VMware Auto Deploy with MSCS won’t work

Our environment is fully built using VMware Auto Deploy 5.1. All the clusters have their own ruleset and we’re very content on how easily we update our hosts and deploy new hosts. However, recently we ran into a major issue with Microsoft Cluster Services inside VMs in combination with VMware Auto Deploy. In a scenario with an “old fashioned” MCSC cluster across boxes with Physical RDMs shared between the two cluster nodes (VMs), these RDMs seem to be stopping an Auto Deployed ESXi host from reconnecting to vCenter Server after a reboot.  [Read more…]

Did you know, no VMotion when HA network partitioned

During my migration from vSphere 4.1 to vSphere 5.5, I ran into an issue I had never experienced before. When your VMware HA network is partitioned, vCenter will not let you perform VMotions. At first I was surprised but after some searching I learned the reasons behind it and it makes complete sense now. [Read more…]

Changing SATP Claimrules for specific storage configurations

At my current customer I was upgrading their vSphere 4.1 environment to vSphere 5.5. When installing and configuring the first ESXi 5.5 host, I noticed a difference in the Path Selection Policy (PSP) between the ESX 4.1 hosts and the ESXi 5.5 host. Each host is connected to two Hitachi storage arrays, each a different model. In the current 4.1 config a general setting is used to have both arrays use Round Robin:

esxcli nmp satp setdefaultpsp --psp VMW_PSP_RR --satp VMW_SATP_DEFAULT_AA

Because of the above rule in the ESX 4.1 hosts, all storage that is not captured by the existing rule sets, will be set to Round Robin (VMW_PSP_RR). Although applying this rule to my ESXi 5.5 host, would solve the problem for me on short term, I could imagine running into an issue when the customer would attach a third storage that didn’t required Round Robin, but would then somehow still default to it, because of this “catch-all” rule. [Read more…]

Add Fusion IO driver to VMware Auto Deploy

A customer of mine, who was already running a vSphere environment on Cisco UCS blades, asked to expand his environment with a number of ESXi hosts that could run a VMware View environment. To be able to run as much View desktops on each host as possible, we offered them Cisco UCS Blades equipped with a Fusion IO card, the UCS 785GB MLC Fusion-io ioDrive2 to be exact.Fusion IO iodrive2

For this customer I had already deployed a vSphere environment a year ago, fully based on VMware Auto Deploy and it now was time to try and add a driver to this Auto Deploy environment, which I had never done before. It wasn’t an easy road, but I wrote down all the steps and hope it helps you should you ever have to do this too. [Read more…]

The Doctor is IN on SRM, Upgrade to vSphere 5.1, vCSA and VCAP-DCA

A few days ago I blogged about my new idea in this post: “The Doctor is: IN” and I received a lot of positive comments and even my first request for assistance. So… here we go !!!

Tonight ( June 7th ) at 19:00 CEST the first session will go live. That is, if Google Hangouts works because last night during my test run there were some issues with Google Hangouts.

This first session has been requested by Ryan Conley. Ryan is originally from Nashville area, moved to Greenville for two years which is where he got his feet wet with ESX/ESXi 4.x and 5.0.  He took a position in San Francisco over a year ago and is now the primary person for managing two vSphere 5.0 clusters for two separate companies. He passed VCP5 in April and as a result of the prep time he is now hooked on learning more and more.  He has his IaaS exam scheduled for the 17th of June and plans to attend VMworld in SF and sit the VCAP-DCA exam since it will be 75% off.  Work wise he is about to standup a DR cluster in SF and begin implementing SRM to tie the two together. [Read more…]