Friday 29 November 2013

vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing vShield and vCloud Director - Module 4

Module 1 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying VC Appliance v5.5
Module 2 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying vCloud and vShield Appliance
Module 3 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing for vCloud Deployment

Module 4 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing vShield and vCloud Director
Module 5 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Configuring vCloud Director - Part 1

Preparing vShield and vCloud Director - Module 3

After completing the configuration of VM Storage Profiles and Distributed Switch, the next step would be to setup and configure vShield and vCloud Director appliance.I will first start with attaching the vShield appliance to vCenter and then do the initial configuration of vCloud Director.

1) In the vCenter home view, Power on the vShield appliance and open the console.Once, the vShield appliance has booted up, login to the console as Username:admin and password:default Figure 1.

                           Figure 1: vShield appliance console.

2) After logging into the console , you need to enter the privilege mode: type "enable" and when prompted for a password, enter "default". Then type "setup" and when prompted assign an IP address and all other details. You might need to log out and log back in for the settings to take effect. Once you login, run the command " show interface mgmt "  to verify that the settings have taken effect.Figure 2.

                            Figure 2: Verify the IP address has been set.

3) Next, we access the vShield Manager via a Web browser. Open an Web browser and type in the Ip address when prompted, enter "admin/default" as username and password. Be patient, it might take a while for the page to open :-)  Figure 3.

                            Figure 3: vShiled Manager login page.

Thursday 14 November 2013

vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing for vCloud Deployment - Module 3

Module 1 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying VC Appliance v5.5
Module 2 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying vCloud and vShield Appliance
Module 3 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing for vCloud Deployment
Module 4 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing vShield and vCloud Director
Module 5 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Configuring vCloud Director - Part 1

Configuring VM Storage Profiles and vSphere Distributed Switch - Module 3

After completing the Import of the vCenter, vCloud Director and the vShield Appliance the next step would be to configure the Storage Profile (VM Storage Policies) and Networks for the vCloud Environment.

We will configure VM Storage Policies, to specify the Storage Capabilities. We will use 3 Datastores with Names "High Priority, Medium Priority,Low Priority" to denote the kind of VM Workload that would be deployed on these Datastores.  

1) Login to the vCenter Server using the WebClient. If you have not already added your Virtual ESXi Servers, now would be a good time to do so. I am assuming that you have presented the Storage to the ESXi Servers. 

2) If you are not familiar with VM Storage Policies  the below steps will show you how to configure them.If already configured, you can skip Step 15.

3) Click on the "VM Storage Profiles" on the Home Screen. Figure 1.
                            Figure 1: Open "VM Storage Profiles".

4) Next step is to Enable VM Storage Profiles on the Resource Cluster. Click on "Enable VM Storage Profiles" Figure 2. and then select the Cluster on which the "Storage Profile needs to be enabled" and click Enable.Click Close to save the settings.Figure 3.This enables "VM Storage Profiles" on the cluster.
                          Figure 2: Click on the Icon to enable "VM Storage Profile"

                           Figure 3: Select the cluster, click Enable and then Close.

5) In vSphere 5.5 "VM Storage Profiles" works on the concept of Tags. So, we need to create tags which will associate  Datastores to Datastore policies.Open the Home page of vCenter and select the "Tags" icon.Click on the "New Tag" icon. Figure 4.
                            Figure 4: Select the "New Tag" icon.

Saturday 9 November 2013

vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying vCloud and vShield Appliance - Module 2

Module 1 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying VC Appliance v5.5
Module 2 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying vCloud and vShield Appliance
Module 3 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing for vCloud Deployment
Module 4 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing vShield and vCloud Director
Module 5 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Configuring vCloud Director - Part 1

Deploying the vCloud and vShield Appliance: Module 2

1) Now,that we have our vCenter up and running, and added the Physical ESXi into the Management Cluster. Let's import the vCloud and the vShield Manager virtual Appliance.

Note: On both the cluster's set "DRS" to enabled and in fully automated mode. Figure 1.
                          Figure 1: DRS enabled on the Cluster and in Fully Automated mode.

2) In the vSphere Web Client, select the Managment Cluster and click on "Actions" => " Deploy OVF Template" option. and browse to the location of the vCloud Appliance. Figure 2.
                           Figure 2: Import the vCloud virtual appliance.

3) If the vCloud Integration plugin was not already installed, the next screen will prompt you to do so. Finish the installation and continue. Figure 3.
                           Figure 3: Install the vCloud Integration Plugin.

4) Review the configuration screen and continue with the Import. Figure 4. For the disk type, I am using "Thin Provisoned".
                           Figure 4 : Review the vCloud Appliance details.

5) At the Network Screen, specify the same network that was used for the vCenter Appliance and continue. Figure 5:
                           Figure 5: Select the Network that was used by the vCenter.

6) At the Customize Template screen, specify a password for the root user account and the guest account under "Linux Accounts".If you are using an external database,you could specify the remote SQL or Oracle database details.Figure 6.
                           Figure 6: Specify a password for root and guest user accounts.

  b) For the Database we will use the Embedded. In the Networking section, Specify an IP for the Default Gateway, DNS and the 2 IP's we mentioned in Module 1. One for the UI and one for the Console Proxy. Figure 7. Click Next to review your configuration and click Finish.This will start the Import of the vCloud Appliance.
                           Figure 7: Specify the IP Address.

7) After the vCloud Appliance is imported, the next step would be to Import the " vCloud Networking and Security Manager"(vShiled Manager). The vCloud Networking and Security Manager provides Network Services to vCloud and the vCenter server.A unique instance needs to be installed for every vCenter Install.
In the vSphere WebClient .Select the Management Cluster => "Actions"  => "Deploy OVF Template". Browse to the location of the " VMware-vShield-Manager-5.5.0.ova" file and start the Import process.Figure 8.
                           Figure 8: Specify the location of the vShield Manager.

8) In the next screen you can review the details about the vShield Manager.Figure 9.
                           Figure 9: Review the details about the vShield Manager.

9) The next steps would be to Accept EULA, Specify a name for the vShield Appliance and location in the Inventory, Disk storage type(I have used Thin Provisoned), Network ( Specify the same Network that was used for vCenter and the vCloud Director.) Review the Settings and Click Finish and wait for the Import process to complete.Figure 10.
                           Figure 10: Review the setting before clicking the Finish button.

10) This completes the process of Importing the vCloud Director Appliance and the vShield Manager Appliance.


vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying VC Appliance v5.5 - Module 1

I am writing this blog to assist my customers with their vCloud Deployments on version 5.5 and also hoping that these posts will be helpful to anyone who wants to setup a small test environment to understand the features of vCloud before implementing the solution in their Production environment.Since, the environment I would be deploying would be within a Single ESXi server, this configuration is not supported in a Production environment.This is only meant for testing. :-)
 VMware provides 2 options for Deploying the vCloud Solution:
1) Installable version - To be deployed in Production Environments.
2) vCloud Director Appliance - Testing and Evaluation, version based upon SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 Service Pack 2.

Below are the Pre-Requisites, for deploying the vCloud Appliance infrastructure:

1) You will need 4 IP address for the following:
     a) 1 for vCenter Server.
     b) 2 for vCloud Director. 1 for HTTP traffic and 1 for Console proxy Traffic.
     c) 1 for vCloud Networking and Security Manager.

2) One Physical ESXi, v5.x  on which all the above components will be deployed.

3) The names of all the components should be resolvable using short name and FQDN names.Use nslookup to verify this.

4) If you will be using more than 1 ESXi Hosts, you will need 4 datastores, each of 100GB shared between all the servers.In my case, I will be providing shared storage to all the ESXi servers using Starwind.

5) A copy of a CentOS 6.3 LiveCD .iso image to use for testing.

6) Installation files for vCloud Director Appliance, vCenter Server and vCloud Networking and Security Manager.

7) An NTP server for all the components to synchronize their time.

8) Once the vCenter is deployed, create 2 clusters called Mangement and Resource.
     a) In the Management cluster, add the Physical Esxi that runs vCenter, vCloud and vCloud Networking and Security Manager.
     b) In the Resource cluster we will deploy the 2 Virtual ESXi Servers which will be used by the vCloud Director.

9) You can download the Evaluation version of vCloud Director using the below link. You will need to register for an account. You can also download the Virtual Center and vShield from the same link.

Will update the list as I complete each module:

Module 1 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying VC Appliance v5.5
Module 2 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Deploying vCloud and vShield Appliance
Module 3 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing for vCloud Deployment
Module 4 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Preparing vShield and vCloud Director
Module 5 - vCloud Director 5.5 - Configuring vCloud Director - Part 1

Installation/Configuration of vCenter Appliance: Module 1

1) Start with the Installation of ESXi on the Physical Server.Once the installation is complete, assign an IP  address and open the vSphere Client on your Desktop and connect to the ESXi host.

2) Click on File => " Deploy OVF Template". In the window that appears, browse to the location of the "vCenter Appliance ovf" file you downloaded and select the file. Verify the OVF Details.Figure 1.
                           Figure 1 : Verify the details of the vCenter Appliance file.

3) Click Next , provide a name for the vCenter Server Appliance and the location(if you have a resource pool).Figure 2.
                          Figure 2 : Select the location to place your vCenter Appliance.

4) Specify the Disk format. I will be using Thin Provisioned disk which will use around 3.4gb on the ESXi Datastore. Figure 3.Click Next and specify the VM Network the Appliance will use.
                           Figure 3 : Select the Disk Format.

5) Verify the settings in the Final Screen and click Finish for the import process to start. Figure 4.
                           Figure 4 : Verify the details and click the Finish.

6) Power on the vCenter Appliance and open the console and wait for the VM to boot up. You might be prompted to setup the Network.Figure 5.
                           Figure 5 : Network not detected.

7) In the Console of the vCenter Appliance, press enter to login to the console. Use (root/vmware) as the username and password. Run the command : /opt/vmware/share/vami/vami_config_net Figure 6.
                           Figure 6: Network Setup Screen.

8) Use the Menu screen and assign the IP,DNS, D/GW and hostname for the VC Appliance.Start with option 6. Once the settings are completed, use Option 0 to verify the configuration.Figure 7.
                           Figure 7: Verify Network Configuration.

9) Exit the Program using Option 1. Type "exit" in the command prompt to return back to the console screen.Figure 8.
                          Figure 8: Verify the IP address is assigned to the appliance.

10) To verify that the Virtual Center is accessible, Open a web browser ( I am using chrome) and enter the IP address of the vCenter with the port number 5480. e.g: . You will be redirected to the web console of the vCenter Server Appliance. Login using ( root/vmware) .
                           Figure 9: vCenter Server web console.

11) Once, you login to the web Console,  Accept the EULA and proceed to the next screen.Figure 10
                           Figure 10 : Accept EULA and proceed to the next option.

12) The next screen will prompt you for the Options, I will go with the Default options as we will be using the Embedded database for VC and SSO. Figure 11.Select "Configure with default Settings" and Click Next.
                           Figure 11: Select the Default settings.

13) Review the screen for your reference and Click Start. Wait for a few minutes, it might take a while. :-)
                           Figure 12: Review the default settings.

14) Once, the Setup completes. You will be redirected to the vCenter server Configuration page.This is the home page, you can use for making any changes to the vCenter Server. Figure 13.
                           Figure 13: vCenter Server configuration screen after the setup completes.

15) Next step would be ensure that the time on the vCenter server Appliance is synchronized.You need to configure NTP time source for your vCenter Appliance. Select the "Time" tab and enter your NTP server details there.

16) Let's verify that the vCenter is running correctly and you can add your Physical ESXi into the vCenter.Open a WebPage and enter the IP of the vCenter followed by port: 9443. For example :  and use (root/vmware).
                           Figure 14: Login to the vCenter using Web Client.

17) Once logged in to the vCenter Server, add your Physical ESXi to the vCenter. in a new cluster called "Management". In the next Module we will deploy the vCloud Appliance inside this cluster. This completes the Installation of the vCenter server Appliance.


Monday 9 September 2013

vSphere 5.x Notes

1) The Integrated databases on vCenter virtual appliance and Windows based vCenter.
The supported limit on all these databases is: 5 Hosts and 50 Virtual Machines.

a) Windows based vCenter : 
vCenter Server 5.x is bundled with SQL Express 2008
vCenter Server 4.x is bundled with SQL Express 2005

b) Linux Based vCenter : 
vCenter 5.1 is bundled with embedded DB2 database
vCenter 5.0 is bundled with embedded PostgreSQL database.

2) How do we compare the performance of the different types of Storage?
A) The below NetApp TR 3916 shows performance using different vSphere supported storage's:
" VMware vSphere 4.1 Storage Performance: Measuring FCoE, FC,iSCSI, and NFS Protocols"

3) How do I get a list of VMs with RDM luns along with the NAA or Lun id?
A) Below is a list of links I found on the Internet that can help you accomplish the above task:
a) Identifying virtual machines with Raw Device Mappings (RDMs) using PowerCLI (2001823)

b) LUN report – datastore, RDM and node visibility

c) Get LUN id of Raw Disk Mappings with PowerCLI

4)  If you ever wanted to Harden your VMware Infrastructure and did not know how, below is the link to the Official guide that can help you ensure that your ESXi, VC, Update Manager and other componets are hardened.

VMware vSphere Hardening Guides v 4.x and 5.x.

5) Below is  link to the Comparison of different features of vSphere Editions. 

6)  When you are archtecting an VMware vCloud Infrastructure  the VMware vCloud Architecture ToolKit(vCAT) is definitely recommended to be used as a reference. It contains a bunch of design guideline documents,reference guides and tools that can be very helpful.

VMware vCloud Architecture ToolKit (vCAT) v3.1

7) How to enable vMotion for Internal Only vSwitch


Saturday 3 August 2013

Veeam One - Part One - Installation

I have been working on Veeam Products for sometime now and wanted to share my experience hoping my blogs will be helpful to anyone looking for info on Veeam. Since, Veeam offers a number of products, I have decided to write multiple posts that cover Installation, configuration and the features of all the products. I wanted to start with Veeam One for now.

Introduction to Veeam One:

Veeam One is a software to monitor VMware as well as Hyper-V Infrastructure.Good monitoring solution has become a necessity now that our Virtualized infrastructures are growing such rapidly. The monitoring charts and alarms provided with vCenter and Hyper-V feels definitely feels basic and a higher value monitoring/reporting solution seems essential. 

 Veeam One has 3 components:
a) Veeam One Monitor - Used to monitor Virtual Environments.
b) Veeam One Reporter - Used to find and isolate configuration issues and optimize resource allocation.  
c) Veeam One Business View - Used to group infrastructure objects into different categories like configuration purpose. 

You can refer to Veeam One Datasheet for VMware and  Veeam One Datasheet for Hyper-V  for additional details.

Eric Siebert has a good whitepaper regarding the VMware Management Challenges and how a monitoring solution can help us with these challenges. Definitely a good read.

Module 1 - Step by Step Installation of Veeam One.

1) To start with Installation you will need to download the executable from Veeam Website. You will require to register on Veeam webiste to download the installation file. I am installing " Veeam One V6.5 " on Windows 2008 64 bit version.

2) If you are using an external SQL Database, then you will have to create this before Installing " Veeam One". Following steps Explain how to Create an External SQL Database.

          a) Login to your SQL Server using SQL authentication. Create a Blank Database using the name "VeeamOne". 

          b) We need to run a script against this Database which is provided by Veeam. The script is located in the "Veeam One" ISO file in "Addins\SQLScript\" folder. The name of this script is "VeeamOne.sql".

          c) You can copy this script to the SQL server and open it using SQL Management Studio. Execute the script to make the new Database compatible with "Veeam One". The results screen with an output of 650 Indicates that this is a script for Veeam One v6.5. The script should result in successful execution.
Figure 1: Run the "Veeam One" script on SQL against pre-created database with the name "VeeamOne". 

           d) This completes the pre-configuration required for Veeam One Database.

2) The next step is to start with the Veeam One Installation, double-click the file downloaded from Veeam website to start the installation. ( Figure 2).
                                         Figure 2 - Veeam one Install prompt.

3) Click on " Veeam One Server "to start the installation, in my case I was prompted that some required files were missing.(Figure 3). Just when you think that you have to go all around the world looking for these files to install the prerequisites, Veeam has a surprise for you, once you click OK, the Installer will start installing these files by itself.Great Isn't it...
Figure 3 : Veeam One Installation Prerequisites.

4) The next couple of installation prompts are a no brainier, where you just click next to continue.

Figure 4 : Setup prompt.

 Figure 5: Accept the License Agreement. 

Figure 6: Select the License Mode. Since, I had a full license of Veeam One, I selected " Full Functionality Mode"

Figure 7: Select the Install Type, I have selected Advanced. 

 Figure 8: The installer installs 2 Components. "Veeam One server" and "Veeam One Web UI".

 Figure 9: The Installer does a final System Configuration Check and reports the missing components. 

Figure 10: The installer automatically installs the missing components.I wish all the installers were as simple and intelligent as this.

Figure 11: Enter a Domain user name that will be used to run Veeam One.

5) I am selecting the second option to use an existing SQL Server, Click the Browse button and the SQL server should show up. Next, click the Browse button for Database name and the select the database you created in Step 2.
Figure 12: The Installer has detected the External Database that we created in Step 2 and click Next.

6)The next screen shows the Ports that will be used by Veeam One.
 Figure 13: Default Ports used by Veeam One.

7) The next screen let's you select which environment you want to monitor using Veeam One. I will be using it for vSphere Environemnt, maybe in later modules I will also use Hyper-V.
Figure 14: Select VMware vCenter Server.

8) In the next screen you will have to enter the credentials for vCenter.
Figure 15: Enter Credentials of vcenter.

9) Summary screen for Installation.
Figure 16: Install Summary screen.

10) Once the install completes, you should see two icons on the desktop.
a) Veeam One Business View
b) Veeam One reporter.

Figure 17:  Icons on the Desktop.

11) The last component that needs to be installed is "Veeam One Monitor Client".Its available in the Veeam One Installation Media.It's a very straight forward and requires about 6 mouse clicks.

Figure 18: Select Veeam ONE Monitor Client.

Figure 19: Click next in the Install Screen.

Figure 20: Take all the time in the world to read the License agreement. :-)

Figure 21: Select the Location to install the Client.

Figure 22: If you want the icon on the desktop, keep the checkbox enabled.

Figure 23: Review the final install screen.

Figure 24: Veeam One Monitor client appears on the Desktop.

This concludes the installation of Veeam One for VMware environments. 

Note : The log files for Veeam One installation and the product itself is located in the below location. These are extremely helpful in troubleshooting if you run into any issues.

a) Veeam One Setup log files in Windows 2008: C:\ProgramData\Veeam\Setup\Temp
and in 2003: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Veeam\Setup\Temp

b) Veeam One Reporter Server log files are located in 2008:  C:\Users\Userid$\AppData\Local\Veeam\Veeam ONE
c) Veeam one Business View - Website information is located in :
C:\Program Files\Veeam\Veeam ONE\Veeam ONE Business View Web\Generated\log.txt

d) To obtain the log files in Veeam One Monitor you select Help => Support Information. This will start the log collection process and zip all the relevant files open a new windows with the log files. ( Figure 27).

Figure 25: Veeam One Business View Configuration tab showing log file location.

Figure 26: Veeam One Reporter Configuration tab showing log file location.

Figure 27: Collecting log files for Veeam One Monitor.