Intel Gigabit CT PCI-E Network Adapter EXPI9301CTBLK–vSphere 5.0

If you have plans to add an extra NIC to your vSphere Lab, Intel PCI-E EXPI9301CTBLK is a perfect plug-n-Play adapter.

Today I received 2 NIC’s ordered from Amazon http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001CY0P7G

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Working perfect without any issues on ESXi 5.0.
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Error: The Operation is not allowed in current state of the Host–while Powering On a Virtual Machine

At least once in your vSphere environment you will face an unfamiliar error. It’s a vague error message which popup when you try to power on a virtual machine.
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Not really sure what causes this error all of a sudden, need to investigate more.

To fix this issue lets check the state of Host.
Host is running, but if you notice the summary page and look at the “Resources” section you will find the data for CPU / Memory Usage is not being pulled.

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When I faced this error 1st, I did a restart of Host which solved the problem, but in some cases you can’t take this step unless you have planned to vMotion the VM’s to another host.

Another way is to “Remove” the host from vCenter and “Add” back again.

To remove the host, right click on the host and select “Remove”

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This action will give a security alert, Click “Yes” to move ahead.

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You can monitor the “Recent Tasks” for the status of your action.

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Lets “Add” the Host again.
Right click on the “Datacenter Name” and select “Add Host…”

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Go through the wizard process.
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You will be prompted again with the Security Alert, Select “Yes” to move ahead.

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Upon completion of wizard you can go through the summary once again.

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And the Host will be added

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Once the Task is complete, check the “Summary” page of the Host and check the “Resources” section.

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Now try Powering On the virtual machine, and it should power on.

vmware vSphere Web Client Installation

This is in continuation with my previous post here

In this post, I will be writing up the installation procedure of vSphere web client.
We will be installing on the same server as we used for Inventory service and vCenter server i.e., vcentersrv.homelab.com

Select vSphere web client from menu and begin the installation.
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Check the vSphere Web Client service has been started.
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That’s all for installation of web client Smile

Lets login to web client, point the browser to https://192.168.1.205:9443/vsphere-client
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My next article will be on Installing the second node of Single Sign On service.

VMWare Single SignOn Service, Inventory Service, vCenter 5.1 Installation

Today, I am going to attempt installation of vCenter 5.1.

vCenter 5.1 requires vmware Single Sign On and vmware Inventory service, so we will start with Single Sign On service.
The order is SSO (Single Sign On), Inventory, and last vCenter. All 3 services can be installed on a single server but, I will attempt to install SSO on a separate server whereas Inventory and vCenter on another server.
I will be installing Inventory and vCenter on same server.

For SSO and vCenter there is a requirement of a SQL server, in this test lab I will be using a separate SQL 2008 R2 server.

So lets begin with installation of SQL 2008 R2 server.

(I will try to post every step screenshot and where ever possible will explain the step also, explanation will be in top of screenshot)

SQL Server 2008 R2 Installation

Domain Name: homelab.com – 192.168.1.151
SQL server : SQL2K8R2.homelab.com – 192.168.1.200

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Start the setup of SQL server.
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Changed the SQL Instance name from default to custom “SQL_INST”
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I have set the Account for Agent and Database Engine as “System” may be this is not the best practice, but for sake of ease and lab.
Also, the Server Agent service startup type is set to “Automatic”, later at time of installing Inventory service it has to be set to Auto, so I did it before hand.
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Make sure to select “Mixed Mode” for Authentication type.
I have also added local system “administrator” and “Domain Admin” group of AD as SQL administrators.
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Installation of SQL has started.
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Once the installation of SQL server is complete we will go ahead for installation of SSO on a dedicated server.
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vCenter Single Sign On Installation
Server Name: SSO-A .homelab.com– 192.168.1.201

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Note: If the Single Sign On server or the VM hosting the server fails, administrators cannot access vCenter, but ESXi hosts continue to function normally. That’s the reason I have planned to test SSO in a cluster.

very 1st we will start by enabling the .Net framework feature through server manager MMC.
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The 1st option will suit our needs for High Availability.
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Installation wizard create a default SSO administrator user account i.e., admin@System-Admin. This username and password (you specify here) will be used for administration of SSO via vSphere web client.
You can create users as required later using this account.
So make sure you remember the password.
The requirement of password is at least 1 uppercase letter, 1 lowercase letter, 1 special character, and total length should be > 8
This requirement can be changed through SSO control panel (vSphere web client).
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Read this carefully, before we go ahead we need to run a script located in the installation media at \Single Sign On\DBScripts\SSOServer\schema\mssql.
This script has to be executed on SQL server.
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We are on SQL Server,. Selected is the script that we need. double click on it, which will launch the management studio.

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Before we execute the script, we need to make some modifiaction.
1. create folder for database file. I am using folder name as “RSA_DB” on C-Drive (for lab test purpose)
2. modify the path at 3 location, see the screenshot below, marked with black line.

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Select “Execute” option from toolbar and you should get a success message.
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You can see the database “RSA” is created.
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Lets go back to SSO server and move ahead with installation.

Now, we need to fill in the appropriate details so that the installer can communicate with SQL server.
Database Name: RSA
Host Name: SQL2K8R2.homelab.com
Username: sa
Password : your password
I am using the sa account here.

JDBC URL will be populated automatically once the connection is successful.
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Might be possible you will get error Database Connection has failed, and if you check the log file vm-sso-javaLib.log mentioned in the error with is located at %temp% dir. it says
“The TCP/IP connection to the host SQL2K8R2.homelab.com, port 1433 has failed. Error: “connect timed out. Verify the connection properties, check that an instance of SQL Server is running on the host and accepting TCP/IP connections at the port, and that no firewall is blocking TCP connections to the port.”.
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To resolve this, I made changes in SQL server configuration manager, under the properties of TCP/IP, IP Address tab, TCP Port is blank, set it to “1433”
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Restart the SQL server service and back to SSO installation, try moving ahead.
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the connection will be successful, if you click back you will see JDBC URL is populated.
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Leave the port number to default.
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This completes the installation of SSO on a dedicated server.
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Check the service from services MMC.
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vCenter Inventory Service Installation

Lets begin installation of Inventory service on a new server, this server will also host the vCenter server.

Server Name: vcentersrv.homelab.com – 192.168.1.205
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Inventory and vCenter requires .Net framework, and we will start by enabling the feature from “Server Manager”

Start the Setup for Inventory Service.

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Here, enter the URL for Lookup service, which is part of SSO.
I hope you remember the password for SSO admin account. Smile
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This was a very straight forward Installation.

vCenter Server Installation

For vCenter, we will start by preparing the database. we will be using the same SQL server for vCenter database.

Use the script below to create the database for vCenter Server.
On the SQL Server, open Management studio, create a new Query and paste the script.

Copy Script starting after the line

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use [master]
go
CREATE DATABASE [VCDB] ON PRIMARY
(NAME = N’vcdb’, FILENAME = N’C:\VC_DB\VCDB.mdf’ , SIZE = 2000KB , FILEGROWTH = 10% )
LOG ON
(NAME = N’vcdb_log’, FILENAME = N’C:\VC_DB\VCDB.ldf’ , SIZE = 1000KB , FILEGROWTH = 10%)
COLLATE SQL_Latin1_General_CP1_CI_AS
go

use VCDB
go
sp_addlogin @loginame=[vpxuser], @passwd=N’vpxuser’, @defdb=’VCDB’, @deflanguage=’us_english’
go
ALTER LOGIN [vpxuser] WITH CHECK_POLICY = OFF
go
CREATE USER [vpxuser] for LOGIN [vpxuser]
go

CREATE SCHEMA [VMW]
go
ALTER USER [vpxuser] WITH DEFAULT_SCHEMA =[VMW]
go

/*User should have DBO Privileges or VC_ADMIN_ROLE and VC_USER_ROLE database roles*/

sp_addrolemember @rolename = ‘db_owner’, @membername = ‘vpxuser’
go

/*or*/

if not exists (SELECT name FROM sysusers WHERE issqlrole=1 AND name = ‘VC_ADMIN_ROLE’)
CREATE ROLE VC_ADMIN_ROLE;
GRANT ALTER ON SCHEMA :: [VMW] to VC_ADMIN_ROLE;
GRANT REFERENCES ON SCHEMA :: [VMW] to VC_ADMIN_ROLE;
GRANT INSERT ON SCHEMA ::  [VMW] to VC_ADMIN_ROLE;

GRANT CREATE TABLE to VC_ADMIN_ROLE;
GRANT CREATE VIEW to VC_ADMIN_ROLE;
GRANT CREATE Procedure to VC_ADMIN_ROLE;

if not exists (SELECT name FROM sysusers WHERE issqlrole=1 AND name = ‘VC_USER_ROLE’)
CREATE ROLE VC_USER_ROLE
go
GRANT SELECT ON SCHEMA ::  [VMW] to VC_USER_ROLE
go
GRANT INSERT ON SCHEMA ::  [VMW] to VC_USER_ROLE
go
GRANT DELETE ON SCHEMA ::  [VMW] to VC_USER_ROLE
go
GRANT UPDATE ON SCHEMA ::  [VMW] to VC_USER_ROLE
go
GRANT EXECUTE ON SCHEMA :: [VMW] to VC_USER_ROLE
go

sp_addrolemember VC_ADMIN_ROLE , [vpxuser]

go

sp_addrolemember VC_USER_ROLE , [vpxuser]

go

use MSDB
go

CREATE USER [vpxuser] for LOGIN [vpxuser]
go

/*User should have DBO Privileges or VC_ADMIN_ROLE */

sp_addrolemember @rolename = ‘db_owner’, @membername = ‘vpxuser’
go

/*or*/

if not exists (SELECT name FROM sysusers WHERE issqlrole=1 AND name = ‘VC_ADMIN_ROLE’)
CREATE ROLE VC_ADMIN_ROLE;

go
grant select on msdb.dbo.syscategories to VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
grant select on msdb.dbo.sysjobsteps to VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
GRANT SELECT ON msdb.dbo.sysjobs to VC_ADMIN_ROLE
GO
GRANT EXECUTE ON msdb.dbo.sp_add_job TO VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
GRANT EXECUTE ON msdb.dbo.sp_delete_job TO VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
GRANT EXECUTE ON msdb.dbo.sp_add_jobstep TO VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
GRANT EXECUTE ON msdb.dbo.sp_update_job TO VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
GRANT EXECUTE ON msdb.dbo.sp_add_jobserver TO VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
GRANT EXECUTE ON msdb.dbo.sp_add_jobschedule TO VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go
GRANT EXECUTE ON msdb.dbo.sp_add_category TO VC_ADMIN_ROLE
go

sp_addrolemember VC_ADMIN_ROLE , [vpxuser]

go

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You will see the database is create and appropriate users are given permissions on database.
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Lets create the x64 SYSTEM DSN ODBC connection for database.
This has to be done on vCenter Server i.e., in my lab it is vcentersrv.homelab.com

We need to create a “SQL Server Native Client” type of data source, You will find that there is no entry for it.
Download and install Native Client on vCenter Server from http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=123718&clcid=0x409

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Installation of vCenter Server is complete.
I will continue the post in next part, where we will cover installation of vSphere Web Client.

Upgrade ESXi 4.0.0 U1(208167) to ESXi 4.1.0 (260247) using ESXi Console “Tech Support Mode” (without vsphere host update utility)

Here we will see how to upgrade ESXi host from 4.0.0 U1 to 4.1.0 using ESXi tech support mode.

we will need the update bundle which is a zip file.
Also you will have to enable SSH so that you can upload the .zip bundle to ESXi host.
We will use WinSCP and Putty as our tools to connect to ESXi host.

As you can see below I have the bundle zip file.
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Lets upload the file to ESXi using winSCP utility.
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You can see I have uploaded the file in “datastore1”, now lets rename it to 40-41.zip so that it will be easy when we refer to this file in SSH CLI

Open Putty, connect to ESXi host.
Login using root username and password
We will use “esxupdate” cmd
esxupdate is found in /sbin directory.
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Let us check the bundle file which we uploaded in datastore1
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We will need the location of file, so we will highlight the location i.e., /vmfs/volumes/4e4….d42 and right click, which will copy the location to clipboard.

Lets run the esxupdate cmd
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The ESXi host should be in maintenance mode for update to run successfully, and I forgot to put it which gave me the error as shown below.
You will also notice that I have used the “datastore1” in the URL, which also works as it’s the shortcut to the numerical folder that we saw before.
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Lets put the host in maintenance mode using vim-cmd hostsvc/maintenance_mode_enter
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Let us run the esxupdate cmd again. and you can see the update has started.
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The update is completed, as the message says we will reboot the host using “reboot” cmd.
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Updated to 4.1.0.
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