I was honored recently by being invited by Mike Laverick to be a guest on his Chinwag. Now, I knew what *the* Chinwag was, but I honestly didn’t know *what* a chinwag was. I had to look it up. It’s basically a chat – makes sense, right? You can find it on Mike’s blog, here. Our chat is below.
I’d like to thank Mike wholeheartedly for thinking of me and giving me the “publicity” that comes with being a guest on his Chinwag. It was truly an honor to “meet” him, as virtual as it was. I look forward to meeting him in person one day.
The DFW VMUG has opened registration for its upcoming local meeting.
Sign up here: http://www.vmug.com/e/in/eid=801&source=5
I’d like to thank our meeting sponsors, Nutanix and Zerto, for helping keep the VMUG alive and kicking.
Yours truly will be giving a short presentation at 12:15 about why I worked *not* to have OTV implemented when the bank I worked for stood up its first DR site. I’ll also speak about VXLAN and why it’s not a L2 Data Center Interconnect. I’m sure you won’t want to miss that…
View the complete agenda for the most up-to-date information. We’ll also hold a vBeers following the meeting, so come and say hi.
So I just finished voting for my favorite blogs on Eric Siebert’s vSphere-land.com. This was my second time voting and I’d like to thank Eric for hosting and TrainSignal for their support of Eric’s work. The VMware army of bloggers is definitely strong, having added dozens of new bloggers this past year as well as the best bloggers posting great new content. What I’d like to do here is run down the list of how I voted just to say thanks to those who’ve contributed so much to my personal success these past 12 months.
Last December I was fortunate enough to win a free copy of Peter Björk’s ThinApp Essentials book through a contest on Duncan Epping’s blog (http://bit.ly/V5QiZ2). Thanks to Duncan’s world-class comment-picking skills, I received the book in my hot little hands in a short amount of time. The book’s publisher, Packt Publishing, was kind enough to get the book to me quickly, though with my schedule and list of things to learn for my new gig, I’m just now getting around to writing down my impressions of Peter’s work. So without further ado my technically-savvy internets friends, my review of VMware ThinApp 4.7 Essentials: Learn how to quickly and efficiently virtualize your applications with ThinApp 4.7.
Good day my Internet friends! Let me say that I feel accomplished – and not just because I got out of bed this morning, although that is a big win for me. No, instead I’ve actually been quite productive (based on my standards, anyways). I’ve been rebuilding my home test lab for the past couple of days before I start my new job. What I really wanted was to get back heavy into the NetApp DataONTAP simulator, but I wanted to get inter-VLAN routing working first so I could have some realistic networking. I only have layer 2 switches in the lab so I was looking for ways to accomplish this. I reckon I knew I would have to use software of some sort, but I hadn’t actually messed with anything up to this point. I’d heard of the Vyatta virtual router recently, so I thought I’d give that a try. You can download the free community edition here with a login: http://www.vyatta.org/downloads I wasn’t able to find the Vyatta virtual appliance I saw advertised around the interwebs, but I was able to install from the LiveCD ISO just fine.
Oh…my…goodness. This caused me such a big headache. I’m using DVD Store as a placeholder for a production database in the lab. We’re in the middle of a proof-of-concept of SRM and we’re getting close to the due date. My boss comes to me and says, “We’re close to the due date. Do you want to document the vSphere 5.1 upgrade or work on DVD Store?” Well, having played with DVD Store a bit in the last few weeks and knowing it wasn’t “plug-n-play” for a custom database size, I couldn’t hand the DVD Store project over to a workmate in good conscience. I didn’t find the learning curve for a simple fellow like myself short and to throw someone else knee deep into the project when I’ve already played with it wouldn’t be right. “I’ll work on DVD Store.” I said, dejectedly. You see, I rarely get excited about scripts I don’t write myself. And to be perfectly honest, once I started reading about DVD Store and the amount of work that would have to go into getting a custom-sized database, I put it off as long as possible. Now I knew I was going to be elbow deep in scripts the next day and I wasn’t very happy about it. Here’s what I found out.
I was troubleshooting a production issue a couple days ago that led me to request the switchport configs from our Networking team of our ESXi 5.0 hosts that pass virtual machine traffic. Here’s a snippet of what they came back with for two particular ports:
description -=R910 ESX# 1 – Front Side=-
switchport mode trunk
description -=R910 ESX# 1 – Front Side=-
Well. Not only do I see our problem (no config *at all* on one port!), but I see something else that troubles me. Our ESXi host-facing ports are only configured as trunk ports. Absolutely* nothing* else. Well, this just won’t do.
Good day my friends! Good day it is, indeed! What makes it a good day, you ask? Well, for one, I’m being audited for the first time in my life. No, this isn’t an IRS audit (although I’m sure that would be more pleasant for me). This is an audit of my virtual infrastructure. I assume people, for some odd reason, like to know their money is entrusted to competent folks (see, I work for a bank) that will safeguard it from the evils of the Internets, like this guy à
Even though we’re using the Dell Management Plug-in for vCenter, we use Dell’s OpenManage Essentials (OME) for physical boxes. I want to be able to view ESXi server info from OME, as well, though. After initial configuration, my ESXi servers were showing up as “Unknown” even though they were correctly categorized as “VMware ESX Servers” in OME. This irritated me because I had finally configured my physical servers to show nice green check marks to show all was well but I couldn’t get my ESXi boxes to play nicely. As the ESXi boxes sat as unknown, they also did not have detailed hardware inventories available.
Now, I’ve been unimpressed by Dell’s hardware management platform so far even though the idea of it promises to be a big time saver and monitoring tool. When I have it configured, not only will I get SNMP hardware monitoring, but I should be able to upgrade firmwares and BIOSs remotely. Mostly, I’ve been dissatisfied by the lack of clear and organized configuration steps for, what I consider to be, a pretty standard data center: mostly virtualized with a few physical servers scattered about. As a note, I haven’t yet configured Dell’s management and monitoring stack to keep track of our remote office hardware, but it’s on the list of things to do.
Real quick, let me show you what I’ve come up with.
A tricky configuration piece of the Dell Management Plug-in that I discovered the hard way was that you must log in to vCenter via the vSphere Client with the same name or IP address with which you used to register vCenter with the Dell Management Plug-in Virtual Appliance. And I mean *exactly* the same, perhaps even with an FQDN. You can’t register vCenter in the Dell virtual appliance with an IP address and then turn around and log in to the vSphere Client with your usual server name or, in my case, a DNS alias or CNAME.
As you can see above, I’ve created a CNAME record for the first of my vCenters that are in a Linked-Mode group. I’ve named it vCenter. This is how I log into the vSphere Client – by just typing vCenter in the Name/IP address field. When I first registered the Dell plug-in via the virtual appliance, I registered the first vCenter server by its FQDN – let’s call it, myvcenter.company.net. Going to the Dell plug-in in the vSphere Client you get a nice error stating that the Dell Management Plug-in cannot access vCenter. Showing details gives you nothing, but don’t despair quite yet.