resource Sharing), you need to add the Accept-Control-Allow-Origin header in the response from your vRealize Automation server. This is only required if the reference application is hosted on a different domain from the vRealize Automation server.

To accomplish this, we create a custom error response file and redirect preflight requests so that the server returns this error file. In the following example, the vRealize Automation domain name is vra.com, and the vRealize Automation Reference Application is hosted on http://vra-ra.com.

Create a custom error file
  1. Log in to the vRealize Automation server. $ ssh root@vra.com
  2. Change to the HAProxy configuration directory. $ cd /etc/haproxy/
  3. Create a custom 503 error file. In this example the error file is named preflight.http and it is created in a new directory called cors. You can use any name you like for the HTTP file and directory. $ mkdir cors && vi cors/preflight.http

The contents of the preflight.http file should be similar to the following:

HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Access-Control-Max-Age: 31536000
Content-Length: 0
Cache-Control: private

Replace THE_ORIGIN_YOU_WANT_TO_ALLOW with the URL of the reference application, for example, http://vra-ra.com.

NOTE: It is important to leave an empty line at the end of the file. It must be a real empty line (only a line break) with no characters including white space. The empty line signifies the the end of the response headers, otherwise the headers will be truncated.

Redirect preflight requests
  1. On the vRealize Automation server, edit the server configuration file. $ vi conf.d/20-vcac.cfg
  2. Make the following additions to the configuration file:
frontend https-in
    use_backend cors_preflight if METH_OPTIONS

backend cors_preflight
    errorfile 503 /etc/haproxy/cors/preflight.http

backend backend-vra
    rspadd Access-Control-Allow-Origin:THE_ORIGIN_YOU_WANT_TO_ALLOW

Replace THE_ORIGIN_YOU_WANT_TO_ALLOW with the URL of the reference application, for example, http://vra-ra.com.

Restart the proxy service
  1. On the vRealize Automation server, issue the following command: $ service haproxy restart



Copyright © 2016 VMware, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the “License”); you may not use this file except in compliance with the License. You may obtain a copy of the License at http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0. Some files may be comprised of various open source software components, each of which has its own license that is located in the source code of the respective component.

Sign in to be able to add comments.

Comments 4

ccarballeira 6 years ago
Hi Helen
I could download and deploy web application, connect it to my vRA (7.0.1) and use the application. All seems ok except i can't get the list of blueprints to request (i can see them if i use vRA portal).
Other functionallity works perfect (list of machines, request...)
Any idea?
Nice post, best regards
ccarballeira 6 years ago
Hi again Helen.
I was digging the code and i found, at /js/CatalogTable.js, where is my problem.
To build up the table with entitled bluerints there is a filter that uses blueprint label instead ID.
This.filters = [
"catalogItemType/name+eq+’Composite Blueprint’"
In my case i'm using a VM with spanish locale. This means that "Composite Blueprint" should be "Blueprint Compuesto". To avoid locale problems, i modified JS code to use ID instead name
This.filters = [
Now is locale independent and works for me.
Best regards
6373198732 5 years ago
Hi Helen
i downloaded and deployed the web app but can't mange to get past the login page.
i also don't get any error messages or any output for that matter but the loading wheel each time i try to log in with a user.
im using vra 7.1
any insight to what might cause my problem or how can i debug it?
thanks in advance!
1135190589 5 years ago
HI Helen,
Successfully deployed this app in my environment
Authentication and catalog items list and able to submit the request, but im unable to see Request list and machine details,
i was digging the code and unable to find out the solution for get request and machine details in app
so let me know the proper steps to followed to get details

Warm Regards,