Browsing Posts in vSphere

VMware vSphere, during its history and the different version, has got several types of GUI client. One of the most used (not the first, but the standard one since Virtual Infrastructure 3.0) was the vSphere Client for Windows. But on May 2016 VMware has announced that the Legacy C# Client (aka thick client, desktop client, or vSphere Client) will no longer be available with the vSphere 6.5 release, replaced by web-based clients. With VMware vSphere 6.5 there are mainly two different “Web Client”:  the vSphere Web Client (based on Flash and introduced in vSphere 5.0) […]

Meltdown and Spectre are critical vulnerabilities existing in several modern CPU: these hardware bugs allow programs to steal data which is currently processed on the computer. Meltdown and Spectre can affect personal computers, mobile devices, server and several cloud services. Actually, the only way to minimize those security risks is to patch your operating systems, but also the hypervisor level and the hardware level (if vendors provide a new firmware).

One month ago, VMware has released a new branch of the VMware Tools, the version VMware Tools 10.2.0 some a new interesting feature: the offline VIB bundle. With this package, you can simply upgrade the embedded VMware Tools components in your VMware ESXi hosts in order to continue to update your VMware Tools as usual!

Now that the PSOD on vSphere 6.5 and 10 Gbps NICs issue is finally solved seems that vSphere 6.5 critical bugs are closed, but it’s not totally true. During an upgrade from a vSphere 6.0, I’ve found a really strange iSCSI storage issues where all the VMs on the iSCSI datastore were so slow to become un-usable. First I was thinking about drivers or firmware, in the hosts and in the NIC (1 Gbps) or the firmware on the storage.

On October 2017, I wrote a post about a possible issue with vSphere 6.5 and 10 Gbps NICs (mostly standard on new deployment). The final result was a PSOD (Purple Screen Of the Death) and no solution was available (yet). VMware KB 2151749 describe this issue as related to possible upgrade at vSphere 6.5. But other customers have report the issue also on new deployment. Veeam, one of the first vendor to found this issues (from their customers), reports that the issues is due to network-intensive activities such as backup over NBD or vMotion randomly triggering one. […]

VMware vSAN should manage better VM snapshots compared with traditional storage and VMFS datastores. The reason is the new (v2) on-disk format in VSAN 6.0 and the new filesystem that is used: VirstoFS. VirstoFS is the first implementation of technology that was acquired when VMware bought a company called Virsto a number of years ago. Also there is a new sparse format called vsanSparse. These replace the traditional vmfsSparse format (redo logs).

In the VMware ESXi 6.x partitions layout, usually there is a partition called “scratch” that hosts the log, the updates and other temporally files. Scratch space is configured automatically during installation or first boot of an ESXi host, and is not required to be manually configured. If you install ESXi on a local hardware disks (or also if you are using a remote LUN in “boot from SAN” mode), this partition is build during the installation phase (it’s 4 GB Fat16 partition created on the target device during installation, if there is sufficient space). If […]

Seems that there are still some issues with vSphere 6.5, with a possible PSOD (Purple Screen Of the Death) after upgrade to 6.5U1 on ESXi hosts using 10 Gbps NICs. The VMware KB 2151749 describe this issue and explains that this occurs because Netqueue commit phase abruptly stop due to the failure of hardware activation of a Rx queue. As a result, Internal data-structure of the Netqueue layer’s could go out of sync with the device and cause PSOD.

One of the big advantages of the virtual appliance version of VMware vCenter (vCSA) is the ability to update both the OS components and the VMware parts with a simple menu. Just use the administrative UI available at https://vCSA_IP:5480 and login with user root and the password that you have choose during the deployment.

The Link Layer Discovery Protocol (LLDP) is a vendor-neutral link layer protocol used by network devices for advertising their identity, capabilities, and neighbors on an IEEE 802 local area network, usually with Ethernet standard. Compared to Cisco Discovery Protocol (CDP) it’s not proprietary and can be used from different vendors. VMware vSphere adds LLDP capability in the Distribuited Virtual Switches (DVS). CDP it’s also available both in DVS, but also in standard virtual switches (by default it’s enabled in listen mode).

If you choose to install the vCSA 6.5 in two different components, you may have an error during the PSC custominization (happens also on latest 6.5U1): An error occurred while starting service ‘pschealth’ This it’s related to a failure of identity management service error on first boot, so during the phase 2 of the deployment where the appliance has already been upload, but still must be configured.

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