3 Replies Latest reply on Mar 18, 2019 9:53 AM by emcclure

    vRA 7.5 problems with RDP, VMRC, design questions

    emcclure Enthusiast



      I'm working with vRA 7.5 and setting this up for another team.  It will basically have blueprints that teams can use to deploy different images of Windows, Linux and Mac for testing.  Currently I'm working on tweaking a blueprint for a Windows VM and am trying to figure out the best things to do to keep the speed of the image build quick, but yet also provide an awesome image that has what the user needs.


      To start I'm joining the machine to our domain and the user who creates it will only be a user on the machine and not a local admin per the team requirements.  There's also a local non-domain user on the machine as well that can be used.  I'm using a Guest Customization that does the sysprep, new SID, domain join, etc.  It takes about 7 - 8 minutes to complete the whole process thru vRA, which to me is fine.  However since it's joining a domain I'd like users to be able to RDP, but sometimes DNS isn't fast enough and it can't find the machine for a few minutes and sometimes it can.  I do have a Property Group that has the VirtualMachine.Admin.NameCompletion and the DNS name I want to use, which I think was supposed to help with the DNS part, but it doesn't seem to be fast enough for what the team will want.  Using VMRC is rather odd as it doesn't work well thru vRA.  If I login to the vCenter where the machines are hosted and Open Console it works with VMRC without issue.  However if I go thru vRA and go to the machine I've created and choose Use VMRC it will either prompt in the browser to install VMRC, which I already have or let me click on a link to open the console.  If I open the console it does open, but that's it.  It doesn't seem to fully open, I can't get into the OS and just have to close VMRC back out.  Obviously I'm the admin so not a huge deal for me, but for users it would be a real pain.  How do I fix that?


      I'm also trying this without adding the machine to the domain, without adding the user who creates it as a local user and just only having the users login with the local non-admin user.  However it would be really helpful to have VMRC working on that as a secondary option.  I've noticed when I remove the Property Group and the Guest Customization it will create the machine in about 3 minutes which is awesome.  However the machine still has the same name as the template and I can't RDP to it either.  I'm assuming the SID/GUID are still the same?  I'm going to assume this is probably the worst way to create an image.


      Another test I've done is to use a Guest Customization that doesn't join the domain.  New SID, host name matches the VM name, can use a local non-admin to login.  It took only 5 minutes to complete.  However RDP is still an issue.   I notice when I go to deployments and to Components -> Machine -> Network I don't see an IP yet for the machine, even though I know it has one, which could be why I'm not able to RDP?  Is there a way to get it to RDP using the IP instead of the host name, or is it just I have to be patient?  I'd basically like it to be after a machine is created for a user to be able to RDP right away or open VMRC (Is there a way in vRA to use a browser to open a console instead of VMRC?  Not seeing an obvious answer).


      So from what I've gathered here so far based on my testing is this:


      Need Guest Customization to rename the machine

      Difference between domain/no domain is about 2-3 minutes build process

      RDP doesn't work right away, need vRA to see IP sooner

      VMRC not working properly thru vRA, but fine in vSphere


      So is there any other way to speed the process?  I use Clone or NetApp FlexClone for the machines since we actually have NetApp/Tintri storage.  How to get the IP quicker so RDP works and how to get VMRC working as well?  Any other good custom properties to use to enhance the process?


      All help appreciated.



        • 1. Re: vRA 7.5 problems with RDP, VMRC, design questions
          emcclure Enthusiast

          I have found if I change the Frequency in State under Data Collection for the Compute Resources to 1 minute then it can take about 7 minutes ( 6 to build, 1 to refresh and get the IP) to complete a setup without adding the machine to the domain.  This allows the user to RDP right away.  Still looking for more ways to speed things up (reasonably) and figure out the VMRC issue.


          Edit: Would having vRA check the state of a compute resource every minute cause any issues?  Anything to worry about at all?  If so where would I check?

          • 2. Re: vRA 7.5 problems with RDP, VMRC, design questions
            Luke Novice

            How is the IP assigned, DHCP or Static?


            Data collections on an endpoint can be quite an intensive operation, especially in a larger infrastructure.


            If you are not already using Static IP addresses with IPAM integration that would maybe be the best route to go down. You can have an email sent to the requestor giving all machine details post build which can show the hostname/IP address for them to use to RDC.


            Are/will the users be initiating RDC from their local machine or have you added it as an action against the VM for them to click?

            • 3. Re: vRA 7.5 problems with RDP, VMRC, design questions
              emcclure Enthusiast

              Hi Luke,


              We are using DHCP.  It'd be the best way for us since the machines will be built up and torn down pretty consistently with different names each time.  I'm sure there's some sort of scripting to assign static IP, but for right now I'm just trying to make it as simple and reliable as possible.


              I added it as an option thru vRA for the user to click on the option to connect via RDP.  I did notice if I collect the state every minute it's about 7 minutes before a machine is fully ready, that is without it joining the domain.