Where am I? It’s dark and I’ve lost my network settings! How innocuous editing of NetApp config file can lead to lost IPs

So I was performing an initial configuration of a FAS3270 the other day when I changed the interface group information via PuTTY. Specifically, I deleted and recreated the interface groups manually instead of running setup. After I did this and following a reboot of the filer, the IP addresses for both interface groups were missing. Performing an ‘ifconfig -a’ before the reboot, I saw the IP addresses assigned correctly:

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Deploy a VM from template with PowerCLI

Now that I have a small VM for my test lab, I converted it to a template and looked for a cool way to deploy several VMs from this template with PowerCLI. Turns out it’s actually really easy, anti-climactic, even. The good folks over at VMPros.nl have an excellent tutorial on this topic. Alan Renouf (Twitter @alanrenouf) was the first to comment on their blogpost. He included a nice for loop to replace a single line for each VM deployment. I incorporated Alan’s suggestion as well as a few options from the PowerCLI New-VM cmdlet reference page, like adding the VM to a resource pool and then powering on the VM.

Here’s the code:

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Share your VDI opinions to enter contest and win VMware View Train Signal DVDs

Manlio Frizzi over at VirtualAleph.blogspot.com has asked me to help spread the word about a contest he’s holding on his blog. It’s actually a great way to start good conversations about Virtual Desktop Infrastructures, how they’re used today, and how they could be made better. To be eligible, Manlio is asking contestants to offer three opinions regarding the state of VDI technology today. With the support of Train Signal, he’s giving away their VMware View 5 Essentials 2 DVD training package to two, yes two, winners. Another cool thing about his contest is that he’s going to donate all the proceeds from his next Google Adsense payment to a cat asylum. Be sure to thank him for this when you enter! You can check out his contest here: VDI CONTEST


Yet another way to create peer keepalive link between Nexus 5ks

During two previous implementations, I’ve configured the peer keepalive between two Nexus 5020s as most folks have seen it done: each mgmt0 interface connected to a management network, passing both day-to-day management traffic and peer keepalive traffic. Something like this:

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In response to Miguel’s post, here are my thoughts:

I’m sure at least one of the VMware dudes Miguel was talking to was once a Windows System Administrator. I’m also sure that that same VMware dude cringed at the thought of needlessly putting multiple services on a single VM. He probably thought that as long as the customer had enough money for Windows Server licenses, compute and disk resources, that one should obviously separate each service into their own server. Now, to take a step back, let us say that, yes, it certainly is possible to put all the services you mentioned, vCenter, SQL 2008, VUM, and maybe even SRM on the same box, whether virtual or physical. But of course, whether this is possible or not is not in question. It’s whether it should or should not be done in the first place. I’m going to pull out the age old consultant’s answer and say, “It depends.”

It depends on if the customer has the budget for more Windows or SQL licenses. Does the customer have the compute and disk resources for several more servers? Is there already an existing SQL box or cluster that could be used? Is a DBA on staff, or at least a competent Windows Server admin? Does the customer’s environment even need a full blown SQL installation or would SQL Express do fine?

Now I’m coming from a background of government contracting where money is usually thrown at such projects. Resources for such an implementation are little thought about because they’re going to be there no matter what. This question could impact SMBs more, but probably not large corporations.

I think there are certainly right and wrong ways to implement based on circumstances. On the one hand, if you have the licenses, compute, disk, and administrative resources, I say absolutely, put each service on it’s own separate box. In more constrained environments, you may need to double up two or more services.

That’s not the least of it. Recovering from a failed VM will cost you less in time, effort, and hopefully, money. With an “all your eggs in one basket” approach, if one VM goes down, is somehow unrecoverable, then you’ve lost a lot of data. Separating your services reduces the liklihood that any one VM failure/loss will result in mutlitple services lost.



So I was having a discussion with a few fellow VMware dudes, and we were discussing the vCenter installation methods. One train of thought is to install vCenter, VUM, SQL 2008,, and SRM on 1 VM with 2 vCPUs, 4 GB of memory an a 100 GB drive, Monitor for performance and adjust as required by analyzing the performance data. I have alwbeen doing installations this way lately without issue. I have also done installations on dedicated SQL boxes \ VMs. I have gotten good performance out of the environment with having all services on a single VM. In larger environments of 20 or more hosts and 300 + VMs, I have used a dedicated SQL server. The SRM documetation recommends a separate server for the SRM installation, but I have not seen any issues with it on the same box, and there was not any performance degradation in an…

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A Small Virtual Machine for a Test Lab

Get my 57MB Damn Small Linux OVA here (rename file extension from .doc to .ova): DOWNLOAD

While I’m traveling, I use my laptop as a mobile test lab. To do anything of significance, I like to run two VMware ESXi 5 hosts, vCenter Server 5, a domain controller (both on x64 Windows Server 2008 R2) and for my recent study focus, a NetApp DataONTAP 8.1 simulator, all on VMware Workstation 8. All these things are great, but with “only” 8 GB RAM to pull from, my resources are limited and I’m pushing RAM utilization to the max before I even start running VMs, as you can see below. The only thing saving me is an Intel 320 Series SSD.

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