The ESX System Analyzer is a tool designed to help administrators plan a migration from ESX to ESXi. It analyzes the ESX hosts in your environment and, for each host, collects information on factors that pertain to the migration process:
• Hardware compatibility with ESXi
• VMs registered on the ESX host, as well as VMs located on the host’s local disk
• Modifications to the Service Console RPMs which have been added or removed or files which have been added or users and cronjobs which have been added
This tool also provides summary information for the whole existing environment
• Version of VMware Tools and Virtual Hardware for all VMs
• Version of Filesystem for all datastores
By having this information, administrators can determine what tasks need to be done prior to the migration. Examples include:
• Relocate VMs from local datastores to shared datastores
• Replace cronjobs with equivalent remote scripts written with PowerCLI or vCLI
• Make note of what agent software has been added to the host and obtain the equivalent agentless version
Be one of the first one to try, rate and comment - ESX-system-analyzer
Update: Remon Lam over at VirtualVlouds.info has figuered out the username and password, he also has a link to the userguide.
Wednesday, November 30. 2011
The ESX System Analyzer is a tool designed to help administrators plan a migration from ESX to ESXi. It analyzes the ESX hosts in your environment and, for each host, collects information on factors that pertain to the migration process:
Tuesday, November 29. 2011
Viktor van den Berg is ramping up. He has presented a great line-up of speakers who are going to deliver the most awesome sessions at the Dutch VMUG event. If you didn’t register yet, there's still a chance. Make sure you mark the 9th of December in your agenda. More information can be found here.
Here’s the list with the celebrities:
• Alan Renouf, Senior Technical Marketing, VMware
• Andre van der Werff, Senior Systems Engineer, VMware
• Bob de Kousemaeker, Principal Product Manager, RES Software
• Bouke Groenescheij, Freelance Consultant, jume.nl
• Cormac Hogan, Technical Marketing Manager for Storage, VMware
• Duncan Epping, Principal Architect, Technical Marketing, VMware
• Eric Sloof, Freelance Trainer/Consultant, Famous Blogger, NTPRO.NL
• Gabrie van Zanten, gabesvirtualworld.com / Consultant - OpenLine
• Henk Arts, Senior System Engineer, Veeam Software
• Jeroen van de Kamp, CTO, Login Consultants
• Luc Dekens, System Engineer, Eurocontrol Maastricht
• Marcel Steenman, Senior Technical Consultant, Platani
• Mattias Sundling, Virtualization Expert, Quest
• Michael Heffernan, Global Chief Technologist Virtualisatie, Hitachi Data Systems
• Raymon Epping, Technical Account Manager, Professional Services, VMware
• Ruben Spruijt, Technology Officer, PQR
• Stefan Willems, Senior Solution Architect, Platani
• Verron Martina, vSpecialist, EMC
• Viktor van den Berg, VMware Consultant, PQR, Dutch VMUG Leader
Sunday, November 27. 2011
Jeff works as a full-time Independent Instructor/Consultant that focuses on Cisco UCS and IP Telephony technologies as well as VMware virtualization solutions. One of his biggest interests is the implementation of Unified Communications on the Cisco UCS solution using VMware’s vSphere datacenter suite.
He has started a weblog over at cloudinaround.com, in one of his most recent articles he introduces the first in a series of videos that will explore the Cisco UCS architecture and signal flow. In this first video, he starts by identifying the main components and their connectivity. In follow-on videos, he’ll dive deeper into how everything communicates.
Wednesday, November 23. 2011
vSphere supports several command‐line interfaces for managing your virtual infrastructure including the vSphere Command‐Line Interface (vCLI), a set of ESXi Shell commands, and PowerCLI. You can choose the CLI set best suited for your needs, and write scripts to automate your CLI tasks.
The vCLI command set includes vicfg- commands and ESXCLI commands. The ESXCLI commands included in the vCLI package are equivalent to the ESXCLI commands available on the ESXi Shell. The vicfg command set is similar to the deprecated esxcfg- command set in the ESXi Shell.
You can manage many aspects of an ESXi host with the ESXCLI command set. You can run ESXCLI commands as vCLI commands or run them in the ESXi Shell in troubleshooting situations. You can also run ESXCLI commands from the PowerCLI shell by using the Get-EsxCli cmdlet. See the vSphere PowerCLI Administration Guide and the vSphere PowerCLI Reference. The set of ESXCLI commands available on a host depends on the host configuration. The vSphere Command‐Line Interface Reference lists help information for all ESXCLI commands. Run esxcli --server <MyESXi> --help before you run a command on a host to verify that the command is defined on the host you are targeting. You can use this link to get your copy of the VMware ESXi 5.0 Reference Poster Continue reading "Video - Using the ESXI 5.0 vCLI Command Set " »
Tuesday, November 22. 2011
VMware® ThinApp™ is an agentless application virtualization solution that decouples applications from their underlying operating systems to eliminate application conflict and streamline application delivery and management. ThinApp simplifies application virtualization and enables IT administrators to quickly deploy, efficiently manage, and upgrade applications without risk. With ThinApp, an entire Windows application and its settings can be packaged into a single executable and deployed to many different Windows operating systems without imposing additional cost and complexity to the server or client. Application virtualization with ThinApp eliminates conflicts at the application and operating system level and minimizes costly recoding and regression testing to speed application migration to Windows 7.
ThinApp virtualizes applications by encapsulating application files and registry settings into a single ThinApp package. IT administrators can deploy, manage, and update these ThinApp packages independently from the underlying operating system (OS). The virtualized applications do not make any changes to the underlying OS and behave the same across different desktop configurations, which provides a stable, consistent end-user experience, and ease of management.
As a key component of VMware View™, ThinApp adds smooth application management to your virtual desktop deployment. View is VMware’s virtual desktop offering, fully integrated with all of the advanced virtual infrastructure features of vSphere. You can manage and assign ThinApp virtualized applications in the same interface where you deploy and manage virtual desktops: the View Administrator console. Users access their View desktops from a wide variety of devices: from a Windows or Mac computer, from a Linux thin client or zero client, or from an iPad or Android tablet.
With ThinApp 4.7, administrators now have the capability of deploying ThinApp virtualized applications in Horizon Application Manager™. Horizon Application Manager is an enterprise-level, cloud-based application catalog and reporting mechanism that provides secure, managed user access to SaaS applications, federated web applications, and ThinApp virtualized Windows applications, all with a single sign-on using Windows Active Directory credentials. Horizon provides a new management platform for entitling, deploying, and monitoring ThinApp packages.
Saturday, November 19. 2011
Mythbusting Goes Virtual - Webcast Playback
Friday, November 18. 2011
This VMware vCloud Director 1.5 Evaluation Guide is designed to provide a guided, hands-on evaluation of the most compelling and relevant features of vCloud Director. It walks users through a series of procedures, each building upon the previous. When completed, the evaluator will have a working configuration that illustrates the key concepts that should be understood before deploying a production private cloud solution with vCloud Director.
Because this guide is to be leveraged for evaluation purposes, it has been written to require the least amount of hardware resources possible. This enables users who do not have a dedicated test lab to still fully evaluate the capabilities and concepts of vCloud Director. This purpose-built evaluation environment should not be considered as a template for deploying a production environment.
VMware vCloud Director is a software product that provides the ability to build secure, multi-tenant clouds by pooling virtual infrastructure resources into virtual datacenters and exposing them to users through Webbased portals and programmatic interfaces as a fully-automated, catalog-based service.
vCloud Director relies on vSphere resources to provide CPU and memory to run virtual machines. In addition, vSphere datastores provide storage for virtual machine files and other files necessary for virtual machine operations. vCloud Director also utilizes vSphere distributed switches and vSphere port groups to support virtual machine networking. You can use these underlying vSphere resources to create cloud resources.
Cloud resources are an abstraction of their underlying vSphere resources. They provide the compute and memory resources for vCloud Director virtual machines and vApps. A vApp is a virtual system that contains one or more individual virtual machines, along with parameters that define operational details. Cloud resources also provide access to storage and network connectivity. Cloud resources include provider and organization virtual datacenters, external networks, organization networks, and network pools. Before you can add cloud resources to vCloud Director, you must add vSphere resources.
The vCloud Director software is distributed as a Linux executable file but also as a virtual appliance stored in Open Virtualization Format (OVF). vCloud Director 1.5 components and the database are packaged into this vCloud Director virtual appliance.
For customers looking to rapidly install an evaluation environment, vCloud Director is distributed in a virtual appliance format file (.ova) for use in a limited-scale environment.The virtual appliance includes a pre-configured Oracle XE database installed on a CentOS VM. The virtual appliance is designed to easily set up your evaluation by importing to your existing vCenter Server. Please refer to the VMware vCloud Director Evaluation Guide for more information and details on deploying this vCloud Director Appliance.
Wednesday, November 16. 2011
The ThinApp 4.7 release provides ThinApp integration with Horizon Application Manager, which includes the following features:
The ThinApp Setup Capture wizard includes an option to manage with Horizon Application Manager. When the checkbox is selected, ThinApp checks if the Horizon agent is installed natively on the client and is running. If the Horizon agent is found, the ThinApp package reports to the Horizon agent so that it can be controlled by Horizon Application Manager. Horizon Application Manager entitlement allows the delivery of ThinApp packaged applications to specified users and groups. The Horizon agent authorizes a ThinApp package to open, based on entitlements.
- ThinApp packages are registered by Horizon Application Manager and delivered to end points.
- The administrator can configure an Organizational URL for end points missing the Horizon agent.
- The administrator can track usage of ThinApp packages by using Horizon Application Manager monitoring and reporting.
VMware Pushes ThinApps to the Web
VMware ThinApp 4.7 Whats New
VMware Horizon Application Manager and ThinApp
In the ThinApp context, Horizon Application Manager provides a centralized administrative view that enables IT personnel to deploy, entitle and manage ThinApp application packages. Implementation of Horizon Application Manager is uncomplicated, and the only changes required in ThinApp is the selection of a check box in the Setup Capture Wizard. Horizon Application Manager checks the Active Directory for ThinApp packages. Currently, only EXE files from ThinApp packages can be managed through Horizon Application Manager.
ThinApp Packages are not stored in Horizon Application Manager, they remain on the network share and are downloaded to the entitled user's machine using BITS technology Each time that a user attempts to run a ThinApp virtual application, the Horizon agent verifies that there is an entitlement for the ThinApp package. If the user is entitled to use the application, the package launches. As long as the user remains entitled to use the application, the application is accessible. If an Administrator removes the entitlement, the Horizon Agent receives that change in entitlement and does not authorize subsequent launches. In addition, the Horizon Agent removes the package from the User Portal and the Horizon folder.
Assuming that a user is connected to the internet, their entitlement is verified every time that they open a virtual application. Because there are situations in which a user might not have internet access while using the application, a user's entitlement to use an application must be authenticated at least every thirty days. If authentication is not completed within this timeframe, the entitlement is withdrawn and the application cannot run. The Horizon Agent must be running on an end user's machine for a virtualized application to run.
VMware Horizon Application Manager is a hosted service that enables organizations to centrally manage the provisioning, access and usage of cloud, software-as-a-service (SaaS) and ThinApp-virtualized Windows applications. This solution enables IT departments to extend on-premises Active Directory identities to the public cloud, simplifying the security of application access. Unlike other federation solutions, Horizon Application Manager does not require an enterprise or public organization to make additional capital investments in complex and expensive hardware.
At its core, Horizon Application Manager includes an identity-as-a-service hub that securely extends a user's existing identity in systems such as Microsoft Active Directory into the cloud. This process simplifies the management of identities across multiple application types that are found in a typical enterprise. This simplification benefits both IT and users by collapsing separate identity silos into a single enterprise identity that can secure user access across private and public cloud resources.
In addition, managers have control over user access policies and are able to track user activity, via usage reports. Following installation, administrative tasks, such as user entitlement, matching Active Directory groups with applications, and so on, can be accessed through a Web portal.
End users open a single sign-on portal from which they have self-service access to the organization's application catalogue. Users can only open the applications to which they are entitled. They can easily move from application to application without having to re-enter their login credentials. Applications can be accessed across a broad
range of devices.
vCloud Connector is an enterprise product that provides a single user interface for overseeing multiple public and private clouds and for transferring cloud content from one cloud to another. It allows you to connect multiple clouds, both internal and external, in a single user interface.
Using vCloud Connector, you can stop and start virtual machines, check their performance, and transfer virtual machines, vApps, and templates from one cloud to another. vCloud Connector consists of three distinct components: the vCloud Connector UI, the vCloud Connector Server, and vCloud Connector Nodes.
The vcloud.vmware.com website allows you to access the vCloud Connector UI through your browser and helps you make the move to a hybrid cloud environment. You can view your vCloud Connector through it and you share access to your clouds with others. The website also connects you to a range of public cloud service providers offering evaluation cloud offers and a community of other vCloud Connector users.
Tuesday, November 15. 2011
Thursday, November 10. 2011
vSphere Replication is a replication engine that is part of SRM 5.0 and requires ESXi 5.0 and later, giving an alternative means of protecting and replicating virtual machines between sites. It is entirely managed within the SRM interface after initial deployment and configuration, and integrates with storage array–based replication to provide full coverage of the virtual environment.
The assumption is that there are multiple databases for vSphere Replication already configured for use, one at each site. In this evaluation guide, we will be using Microsoft SQL Server as a database, and using native SQL authentication for access. Workflow covered will be as follows:
1. Deploy vSphere Replication Management Servers (VRMS).
2. Configure VRMS.
3. Pair VRMS.
4. Deploy vSphere Replication Server (VRS).
5. Register VRS.
6. Configure virtual machines for protection with vSphere Replication.
7. Create a protection group using vSphere Replication–protected virtual machines.
Wednesday, November 9. 2011
• vFabric GemFire deployed as an enterprise data management system.
• vFabric GemFire deployed as L2 cache.
• vFabric GemFire deployed for HTTP session management.
• vFabric GemFire deployed as a faster mass data mover—for example, real-time reporting.
This guide provides best practice guidelines for deploying vFabric GemFire. The recommendations in this guide are not specific to any particular set of hardware or to the size and scope of any particular implementation. The best practices in this document provide guidance only and do not represent strict design requirements because enterprise data requirements can vary from one implementation to another. However, the guidelines do form a good foundation on which you can build—many of our customers have used these guidelines to successfully implement an enterprise data fiber for their enterprise applications.
Tuesday, November 8. 2011
This document describes the architecture and features of vShield Edge and vShield App, and presents some reference designs for solutions built using these products. The designs described are meant to be representative of common business problems that organizations face when they further increase their virtualization footprint and move toward a cloud model of IT. By seeing how these problems are addressed, and mapping them to the actual issues they currently must address, customers should better understand how to deploy vShield Edge and vShield App in their own environments.
Monday, November 7. 2011
VMware vShield is a suite of security virtual appliances built for VMware vCenter Server and VMware ESX integration. vShield is a critical security component for protecting virtualized datacenters from attacks and misuse helping you achieve your compliance-mandated goals. vShield App is an interior, vNIC-level firewall that allows you to create access control policies regardless of network topology. A vShield App monitors all traffic in and out of an ESX host, including between virtual machines in the same port group. vShield App includes traffic analysis and container-based policy creation.
In this video I'll show you that vShield App installs as a hypervisor module and firewall service virtual appliance. vShield App integrates with ESX hosts through VMsafe APIs and works with VMware vSphere platform features such as DRS, vMotion, DPM, and maintenance mode. vShield App provides firewalling between virtual machines by placing a firewall filter on every virtual network adapter. The firewall filter operates transparently and does not require network changes or modification of IP addresses to create security zones. You can write access rules by using vCenter containers, like datacenters, cluster, resource pools and vApps, or network objects, like Port Groups and VLANs, to reduce the number of firewall rules and make the rules easier to track.
You should install vShield App instances on all ESX hosts within a cluster so that VMware vMotion operations work and virtual machines remain protected as they migrate between ESX hosts. By default, a vShield App virtual appliance cannot be moved by using vMotion. The Flow Monitoring feature displays allowed and blocked network flows at the application protocol level. You can use this information to audit network traffic and troubleshoot operational.
Sunday, November 6. 2011
A few weeks ago I’ve delivered a VMware Site Recovery Manager training course and one of the attendees was Arnim van Lieshout. Besides being a co-author of the VMware vSphere PowerCLI Reference: Automating vSphere Administration guide, Arnim also works as a VMware PSO consultant. While we were trying to set-up SRM Host Based Replication, Arnim showed me a real cool trick to do some fast troubleshooting regarding the VPXD daemon, also known as the vCenter Service.
This video guides you through the process of troubleshooting a corrupted vCenter Server database with vpxd.exe -s and helps you to fix VPX daemon start-up problems. The video also helps you eliminate common causes for your problem by verifying the configuration of your database, validating network connectivity, and verifying the configuration of the vCenter Server service with vpxd.exe -b.
Thursday, November 3. 2011
VMware vSphere is the industry's most widely deployed virtualization solution. However, performance problems are inevitable and require an in-depth understanding of the interaction and relationship between software and hardware. Aimed at VMware administrators and engineers and written by a team of VMware experts, this resource provides guidance on common CPU, memory, storage, and network-related problems. Plus, step-by-step instructions walk you through techniques for solving problems and shed light on possible causes behind the problems Divulges troubleshooting methodologies, performance monitoring tools, and techniques and tools for isolating performance problems. Details the necessary steps for handling CPU, memory, storage, and network-related problems. Offers understanding on the interactions between VMware vSphere and CPU, memory, storage, and network. VMware vSphere X Performance is the resource you need to diagnose and handle VMware vSphere performance problems.
Tuesday, November 1. 2011
Live storage migration is the missing piece in liberating VMs and their associated files completely from the physical hardware on which they reside. Predictable migration times—with minimal impact on the performance of the application accessing the virtual disk that is migrated—are expected from the vSphere’s storage vMotion feature. This paper offers a deeper look at the interaction of svMotion with a large, active SQL database workload. The study includes application behavior when migrating individual virtual disks used by the database and the impact application I/O traffic had on the svMotion of a particular virtual disk. The study showed consistent and predictable disk migration time that largely depended on the capabilities of the source and the destination arrays. svMotion increased the CPU consumption of the VM running the test workload from 5% to 22% depending on the load conditions. The I/O patterns of the SQL database workload had noticeable impact on svMotion throughput (and the disk migration time).
Storage vMotion of a Virtualized SQL Server Database
• VMware vSphere Distributed Switch
• Distributed Port Group
• Distributed Port
Download and try out VDSPowerCli
VMware is working on the completion of a fully renewed vSphere 5 Fast-Track. This training course will look a little bit like the old VI3 Fast-Track (Install, Configure and Manage plus the Deploy Secure and Analyze) training we had in the old days. Here’s a short overview:
This intensive, extended-hours training course focuses on installing, configuring, and managing VMware vSphere 5. It combines the content of the VMware vSphere: Install, Configure, Manage course with advanced tasks and skills for configuring a highly available and scalable virtual infrastructure. The course is based on VMware ESXi 5.0 and VMware vCenter Server 5.0. Completion of this course satisfies the prerequisite for taking the VMware Certified Professional 5 exam.
The objectives are:
- Configure and manage ESXi networking and storage.
- Create, configure, migrate, manage, convert, and monitor virtual machines and virtual appliances.
- Manage user access to the virtual infrastructure.
- Use vCenter Server to monitor resource usage.
- Scale the vSphere virtual infrastructure.
- Implement business continuity solutions.
- Manage changes to the vSphere environment.
- Use a command-line interface to manage vSphere.
- Install and configure ESXi and vCenter Server.
- Use vSphere Auto Deploy to provision ESXi hosts.
This course is designed for experienced system administrators and system integrators willing to work hard to achieve superior vSphere skills with minimal time away from the office. The prerequisites are the willingness to participate in a demanding, high-intensity training experience. And you must be comfortable with system administration using command-line interfaces.