Friday, December 9, 2011

you do not hold privilege "system > read" on virtual machine ""

Yep, blank name for the virtual machine.

More information:
Call storageresourcemanager.configurestoragedrsforpod blah blah
(didn't write it all down)

I did once get the above ^ permission error and then this message:
The guest os id is not valid. Therefore, editing these vm settings is not recommended.

What was I doing?
Cloned a virtual machine and then tried to make any changes to the settings (I tried changing the port group and adding/removing a vCD iso). Saying OK to commit the changes brings up that permission error.

I looked up the Storage Resource Manager parts in the API docs and there are no associated privileges: Drink Me Similar calls need System.View priv set (which this user holds).
Here's the way I've currently been able to get rid of the error: I removed the associated datastores from the datastore clusters (moved it to the parent folder) and now I can't recreate the problem. I moved the datastores back under the datastore clusters (without otherwise making changes) and still no error message.

Sounds like a bug with storage DRS to me... I'll wait to see if it shows back up.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Consolidated server and desktop workload licensing failure

VMware View and a standard vSphere server workload deployment cannot mix. Separate physical hosts, separate vCenters. WHY???
If you have a SMB who wants to get their feet wet with both virtualized Desktop and Server workloads, you're telling them that they need to purchase twice the rackspace to have the same n+1 cluster setup. I can see large shops wanting to keep the workloads (and admins in charge of them) as separate entities, but don't make it a restriction. 

From VMware View 5 Licensing FAQ:
Q: Can I run other server workloads on the vSphere that is included in View?
A: No. The vSphere and vCenter components of the View bundle are restricted to desktop deployments. A desktop virtual machine is defined as a virtual machine running the following operating systems: Windows 95/98, Windows 2000 Professional, Windows XP Professional, Windows Vista Ultimate, Windows Vista Business, or Windows Vista Enterprise, Windows 7.
The only exception to this rule are the components that make up the virtualized desktop infrastructure (View Manager, vCenter Server, another Connection Broker and/or any desktop management and performance monitoring tools used solely for hosted desktop virtual machine(s) within an operating system of a server).

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

vSphere 5 vCenter Appliance first take

UTC. Do not change the timezone on the appliance or the embedded DB2 database will not start. 

Also watch for the DB2 logsize:
And the Likewise AD auth needs to be a domain admin, but it won't put the hostname in correctly if it's longer than 15 chars. 

Bugs to work out? Nahhhhh..

Other than those...few..gaping holes, I think VMware's got something going for it. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

ESX 3.0 on ESX 4.0

I was trying to run ESX 3.0.3 U1 inside of my vSphere 4.0 implementation (so that I could test upgrade strategies to 4.1).

I set the OS as RHEL 4 (64bit) and specified "Use Intel VT-x/AMD-V" under the CPU/MMU Virtualization Options area (rather than automatic). It seemed to boot fine at that point.
Note that the install went fine without poking in the settings area, but it was just hanging at "vmkernel has been loaded successfully" rather than actually booting into the OS.

Now I can get to work.

Friday, September 30, 2011

VMW 2011 sessions

Using the bash script linked below will download all available flv presentations or the session pdf if no flv was available. Some sessions did not have any content (about a dozen or so). Resulting folder size is currently 16.5G. Requires lwp-download that should work on sol/nix/OSX long as perl is installed.
Or just browse the script for sessions you want. Session name will be the file name.

...if anyone asks, i got it from a friend of a friend.

Drink Me

Monday, August 1, 2011

virtualappsonline redirect

I'm going to redirect a site I own and have done nothing with over here.. It's

The only real topic on that site was a VM I made for the marketplace in Jan 2007. This is the text, just for fun:

activeCollab 0.7.1 Project Management Solution
From website:
activeCollab is an easy to use, web based, open source collaboration and project management tool. Set up an environment where you, your team and your clients can collaborate on active projects using a set of simple, functional tools. 100% free!
Download links at the bottom of this post
1. Easy to install and easy to use
2. Web-based. After installation only thing you'll need to use it is web browser
3. 100% open source, 100% free
4. No limitations on number of projects, clients, team members...
5. Per project permissions
Google for other reviews of this project management platform. Most reviews compare it to Basecamp by 37signals.
Below is text from included readme file:
==Debian Settings==
Login to server: root toor
Login to mysql: root toor
ac 4ct1v3
Login to activeCollab website: admin 4ct1v3
* mysql database ac created for activeCollab
* ssh access available to root
* no firewall settings
* vmware tools not installed (no GUI installed)
==Virtual Machine Settings==
floppy1, sound adapter turned off
ethernet1 bridged (will receive a DHCP address from your local network). To change network settings to static, see the /etc/network/interfaces file.
==Getting the Server / activeCollab Setup==
change /var/www/activecollab/config/config.php ROOT_URL listing to the server's FQDN for active collab to work
/etc/apt/sources.list should be changed to a mirror closer to you. See for a listing.
Dotdeb should stay in the sources list for php5 / mysql5 updates.
Operating system: Debian Sarge 3.1 Stable
Applications installed:
Debian Sarge 3.1: Apache2-mpm-prefork, MySQL-server, PHP5, PHP5-MySQL, PHP5-gd, activeCollab 0.7.1
VMware Tools installed: No - With no GUI, VM tools doesn't change performance.
Size: 222.3 MB MB
Primary account
Username: root
Password: toor
Memory allocated: 256MB
==Download Links==
Available upon request... but come on now..
md5sum: ad8904b13d56f5c6c6221fb8f9ce6e60

Thursday, July 14, 2011

The KoolAid is now laced

The potassium cyanide has been added. Who will drink the new vSphere 5 licensing model?

For myself, it's time to look into XenServer and maybe even HyperV. vSphere 4.1 is an excellent product and hopefully VMware will reconsider this idiotic move.

--- Update 8/3/11:

Yep. They fumbled the ball but have come up with a solution that should work for most shops. Smart move VMware. XenServer is pretty easy to run.

Drink Me now :)

Friday, July 1, 2011

vCenter database growth problem and fix

Symptom: Disk space low after a scheduled job at night in dev environment. DBA & I were alerted, DBA looked into it initially.

Short Term Cause: Short term cause (figured out by DBA) was when the index for the VPX_HIST_STAT2 table is re-organized (when fragmentation > 20%). The table was huge (42,000,000+ rows, while prod holds 7,000,000+) and holds the weekly history stats. This table, when running correctly, will hold the last week's worth of stats based on the stat level associated..and nothing else. I changed the stat level in dev to reflect the same settings as prod, restarted services and did some general poking with no success in a reduction of the table size.

Long term cause: When looking at the "VPXV_HIST_STAT_WEEKLY" view in dev, there were dates listed all the way back to 2009, although nothing very synchronous. Further digging in SQL Server brought me to the sql agent job that is supposed to do the rollup sequence and purge old records from that table ("Past Week stats rollup"). At some point (unknown date), the third step that purges the old record was set to never run (the second step would quit the job upon success). I shut down vCenter services and ran the third step in the job to start purging the records.

Hiccup: The purge job grew the transaction log to the point that it filled up the partition, grinding SQL Server to a halt. I was trying to cancel the job/shut down the sql server agent service, when the gears stopped. I added a new 25G disk to the VM and moved the log file (then at 11G) to this new partition. I started SQL Server back up and banged on it a bit to start the virtualCenterDev database up again*. Once up, I re-started the rollup/purge job and had to run to an appointment.

Finale: Watched by DBA, the job completed successfully then ran again successfully & quickly on the next schedule (probably because the vcenter service was still off). DBA ran a full backup then shrank the data & log files on both the vcenter db & tempdb. Ran another full backup & t-log backup. The log file is still on the new partition and can stay there through the lifespan of this VM (not long, as 4.1 is imminent).
vCenter services are now on and the database is at it's [probably correct] size of 1.2G.

Moral of the Story: Perhaps I should pay better attention to the database size. There is an estimator built into the vCenter client on the statistic level settings page for the db size based on the stat levels you choose. vcenterdev is now at that estimated size (rather than the 4.2G with one table running at 2.2G).

* : database offline, sp_detach_db, sp_attach_DB...

Monday, May 9, 2011

vCenter update manager version

Version 7313 is 4.0 U3.
I've got two vCenter instances running in the same subnet... sometimes I'm not sure if I'm connecting to the right discovered plug-in. It's only a problem when I go to upgrade the dev/staging environment. Heh.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Please use vCenter. Please?

I've learned that I've been living the good life with vCenter (formerly known as virtualcenter). It's always been a part of the environments under my care. Now I'm seeing that other shops are not as lucky... I keep having to look up ways to hack around the things that I've taken for granted all this time. Like alarms, historical graphs, cloning... I could go on. Luckily the hacks are out there, it's just not pretty.
You can get 3 vSphere Essentials lics + vcenter for under $1k. Now, that cheap version of vcenter has some gotchas like database size, but worth it. So worth it. So all you smallish shops: Use vCenter, please. Don't run it as a VM *on* the hosts it's managing. You'll thank me later.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

vCenter management over WAN links

Traffic that heads through vCenter in a WAN vSphere architecture:

- vUM patches
- Template Clones (that live in one location that you are deploying in another)
- virtual console
- linking virtual CDs

Some tips with syncing options listed here: Drink Me

While PHD's free patch downloader can help with lack of local vUM.

Other than connecting locally to the ESX(i) server that is hosting the VM, I don't see another way around virtual console access.

I'll update if I come across anything else.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

get-esxtop != resxtop

Bleh. get-esxtop is no alternative for resxtop. You windows users are better off getting vmplayer with vma inside.

Monday, January 31, 2011


To follow up on Call "UserDirectory.RetrieveUserGroups" for object "ha-user-directory" on ESXi "" failed.

YEP! Changing the LDAP SSL certificate requirements from "required" to uh.. not.. made the error go away on our domain.

Computer configuration - Policies - Windows Settings - Security Settings - Local Policies/Security Options - Domain Controller: LDAP server signing requirements (None/Require signing/Undefined[which is the same as None])

A quick google search brought up this likewise discussion, where a member of likewise states that they don't support ldaps.

The ticket for me was the "LDAP error code: 8 (Strong(er) authentication required)" line in /host/messages. No verbose logging was required to get to the root of the problem.
Good enough for me and my crew.

Friday, January 28, 2011

ESXi Active Directory Lookup failure

Call "UserDirectory.RetrieveUserGroups" for object "ha-user-directory" on ESXi "" failed.


ESXi 4.1.0 v320137, evaluation license

Looks like a known bug:

Note my message there at the bottom that says that the actual authentication and user/group add/del works fine... you just have to manually type the users/groups.

Here's my traceback in /host/messages:

Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.905 FFDC2B90 verbose 'UserDirectory' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Searching for LDAP server for AD
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.909 FFDC2B90 verbose 'UserDirectory' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Using LDAP base dn: DC=ad,DC=mycompany,DC=com
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.910 FFDC2B90 verbose 'SysCommandPosix' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] ForkExec '/bin/kinit', pid 30416, rc 0
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.959 FFDC2B90 error 'UserDirectory' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] LDAP error code: 8 (Strong(er) authentication required)
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.959 FFDC2B90 error 'App' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Error accessing directory: Can't bind to LDAP server for domain: AD
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.959 FFDC2B90 info 'App' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] AdapterServer caught exception: 68130fd8
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 info 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Activation [N5Vmomi10ActivationE:0x68094b10] : Invoke done [retrieveUserGroups] on [vim.UserDirectory:ha-user-directory]
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 verbose 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Arg domain:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: "AD"
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 verbose 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Arg searchStr:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: ""
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 verbose 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Arg belongsToGroup:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: (null)
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 verbose 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Arg belongsToUser:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: (null)
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 verbose 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Arg exactMatch:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: false
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 verbose 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Arg findUsers:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: true
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 verbose 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Arg findGroups:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: true
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 info 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Throw vmodl.fault.SystemError
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: [2011-01-29 00:43:07.960 FFDC2B90 info 'Vmomi' opID=C6A12DE4-00000176] Result:
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: (vmodl.fault.SystemError) {
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: dynamicType = ,
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: faultCause = (vmodl.MethodFault) null,
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: reason = "Error accessing directory",
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: msg = "",
Jan 29 00:43:07 Hostd: }

Also seems from the logs that there's something running in the background using the credentials that added the host to AD for some other lookup. Not sure how I feel about that one.

I'll see if I can devote any more time to this next week. As it is, it just looks to be an obnoxious bug...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

ESXi log file location

Damned if I had a brain freeze today and couldn't remember the url path where ESXi has it's log files: