brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

ESX deployment appliance v1.05

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https://solutionexchange.vmware.com/store/products/esx-deployment-appliance-eda

ESX Deployment Appliance (EDA) is a small and easy to use appliance

that makes deploying ESX servers a breeze. It has a very intuitive

web-interface that can configure and deploy dozens of ESX servers in

minutes. It has a script-builder that will allow any admin to create

%post-scripts that will do most anything one needs to get the ESX hosts

up and running! Even if deploying with RDP/Altiris or the UDA, this

script-builder can help setting those up very quickly.

850 Replies
David_Meekins
Contributor
Contributor

Hi my SAN storage issue turned out to be a Hba hardware failure. Did you manage to release the next version of EDA

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

it's ready but i haven't had a chance to test it with a real esx/san environment. as soon as i have and seen it work i'll upload it.

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unreal2
Contributor
Contributor

Hello Brugh,

I've got a question, also posted on the VMUG.

I'm trying to use your EDA to build a deployment for a number of ESX systems.

Running the appliance under Workstation, and seperated this, and the target system from the network by using a switch, I am now ready to go for a unattended trial-run.

The target system is a IBM X346 with additional broadcom NICs.

The target boots fine from the PXE of the appliance, and the configuration names I made in the browser shows up.

I choose one, and it starts the installation process, until it wants to copy the ks.cfg file.

The text installations stops at "choose the language you want to use during installation"

CTRL-F3 shows:

ks location http:.............hostname=TestESX01

transferring ks............... to a fd

failed to retrieve ..... ks.php hostname=TestESX01

CTRL-F4 shows:

cdrom: open failed.

And then everything stops.

Do you, or anyone here knows what is going wrong, and what I have to do to get it running ?

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

this is usually a VLAN or network segmenting problem. once the PXE part of the boot process is over, stage 2 starts and restarts the network. it's possible that a differnet NIC is considered primary and tries to get an IP address. this NIC can be in a different VLAN as the PXE/web server and will fail to connect.

you can try stepping through the wizard as a normal installation, choosing http as your installations source. type the ip address of the EDA as webserver and 'esx' as directory. if that fails you have to try booting from another NIC or put everything in one LAN. if that works however, forget all the previous VLAN stuff because you have another issue. in that case let me know and I'll have another look.

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

OK! i finaly got around testing the new EDA 0.71 version and it works like a charm. no more problems with SAN connected ESX servers. it installs perfectly. i added some new scriptbuttons so people downloading it just for it's scriptbuilder will have more options too.

i'll post it this weekend and will leave a msg here to it's whereabouts Smiley Wink

and it's online. v0.71 now available at http://www.virtualappliances.eu/

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dmaster
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Hello All,

Does someone knows when a new release comes out or where the saved kickstart files are located ?

It's a realy nice tool, but not complete. Is there a alternative way to modify the kickstart files for now ?

for example on the ubuntu console (where are this files located), so i can from there update the kickstart files.

now for example the license sever string is not correct, you cannot change root password or manually encrypt it, etc etc.

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

you're right, it's not finished. that's why it's not a version 1.something.

the base kickstart file is in /var/www/ks/ks.php

the rootpassword is on the todo list. but what's wrong with the license server string? i'm trying to get this thing as complete as possible so i'll fix those in the next release.

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dmaster
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Hi Brugh,

i also found the /var/www/ks/ks.php file.

in there i was able to change the root password with an ecrypted one.

i also was able there to change the license server string.

we use:

vmlicense --mode=server --server=27000@licensesrv.domain.com --edition=esxFull

When we use --edition=Full instead of --edition=esxFull there is no license server added to the newly deployed ESX host.

p.s. Is the EDA appliance also compatible with ESX 3.5 Update 2 ? (do you know the location of the script wich recreate the ESX .iso file)

p.s. Are there also files available on the appliance which contains all the kickstart info of all the created esx hosts and what is the location of that?

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

EDA will work with ESX3.5u2. it doesn't however recreate a whole new ISO file. it just strips the SAN drivers from the PXE boot files. the script that does that is /usr/bin/scr.

and it doesn't save the kickstart files it generates. it just generates them everytime you click on the 'ks' link behind an ESX server name or when an ESX server requests it at installtime. if you want to backup the ks files you could save the settings for the whole appliance. restore that and you'll have your ks files back.

i'll change the Full to esxFull in the next release. thanks!

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dmaster
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Hello brugh,

The ESX deployment appliance v0.71 works okay here..

except when i use the the .iso of latest release of VMware ESX Server 3.5 update 2 ;(

with the .iso of update 1 it works great ?

i get the following debug information when try starting the deployment of esx 3.5 update 1, do you have a clue ?

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dmaster
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Hi brugh,

can i do a feature request ?

is it possible to build in two buttons for stopping and starting of the internally dhcp server?

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

what kind of hardware are you running on? it looks like it doens't correctly identify the network card. and without network, no http install, so it will try to fallback to cd and since there's nothing in there, it stops. this is a normal phase 2 from the boot process and should have nothing to do with how it's being installed. did you try booting the machine directly from the cd and see if that works? and booting from cd and manually start a http install?

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

will do.

if you want to stop it now you can go to dhcp config, type some random stuff in the configfile and restart dhcp. it will stop the server because of a bad configfile Smiley Wink not very elegant and exactly why i'll add that button in the next release

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dmaster
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

I am testing now with VMware Workstation 6 and use the e1000 network device..

i cannot believe that the e1000 has been stripped out with esx 3.5 update 2

when i use esx 3.5 update 1 with exactly the same configuration the deployment with EDA 0.71 works fine ?

i will try the manual install to see if the e1000 is working with that.

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dmaster
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

hi brugh,

thanx for fullfilling the feature request and the workaround for the dhcp server.

i tried the manual install of esx 3.5 update 2 and that worked fine on the same configuration on with the EDA 0.71 appliance failed ? see screenshot.

did you test esx 3.5 update 2 yourselve with EDA 0.71 ?

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

that's very strange. i tried the installation on vmware workstation 6.5 beta 2 and it works fine. also on physical hardware the u2 release installs perfectly. i have no idea why it doesn't work for you. can you try the same setup on a physical box?

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dmaster
VMware Employee
VMware Employee

Hi brugh,

i recently discovered that i was testing with EDA v0.61 instead of v0.71.

i use VMware workstation 6.0.4 build-93057 (latest non beta release)

i will test the deployment again with EDA v0.71 and post the results.

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cmors
Contributor
Contributor

Anyone know where I can set or edit the ksdevice option for EDA? Having trouble with getting it to start the script and I suspect is due to having multiple nics and the wrong one being used. Stuck at:

reverse name lookup failed

ks location: http://myipaddress/ks/ks.php?hostname=myhostname

transferring http://myipaddress/./ks/ks.php?hostname=myhostname to a fd

failed to retrieve http://myipaddress///ks/ks.php?hostname=myhostname

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brugh
Enthusiast
Enthusiast

it's in the interface's main page in the General ESX host settings. it defaults to eth0 but if you add a quadport NIC you may sometimes have to enter eth4 or even something else.

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cmors
Contributor
Contributor

I have been through just about every ethx with no luck. I have 4 x onboard broadcom and 2x4x intel nics. Took some time but still doesnt work. Any idea what might be going wrong?

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