vSAN Experience Day

On 3rd May we had a great day, called vSAN Experience Day. The event hosted by VMware, in Holiday Beach Budapest Hotel.

The presenter, Karel Rudišar is a System Engineer at VMware from Czech Republic. He previously worked at Dell, has significant experience at storage and vSAN area. Let’s check the agenda:

The event was organized as a classroom training. Rudišar has started with the SSDC. Some words about the market share of complete portfolio, evolution of storage components and the current market status of the vSAN. (7000+customers, 100+ countries)

Then we went through the vSAN basics: limitations, policies, HCI, tier types, disk groups, use-cases, options (VxRAIL, ready nodes, certified components)

The latest version of the vSAN 6.6 was just released, with a huge feature package. I also wrote some posts about the new features of the vSAN 6.2 last year, but this table summarizes each release. (click to enlarge)

Stretched cluster had a couple of slides. If you have 5ms RTT & 10Gbps connection between sites, you can build one

Next topics: RoBo, Hybrid vs All-Flash setup.

vRealize Operations Manager has a management pack for vSAN, you can download from here. Here you can check a great demo about it.

Another topics was also excited. If you want to try the vSAN without having any physical vSAN components, you can do it via the Hands On Labs!

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VMUG Hungary 2017 Q1 – Great Opening

Yesterday was the first VMUG, HU in 2017: nice venue, exciting presentations, delicious lunch and around 100-130 attendees. As I wrote, the Cinema City was the host again which has of course a fantastic huge screen for presentations:)

Lets check the agenda a bit detailed.

9:00-9:50Regisztráció / Registration

9:50-10:00 VMUG Leader köszöntő / Welcome

Csaba has talked about the new global VMUG site – he will upload the photos and presentations of the previous VMUG events soon.

10:00-10:30Dell-EMC

Előadás címe: VMware vRealize Operations Manager bevezetés és tapasztalatok a Lapker Zrt.-ben
Előadó: Gyémánt Krisztián (Areus Zrt.) és Kiss Tibor Lapker Zrt.

The first topic was a vRealize Operations Manager PoC / implementation / administration case study in Lapker Zrt. We have seen how awesome is the Infra Navigator (it’s mapping the VM dependencies at application level automatically) Tibor showed us several examples about the alarms and predictions.

10:30-11:00VEEAM

Előadó: Boris Mittelmann (VEEAM)
Előadás címe: Hidden and overlooked gems that make VEAAM unigue availability solution

Obviously the message was that they do not like any more the “backup software” category, but using instead “availability” software. the Linux and Windows agents are still in beta, but coming soon.

Also, a new management tool will be launched, called VEEAM Availability Console, for service providers and distributed enterprise environments. A short reminder about the Quick Migration i.e. (s)vMotion w/o vCenter. There were a couple of slides about the Enterprise Manager (coming soon) which is a web based management tool, tag integration. Swiss knife at Veeam side is the Backup Extractor, which is a 20MB size smart tool, handles the VEEAM backup files w/o any infrastructure (vCenter, B&R, etc). So even if all of the infra components are lost, except the backups, VMs / VMDKs / guest files can be restored with this tool.

Also I had a talk with Boris about the new B&R v10. He showed me some very interesting new features, which will come later this year. But I can’t tell more, because he would shoot me down:)

11:00-11:30Kávészünet / Coffee break

Great cookies and good coffee with IT experts  🙂

11:30-12:00VMware

Előadó: Czuczumanov Valentin
Előadás címe: VMware bejelentések, újdonságok az EUC háza tájáról

Valentin brought us several exciting news.

  • In the ECU segment the magic quadrant showed that the Horizon passed the Citrix.
  • News from the latest Horizon version (7.1):
    • Just-in-time Management Platform (JMP),
    • Blast protocol enhancements in different network conditions,
    • Skype for Business.
  • Workspace One: SSO for your apps from any device.
  • New App Volumes editions are available (Std / Adv / Ent).
  • Based on the recent purchases only 30-32% of the sales at VMware was coming from vSphere. The other huge part was everything else, but upper level.
  • At the end we have seen a great demo about the App Volumes: under 2-3 seconds ~20-30 apps were pushed to a demo desktop. Uninstallation took also only 2-3 seconds. That was impressive.

12:00-12:30Lenovo

Előadás címe: Lenovo nagyvállalati megoldásai VMware-re hangolva

Miklos started his presentation with the Lenovo / ex-IBM server portfolio: Tower, Rack, Dense / Flex categories. Currently there are Lenovo based (RS, RD)  and IBM based (System X) rack servers, but in the near future the portfolio will be consolidated: ThinkServer and ThinkAgile will be the only brands. He talked about the Flex nodes, Chassis and the NeXtScale System in details. Both are suitable for virtualization. Then the huge rack servers were mentioned: System x3850 X6, which is a 4-socket 4U high performance modular sever with great expansion options, check the photo, in the left corner.

The beast System x3950 X6 is a 8-socket 8U, which can be logically partitioned into two 4-socket systems. There were couple of slides about the network options and the entry-level storage solutions (Storwize family). Based on the research, Lenovo thinks that the feature of the storage solutions will be the SDS (Software-Defined Storage) with Nexenta and Cloudian.

12:30-13:00EBÉD / Lunch

13:00-13:30VMware

Előadó: Czuczumanov Valentin
Előadás címe: VMware Validated Designs

In this presentation Valentin showed us what is the VMware Validated Designs We have seen the new 4.0 version. The official webpage has a great definition, so I will use it:

VMware Validated Designs deliver holistic data center-level designs that span compute, storage, networking and management, defining the gold standard for how to deploy and configure the complete VMware SDDC stack in a wide range of use cases.

The version 4.0 is just 3 weeks old, the new set of the documents can be downloaded from here. It defines PODs (Point of Delivery) which can be: Management, Edge and Compute. Here is a great high level post about the POD components. Below a huge poster from the 3.0. The new 4.0 version can be downloaded in .pdf format.

13:30-14:00Közösségi előadás / Community Presentation

Előadó: Herceg András (VCAP-DCA/DCD, vExpert)
Előadás címe: vCenter SSL tanusítvány készítése és cseréje / Self-Signed vCenter SSL Certificate – Creating and Replacing

That was my presentation at the end:) I have talked about how to create and replace a self-signed (expired..) vCenter SSL certificate. I went through also a Root CA (MS AD CS) installation & SSL template creation. This is a non-production (test & dev) environment case-study with a lot troubleshooting, but with a happy end. You can check my Perzi here:

14:00Sorsolás, Zárás / Giveaway, Closing

Giveaway! Csaba and the sponsors had exciting prizes, such as: 1-year VMUG Advantage subscription, VMUG MUG, a Synology 2-disks NAS, (yes, Csaba you are right, that is a really good product, I am using one many years ago:), a VMware bag and some other things.

The next VMUG date is 2017, Jun!

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VMUG Hungary – 2017 Q1

The first VMware User Group Hungary conference will be on Tuesday, 28th of March. This time I will participate as a speaker, I am preparing with the following:

“Self-Signed vCenter SSL Certificate – Creating and Replacing”

I will tell about the creating and replacing process, which wasn’t a smooth task at all 😀 So we will also go through a couple of exciting errors.

The agenda is already available, Csaba has just send it out via mail. Also available on the VMUG Community website, here.

  • 9:00-9:50 – Regisztráció
  • 9:50-10:00 – VMUG Leader köszöntő
  • 10:00-10:30 – Dell-EMC
    Előadás címe: VMware vRealize Operations Manager bevezetés és tapasztalatok a Lapker Zrt.-ben
    Előadó: Gyémánt Krisztián (Areus Zrt.) és Kiss Tibor Lapker Zrt.
  • 10:30-11:00 – Veeam
    Előadó: Boris Mittelmann (Veeam)
    Előadás címe: Hidden and overlooked gems that make Veeam unigue availability solution
  • 11:00-11:30 – Kávészünet
  • 11:30-12:00 – VMware
    Előadó: Czuczumanov Valentin
    Előadás címe: VMware bejelentések, újdonságok az EUC háza tájáról
  • 12:00-12:30 – Lenovo
    Előadás címe: Lenovo nagyvállalati megoldásai VMware-re hangolva
  • 12:30-13:00 – EBÉD
  • 13:00-13:30 – VMware
    Előadó: Czuczumanov Valentin
    Előadás címe: VMware Validated Designs
  • 13:30-14:00 – Közösségi előadás
    Előadó: Herceg András (VCAP-DCA/DCD, vExpert)
    Előadás címe: vCenter SSL tanusítvány készítése és cseréje
  • 14:00 – Sorsolás, Zárás

Additionally, it will be again in the Cinema City – IMAX Arena, which was a great former location of the VMUG many years ago.

Here you can register!

Update 03.30:

Here you can read my thoughts about the VMUG 2017 Q1 event.

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vSphere Compatibility Predictor – fling test

VMware has just released a new fling called vSphere Compatibility Predictoricon-icoIt is basically an upgrade checking tool. Validates if your currently running vSphere 5.5 / 6.0 infrastructure components will work with 6.5 or not.

This Fling scans all PSCs connected to a single
PSC. It will detect the versions of all the vCenter Servers connected to PSCs and all the Solutions connected to vCenter Servers. It will then depict the connectivity in pictorial form.

When you choose the Upgrade View in the Fling, it will show which Solutions are compatible with vCenter Server 6.5. This can help the administrator plan the upgrade in advance.

Installation

After accepting the Technical Preview License, the .zip can be downloaded. It contains the VMware-vSphere-Compatibility-Predictor-Setup-1.0.0-20170127.exe, install it on a Windows 2008R2/2012/8.1.

install

Usage

I have tested it with both existing vCenter versions: 5.5 and 6.0. Use the PSC/SSO credentials. (vsphere.local\Administrator). With the default settings you can login into a vCenter 6.0 only – that is using the LDAP port 636. So based on the versions you need the following LDAP ports:

  • vSphere 5.5 SSO: use the port 11712
  • vSphere 6.0 PSC: use the port 636

Otherwise you will get the following error:

Could not able to make the connection to PSC/SSO Ldap Server…

error

However the same will be displayed, even with wrong user/password, port, IP as well.

Results

After a successful login Accept the thumbprint, then select the site (vCenters and PSCs will be displayed) and press Upgrade View. In our 5.5 example a couple of extensions are compatible with 6.5:

  • vCenter Intelligent Power Plug-in (EATON)
  • vShield Manager
  • VR Management
  • VDP 6.1

Do not forget to check the fling site!

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DELL iDRAC Quick Sync NFC with PowerEdge R730

Recently we have received a couple of DELL PowerEdge R730 rack servers. Of course, each has already vSphere installed with the new HTML5 vSphere Web Client Appliance.

hosts_edit

In our lab till now there were mainly IBM /Lenovo and Fujitsu servers, so the R730 was also new for me.

20170127_144515-1

The 13th Gen server (of course it is great and fast) has a very special functionality, called iDRAC Quick Sync. This solution allows you to manage some of the 13th Gen Dell rack servers by touching your phone to the front bezel using the NFC technology. Sounds amazing, right?

20170127_144447-2

The iDRAC Quick Sync is visible at back side of the front bezel

How to setup

  1. Power On the NFC capable 13th Gen Dell server
  2. Install the DELL OpenManage Mobile to your iOS /Android phone
  3. Enable the NFC on your phone
  4. Press the iDRAC Quick Sync button on the front bezel
  5. In the OpenManage app select the iDRAC Quick Sync Read option and touch the front bezel with your phone (can be password protected)
  6. After 1-2 sec a new iDRAC item will be listed in the app.

What is possible?

With this convenient mobile solution lots of information about the server can be polled.

  • Basic data, server components list
  • Server event logs
  • Firmware details (from all of the components, even from the PCIe cards)
  • Network (iDRAC) details: IPv4/6 and MAC addresses
  • Health (storage, battery, FAN, Power, Temp, Voltage..) status
  • Warranty info – based on the Service Tag the start/end date, order and customer numbers are displayed
  • Link to the components list.

This list can be refreshed whenever you want. The another great function is that e.g. the iDRAC network settings can be modified and applied on the server.

So if you have such DELL Rx30 server and NFC capable phone, it definitely worth a try!

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vSphere (HTML5 Web) Client 6.6 – Fling Dashboard

Almost every week a new beta version of the vSphere HTML5 Web Client is released. As you already know the community loves this product: the site has more than 1400 comments, 63 bugs and a huge changelog with lot of improvements and bug fixes. The huge enthusiasm is understandable, because the HTML5 based client provides a modern, flat based much cleaner interface. Of course the most important advantage is the rocket speed response time.h5-icon

This year in March I also tested the first version. (For Hungarian readers: Zoli has also posts here and here) Since then, VMware has released the vSphere 6.5 VCSA including a “supported version” of the vSphere H5 Client. (bulid 4598948)

0-vcsa-ver

Unfortunately upgrading of this vSphere Client inside the VCSA is not possible currently. The only way to have the latest Fling (which is 2.19 – Build 4810256) is using the vSphere Web Client Appliance. The installation method is pretty much the same, as with the Bulid 3680819, but since the 1.17 – Build 4202128 a new way is available through the Fling Appliance Management Interface (FAMI). This web interface eliminates most of the CLI part – theoretically:)  Let’s check it.

Installation

  • Download the OVA, deploy it and boot it. You will get the following on the console:

01-version

  • On the VCSA6.5 the default shell must be changed to bash, this can be done via SSH.

022-precfg-on-vcsa

  • Now we can use the Fling Appliance Management Interface (FAMI), which is available at https://H5_Appliance_IP_Address:5490 (On the port 5480 we can modify the IP, GW, DNS, hostname of the appliance). With the FAMI the VCSA registration can be done.
  • Looks great! Now we have two H5 Clients: the integrated one inside the VCSA and the latest one as an OVA appliance. Let’s check the latest H5 Client with opening the https://H5_Appliance_IP_Address/ui Unfortunately there is no UI, but an error message was waiting for me

A server error occurred.

[400] An error occured while sending an authentication request to the vCenter Single Sign-On server – An error occured when processing the metadate during vCenter Single Sign-On setup – null.

Check the vSphere Client server logs for details

04-error

Oookay. Look into the logs

root@vcsa65 [ ~ ]# /etc/init.d/vsphere-client show_log

At the end:

[2016-12-29T11:54:02.900Z] [INFO ] cm-catalog-manager-pool-5 c.v.v.s.c.impl.SecurityTokenServiceImpl$RequestResponseProcessor Request message has expired. Server message: ns0:MessageExpired: The time now Thu Dec 29 12:54:03 UTC 2016 does not fall in the request lifetime interval extended with clock tolerance of 600000 ms: [ Thu Dec 29 11:44:02 UTC 2016; Thu Dec 29 12:14:02 UTC 2016). This might be due to a clock skew problem.
[2016-12-29T11:54:02.900Z] [INFO ] cm-catalog-manager-pool-5 c.v.v.s.c.impl.SecurityTokenServiceImpl$RequestResponseProcessor Server returned 'request expired' less than 0 seconds after request was issued, but it shouldn't have expired for at least 600 seconds.
[2016-12-29T11:54:02.900Z] [ERROR] cm-catalog-manager-pool-5 com.vmware.vise.vim.security.sso.impl.SsoUtilInternal Time sync error: VC Server and local machine's clocks are out of sync by more than the accepted tolerance.
[2016-12-29T11:54:02.900Z] [ERROR] cm-catalog-manager-pool-5 com.vmware.vise.vim.security.sso.impl.NgcSolutionUser Solution user login failed. com.vmware.vim.sso.client.exception.TimeSynchronizationException: Server returned 'request expired' less than 0 seconds after request was issued, but it shouldn't have expired for at least 600 seconds.

Continue reading

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Recover Orphaned Virtual Machines

After several host network issues some of the VMs in the inventory were displayed as orphaned. No worries, this is an easy one 🙂

orphaned

However in this state the VMs are not usable, but a few options are still available. To recover them there are the following possibilities:

  • simply migrate (cold vMotion) the orphaned VMs to another ESXi host. After the re-registration they will be active again.
  • remove (unregister) the VMs from the inventory, open the Datastore and add (register) the .vmx file to the vCenter server.

Usable KBs in this topic:

  1. Virtual machines appear as invalid or orphaned in vCenter Server (1003742)
  2. vSphere Docu Center
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