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BContario
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Copying / Cloning host configuration of existing ESXi host to new ESXi host without Virtual Center

We are adding more ESXi 3.5 hosts to our existing set of ESXi hosts and the VLAN, Port Groups, and iSCSI configuration is getting pretty complicated to keep in sync between the existing hosts, let alone copy to new ESXi hosts. What options are available currently for ESXi to copy such settings off of running ESXi systems and apply them to new hosts?

I found the ITQ VLan and Portgroup Manager, but it requires Virtual Center to export and then apply settings from one host to another, and we do not have budget/plans to buy vCenter / Virtual Center for a while yet.

The posting here http://communities.vmware.com/thread/166932 has a pretty manual method, but going back and updating live systems as we add VLANs and port groups seems risky as the number of hosts increases.

I am hoping I have just overlooked things by not using the correct search terms. Does anyone have any suggestions or pointers for ways to export and then import just the VLAN, Port Group, iSCSI, and vSwitch settings via powershell or RCLI commands?

Thank you in advance,

Brian

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lamw
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It looks like you've already looked at some possible solutions, you might also try looking in the VI Toolkit for Windows (PS) for any scripts that have been written to only export/import network configurations to the host. I'm not aware of any tools that does just what you're asking for, if you're looking at the RCLI you could use vicfg-backup to download an already build ESXi host and with some crafty manipulation, you could re-upload that change back to the host, though you would be uploading all changes including mounted datastores if your ESXi had any.

It might just be easier if you create a script that does exactly what you're looking for in either Powershell or RCLI and just update the portgroup/network configs as needed so it can be used in the future. Note with ESXi 3.5u3, the VI API has been unlocked with both r/w access, in a future build this will not be the case and tools like VI Toolkit Windows and RCLI will not be able to remotely manage a free version of ESXi. If you are using at leas the VI Foundation license, you don't need to worry and in the upcoming relesae of the new VI, you'll have things like Host Profiles that you can take advantage to keep your builds consistent.

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William Lam

VMware vExpert 2009

VMware ESX/ESXi scripts and resources at:

BContario
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Well, this morning I ran across this posting that I think has the basic principles of what I want to do:

I'll be looking at this for now, but anyone else that has tips, suggestions, and scripts, I will warmly welcome them!

So, is there roadmap information somewhere I can see that explains the remote management limitations of ESXi Free versus ESXi with a VI license? That could significantly impact some of our future efforts and I would love to be able to produce some online documentation to point upper management to for justification of budget adjustments.

Thank you!

Brian

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