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2011

From the editors Virtual Desk

 

Hi everyone, well the bloggers have certainly kept me busy again this week. I am amazed at the amount of information that is available on a weekly basis around VMware and it’s related technologies. I am sure that I also miss out on a lot as well with all of the new technologies that we have purchased and in particular I will start to add more information on solutions from SpringSource and others that have probably not got as much airtime in my newsletter as they should have.

 

For those that haven’t yet tried it out I have been using the new VMware View client on my iPad for the past week with excellent success even over fairly low bandwidth and latency 3g connectivity which has helped me be a lot more productive wherever I am.

 

This week there is also a link to another VMware Lab’s download which is a preconfigured ThinApp package for the vSphere Client which many of you will find very useful with the ability to carry around a portable version of this.

 

If like me you are a iPad fan then I suggest you head over to the iTunes store and pick up the just released FREE vSphere Client for iPad - http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/vmware-vsphere-client-for/id417323354?mt=8.

Take care until next time

 

Neil Isserow (Newsletter Editor), Paul James

Queensland TAM Team

 

Featured Product

VMWARE SERVICE MANAGER 9 (VSM)

http://www.infra-corp.com/

 

VMware Service Manager develops a 100% web architected solution that automates IT Service Management processes in enterprise organizations.VMware Service Manager is independently verified to the highest level of ITIL compatibility for Incident Management, Problem Management, Change Management, Release Management, Configuration Management, Service Level Management and Availability Management.

With a proven track record of implementation success in global enterprises across an international client base, VMware Service Manager delivers the best upfront and ongoing value for comparative depth of functionality in the enterprise IT Service Management market.

 

THE VMWARE SERVICE MANAGER ADVANTAGE

Reducing the cost of physical infrastructure, improved operational efficiency and customer responsiveness are all benefits that come with properly managed virtualization adoption. However, the rapid adoption of virtualization has also seen the emergence of new management challenges as organisations struggle to control the complexity and abstraction that virtualization technology introduces. As a result, an increasing number of IT organizations are looking to the much needed transition from a technology-centric model to a service-delivery focused approach to provide the visibility and control required to manage their operation as they adopt virtualization.

Leveraging an open and configurable platform and intelligent automation, the VMware Service Manager solution enables IT organizations to deliver service excellence in this dynamic new environment with predictive Problem resolution, real-time collaborative Knowledge Management, easy-to-use workflows, seamless integration with existing infrastructure and a powerful federated CMDB.

The key advantages to VMware Service Manager solution include:

Rapid ITIL Deployment
Using pre-integrated processes in a unified single product, VMware Service Manager central web architecture ensures rapid and centralized installation to allow you to successfully deploy your ITIL solution in weeks not months

Flexibility and Configurability
VMware Service Manager’s easy to use, graphical workflow Modeller and flexible screen designer ensure users can easily map the most complex of business processes to ensure richness of functionality without compromising ease-of-configuration.
End-to-end Automation
From an Incident and Problem creation to proactive analysis, provisioning, credentialing updates, finance system updates and an easy to create and maintain CMDB, VMware Service Manager allows users to take advantage of intelligent automation, from business users to underlying infrastructure management.
A Global Team of Experts
Service Manager has over 20 years experience providing successful IT Service Management solutions in global enterprises across an international client base and is supported by a highly skilled global network of expert ITSM consultants and 24x7 premier support.

 

 

Brisbane VMUG Meeting Information

We meet on the second Wednesday of each month.

Register here: http://www.vmware.com/a/events/vmug

Agenda

15:00 - Registration

15:15 - Member presentation(s)

16:00 - Pizza

16:15 - Sponsor presentation(s)

17:00 - Finish

Venue

     Mincom Building

     Level 7 Auditorium

     192 Ann St

     Brisbane QLD 4000

April 13 2011Theme: Data Protection - VMware documentation and data protection

Sponsor: Veeam

 

LATEST NEWS AND REVIEWS
VMware Support Insider: Custom SSL for Virtual Center and ESX

Here is a step-by-step walk through by Tech Support Engineer Jasbinder Bhatti on how to install custom SSL certificates into your environment. These steps complement KB articles 1029944 and1005210. We recommend you be familiar with those KB articles before you embark on this mission.

 

VMware ThinApp Blog: ThinApped vSphere Client fling new download available

Hi Guys,

Today we posted a free version of the vSphere Client packaged with ThinApp.   This is super-handy if you use vSphere as much as we do – you can download and run it directly on any Windows machine without any install.   Because you don’t need to go through any form signups to get the download, you can be running the vSphere Client on a new machine very quickly.   The video below has more details and a demo.   Grab the download here:

http://labs.vmware.com/flings/thinapp-vpshere

 

VROOM!: Updated VMmark 2.1 Benchmarking Guide Available

Just a quick note to inform all benchmarking enthusiasts that we have released an updated VMmark 2.1 Benchmarking Guide. You can get it from the VMmark 2.1 download page. The updated guide contains a new troubleshooting section as well as more comprehensive instructions for using virtual clients and Windows Server 2008 clients.

 

VMware Virtualization Management Blog: vCenter Operations is GA

VMware launched vCenter Operations to provide automated Operations Management for virtual and cloud infrastructure through an integrated approach to performance, capacity and configuration management. vCenter Operations is now GA and can be downloaded for a free 60-day evaluation.You can also check out the product documentation and community pages. Let us know what you think. In this blog post, I would like to provide additional context for the product.

We all know that virtualization has transformed the traditional, silo-ed, LOB-driven IT infrastructure (“vertical” stacks) into shared physical resources (“horizontal” resource pools) out of which LOB-applications and services are provisioned. This horizontal resource pooling often raises three key questions when managing operations at the infrastructure level:

How is my infrastructure doing?

How are the virtual resources sharing the same physical resource (host or cluster) impacting my service or application? (“the population effect”)

How do the dynamic aspects of virtualization (shares, VMotion, DRS/DPM and so on) further impact my service or application? 

 

Uptime: vCenter HA Survey

Customer feedback is critical for us at VMware to understand our customer's needs.  It helps to shape the direction of the products and features as well as help us identify any pain points.  To this end, we have a new survey that we invite you to take concerning the availability of vCenter.  I'd invite you to take the short survey and let us know your thoughts!

You can access the survey here.

 

VMTN Blog: New community for vCenter Operations launched

Last night, vCenter Operations has gone GA, and at the same time we have launched a new community for it.

Come check out VMware vCenter Operations community to learn about the product, watch a video tutorial given by Kit Colbert, or ask a question in the community forum.

VMware vCenter Operations helps you to proactively ensure service levels, optimum resource usage and configuration compliance in dynamic virtual and cloud environments. Through automated operations management and patented analytics, you benefit from an integrated approach to performance, capacity and configuration management.

 

VMware Security Blog: Security Conference Announcement Review and Why They Matter

Rob Randell here from VMware's Security and Compliance Specialist team.  For those that don't know about our team and what we do, here is a quick rundown on our mission.  The mission of our team is to work with our customers to help them understand how moving to virtualization and the cloud with VMware can help them become more secure and compliant than in the physical world, as well as provide them with the knowledge necessary to deploy their virtualization infrastructures and clouds in both a secure and compliant manner.  In short, we are out in the field talking to folks on a day to day basis about all things VMware security.  You should start seeing regular posts here from our team on these topics.  We'll introduce each member of the team as each of us makes a post.

 

VMware Support Insider: Using Tags to control Location Based Access to pool Desktops

Recently I was asked if it was possible to control access to a pool of View Desktops based on whether they were accessed internally or externally. That’s a good question.  Here’s what you need to know:

VMware View version 4.0 and above has a tagging feature that allows us to specify if a pool can be accessed when using a particular connection broker. Using this feature it is possible to differentiate your pools for internal or external access.

 

VMware Support Insider: Changes to Support Request Numbering at VMware

To help answer some questions about changes to Support Request numbers at VMware, we've produced a short video explaining the changes from a customer perspective. Specifically, VMware has changed from a 10 digit Support Request number to an 11 digit Support Request number. You can still find your support request by searching with the 10 digit support request number, but your result appears as the new 11 digit support number.

 

vSphere PowerCLI Blog: Connect-VIServer usability goodie – the new Menu parameter

In this blog post, I want to show you one of the usability improvements that we introduced in the latest PowerCLI release. Namely, the new –Menu parameter of the Connect-VIServer cmdlet.

The functionality of this parameter is simple and useful – it lets you select a server from the ones you use most often. Here’s an example:

 

VMware Support Insider: Changes to Filing a Support Request

Changes are afoot in the process of opening support requests at VMware, and we want to fill in you in on all the exciting changes we’ve made. We are streamlining processes so that you get what you need faster, easier, and with more options.

In anticipation of the questions we expect to get, we have prepared an FAQ in the Knowledgebase to answer most of your questions: FAQs about changes to filing a support request (1034261).

 

You can also check out our new video that touches on the changes in the article athttp://kb.vmware.com/kb/1021619

As part of these improvements, there is a window of scheduled downtime from 6pm PST Friday, March 11 to 5pm PST Saturday, March 12. If you need to file a support request while the upgrade is in progress, call VMware Technical Support for assistance.

We appreciate your patience during this maintenance period. These system upgrades are part of our commitment to continued service improvements and will help VMware better serve your needs.

 

ESXi Chronicles: Ops changes part 6 - Quick troubleshooting tips

When ever an issue arises on an ESX host people often rush to the Service Console and start typing various commands to figure out what is wrong. Of course some of the commands are not available with ESXi and you might not even have access to the ESXi console. Many will resort to the vCLI/vMA or even PowerCLI and that works perfectly fine. Especially the vCLI/vMA is geared towards those who have experience with ESX command-line troubleshooting. You will have all "esxcfg-*" commands to your disposal and of course resxtop; which will cover 95% of those cases where commandline details are required.

 

VMware vSphere 4.1 HA and DRS technical deepdive review

A few months ago, I wrote about the arrival of the new VMware vSphere 4.1 HA and DRS technical deepdive book.  Having finished reading the book, I thought I’d write a quick follow up.

This book was a pretty easy read, and by that I mean it as a compliment in that the authors did a superb job in conveying the details of deep technical discussions in a way that I think is easy to comprehend and understand at different levels.  At the same time, the coverage did not disappoint.  All aspects of HA, DRS, and even DPM were discussed at length.  Along the way, Basic Design Principles in each section were highlighted to summarize the technical detail.

 

Xangati’s enhanced version of Xangati for ESX stays free

Xangati for ESX – new enhanced version – and still free.

Xangati has released a new version of Xangati for ESX. The new updated product is faster and more easy to deploy.  Free to use and monitor one ESX server. If you want to monitor more servers, you can have a look at the commercial version of Xangati called Xangati Management dashboard. (XMB).

 

Top 10 Best Practices for VMware Data Protection

best practices for data protection

Free Webminar with Eric Siebert – Top 10 Best Practices for VMware Data Protection.

Usually I’m always missing webminars, because the time zones between Europe and United States. There is a new webminar scheduled with Eric Siebert which is scheduled for March 16th. The duration of 1h.

Featured Speaker: Eric Siebert, VMware vExpert

 

Power on VMs from ESXi command line

VMware command line ssh vim-cmd vmsvc/ vsphere vsphere client

Ran into some stupid issue today. Don’t know why but suddenly I lost the storage of my homelab and all VMs had frozen and eventually crashed. Since my vCenter is running as a VM, it had gone...

 

APAC Virtualization Roundtable (VMware View 4.6 with David Wakeman) – Wed 16/3

VMware View 4.6 with PCoIP Secure Gateway, Enhanced USB device compatibility, Support for Microsoft Windows 7 SP1, iPad Client, ThinApp 4.6.1 and more… A lot has happened in the VMware’s End User Computing space in the last few weeks.

We are pleased to have once again VMware’s APAC Product Marketing Manager for EUC, David Wakeman to talk about the milestones recent delivered by VMware.

 

Improve your iPad View 4.6 Client experience

I could not wait to put my hands on the new VMware View 4.6 iPad client and test the app’s user experience using PCoIP display protocol. Finally last week we were all able to download and test the GA product. As soon we connect to the virtual desktops using the PCoIP gateway we start to understand and feel the differences between the PCoIP client and other RDP clients, such as the Wyse Pocket Cloud. The client is sleek with easy to learn gestures.

 

TPS, Large Memory Pages and your VDI environment

If you have been running VMware View 4.0 or greater the chances are that you have vSphere 4.0 U2 or vSphere 4.1 deployed in your VDI infrastructure. You may have VMware Infrastructure 3.5 U5 but I am hoping that at this stage you have already been trough the upgrade.

If you haven’t yet upgraded you will experience the behaviour I am explaining below when you upgrade to vSphere 4.0 and greater. If you have already upgraded your ESX hosts and the hosts are Nehalem based Xeon 5500 series CPUs, you may or may not have noticed that after the upgrade vCenter and esxtop show that the hosts are consuming more physical memory than before the upgrade even thou the number of virtual desktops have not changed.

 

My VCAP-DCD Exam Experience

Today, after a week of extensive blogging and prepping I’ve passed my VCAP-DCD exam :-) The exam consists of over one hundred questions ranging from "the simple multiple choice" and "choose all that apply" ones to the "create a diagram for the following situation" challenges. It’s hard to prep for this exam, either you know how to create a design or you don’t but a proper design is built upon up-to-date knowledge and that’s where you should work on if you don’t feel confident.

 

Video – Creating web applications with WaveMaker

Training

WaveMaker has recently been acquired by VMware. This partnership is the result of discussions that have been going on between WaveMaker and the SpringSource division of VMware for more than a year. WaveMaker is a visual development tool that lets everyone quickly build and deploy great-looking web and cloud applications. With WaveMaker, you can build a complete, 3-tier web application in minutes! Let’s see how it works – in this video I’ll show you a short WaveMaker demo. The community version of WaveMaker is available for download at:http://www.wavemaker.com/downloads/

 

VMware Certified Professional (VCP4) Free Second Chance

VMware is offering a free second chance if you fail for your first attempt and believe me the exam isn’t easy. I’ve seen a lot of VCP candidates fail at their first attempt. To be eligible for a free second chance, you must use a special promotion code when booking the first one. For a limited time, VMware is giving you a free second chance at the VCP4 exam when you register for a full-priced exam by following the steps below.

 

Behind the scenes at VMware Support - Advanced Root Cause Analysis

VMware’s Nathan Small who works as a Staff Engineer at Global Support Services has put together a great presentation about Advanced Root Cause Analysis. The presentation was designed to give you more insight into how a VMware Technical Support Engineer reviews logs, gathers data and performs in-depth analysis. Nathan is hoping to show you the skills they’re using every day to help determine the root cause for an issue in your environment. With this core knowledge, you will become more self-sufficient within your own environment and be able to diagnose an issue as it occurs rather than after the damage has been done.

 

Things in my Open Tabs – Face Melting Java in VMs

I’ve hit the point in Chrome where I’ve been so productive that I can’t be productive. That is, the point in which I have more tabs open than I could hope to reasonably read. What that means for y’all, is that as I close them out, I hit a few that hit interest points and are worth sharing. This week that includes some “Face Melting” and some guidance on running Java apps in virtual machines:

 

vStorage Performance Troubleshooting

Nathan Small, a Senior Escalation Engineer with VMware storage sent along this presentation he has been giving on troubleshooting vStorage Performance. Lots of gold in here… lots and lots:

vSphere vStorage: Troubleshooting Performance

 

Using Dell Equallogic HIT-VE Plug-in

It was my recent good fortune to get the loan of two Dell EqualLogics system from Dell. There mainly for use in my work in VMware SRM. I’m ramping up to write my 3rd book on SRM. But along side that it gives me a chance to look at the integration with VMware that Dell have been working for sometime. This follows a recent theme of mine on RTFM covering the various plug-ins from the storage vendors including EMC’s VSI and NetApp VSC.

 

VCAP-DCA & DCD Resources Page Updated

VMware VMware Pro Series Training Vol1 vmtraining VCAP-DCA VCAP-DCD VMware Certified Advanced Professional Datacentre Administration blueprint Trainsignal virtualization

 

Just a very quick posting to alert people that I have now updated my VCAP-DCA and DCD resources page. The page is a list of resources that I have been constantly updating as I  have come across new resources and I have made my way through the  required amount of studying to be prepared (which is still on-going).So either click the “VCAP-DCA & DCD” link at the top of the page or click here if you can’t be bothered going to the top of the page and if you know of any other great resources please do comment so that I can add them and it can benefit the whole community.

 

Resource Pools to the Rescue

resource pools SCVMM vSphere

The Resource Pool Advantage

It’s easier to manage a group of things than individual objects.  Consider filesystem directories as a way to organize and secure files, or Active Directory groups as an efficient means of assigning rights to users.

VMware vSphere Resource Pools — introduced in VI3, circa 2006 — give administrators a way to aggregate resources from multiple hosts in a cluster and then subdivide them to meet a range of business needs.  After creating pools of CPU and memory with reserves and limits, virtual machines are simply dragged as necessary to guarantee performance or prevent less-critical workloads from causing interference.

 

EMC PowerShell Cmdlets – Where to start

I managed to finally find time recently to install the EMC PowerShell Cmdlets and have a play, this was mainly evenings and lunchtimes but when else do we get spare time in our working days !

I thought it would be useful to share my experience and show what EMC are doing in the world of PowerShell.

Why you need PowerShell for Storage

 

EMC VNX Replicator now supported by VMware SRM 4.x

recovery manager srm vnx vsphere

Just received notice this morning that EMC VNX Replicator has been approved for support for VMware Site Recovery Manager 4.0.x and 4.1.x. An excerpt of the message is below:

The EMC VNX Replicator 4.0.23 is now certified (re-test waiver) for SRM versions 4.0.x and 4.1.x. EMC has updated the 4.0.22 Celerra SRA to reflect new array support (VNX line), but have not had to change any of the code as the new array runs the same replication software as the old (Celerra line).

 

MinFreePct 6% or should it be less?

Back in the days when Servers still had 8GB or 16GB memory at most a setting was introduced that guaranteed the hypervisor had a certain amount of free memory to its disposal. The main purpose of this being of course stability of the system. As with any Operating System free memory is desirable to ensure it is available whenever a process requests it.. or should we say World in the case of ESXi.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VMware Knowledge Base Weekly Digest: New Articles Published for week ending 3/12/11

VMware Blogs 14/03/11 10:44 PM

VMware ACE
Uploading large attachments (1033726)
Date Published: 3/12/2011

VMware Alive Enterprise
Health values are not sorting properly in the VMware Alive Enterprise Environment Overview and Resource widget (1035644)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Generating a VMware Alive Enterprise Support Bundle (1035800)
Date Published: 3/10/2011

VMware ESX
When starting an ESX host, you see message: WARNING: AcpiShared: 194: SSDTd+: Table length 11108 > 4096 (1028039)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
Cannot install VMware application due to error: The system must be rebooted before installation can continue (1031202)
Date Published: 3/8/2011
Best practices when using SAN transport for backup and restore (1035096)
Date Published: 3/8/2011
The messages log file in the ESX/ESXi 4.1 Update 1 or earlier host reports the log spew: LsaFindUserByName (1035605)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Opening more than 2 virtual machine consoles in vSphere Client fails with an internal error (1035639)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Moving the ESX 3.5 Update 4 host from VirtualCenter 2.5 to vCenter Server 4.0 fails with the error: general system error (1021820)
Date Published: 3/10/2011
Host upgrade to ESX/ESXi 4.1 Update 1 fails if you upgrade by using Update Manager 4.1 (1035436)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Installing HP Insight Manager Agents on ESX 4.0 hosts fails with the error: Unable to lock config file /etc/vmware/esx.conf (1021061)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Reconnecting an ESX host fails with the error: A general system error occurred: Internal error (1031652)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Update Manager fails to scan ESX/ESXi 4.1 hosts or clusters with Cisco Nexus 1000v (1035425)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
ESX host boot failure due to Check Condition on local disk (1035715)
Date Published: 3/9/2011

VMware ESXi
Local users are unable to access local or remote Tech Support mode on ESXi 4.1 (1029178)
Date Published: 3/8/2011
Cannot add Active Directory Users or Groups to an ESX or ESXi 4.1 Standalone Host (1030068)
Date Published: 3/10/2011
Windows XP/2003 virtual machines display incorrect link speed for VMXNET3 vNIC (1035486)
Date Published: 3/8/2011
Uplink redundancy restored on DVPorts events for specific VM Dvports. (1032895)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
Setting the speed or duplexity in ESX/ESXi 4.x fails with the error: Operation not permitted (1034313)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Unable to remove the floppy device in the Windows virtual machine (1034616)
Date Published: 3/8/2011
Installing ESX/ESXi fails with the error: The system has found a problem on your machine and cannot continue (1034738)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
HP images of ESX and ESXi for Proliant BL460c G7, BL685c G7 and BL685c G7 server blades (1035114)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Cannot grow VMFS datastore, the Increase button is disabled (1035285)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Understanding sf_pad_runt errors on ESX or ESXi with Cisco Nexus 1000V (1035438)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Migrating virtual machines with snapshots (1035550)
Date Published: 3/8/2011
The ESX/ESXi host fails with a purple diagnostic screen and report a backtrace with Util_CopyToUser and copy_to_user (1035714)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
Adding a virtual disk to the virtual machine fails with the error: possible extent truncation (1035798)
Date Published: 3/10/2011

VMware Service Manager
How can I find out workflows containing a specific workflow component? (1032866)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Important information about configuration portability in Service Manager v9.0 (1032961)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
On the Customer Portal Incident Review screen, the Service field shows Service Ref instead of Service Title (1033611)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
VMware Service Manager session becomes unresponsive when trying to view the Email section of the Activity log within System Administration (1035590)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
You see duplicate messaging tasks when trying to import a workflow template into VMware Service Manager 9.0 (1035606)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
The VMware Service Manager 9.0 PDA screen does not update correctly when altering the rebranding area (1035891)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
The body an email is not added to the task or request history in VMware Service Manager 9.0 when an officer approves an approval via incoming email (1035892)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
The Group dropdown on the Calls Outstanding screen in VMware Service Manager 9.0 is limiting view to 40 characters (1035898)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
Configuration Portability stops with the error: log entry # not found (1035902)
Date Published: 3/11/2011

VMware vCenter CapacityIQ
Upgrading VMware Tools on the CapacityIQ appliance fails with the error: Error upgrading VMware Tools (1027179)
Date Published: 3/10/2011
CapacityIQ causes several log in and log out tasks per minute (1033508)
Date Published: 3/10/2011

VMware vCenter Converter
Location of VMware vCenter Converter log files (1035811)
Date Published: 3/11/2011

VMware vCenter Lab Manager
Lab Manager login Web page reports the error: The Server is unavailable (1034498)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Exchanging Lab Manager and Life Cycle Manager licenses for vCloud Director licenses (1035680)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
When performing Configuration deployment in vCenter Lab Manager you receive error: vCenter Lab manager could not find any resource pools.. (1035686)
Date Published: 3/9/2011

VMware vCenter Server
vSphere Client 4.1 randomly pop up multiple windows with error: " A internal error occured in the vSphere Client. Details: Object reference not set to an instant object" (1033560)
Date Published: 3/10/2011
vCenter Server with a DB2 database fails when adding hosts (1035782)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Upgrading from vCenter Server 4.0 to 4.1 fails with the error: Setup failed to validate the 32-bit DSN for upgrade (1035672)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
The vCenter Chargeback storage sync job fails (1025767)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Unable to view Hardware Status on remote Linked Mode vCenter Server instances (1026411)
Date Published: 3/8/2011
Turning off compression for vpxd log files (1027049)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Performance Overview and vCenter Service Status fail to display data and report the error: The website declined to show this webpage (1027227)
Date Published: 3/10/2011
VMware vCenter Server editions and licensing information (1034294)
Date Published: 3/7/2011

VMware vCenter Server Heartbeat
Best Practices on configuring Split-brain avoidance in vCenter Server Heartbeat (1030626)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Performing a System State backup and restore on Windows Server 2008 (1035623)
Date Published: 3/7/2011

VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager
The vCenter Site Recovery Manager server fails when scanned by network security and vulnerability scanning tools (1034240)
Date Published: 3/9/2011

VMware vCloud Connector
VMware vCloud Connector FAQ (1034906)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
Changing Passwords for vCC Users (1035908)
Date Published: 3/11/2011

VMware vCloud Director
Accessing vCloud Director Organization fails displaying the message: Attempting to connect (1026174)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
Accessing the vCloud Director Web site fails with the error: Could not verify this certificate for unknown reasons (1032520)
Date Published: 3/10/2011

VMware vCloud Request Manager
Installing VMware vCloud Request Manager fails when using Oracle Instant Client (1033600)
Date Published: 3/11/2011

VMware View Manager
When connecting to a desktop pool you receive the error: No desktop source assigned for this desktop Please contact your system administrator (1031269)
Date Published: 3/9/2011
Adding View Composer to the View Connection server fails with the error: Error while adding the administrator. Please re-check your information (1035626)
Date Published: 3/7/2011
VMware View Composer fails with the error: VMware.Sim.Fault.DbOperationFailedFault (1035727)
Date Published: 3/10/2011
When printing PDF documents in HP Thin Client t5740, the client screen goes black and then disconnects (1035751)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
When installing two or more printers that use a single driver in VMware View Manager, Windows 7 groups them as a single printer (1035831)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
VMware View Client for iPad support (1035937)
Date Published: 3/11/2011
Pool Desktops are stuck in Maintenance state and cannot be refreshed or recomposed (1027122)
Date Published: 3/8/2011

VMware vShield Edge
Deploying a vApp in vShield Edge fails with the error: Edge configuration failed (1033051)
Date Published: 3/10/2011

VMware vShield Endpoint
Installing vShield Endpoint fails without any errors (1035646)
Date Published: 3/9/2011

VMware vShield Manager
Importing SSL certificates in vShield Manager (1035387)
Date Published: 3/9/2011

VMware vShield Zones
Collecting diagnostic information for VMware vShield Manager 4.1.x (1029717)
Date Published: 3/10/2011

VMware Workstation
Team bandwidth/packet loss settings are not adopted by virtual machines that are powered on individually (1035548)
Date Published: 3/10/2011

Hi everyone, I hope that you have had a successful week. Over the past few weeks I have been running a number of our tech briefing sessions which have become very popular. These are well attended and always attract many questions and queries. Each week we pick a different topic and from now on in the newsletter I will feature the upcoming session’s product. This past week we had a session on vCloud Director and vCloud Request Manager. Next week we will be doing a session on VMware Application Discover Manager. See below for more info on this technology and if you are in Brisbane feel free to register for the session (details at the end of the newsletter).

 

I would also like to wish my readers in Japan all the best after such a tragic event in your region.

 

Take care until next time

 

Neil Isserow (Newsletter Editor), Paul James

Queensland TAM Team

 

Featured Product

VMware vCenter Application Discovery Manager

GET A FAST AND ACCURATE VIEW OF YOUR DATACENTER

 

Quickly and accurately map your application dependencies to accelerate datacenter moves, precisely plan infrastructure consolidations and confidently virtualize your business critical applications.

Fast and low-impact deployment through unique agentless technology

Guaranteed visibility into all application interactions across both physical and virtual machines via network-based approach

Discovery of unknown, unwanted and unexpected application behaviors

 

Automated Application Dependency Mapping

VMware vCenter Application Discovery Manager (formerly EMC Ionix Application Discovery Manager) provides the automated, real-time application discovery and dependency mapping capability you need for effective, dependency-driven change, configuration, incident and problem management across physical and virtual environments.

 

Map Applications Quickly, Accurately via Agentless Discovery

Through Application Discovery Manager's agentless, continuous dependency mapping - across physical and virtual application infrastructures - you can quickly gain an understanding of your service dependencies with unparalleled accuracy and efficiency. Whether you are moving a data center, virtualizing applications, building a site recovery plan or moving a service to the cloud, an accurate application dependency map is an essential first step.

 

 

Virtualize Business Critical Applications with Confidence

Application Fingerprints™ uniquely identify common packages and applications. In addition, Application Discovery Manager’s heuristic fingerprinting recognizes common n-tier application interactions and automatically groups and maps these applications, which allows enterprises to quickly classify their applications. A user can also specify a grouping of hosts that make up an application and then discover all instances of that application and related hosts in the environment. Alternatively, deep-packet inspection can discover patterns within the discovery process—such as URLs and database table names—to allow the creation of new fingerprints around these patterns for ongoing discovery of application instances.

 

 

Eliminate Reliance on Tribal Knowledge

Application Discovery Manager provides a real-time, automated dependency mapping solution that allows enterprises to drive quick and accurate application virtualization and datacenter blueprinting projects. It eliminates reliance on "tribal knowledge" and guesswork, helps IT teams avoid change-induced service outages, degradations and failures and populates third-party or homegrown CMDBs or CMSs. Enterprises can detect, log and report on software and hardware configuration changes and compare configurations server to server. External database reporting capabilities provide the ability to create customized reports based on the data in Application Discovery Manager’s repository. Operations teams can quickly determine what changed and track down the truth behind the all-too-common statement: "I didn't change anything."

 

Latest news and reviews

 

VMware View: VMware View Client for iPad #1 Free Business App – #Awesome App

Less than 12 hours after launch of the View Client for iPad we’re proud to say that we’re already number one on the App Store for Business Apps.  We’d like to thank all of those who have downloaded and reviewed the app so far and look forward to hearing your feedback.  We’ve also been getting some great coverage across the net on the various media outlets.  Here’s a list of a few of them:
iPad goes enterprise, VMware says (first look at its new “View” app)

VMware View brings virtual desktops to iPad with touchscreen-friendly controls (video)

VMware brings out View client for iPad

VMWare View Lets iPad Users Access Corporate Desktops

VMware Community Podcast now: VMware Education/Certification & View iPad Client

VMware View client for iPad released

Apple iPad Means Business for Healthcare With VMware View™ Virtual Desktops

VMware offering View app on iPad for remote computer control

Short-Take: Windows 7 for iPad, Free

If you don't already have a copy of the View Client for iPad you can get it here.

This is just the start of good things to come.  Be sure to check back to the View Blog often and follow@vmwareview on Twitter for product updates.

 

VMware vCloud Blog: Interview with Steve Jin on vSphere API, State of the Cloud

Recently at VMware Partner Exchange 2011, I had the honor of meeting VMware's Steve Jin. If you have read the vCloud blog at all in the past, likely you have read a post from Steve or visited his blog DoubleCloud.org.

I sat down with Steve, learned a lot about him, and learned what makes him so successful.

 

VROOM!: Exploring Generational Scaling with VMmark 2.1

The steady march of technological improvements is nothing new.  As companies either expand or refresh their datacenters it often becomes a non-trivial task to quantify the returns on hardware investments.  This difficulty can be further compounded when it’s no longer sufficient to answer how well one new server will perform in relation to its predecessor, but rather how well the new cluster will perform in comparison to the previous one.  With this in mind, we set off to explore the generational scaling performance of two clusters made up of very similar hardware using the newly released VMmark 2.1.  VMmark 2.1 is a next-generation, multi-host virtualization benchmark that models not only application performance but also the effects of common infrastructure operations.  For more general information on VMmark 2.1, including the application and infrastructure workload details, take a look at the expanded overview in one of my previous blog posts.

 

VMware Support Insider: New Mind Map for VMware Hosted Products

VMware products that enable virtualization within a hosted OS form a class by themselves. These products currently include VMware ACE, Player, Server, and Workstation. (Fusion fits the bill as well, and there’s a lot of crossover between the products, but we tend to handle documentation and such separately.) GSX Server used to be part of this group, but we no longer support it (migrate to Server or Workstation already!), and you'll still see it tagged on some articles. The Resolution Pathsfor VMware's hosted products have been newly revised, to keep up with new product and OS versions.

 

VMware ThinApp Blog: The power of AppLink

One great benefit of ThinApp’s bubble-to-bubble communication feature, called AppLink, is that you can have application dependencies assigned either static or dynamic. This will allow you some great flexibility but can just as easily make your design quite complex. As always, just because we support a feature or a usage of a feature doesn’t necessarily mean you should use it. In this blog post will I tell you about some of the functionalities of AppLink and then leave it up to you to decide how you’ll implement it...

 

VMwareTV: Demo of VMware View Client for iPad

bit.ly - Read about the release of the VMware View client app for the iPad and watch this demo video.

 

VMwareTV: Children's Hospital on the VMware View Client for iPad

bit.ly - Children's Hospital of Central California has deployed VMware View to provide secure, "Follow-me Desktops," that move from room-to-room with clinicians and staff as they treat their patients and plans to deploy VMware View Client for iPad.

 

Business Critical Applications: Monitor SQL Server Performance on VMware

Virtualization adds new software layers and new types of interactions between SQL Server and the hardware components. While the general methodology for monitoring and troubleshooting SQL Server performance does not change, VMware provides additional tools for monitoring and troubleshooting at the physical host level. This is the first of a series of Monitoring and Troubleshooting SQL Server performance on VMware blogs. In this blog, I'd like to discuss how to effectively monitor SQL Server performance on VMware.

 

VMware Support Insider: Migrating User data Between VMware View Desktops

VMware View Administrators will be interested in this blog post from Hasan Mahmood, a TSE in our Burlington offices. Dealing with user data in a View environment has a couple of caveats Hasan explores below.

During the life cycle of a View pool you may find that you need to move a user's data from one desktop to another. This may be to recover from a failure or due to operational needs.

Depending on the type of pool, your user's data might be located on a separate disk or on the same disk as the OS in installed. In the case of Linked clones with persistent / User Data disks, we can use the procedure described in Knowledge Base Article:

 

Business Critical Applications: Enterprise Java Applications on vSphere Best Practices

Many of our customers have run critical enterprise Java applications on vSphere successfully.  The best practices guide is often referred to by our customers when embarking on running Java applications on vSphere.

December last year version 2 of the best practices paper was released here:http://www.vmware.com/resources/techresources/1087,

The paper covers quite few best practices and definitely recommended for anyone doing deployments of Java applications on vSphere, however it is worthwhile to note that the top 3 most sought after best practices from this paper are as follows and based on customer interaction:

 

ESXi Chronicles: Ops changes part 5 - Scratch partition

When implementing ESXi the first noticeable difference in the architecture is the partition layout.With ESX classic you always had the ability to customize your partition layout and many used the obvious "Linux" partition scheme with a /tmp, /opt, /var and /home. This however as changed with ESXi and there isn't actually much left to discuss... well except for the Scratch Partition that is.

The question of course is what is it used for and when is it created and can I modify it?

The Scratch Partition is used for a couple of things:

 

Enabling VMware View 4.6 PCoIP with dynamic IP address

Don’t we all run those Enterprise products in our own home lab just to play with, get acquainted with, use them to prepare for exams and use them to think of new concepts? In my lab I use VMware View...

 

VDI Flash Calculator v2.1 Released

I have just uploaded a new release of the online VDI Flash Calculator.

This new release offers full support to VMware View 4.6 architecture. This release also introduce the support to CPU/Core speed calculation. Based on a given average MHz for each individual VM the flash calculator will provide the amount of GHz required to support the workload per CPU/Core.

 

Addressing Self-Service Password Reset with VMware View 4.6

A common request from my customers is the ability to leverage password self-service from 3rd party tools. The idea behind such tools is to allow users to change and/or reset account passwords without having to ring the helpdesk.

VMware View Client supports the requirement to change password during logon time if the user account password is expired. However, if the user account is locked out for any reason VMware View will not let the user to login because it will not be able to validate user credentials.

 

VDI Display Protocol Calculator v1.1 w/ New Features

I am making available an updated release of my online Display Protocol Calculator. This new release implements a number of features to better size protocol bandwidth utilization, VMware View 4.6 with PCoIP Gateway support, and also an experimental (!) feature to calculate the bandwidth offset when multiple simultaneous sessions.

 

Video – Using the vCloud Connector

Director

The VMware vCloud Connector, a free plug-in that will allow all VMware vSphere administrators to immediately begin deploying and managing virtual machines (VMs) across VMware vCloud Powered cloud services from within the VMware vSphere Client. In this video I’ll show you how to configure both the vCenter server and the vCloud Director and how to upload a virtual machine to the vCloud Director.

 

vCenter Operations – Your Future Performance Dashboard

VMware has released a great new product which is able to diagnose and analyse vSphere performance metrics. vCenter Operations Standard is for vCenter administrators who want to better understand the performance of their virtual infrastructure, and to diagnose and correct performance problems easily and quickly.

 

vCenter Operations Standard collects performance data from each object at every level of your virtual infrastructure, from individual virtual machines and disk drives to entire clusters and datacenters. It stores and analyses the data, and uses that analysis to provide you with real-time information about problems, or potential problems, in your enterprise. vCenter Operations Standard presents the data in graphical interface pages that display different views of your virtual infrastructure.

 

Video - VMware View Client for iPad

VMware View Client for iPad makes it easy to access your Windows virtual desktop from your iPad with the best possible user experience on the Local Area Network (LAN) or across a Wide Area Network (WAN).I’ve created a short demo video which unveils some cool features of the VMware View Client for iPad.

 

Video - VMware vCenter Operations - Troubleshooting Workflow

This week was awesome and it isn’t even over yet. We had two new product launches and can expect some more fireworks in the coming days. Last Tuesday VMware has released vCenter Operations Standard, it’s a great new product which enables you to diagnose and analyse vSphere performance metrics. I’ve already blogged about it and also recorded a short demo videoimmediately after the release. VMware's Kit Colbert, lead engineer on vCenter Operations also recorded two great videos which will give you an in-depth overview of the vCenter Operations Standard edition and will learn you all about to the Troubleshooting Workflow.

 

Performance Troubleshooting Guide Update

My old friends in VMware’s performance team updated the hugely popular performance troubleshooting guide for vSphere with a vSphere 4.1 version. The previous version of this document has been viewed nearly 30,000 times to date, making it the most popular document ever produced by performance engineering. The vSphere 4.1 version has already been seen over 9,000 times which suggests its early popularity with a large audience.

 

Start and Manage a VM Without Using vSphere Client

You’re familiar with features in VMware vSphere that can help bring up critical virtual infrastructure after a widespread datacenter outage — planned or otherwise — but did you also know that it’s possible to power on a virtual machine and even determine the dynamic IP address of a guest OS using a simple command-line utility?  This could be handy after a disaster or if you normally rely on a Windows virtual machine to run the vSphere Client and don’t feel like firing up Fusion for one quick task.

 

PowerCLI Book Preview

If you follow any of my co-authors blogs you will know that our PowerCLI book “Vmware vSphere PowerCLI Reference” is due out imminently, around the end of this month, you of course do not have to wait this long, you can already pre-order the book from any of the sites listed below:

Amazon USA

Amazon UK

Sybex

We also started a website which you can keep up to date and download the latest examples from the book or ask questions about scripts in the book, visit it here: PowerCLIBook.com

But what I thought might be nice is a little taster so you know what to find in the book.

Recently when attending the Dutch VMUG, Luc and I gave a presentation, in this presentation we showed more about the book and what to find in it, we even gave some nice video examples of the scripts which you can find in the book, please see below for the slide deck and the videos from our presentation…

 

Change VM Video Memory

I was contacted by a colleague asking if there was an easy way to set the video memory for a number of virtual machines, he had been working with a customer who had received an error when a virtual machine was being Vmotioned, the Vmotion completes successfully but the following error is received:

Insufficient video RAM. The maximum resolution of the virtual machine will be limited to 1176x885 at 16 bits per pixel. To use the configured maximum resolution of 2360x1770 at 16 bits per pixel, increase the amount of video RAM allocated to this virtual machine by setting svga.vramSize="16708800" in the virtual machine's configuration file.

 

No one likes queues

Well depending on what type of queues we are talking about of course, but in general no one likes queues. We are however confronted with queues on a daily basis, especially in compute environments. I was having a discussing with an engineer around storage queues and he sent me the following which I thought was worth sharing as it gives a good overview of how traffic flows from queue to queue with the default limits on the VMware side:

From top to bottom:

 

Talking about face melting stuff

Yes not only Chad Sakac deals with face melting ultra uber geeky cool stuff I do as well (those on twitter know what I am referring to), but unfortunately I cannot share the details on some of the stuff I am working on. I can however provide you a link which contains the papers written by  the engineers on some of the stuff that might be coming up in the future. Note the “might”, there is no guarantee it will ever make it into the VMware products, but nevertheless still cool to read:

 

 

Thin provisioned disks and VMFS fragmentation, do I really need to worry?

I’ve seen this myth floating around from time to time and as I never publicly wrote about it I figured it was time to write an article to debunk this myth. The question that is often posed is if thin disks will hurt performance due to fragmentation of the blocks allocated on the VMFS volume. I guess we need to rehash (do a search on VMFS for more info)  some basics first around Think Disks and VMFS volumes…

 

 

Security Updates

NEW: March 7, 2011 VMSA-2011-0004 - VMware ESX/ESXi SLPD denial of service vulnerability and ESX third party updates for Service Console packages bind, pam, and rpm.

UPDATED: February 10, 2011 VMSA-2011-0003.1 - Third party component updates for VMware vCenter Server, vCenter Update Manager, ESXi and ESX

UPDATED: December 7, 2010 VMSA-2010-0019.2 - VMware ESX third party updates for Service Console

UPDATED: August 31, 2010 VMSA-2010-0013.3 - VMware ESX third party updates for Service Console

UPDATED: April 1, 2010 VMSA-2010-0006.1 - ESX Service Console updates for samba and acpid

 

Common Criteria:

Common Criteria (CC) is an international standard (ISO15408) set of guidelines for the evaluation of IT products. It was born out of the unification of pre-existing standards from the governments of Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, the UK, and the U.S.

 

There are seven certification levels called Evaluation Assurance Levels (EAL), increasing levels are more stringent. Levels EAL2 and EAL4 are most common and EAL4+ is the highest assurance level that is recognized globally by all signatories (currently 26 countries) under the Common Criteria Recognition Agreement (CCRA). 

 

VMware completed the first Common Criteria certification for a virtualization product on x86 hardware in March 2006 with the certification of ESX® Server 2.5 and VirtualCenter 1.2. To date vSphere 4.0 & 4.1, ESX 3.5/VirtualCenter 2.5, ESX 3.0.2/VirtualCenter 2.0.2 have earned certification at EAL4+ level.

 

You can find further details at http://www.vmware.com/security/certifications/ or the Common Criteria portal: http://www.commoncriteriaportal.org/’

 

In the News:

Imprivata and Teradici Announce Strategic Partnership to Provide Strong Authentication on PC-over-IP Zero Clients for VMware View™

http://www.imprivata.com/teradici_release_

 

RSA, EMC and VMWare advise on defending against advanced persistent threats

http://www.computerweekly.com/Articles/2011/02/17/245475/RSA-2011-RSA-EMC-and-VMWare-advise-on-defending-against-advanced-persistent.htm

 

Kaspersky Labs announces support of vShield Endpoint:

http://pr-usa.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=626817&Itemid=28

 

HP Tipping Point IPS integrating with vShield and vCloud Director:

http://www.wwpi.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=9665:hp-vmware-to-develop-market-security-technology-for-cloud-environments&catid=230:cloud-computing&Itemid=2701186

 

 

VMware Knowledge Base Weekly Digest: New Articles Published for week ending 3/5/11

 

VMware Alive Enterprise
Setting multiple FSDB locations in VMware Alive (1034899)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
Connecting to the VMware Alive Enterprise SCOM adapter using Windows Authentication (1035184)
Date Published: 3/3/2011

VMware Data Recovery
More than 0 virtual machines were selected. A maximum of 0 virtual machines can be backed up by one Data Recovery appliance (1033813)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
VMware Data Recovery File Level Restore: Installing FUSE on a Debian-based Linux 64bit OS (1035231)
Date Published: 3/3/2011

VMware ESX
vMotion fails with the error: Migrate_SetFailure: Failed waiting for data. Error bad0004. Busy (1031636)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
ESX or ESXi hosts might fail when you update the CPU microcode manually (1033694)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Enabling VMware High Availability and VMware Distributed Resource Scheduler in a cluster (1034280)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Booting the ESX host fails with this message in the console: Restoring S/W iSCSI volumes (1022071)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Gathering esxtop performance data at specific times using crontab (1033346)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
Upgrading VMware Tools fails with the error: No module BusLogic found for kernel x.x.xx-xx, aborting (1033819)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
VMware Tools on ESX 4.0 hosts fail to start due to SELinux default setting (1024209)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Installing ESX 4.0 Update 2 fails with the error: could not find packageData.pkl file under file:///mnt/source/VMware/RPMS/ (1029784)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
Upgrading the host to ESX 4.1 Update 1 fails with the error: The uploaded upgrade package is not a valid upgrade package (1035176)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Virtual machine network connectivity fails with the error: Peer not allowed to change address, blocking port (1035424)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
IBM x3850/x3950 reports alert for component OEM System Integrator defined 1 SEL Fullness (1032334)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
LeftHand P4000 series performance is much lower than in physical (1032833)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
The hostd.log file reports CIM monitoring messages repeatedly (1033921)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Understanding iterative redolog consolidations during online snapshot deletion in VMware ESX (1034364)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
Running the su command on the service console fails with the error: incorrect password (1034974)
Date Published: 2/28/2011

VMware ESXi
Creating a scratch partition using a USB stick/Memory Card (1033696)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Enabling esxupdate logging on ESXi 4.x (1034329)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Deleting a large file on the NFS datastore with ESX succeeds, but reports the error: Error caused by file /vmfs/volumes/<datastore-uuid>/<filename> (1035332)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
The GuestInfo variables set for the virtual machine do not persist after the virtual machine is rebooted (1034826)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Custom quiescing scripts do not get called during VMware Consolidated Backup of Linux-based operating systems (1035452)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Generating the vm-support bundle from ESXi 4.x fails to gather the vmkernel core and PSOD dump (1033261)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Virtual Machine powers off while creating or deleting snapshots with error: Failed to lock the file (1033571)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
ESX/ESXi reports in Task & Events: User root@127.0.0.1 logged in (1031578)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Logging in to the ESX/ESX 4.0 Update 1 host using the vSphere Client fails with the error: Error parsing the server <server ip> “clients.xml” file (1033550)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Disabling simultaneous write protection provided by VMFS using the multi-writer flag (1034165)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Why does my vSphere Client on French Operating System display in English when I connect to vCenter 4.0 (1032674)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
ESXi host displays an error and fails to boot when two ESXi installations are on the same system (1035107)
Date Published: 3/2/2011

VMware Player
Installing VMware Tools in VMware Player (1035392)
Date Published: 3/2/2011

VMware Service Manager
Is VMware Service Manager compatible with Internet Explorer 9? (1035148)
Date Published: 2/28/2011

VMware vCenter AppSpeed
Logging in to the vCenter Appspeed interface fails with the error: Permission Denied (1033431)
Date Published: 3/1/2011

VMware vCenter CapacityIQ
CapacityIQ upgrade fails with status error for data migration (1035426)
Date Published: 3/2/2011

VMware vCenter Converter
Converting a Linux virtual machine fails at 99% with the error: Unable to reconfigure the destination virtual machine (1034984)
Date Published: 2/28/2011

VMware vCenter Lab Manager
Exporting a Lab Manager configuration fails with the error: The file specified is not a virtual disk (1034946)
Date Published: 2/28/2011

VMware vCenter Server
vCenter Service Status reports the error: Cannot store license usage in the vCenter Server database (1029495)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
The Annotation field in the Summary page of a virtual machine fails to update (1035329)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Performance Charts are not displayed and the Storage Service is not initialized when clicking on Storage Views (1021022)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
vCenter Server 4.x times out when connected to an Oracle instance (1030273)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Transient IP Allocation Policy fails to assign IPs to virtual machines (1031476)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Storage view tab not displaying Multipathing Status (1033442)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
Host profile cannot handle more than one vmk# ports that are enabled with different services in the same dvs portgroup (1035431)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Viewing performance charts fails with the error: This program cannot display the webpage (1029664)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
vCenter Storage Monitoring plug-in does not get enabled when vSphere Client 4.1 is connected to vCenter Server 4.0 (1029885)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Upgrading the ESX/ESXi host using vCenter Update Manager fails with error: Unknown Error (1030744)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
SSPI Timeout when logging in to vCenter using Windows session credentials (1032641)
Date Published: 3/4/2011
Cisco HBA does not handle aborted commands correctly in Cisco UCS blades (1033409)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
When executing a SQL statement VirtualCenter Server service stops with the error ORA-01010: invalid OCI operation (1034312)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
Clicking the Hardware Status tab for an ESX host reports the warning: No new host data available. Data will be updated in 5 minutes (1035457)
Date Published: 3/4/2011

VMware vCenter Server Heartbeat
vCenter Server Heartbeat console shows SQLServer messages (1031530)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
Installing vCenter Server Heartbeat using Broadcom NICs or HP NICs with Broadcom chipset capable teaming on Windows Server 2008 and later (1035398)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
vCenter Server Heartbeat console shows SQLServer messages (1035402)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
Locating the VMware vCenter Server Heartbeat Executables and Icons (1035414)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
vCenter Server Heartbeat console log displays the message: System: Error creating counter Server Work Queues\Queue Length (1035415)
Date Published: 3/1/2011
Locating the VMware vCenter Server Heartbeat executables and icons (1030677)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
Data Rollback disabled in the vCenter Server Heartbeat Console (1035410)
Date Published: 3/1/2011

VMware vCenter Update Manager
Scanning the ESX host using VMware Update Manager fails with the error: request failed because the remote server xxx.xxx.xxx.xx took too long to respond (1029364)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Installing Update Manager fails with the error: Error 25085 : Setup failed to register VMware vCenter when trying to install update manager (1035543)
Date Published: 3/4/2011

VMware vCloud Connector
vCloud Connector does not support top-level domains (TLDs) with more than 4 characters (1035488)
Date Published: 3/2/2011

VMware View Manager
Connecting to the VMware View desktop fails with the error: No desktop resource available (1025790)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Physical Machines with Teradici Host card not working with PCoIP (1033823)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Checking out a linked clone desktop fails with the error: This desktop cannot be checked out (1034948)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Frequent disconnects when using Thin Client for connecting to VMware View desktops (1034986)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Unable to take snapshot of persistent disks on linked clone View desktops (1035019)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
Removing a replica VMware View Connection Server from the Administrator page (1035520)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Provisioning a desktop pool fails with the error: VcFault:VMware.Sim.Fault.VcObjectNotFoundFault (1019581)
Date Published: 2/28/2011
Windows in View Desktop appear as outlines when connecting from Wyse V10L Thin Client (1022515)
Date Published: 3/3/2011
Download page does not list VMware View Composer (1035324)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
Creating a linked clone pool fails with the error: Only ESX 4.0 hosts or homogeneous clusters of hosts running ESX 4.0 can be selected (1028489)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
Security servers switch to only listening over HTTP after upgrading to VMware View 4.6 (1035349)
Date Published: 3/2/2011
Pool deployment fails when Windows volume licence does not activate in pool desktop (1035519)
Date Published: 3/3/2011

VMware VirtualCenter
Using the Move VMs to Directories option causes virtual machines to disappear from the inventory (1029769)
Date Published: 3/4/2011

Well from my calculations we have now passed 100 newsletters over the past 2 or so years. I am very proud of that achievement and hope that I have at least informed you of some of the activities in the world of VMware which as you all know if something I am very passionate about.

 

This week I am removing some of the content that I have kept in for a while to streamline the newsletter back for a week or two but of course these are always archived on my blog every week around Friday’s which is 5 days after I send this newsletter to you. The blog is accessed at http://communities.vmware.com/blog/vmwaretam, not all newsletters are there but at least the last 50 or so should you need to find anything. With the older newslettters being PDF and DOC’s they are harder to search but as we have now moved to HTML this is made much easier.

 

Of course as usual I have loads of news for you this week with all of the announcements, conferences and so on going on around the world it is really a privilege to be able to bring this newsletter to you with the effort really being driven by the wonderful VMware bloggers out there. If I haven’t mentioned this enough I want to re-iterate that it is the amazing work done by these individuals that gives me a newsletter I can produce and send to you each week. I often wonder what sort of newsletter I would have without them but luckily for me the world of VMware just gets more and more interesting and there is an ever increasing number of bloggers out there ready to share their views and news with us.

 

This week I would like to draw your attention to something that seemingly went unnoticed at least for me anyway, maybe I am just too busy but just in case I thought I would share it with everyone. More info in the newsletter but VMware released a small plugin called the VMware vCloud Connector which I think will be the beginning of a big impact for all.

 

Take care until next time

 

Neil Isserow (Newsletter Editor), Paul James

Queensland TAM Team

 

Featured Product

VMware vCloud Request Manager

ENHANCE COMPLIANCE AND CONTROL FOR VCLOUD DIRECTOR PRIVATE CLOUDS

Enhance compliance and control in VMware vCloud Director based private clouds by adding sophisticated approval workflows to provisioning requests and automatically tracking software license usage. Enforce standardized settings for better cloud governance and asset management:

Improve private cloud policy control by enforcing business policies and procedures on your private cloud infrastructure to avoid virtual sprawl

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Simplify user experience for cloud consumers with a simple cross-browser compatible portal

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More info: https://www.vmware.com/products/vcloud-request-manager/

 

VMware vCloud Connector

VMware vCloud Connector enables customers to use their vSphere Client as a single pane of glass view across hybrid clouds. Customers can use vCloud Connector to view, power on and off and copy VMs, vApps and templates across vSphere and vCloud Director-based private or public clouds.

 

Download: http://downloads.vmware.com/d/details/vccp/ZHcqYnRkZXdiZCpldw==

 

VMware View 4.6

While View 4.6 is considered a minor update, I am actually very excited about the new capabilities we have baked in to this version of our award winning desktop virtualization solution. Among the minor bug fixes and USB updates, View 4.6 delivers enhancements to View Security Server.  VMware View 4,6 now provides support for external end-users connecting to their View desktop via PCoIP across the WAN. This new support provides for a simple, secure remote connection and authentication as users connect to their desktops outside of the firewall. 

With this new native support, View Security Server provides an end-to-end PCoIP protocol session, and also removes the requirement for enterprise-class SSL VPNs (you can still use them with View and PCoIP if that’s what you have in your environment). For businesses this means reduced desktop virtualization infrastructure cost and configuration issues along with lower ongoing support costs. The result is a tightly-integrated and cost-effective desktop virtualization deployment that provides for easy authentication for those of us who work remotely. We think you will agree – it provides a vastly improved remote user experience.  

More details about what we're delivering with the PCoIP/Security Server integration can be found in this post from Mark Benson, View Architect from our CTO office.

Mark also pulled together this great video, which goes deeper into the technical specifics of the PCoIP/Security Server enhancements in View 4.6.

 

 

VMware View 4.6 PCoIP Remote Access from Mark Benson on Vimeo.

And as if Mark hasn't been busy enough, he pulled togehter this great blog post on Setting up PCoIP Remote Access with View 4.6.

You’ll also find a write up here from Scott Davis, CTO for End-User Computing.

The View 4.6 bits can be downloaded here.

 

Latest news and reviews

 

Uptime: New Book: Professional vSphere 4: Implementation and Management

I'm always on the lookout for new technical books with a VMware focus.  It looks like Cody Bunch and Patrick Ancillotti are working on a new one called "Professional vSphere 4: Implementation and Management".  It is expected to be released later this year (May 18th acording to Amazon.com).  From the standard description:

"VMware vSphere, is VMware's first cloud operating system, able to manage large pools of virtualized computing infrastructure, including software and hardware. Building on the power of VMware? Infrastructure, VMware vSphere dramatically reduces capital and operating costs, and increases control over IT infrastructures while preserving the flexibility to choose any OS, application and hardware. This book provides vSphere administrators with essential guidance in implementing and managing VMware's vSphere product suite. This guidance has been battle tested in virtual environments big and small. It also provides actionable advice for the day to day operational maintenance and common pitfalls to avoid for first time vSphere administrators. Best of all, the book includes an introductory version of Train Signal's vSphere training DVD that provides additional hours of vSphere training."

 

VMware Support Insider: Hardware Monitoring in ESXi

Today we have a guest post from Arun Pandey, a Tech Support Engineer in Bangalore, India office. Arun explains below how hardware monitoring can be accomplished in ESXi using vCenter.

Most of us are aware by now that future major releases of VMware vSphere will only include the VMware ESXi architecture. ESX, with its console is being phased out.

In ESX classic the VMware agents (hostd, vpxa), virtual machine monitor and the various 3rd party agents run in the service console.  In ESXi, they run natively within VMkernel. This architecture does not allow for installing any arbitrary code on your ESXi system (hence improving security and stability of the product). How then, can we plug in a monitoring solution?

 

vCO Team: vCloud Connector and other delights on VMware Communities Roundtable

No worries if you missed the live broadcast. It is available below. We had a very active session for just under an hour. Hope you enjoy(ed) the show

For the vCO portion of the discussion, we had Burke Azbill and John Stanford from VMware's Cloud Services team!

VMware Communities Roundtable

Title:#130 - vCloud Connector and other delights

 

Business Critical Applications: Introducing an updated VMware Compatibility Guide!

Did you notice the new user interface for the VMware Compatibility Guide? We are happy to announce that recently, we updated our customer-facing compatibility search for all compatibility items. Included in this is a revised and improved guest operating system search. You can search as before, but in addition you can now also search by attributes including Networking, Storage, Virtual Hardware and VMware Tools for OSes supported on ESX. Other benefits include an attractive UI, a significant increase in speed, and easy navigation to OS support details.

 

VMware Support Insider: How to configure Port Binding in Software/Hardware iSCSI initiators

Another guest post from Venkat Krishnamurthy, today's dealing with how to configure port binding for your iSCSI initiators.

Port binding is a method of configuring multipathing with Software/Hardware iSCSI initiators.

A brief outline of the steps involved:

Create a vmkernel port for each physical NIC. If there are n physical NICs, you can create n vSwitches and define vmkernel ports to map each of those physical NICs. Else a single vSwitch can be created and each vmkernel port could be mapped to one active NIC. This step could be easily performed from the vSphere client.

 

Business Critical Applications: High Availability for Exchange 2010 without DAG

With the release of Exchange 2010 the native clustering feature (Database Availability Group) is a significant improvement over what was available with all previous versions. Be that as it may, there will still be customers that simply don't want to cluster. Typically, not clustering the application would mean no high availability. VMware changed that with the introduction of VMware HA. By simply enabling this feature (which is literally a check box) all virtual machines, regardless of operating system or application, would be provided protection from an ESX host failure. To take it a step further you could enable VM Monitoring to protect against guest OS failures by monitoring VMware Tools running within the virtual machine. Agnostic protection of the guest OS and application is great, but the question that was consistently asked by our customers was "…what if my application fails?" vSphere 4.1 helps answer that.

 

VMwareTV: VMware View PCoIP Remote Access in View 4.6

VMware View 4.6 now provides support for external end-users connecting to their View desktop via PCoIP across the WAN. VMware ThinApp 4.6.1packages applications into single executables that run completely isolated from each other and the operating system, now with improved packaging for Microsoft Office 2010.

 

VMware Support Insider: A Beginner's Guide to Memory Reclamation in ESX/ESXi

Today we have a guest post to the blog from Venkatramani Krishnamurthy, a Tech Support Engineer in our India offices. Venkat (for short) gives us an introduction to some of the different ways ESX and ESXi manipulate memory.

 

There are four different methods by which ESX reclaims virtual machine memory. They are:

Transparent Page sharing

Ballooning

Hypervisor swapping

Memory compression

 

Uptime: Fault Tolerance and Isolation Response

Most of us are familiar with how the HA Isolation Response works.  If a host in a cluster loses connectivity with all the other nodes in the cluster it is deemed as isolated.  When this happens the cluster “Isolation Response” dictates how the host will react.  
The options are: 
(1)    Leave powered on
(2)    Power off
(3)    Shut down

 

ESXi Chronicles: Ops changes part 4 - Injecting or installing drivers

Two weeks ago I was presented with a problem regarding the use of drivers that were not part of the standard ESXi ISO. I started looking into it and discovered there are two main solutions for a problem like this.

Installing drivers during the installation

Injecting drivers into the ISO

 

vCO Team: VMware KB TV - How to install and configure VMware vCenter Orchestrator Plug-in for vCloud Director

We are proud to announce that vCO Team members and VMware KB TV have released the "How to install and configure VMware vCenter Orchestrator Plug-in for vCloud Director" video. This video is published on the excellent VMware KB blog and VMware KB channel on youtube . We definitely recommend you to subscribe to these and to follow VMware KB on twitter.

 

vCO Team: VMware released the vCenter Orchestrator Plug-in for vCloud Director

Today VMware released the most complete automation solution for vCloud Director as a free download !

This is a plug-in for vCenter Orchestrator allowing to orchestrate vCloud Director (and not the other way around, vCD 1.01 does not have the ability to start an external process).

 

Tiny Core Linux and Operational Readiness

When installing, configuring, or managing VMware virtual infrastructure, one of the steps which should be performed before releasing a host (back) to production is to perform operational readiness tests.  One test which is quite critical is that of testing virtual infrastructure networking.  After all, what good is a running VM if it has no connectivity to the rest of the network?  Each ESX or ESXi host pNIC should be individually tested for internal and upstream connectivity, VLAN tagging functionality if in use (quite often it is), in addition to proper failover and fail back, and jumbo frames at the guest level if used.

There are several types of VMs or appliances which can be used to generate basic network traffic for operational readiness testing.  One that I’ve been using recently (introduced to me by a colleague) is Tiny Core Linux.  To summarize:

 

Two books about ESX/ESXi in the entreprise

ESXi is the product to deploy, how? Those 2 books might help you with that.

In no particular order, I’ll start with the first one. Dave Mishchenko the author of this book.

VMware ESXi is the easiest way to get started with virtualization — and it’s free. It allows administrators to consolidate their applications onto fewer servers and start saving money through reduced hardware, power, cooling, and administration costs. VMware ESXi has been optimized and tested to run even their most resource-intensive applications and databases with minimal performance overhead. “VMware ESXi: Planning, Implementation, and Security” covers the key features critical to successfully planning for and implementing VMware’s ESXi.

The book is perfect for current VMware VI3 and vSphere administrators who may be planning their migration to vSphere ESXi. These users may have some experience with ESXi but not yet have it deployed within their production environment. This book provides the guidance to implement ESXi in their environment, ensuring a smooth transition from their current deployment of ESX.

 

Floating Pools are the way to go….

I mostly see the use of Persistent Pools at organisations I visit here in Asia Pacific region. Perhaps this is different for other regions of the planet (I doubt!), but I can tell you what I see here.

When I ask administrators for the reason why persistent pools have been adopted as the default solution for their virtual desktop infrastructure I repeatedly get the same responses:

Our users need to connect to the same environment 
- Our users need to be able to retain the look and feel 
- Our users must maintain their data every time they connect to the virtual machines 
- We need the Persistent Disk (old User Data Disk) 
- Not sure…

 

FlexPod for VMware Deployment Model CVD Now Available

Customers are moving away from silos of information and moving toward shared infrastructures to virtualized environments and eventually to the cloud to increase agility and reduce costs. As a means to accelerate customers move toward a shard cloud platform Cisco, NetApp, and VMware released FlexPod™; a preconfigured and validated cloud architecture built on the Cisco® Unified Computing System™ (UCS), Cisco Nexus® data center switches, NetApp® FAS storage components, and a range of software partners.

Today Cisco & NetApp published our latest Cisco Validated Design (CVD) titled the FlexPod for VMware Deployment Model. This document describes the basic architecture of FlexPod for VMware as well as the general procedures for deploying a base FlexPod for VMware configuration. This document is intended for engineers who want to deploy a FlexPod for VMware architecture.

 

Yeah - The VMware FastTrack training courses are back

VMware vSphere: Automation FastTrack

This fast-paced, extended-hour training course includes the content of the VMware vSphere: Install, Configure, Manage and VMware vSphere: Automation with vSphere PowerCLI courses. This hands-on course explores installation, configuration, and management of VMware vSphere™ using the VMware vSphere Client and VMware vSphere PowerCLI. vSphere PowerCLI automation can reduce your IT costs while improving efficiency, availability, flexibility, and manageability. The course is based on VMware ESX™/ESXi 4.1 and VMware vCenter™ Server 4.1 and includes a prepaid voucher for the VMware Certified Professional 4 examination.

VMware vSphere: Advanced FastTrack

This fast-paced, extended-hour, lab-intensive course includes the content of the VMware vSphere: Manage for Performance and VMware vSphere: Troubleshooting courses. This course provides the knowledge and skills necessary to make fundamental design decisions that enhance performance and meet performance goals in a deployed VMware vSphere™ installation. This course also provides the knowledge, skills, and abilities to achieve competence in troubleshooting the vSphere virtual infrastructure. This course includes a prepaid voucher for the VMware Certified Advanced Professional 4 – Datacenter Administrator examination.

 

VMware View: Desktop FastTrack

This fast-paced, extended-hour training course includes the content of the following courses: VMware View: Install, Configure, Manage Application Virtualization with VMware ThinApp VMware View: Design Best Practices This hands-on training course builds your skills in the VMware View™ suite of products: VMware View Manager, VMware View Composer, and VMware® ThinApp™. It will provide applicationsoriented administrators with the knowledge and skills to virtualize Windows applications with ThinApp and to choose the best deployment and updating processes for their environment. The course will also present a methodology for analyzing and designing a View solution for the VMware vSphere™ infrastructure. The course is based on View 4.5 and ThinApp 4.5 and 4.6. It includes a prepaid voucher for the VMware Certified Associate 4 Desktop examination.

http://www.vmware.com/education

 

Video – Deploying the vCloud Connector

In this video I’ll show how to deploy the vCloud Connector virtual appliance and connect it to a vCenter server instance.  vCloud Connector (vCC) allows the vSphere Administrators to use their familiar vSphere Client as a single pane-of-glass view across hybrid clouds. It’s also a great tool when you have to transfer virtual machines between multiple vCenter servers.

New Article – Configuring Storage Pools on a CLARiiON

penguinpunk.net 3/03/11 8:27 AM dan CLARiiON EMC Storage Unisphere cx4 emc flare howto san storage pools unisphere

 

I’ve added another 16 page pdf that states the obvious, in a visual way, about how to configure storage pools on the CLARiiON. Check out my other articles while you’re here.

 

Virtual Network Best Practices Aggregation

This week a colleague of mine asked me to help out with a customer’s network design in his VMware environment.  I have long possessed the kind of socratic wisdom that allows me to recognize my ignorance.  And I have either the confidence of the foolishness to boldly announce here that I am a networking ignoramus.  But the journey to enlightenment starts with one step.

 

Virtualisation 102 – SRM

This article builds on the previous 101 overview of VMware’s Site Recovery Manager and covers the deployment process at a high level.  For detailed instructions on how to roll out SRM please refer to the documentation linked to in the previous article.

Preparation Phase

DR projects are notorious for soaking up engineer resource, requiring multiple tests and lots of beard-stroking to achieve a workable solution, so it’s vital to have a business sponsor to drive the project to completion.  Any half-hearted attempt at building a DR platform will fail.

 

 

VMware vSphere: Manage for Performance Course Experience

Last week I was fortunate enough to be able to attend the VMware vSphere: Manage For Performance course. I did the lab related to this course at VMworld Europe last year and in my now increasing preparations for the VCAP-DCA exam I knew I needed to strengthen my troubleshooting skills and more importantly fine tuning my ESXTOP/RESXTOP skills. Quite a few people commented that they really liked my VMware vSphere: Manage and Design for Security Course Experience posting so I thought i would try do the same for this one for anyone interested or thinking about booking the course.

 

More on Oracle and VMware–including other must-see resources.

The blog post on EMC’s own journey on virtualizing Oracle (we saved $5M vs. our old configuration, and got 20x more performance) has gotten a lot of feedback (thank you all!)

There was one piece of feedback I wanted to call out in particular before we get to more resources.   Phil Jaenke does a spirited defense of RISC-based approaches to Oracle here.   His main point (IMO) is that people with aging RISC/large-endian systems should consider refreshing those rather than the alternative I presented (replatforming to x86 and virtualizing).

There will be a time to do a point by point discussion with Phil on the topic.   His main point was around Oracle licensing.   He noted that our low CPU utilization number means that we could have saved more by either having less UCS hosts and/or VMs, or by keeping it on RISC and using RISC-based virtualization/partitioning approaches.

But, while we will do the point-by-point (Phil – shall we do it at VMworld?), I actually AGREE with Phil more than you would think.

As I noted in the article (these are points that Phil points out also):

 

EMC Webcasts in March

EMC Webcasts are in full effect! Over 20,000 viewers have registered for these webcasts, why haven’t you!? Every Thursday we cover the hottest topics hitting the virtualization scene, and this month isn’t going to be any different!

We have five hot topics for you this month, everything from Virtualizing Oracle to Delivering IT as a Service! And for a special treat we have Chad’s Choice at the end of the month where VMware Technology Alliance Vice President, Chad Sakac, delivers the hottest topics flowing around the virtualization ecosphere…this is one webcast you do not want to miss!

Want to hear them all? Register for the entire series and never miss an episode!

Converting Open Virtualization Format (OVF) -Virtual Machines to VMware Fusion

Yellow Bricks 26/02/11 11:59 PM repping Desktop Various fusion ovf tips

I needed to run an appliance inside VMware Fusion on my Mac, the appliance was in OVF format. VMware Fusion currently does not support this format and requires you to convert the image with a tool called ovftool which can be downloaded at the following location: http://communities.vmware.com/community/vmtn/vsphere/automationtools/ovf

Conversion is as simple as:

./ovftool "source.ovf" "target"

 

PowerCLI reference book

I blogged about this almost two months ago and just on Luc’s blog that the release date has been set and the cover art was released. I wanted to remind all of you the book that is one of a kind, VMware vSphere PowerCLI Reference: Automating vSphere.

Release date: 28th of March
Authors: Luc Dekens, Alan Renouf, Glen Sizemore, Arnim van Lieshout, Jonathan Medd
ISB: 0470890797

 

Managing availability through vCenter Alarms

Last week a customer asked me a question about how to respond to for instance a partial failure in their SAN environment. A while back I had a similar question from one of my other customers so I more or less knew where to look, and I actually already blogged about this over a year ago when I was showing some of the new vSphere features. Although this is fairly obvious I hardly ever see people using this and hence the reason I wanted to document one of the obvious things that you can implement…. Alarms

Hi everyone, well I have a particularly long newsletter this week. Firstly I have decided to keep a few of last week’s announcement’s and information in this week’s newsletter in case anyone missed them. This includes SpringSource news, Lab Manager announcement and vSphere 4.1 update 1.

 

I would also like to turn your attention to View 4.6 which is an update for anyone running View. This is another significant step in desktop virtualisation.

 

There is also a new VMware blog which I have highlighted this week called Business Critical Applications. From next week I will begin to put further important updates from this blog in the newsletter as well.

 

A while back in the newsletter I used to feature a particular product and include summary information from our website on it. I have decided to start doing this again. Over the past 18 months there has been so many new technologies and updates that are worth mentioning that I think this is the best forum for me to do this.

 

On that note please enjoy the newsletter and I look forward to speaking to you all next week.

 

Take care until next time

 

Neil Isserow (Newsletter Editor), Paul James

Queensland TAM Team

 

Featured Product

VMware vCloud Request Manager

ENHANCE COMPLIANCE AND CONTROL FOR VCLOUD DIRECTOR PRIVATE CLOUDS

Enhance compliance and control in VMware vCloud Director based private clouds by adding sophisticated approval workflows to provisioning requests and automatically tracking software license usage. Enforce standardized settings for better cloud governance and asset management:

Improve private cloud policy control by enforcing business policies and procedures on your private cloud infrastructure to avoid virtual sprawl

Maximize efficiency and service delivery through intelligent process automation

Simplify user experience for cloud consumers with a simple cross-browser compatible portal

Minimize deployment costs and speed with minimal configuration

 

More info: https://www.vmware.com/products/vcloud-request-manager/

 

VMware View 4.6

While View 4.6 is considered a minor update, I am actually very excited about the new capabilities we have baked in to this version of our award winning desktop virtualization solution. Among the minor bug fixes and USB updates, View 4.6 delivers enhancements to View Security Server.  VMware View 4,6 now provides support for external end-users connecting to their View desktop via PCoIP across the WAN. This new support provides for a simple, secure remote connection and authentication as users connect to their desktops outside of the firewall.

With this new native support, View Security Server provides an end-to-end PCoIP protocol session, and also removes the requirement for enterprise-class SSL VPNs (you can still use them with View and PCoIP if that’s what you have in your environment). For businesses this means reduced desktop virtualization infrastructure cost and configuration issues along with lower ongoing support costs. The result is a tightly-integrated and cost-effective desktop virtualization deployment that provides for easy authentication for those of us who work remotely. We think you will agree – it provides a vastly improved remote user experience. 

More details about what we're delivering with the PCoIP/Security Server integration can be found in this post from Mark Benson, View Architect from our CTO office.

Mark also pulled together this great video, which goes deeper into the technical specifics of the PCoIP/Security Server enhancements in View 4.6.

 

 

VMware View 4.6 PCoIP Remote Access from Mark Benson on Vimeo.

And as if Mark hasn't been busy enough, he pulled togehter this great blog post on Setting up PCoIP Remote Access with View 4.6.

You’ll also find a write up here from Scott Davis, CTO for End-User Computing.

The View 4.6 bits can be downloaded here.

 

vSphere 4.1 Update 1

=== VMware ESX ===

http://www.vmware.com/support/vsphere4/doc/vsp_esx41_u1_rel_notes.html

 

=== VMware ESXi ===

http://www.vmware.com/support/vsphere4/doc/vsp_esxi41_u1_rel_notes.html

 

=== VMware vCenter ===

http://www.vmware.com/support/vsphere4/doc/vsp_vc41_u1_rel_notes.html

 

=== VMware vSphere 4.1 Update 1 is available for download ===

http://downloads.vmware.com/d/info/datacenter_downloads/vmware_vsphere_4/4_0

 

Lab Manager - Product Announcement                            

                                                                                                                                                                Recently VMware announced important changes to the vCenter Lab Manager product, specifically around its future development and lifecycle.

 

Key Facts contained within the announcement:

-       Lab Manager will be supported until May 1, 2013, (27 months from now)

-       As part of VMware’s investment in our customers' journey to cloud computing, all LabManager customers can exchange existing licenses to vCloud Director (vCD)

-       Customers will have the option to exchange licenses anytime through the end of LabManager’s general support in May 2013

 

vCloud Director is a new software solution that provides the scalability and security necessary to deliver catalogue-based self-service provisioning across different workload types, across multiple enterprise tenants, and across both private and public deployment models

 

For those customers already using Lab Manager, this may be the ideal opportunity to:

-       Reduce Lab Manager Sprawl – consolidate multiple Lab Manager installations that havesprung up across departments into an enterprise private cloud

-       Facilitate your path to a Hybrid Cloud – obtain the option to extend workloads to externalpublic clouds using vCloud technology

-       Harden for mission criticality – leverage the scalability and security offered by the architecture of vCloud Director

 

For more details around the announcement please visit the official Product Lifecycle FAQ landing page at http://www.vmware.com/support/policies/labmanager-update.html

 

Springsource News

 

RabbitMQ 2.3.1 is Released

The RabbitMQ team is pleased to announce the release of RabbitMQ 2.3.1—perfectly timed for the start of the year of the Rabbit. This release fixes a number of bugs and introduces some enhancements, including streaming publish confirmations, new plugin mechanisms for authentication and authorization and more, which you will find in the release notes

 

Spring GemFire 1.0.0 project now available for both Java and .NET!

The Spring GemFire project is designed to make it easier to build Spring-powered highly scalable applications using vFabric GemFire as a distributed data management platform.   Through Spring GemFire, Spring users should feel right at home interacting with GemFire while developers familiar with GemFire will see the benefits and flexibility of the Spring container, its powerful AOP integration, and versatile service abstractions.  Spring GemFire for both Java and .Net available for immediate download.

 

Spring Android 1.0.0.M2 Released

We are pleased to announce that the second milestone release of the Spring Android project is now available! This release supports usage of the Spring Framework in an Android environment. The 1.0.0.M2 release focuses on extending the use of RestTemplate in native Android applications. For more details on utilizing the Spring Android Rest Template and Spring Android Commons Logging libraries, take a look at Roy Clarkson’s Spring Android and Maven ‘Part 1’ and ‘Part 2’ postings.

 

Spring Mobile 1.0.0.M3 has been Released

We are pleased to announce the third milestone release of the Spring Mobile Project which provides extensions to Spring MVC aiding in the development of cross-platform mobile web applications. The 1.0.0M3 release ships a general facility for user site preference management that can be used independently or in conjunction with the mobile site switcher. See the Changelog and reference manual for all the info

 

Latest news and reviews

 

Uptime: VMware vCenter Site Recovery Manager 4.1.1 is released!

This maintenance release of SRM was released the same day that vSphere 4.1 Update 1 was released.  We will always try to do that whenever possible.  There are a number of important fixes in it however, and as such I recommend people look at upgrading to it as quickly as their need dictates.  I should mention that the upgrade itself can only upgrade SRM 4.1 installs and NOT SRM 4.0 installs.  The release notes can be found here.  You can download the update here.

 

Uptime: Recommended Alarms for SRM Admins to watch

I have been asked before about which of the SRM alarms should users configure and watch for.  There is a lot of different alarms, and I suspect no one needs all of them, but I also suspect everyone will need a few of them.  I will help you get started with what I think are important and mostly standard alarms.  I will also give you ideas of what will trigger them if there is any doubt.

Lets dive in!

 

Uptime: VMware Data Recovery is now included in Standard

This question has been raised a few times lately, and I thought I would try to give the answer a little broader distribution.

Yes, as of vSphere 4.1 Update 1, we have included VMware Data Recovery (vDR) with the Standard product edition, which means all of the editions now include vDR.  You can see more detail here.

 

Rethink IT: New cloud readiness self-assessment tool

“Poor leadership and misalignment is a people problem and ain’t no cloud ever gonna fix that.” This heartfelt tweet came from a large enterprise engineering lead responsible for private cloud. It gets to the core of a key question: how, exactly, does an IT organization deal with people and process issues on the path transform itself to deliver IT as a service?

To help organizations determine where to start, VMware has launched a new web-based cloud readiness self-assessment tool: http://www.vmware.com/go/getcloudready

 

VMTN Blog: New Desktop certification forum created

Last week, we have launched a new forum to discuss the recently-created desktop certification: VCA-DT: VMware Certified Associate - Desktop

The VMware Certified Associate 4 – Desktop (VCA4-DT) is the first step  toward gaining expertise in desktop virtualization and earning the  respect and recognition that comes with being VMware Certified. The exam  is designed for  Desktop System Administrators who seek to demonstrate their ability to  manage, monitor and troubleshoot desktop  deployments and VMware View components, as well as their knowledge of  adjacent, complementary technologies to VMware  solutions.

The exam is currently in Beta. For more information or to sign up for the beta, visit the VCA-DT certification page.

 

Business Critical Applications: Troubleshooting Performance Related Problems in vSphere 4.1 Environments

The hugely popular Performance Troubleshooting for VMware vSphere 4 guide is now updated for vSphere 4.1 . This document provides step-by-step approaches for troubleshooting most common performance problems in vSphere-based virtual environments. The steps discussed in the document use performance data and charts readily available in the vSphere Client and esxtop to aid the troubleshooting flows. Each performance troubleshooting flow has two parts:

 

Virtual Reality: Hypervisor Memory Management Done Right

Sophisticated and effective memory management has always been a key strength of the ESX (and now, ESXi) hypervisor that powers VMware vSphere.  Back in 2001, when ESX first came out, 2GB was a lot of RAM in an x86 server, so it was essential for a hypervisor to economize on memory to deliver the server consolidation benefits customers were so eager to realize.  Back then, the big attraction of server virtualization was running several lightweight utility and test/dev servers in VMs on a single host and memory was usually the resource that limited consolidation ratios.  Today, x86 machines are pushing 1TB of RAM, but because our customers have now virtualized their most memory-hungry production database, messaging and application servers, memory resources are just as critical as ever.

 

Business Critical Applications: Welcome to the new VMware Business Critical Applications blog!

Hello and welcome to the new VMware Business Critical Applications blog, a source for information, insight, and updates to help you virtualize your business critical applications on the VMware platform.

The blog will cover the following applications/functional areas and we will continue to add more over time:

Microsoft Applications

Exchange

SQL Server

SharePoint

SAP

Oracle

Java Applications

 

ESXi Chronicles: Ops changes part 3 - Local disk vs USB vs BFS

When I was planning this series of articles one of the things that was on the top of my list was to "compare" the type of install destinations that could be used as I guess the variety of options is the strength of ESXi. The reason, as hopefully all of you know by now, that ESXi can be installed on a large range of different devices is the size of the system image.The system image is not only tiny, but ESXi is loaded into memory and will only write its configuration roughly once every 10 minutes when it is booted.

 

Uptime: vMotion - what's going on under the covers?

It’s funny how you can go months without any questions about a feature and then all the sudden you get a flurry of questions.  Such is the case with vMotion.  Over the past few weeks I’ve had several folks ask me about vMotion.  These haven’t been the typical “how do I configure vMotion” questions, but rather “what’s going on under the covers” type questions.  In response to one such question Gabriel Tarasuk-Levin from the VMware engineering team gave an excellent overview on how vMotion works and I thought it would be good to share.

New vSphere 4.1 Performance Guide

vSphere 4.1 Performance Troubleshooting Guide has been released.

It’s a community document (PDF) which is available from this link.

“It’s a guided approach to lead the reader through the observable manifestations of complex hardware/software interactions in order to identify specific performance problems. For each problem covered, it includes a discussion of the possible root-causes and solutions. Topics covered include performance problems arising from issues in the CPU, memory, storage, and network subsystems, as well as in the VM and ESX host configuration.  Guidance is given on relevant performance metrics to observe using the vSphere Client and esxtop in order to isolate specific performance issues.

 

Configure iSCSI port binding in VMware vSphere 4.1 video

In this video, VMware engineer will show you the configuration of iSCSI port bindings.

Nice video find on the VMware KBTV which I’d like to share here. It’s the process of activating an iSCSI initiator (via GUI) and binding the vmk nics (via CLI ..) .

You’ll see the configuration steps, but also the testing with ESXTOP command line. Also he will do a check to make sure that the configuration is correct by creating a disk file on a datastore. While doing this, he unplugs one cable to simulate a failure. As you’ll see there will be 100% packet drop, and the failover to vmnic2 will happens. The creation of the VMDK file will continue and the traffic will flow through the vmnic2 only.

 

Official VCAP-DCA simulation demo online

Watch a Official VCAP-DCA demo at VMware Website.

I was not aware of that, but while I was reading return of experience from David Davis and his VCAP-DCA exam, I noticed that he pointed in one of his links to this official VMware Online demo. David is an author of many successful VMware vSphere trainings, but his latest training is oriented to prepare you for the VCAP-DCA exam. I already wrote an article about the new vSphere troubleshooting training and you can watch 2 videos for free – when the course went out I’m preparing to pass this exam as well and I’m using those training courses myself to learn.

 

ThinApp 4.6.1 released

Thinapp 4.6.1 is a maintenance release.

A new version of ThinApp has been released. This maintenance release covers more than 160 fixes. Some of those fixes are for example for Google Chrome running on x64 bit platforms, WordPerfect, Ad-Aware2008, vSphere 3.5U5 on XP, Victor Player, Firefox + Foxit Reader 4.2, Office communicator, HP Peregrine, SAGE, iTunes 9.2.1, and Equation editor for Microsoft Office Excel 2007….

Some of the other improvements are for Microsoft Office 2010, Internet Explorer 6,7,8, new options for the package.ini file, and support for SxS COM (SxS – Side-by-Side – It’s Microsoft’s technology  with Windows XP which allows applications to create COM objects without installation or registration in the registry.

 

How to pin a VM to single host and still be able to enter maintenance mode

Today a customer asked me about a specific issue he has in his vSphere environment. They are running a VM that monitors network traffic and they want to make sure the VM is running on esx-1 unless...

 

VCAP4-DCA… run…run…run

Late last week I received the good news from the VMware Certification Team that I passed my VCAP4-DCA exam. It has taken almost 3 weeks to receive the results.

A number of bloggers have provided feedback on their exam experience and how difficult it is. I personally didn’t find it extremely difficult, however in my opinion there is a post from David Davis that synthesizes exactly what I experienced when taking the exam.

Read his post at http://www.trainsignaltraining.com/vcap-dca-exam

 

VMware View 4.6 PCoIP Software Gateway (PSG)

VMware View 4.6 has been just released and as everyone expected this release introduces support for external secure remote access with PCoIP, without requirement for a SSL VPN. This feature is also known as View Secure Gateway Server. VMware’s Mark Benson, in his blog article, does a very good job explaining why tunnelling PCoIP traffic through the Security Server using SLL was never a viable solution because VMware didn’t want to interfere with the advanced performance characteristics of the protocol.

 

New Book - VMware vSphere For Dummies

VMware vSphere For Dummies is a plain-English guide to the market-leading virtualization and cloud computing technology. With virtualization, a single server can host dozens or hundreds of virtual machines running a variety of operating systems, and even hook them together in a virtual network or cloud infrastructure. This practical guide shows you how to create a virtual system using the VMware VSphere environment.  You'll find all the information you need to understand, design, and deploy one—without getting overwhelmed with technical detail. And once you’re up and running, this book is the perfect reference for maintenance and troubleshooting issues. 

 

VCAP4-DCD Exam Simulation

VMware has released the VCAP4-DCD exam simulation. The VMware Certified Advanced Professional Datacenter Design Exam contains tree types of items. Multiple choice, drag and drop and design items created using a tool that allows diagramming vSphere Designs. The purpose of this simulations is to give future candidates the opportunity to work with the tool that’s also used in the real Datacenter Design exam.

 

VMware Labs V2

VMware is happy to announce an updated version of VMware Labs. As you know VMware has launched flings a few months back and their goal has been to make VMware Labs a home for collaboration by sharing information and ideas. As part of this they have now expanded their offerings to include:

• Flings: You can now view those cool flings sorted by Top Rated and Most Commented plus addition of latest fling - XVP Manager and Converter
• Publications: Listing of academic and technical papers authored by VMware engineers.
• Academic: Find details on our collaborative work with academic institutues or review the request for proposals for research projects.
• Conference: Want to meet a VMware engineer? Find a listing of conferences sponsored by VMware where engineers are usually giving a talk or presenting a paper.

 

New Book - VMware vSphere PowerCLI Reference: Automating vSphere Administration

VMware vSphere PowerCLI is a must-have tool for any administrator managing VMware vSphere in a Windows environment. Having to repeat vSphere administrative tasks can be time consuming and error-prone, but PowerCLI—created specifically for Windows environments—allows VMware administrators to automate tasks. Written to the latest PowerCLI, this handy guide shows you step by step how to use the PowerCLI cmdlets for daily administration procedures and frequently performed tasks for VMware vSphere 4.1. The reference is organized by vSphere tasks, providing a practical approach to accessing the information you need while you are on the job. Supported by real world examples and no-nonsense instruction, coverage includes installation, configuration, and management of a vSphere environment, management of the virtual machine life-cycle, security, and monitoring and reporting.

 

Turning Your Virtualization Project Around

Recently an former VMware colleague of mine sent me an email. His new employer’s IT department encountered a variety of problems with the virtualized deployment of their custom application. Now they are reluctant to put business-critical applications on vSphere. The tide of virtualization is crushing them from all sides so they know that they need to figure out what has gone wrong and produce a functional virtual environment. But where to start? And how can they mitigate risk and avoid any more failures?

At my friend’s request I spent some time thinking about this. I sent him a long response and thought I would share it with you.

 

Virtualisation 101 – SRM

This is the first in a short series of high level articles intended to explain how some of VMware’s products and features work, to help anyone that needs to get up to speed quickly on a particular topic.

What Is It?

Site Recovery Manager is a VMware product that enables protection of a virtual infrastructure at a site level.  Once configured, SRM can orchestrate the recovery of a failure of the primary site, bringing virtual servers online quickly, and in a predetermined order, at the recovery site.

What Do I Need to Deploy It?

 

Reference – VMFS3 Block Sizes & Limits

Just putting this here for my own reference (as I often find Google indexes my site better than the VMware KB).

Speaking of KB. Here is the relevant VMware KB.

VMFS3 Block Size choices & Volume limits:

Block Size     Largest virtual disk on VMFS-3

1MB          256GB

2MB          512GB

4MB          1TB

8MB          2TB

 

My View 4.5 Guide is now FREE to download

Well, I think the blogpost title kind of says it all. As of today my View 4.5 Guide is now completely free to download.

Why I have a decided to this. Well, for a couple of reasons.

  1. View 4.6 was released today – introducing new functionality. In particular the Security Server is now compatible with PCoIP. It’s always been my policy that as new version comes out. I either write an update – or I make the previous edition free – this was the case with the SRM 1.0 and 4.0 books. If you want to learn about 4.6 new functionality watch this video below its great!

 

Cold Starting a Datacenter

How would you prepare for a complete datacenter power outage?

I had the opportunity to consider this recently — last weekend, some of the VMware labs needed to be shut down completely for widespread power maintenance.  It was a minor inconvenience, but fortunately these occasions are few and far between.  At least I fared better than Scott Lowe who recently powered off all of his gear for nothing.  Ouch!

In this particular lab the primary hardware is a couple dozen HP servers and two CLARiiON storage arrays.  Naturally, all of the supporting infrastructure is virtualized, so I looked at this as an opportunity to see how I could best manage such an event.  Oh, by the way, this lab is two states away, so everything is done remotely.

 

Backing up the ESXi System Image

ESXi is based on a system image, VMware used to call this a firmware but some people found this misleading, most people still refer to it as firmware but in this post I will refer to it as a system image.

The system image is a unified image which is the same whether booting from USB, Hard Disk, PXE or any other media. The logic in the first boot will provide auto configuration based on the kind of installation you have.

 

Why Virtualize Oracle? How about saving $5M and 20x faster perf?

While there are MANY enterprise customers who are virtualizing mission critical apps, some who are virtualizing clients in all shapes and forms, some who have functioning internal self-service ITaaS portals, and some who are leveraging external public cloud models – for the most part, we’re still in relatively early days.

 

Installing drivers during a scripted install of ESXi

As you hopefully have read I have been busy over the last weeks with a new project. This project is all about enabling migrations to ESXi. I wrote two articles for the ESXi Chronicles blog of which the first article describes the scripted install procedure and the seconds gives some additional advanced examples of what is possible in these scripts. Based on that article I started receiving some questions from the field and last week I had a conference call with a customer who had issues “injecting” a driver into ESXi during the install. Normally installing a driver is done by using a simple “esxupdate” command and a reboot, but in this case however the situation was slightly different and let me explain the problem first.

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