Archives For vSphere 5.1

ESXi 5.1 comes with many improvements and one of them is new namespaces and commands in esxcli.

Those new commands enable a system administrator to perform a shutdown, a reboot or a maintenance operation in a host.

Under the system namespace the new commands are the equivalents of the classic vicfg/esxcfg-hostops which until now was the only way to perform such kind of operations with vCLI and are also accessible locally on ESXi Shell.

image

Maintenance mode operations

Getting the basic usage of the command is as simple as always. You can perform two operations.

  • Get the state of the host
  • Put the the host in or out of Maintenance Mode
~ # esxcli system maintenanceMode 
Usage: esxcli system maintenanceMode {cmd} [cmd options]
Available Commands: 
  get                   Get the maintenance mode state of the system. 
  set                   Enable or disable the maintenance mode of the system. 
~ #
  • Get the state of the host
~ # esxcli system maintenanceMode get 
Disabled 
~ #
  • Put the host in Maintenance Mode
~ # esxcli system maintenanceMode set -e true -t 0 
~ # 
~ # esxcli system maintenanceMode get 
Enabled 
~ #

Power operations

With the shutdown command the host can be either rebooted or shutdown. If the ESXi server is not in Maintenance Mode mode the operation will not be allowed.

~ # esxcli system shutdown 
Usage: esxcli system shutdown {cmd} [cmd options]
Available Commands: 
  poweroff              Power off the system. The host must be in maintenance mode. 
  reboot                Reboot the system. The host must be in maintenance mode. 
~ #

For both task the delay and reason parameter must be provided.

~ # esxcli system shutdown poweroff 
Error: Missing required parameter -r|--reason
Usage: esxcli system shutdown poweroff [cmd options]
Description: 
  poweroff              Power off the system. The host must be in maintenance mode.
Cmd options: 
  -d|--delay=<long>     Delay interval in seconds 
  -r|--reason=<str>     Reason for performing the operation (required) 
~ #
  • Power off the host
~ # esxcli system shutdown poweroff --delay=10 --reason=”Hardware maintenance”
  • Reboot the host
~ # esxcli system shutdown reboot -d 10 –r “Patches applied”

Juanma.

In the last post we discussed about the new features and changes that comes with version 5.1 of the VMware vCenter Server Appliance. In this new one I will explain how to deploy it and perform an upgrade.

VCSA Deployment

The deployment of the VCSA 5.1 is very similar to the previous version. Use the vSphere Client to deploy a new OVF template and browse to the VCSA OVA package, follow the instructions until you get to the Networking Properties screen.

Here you can pre-set the networking configuration values of the appliance.

image

If you are going to do a fresh VCSA or vSphere installation enter the appropriate values on each field. If you want to perform an upgrade instead leave them blank to get the info by DHCP or put a temporal IP address if there is no DCHP server in place. You don’t need to put here the final values since during the upgrading process all the network settings will be migrated.

Let the deployment process finish and power on the vCenter appliance. During the boot process you can see how the network configuration is applied to the VM.

image

And finally you will reach the familiar blue screen.

image

That’s it, now proceed to the WebUI to complete VCSA setup. In your first log into the vCenter a wizard will appear.

image

After accepting the EULA you will presented with four options:

  • Configure with default settings
  • Upgrade from a previous version, which also gives you the option to use the default Single Sign On configuration.
  • Upload configuration file. Very useful in case your vCenter Server virtual machine gets corrupted or you messed it up, if have a saved copy of the most recent configuration file you can deploy a new appliance and quickly restore its settings by uploading it.
  • Set custom configuration <- I used this option for my homelab testing.

image

In the next screen you choose which database you want to use, the vPostgres embedded or an Oracle external.

image

Now we must choose the options for the Single Sign On server. vCenter 5.1 comes with a new component known as the Single Sign On server, or SSO.

SSO allows an administrator to login through the vSphere Web Client or the API and perform operations across all components of the vCloud Suite without having to log into them separately. It integrates with multiple identity sources like Windows Active Directory, NIS and OpenLDAP. The SSO is a requirement for the Inventory Service, vCenter Server and the Web Client.

In the Windows based vCenter installer SSO comes as a separate component that can be installed in the same VM as the vCenter or in a different one as a stand-alone server, in High Availability mode or even in a multisite environment.

The VCSA comes with the SSO embedded however it is prepared to use an external SSO server too. If choose the external SSO deployment mode all the appropriate information must be provided in this screen. Again as with the vCenter itself the database type must be set.

image

Finally set the Active Directory configuration accordingly to your environment, review the configuration and click Start to begin.

image

At the end if everything goes fine you will see a screen with a confirmation, click close and will see al the vCenter services up and ready in the main screen of the WebUI.

image

The deployment and basic setup of the VCSA is done, at this point all other components and settings can be setup from here.

VCSA Upgrade

The upgrade of the vCenter Server Appliance will allow to update to a different OS version and migrate to a different database.

If you are upgrading from 5.0 to 5.1 and using the embedded database, it will be migrated from IBM DB2 to VMware vPostgres.  The configuration state will be preserved and the schema will be upgraded in order to be compatible with 5.1. VCSA 5.0 Update 1 already comes with vPostgres instead of DB2.

The major upgrade is supported from 5.0 and updates to 5.1.

The upgrading process is relatively simple:

  • Deploy VCSA 5.1.
  • Set the 5.0 appliance as source and 5.1 as destination.
  • Establish a connection between both VCSAs.
  • Import network configuration of existing VCSA.
    Prior to the upgrading the VCVA 5.1 must have a valid network connection and vCenter Server service must be stopped and un-configured.

Deploy the appliance as shown above, log into the WebUI and in the wizard accept the EULA in the first screen and select Upgrade from previous version in the second, let Use default SSO configuration as it comes by default.

The next screen that will be displayed is the Local and Remote Appliance keys.

image

Here we have put the current VCSA 5.0 key. To do so go to the Upgrade tab in VCSA 5.0 web interface. In the Prepare section select source and click Set role.

image

Go back to the VCSA 5.1 and copy the Local appliance key. On the 5.0 appliance click on Establish Trust and paste the copied key in the Remote key appliance key field. Click on Import remote key and wait for the import to complete.

image

In the VCSA 5.0 copy the Local appliance key. Go to 5.1 vCenter, paste that key on the Remote appliance key field of the setup wizard screen and click Next. The Pre-Upgrade Checker screen will show up.

image

After this a check will be run against the ESX/ESXi managed by the old VCSA and it will generate a report.

image

And the final screen will appear asking for confirmation. Click on the confirmation checkbox and in Start.

image

During the upgrade VCSA 5.1 will shutdown the 5.0 virtual appliance and assumes its network identity.

When the process is done a final screen will appear.

image

If you want to check if the process is done log into the VCSA through SSH and list the vmware services, vmware-sso just to name one will show up on the list.

image

Also you can access the vSphere Web Client and will see the new 5.1 client.

image

Juanma.

VCSA 5.1– A quick look

August 28, 2012 — 2 Comments

Yesterday was a very exciting day, VMware finally announced the new vCloud Suite 5.1. With new products and features announced, each one of them as great as ever.

But yours truly decided that instead of presenting you a generic “What’s new” post it was more interesting, at least for me and hope also to you, to focus in one of my favorite pieces of vSphere, the vCenter Server Virtual Appliance and in a couple of articles describe what new features are coming and how to perform an upgrade from 5.0 to 5.1.

What’s new in the VCSA 5.1

With this new release of the vCenter Server VA a few new features have been added, most of them related to the WebUI and to the new features and services that have been released globally for the vCenter 5.1, Windows and Linux based versions.

These new enhancements can be seen in the Summary section of the vCenter Server Tab as shown in the screenshot below.

image

From here all the vCenter Service can be started and stopped. The Services Tab no longer exists and it’s now a section of the vCenter Server Tab.

In the Storage Usage are you can check the disk usage of the different components of the VCSA.

There is also a Utilities are where you can:

  • Generate a support bundle in case of an incidence with the vCenter Server.
  • Download the configuration file of the VCSA and then open it in your favorite text editor.

image

  • Launch again the Setup Wizard to configure the VCSA from scratch or make modifications to some of he initial settings.
  • Upload the Windows Sysprep files to the vCenter VA.
      For this last option the procedure is quite simple. Click the

Upload

    button.

image

A new windows will open, select the operating system and browse for the location of the files.

image

The files will be uploaded to /etc/vmware-vpx/sysprep/<OS>.

Additionally in the vCenter Server Tab two new sections have been added.

The Service section where the VCSA administrator can setup:

  • ESXi Dump Collector repository size
  • vSphere Auto Deploy repository size
  • Inventory size

image

The SSO section. Here you can configure all the settings related to the newly introduced Single Sign On server.

image

In the next post we will discuss about VCSA 5.1 initial deployment and how to upgrade from 5.0 and 5.1.

Juanma.