Tag Archives: vSphere 5

Enable Copy and Paste Through the VMware Console

I was setting up a new host the other day and I received a call from one of my admins letting me know that they could not copy/paste within the console; but they can copy/paste in RDP.
nocopypast

This is a simple fix found in KB1026437.  You can make the change on an individual VM, but I think it is best to change it on the host (which applies to all VMs).  I really wish the default would have this enabled.

Open a Putty session…if you don’t have putty then get it here.
putty

1. Log into the ESXi host that you want to change.
2. Type vi /etc/vmware/config
3. Arrow down to the last line and type which stands for “insert”.
4. Add the lines:
         vmx.fullpath = “/bin/vmx”
         isolation.tools.copy.disable=”FALSE”
         isolation.tools.paste.disable=”FALSE”
5. Press the ESC key and then type :wq which stands for “write and quit”.
addlines

The next time each VM is power cycled it will enable the copy/paste functionality.  Keep in mind that if you ever upgrade this host to a new ESXi version that this setting will go back to the default of disabled and you will have to add this line again.

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The authentication server returned an unexpected error

I came in this morning only to be greeted by my web client telling me that I can’t login because it can’t create SAML 2.0. I am not sure that I really want it creating SAML 2.0….I don’t know SAML 1.0. Ok, bad joke. Here was the message…

I found KB2034798 at which point I remoted into my SSO server and checked the imsTrace.log for “NetUserGetLocalGroups”. I didn’t find it…so the KB didn’t apply to me…L

After some more googling I found this blog post that indicated that references KB2043070. The idea is that there is a local identity source within SSO that it is trying to authenticate the users to. You have to login with the admin@system-domain account and password. Hopefully you saved this when setting up your SSO server. The only problem I had was that I didn’t have this local identity source to remove.

I thought to myself, that there might be a stale identity source on the list that it is authenticating to. I was talking to a coworker and they mentioned that there was a domain that was deleted the day before. AHAH!! I clicked on the identity source of the domain that had been removed and then clicked “Test Connection”. There was an error that didn’t tell me much.

3-12-2014 2-42-32 PMI cancelled out and was back at my list of identity sources. I selected the identity source that had been removed from AD and I hit the red X, “Delete Identity Source”. You will get a prompt asking for you to confirm. One thing to note is that the identity source that I deleted was not one of the default domains at the bottom. If you haven’t set a default domain up, I would do that now. I am wondering if there might be a bug that uses the identity source at the top of the list instead of the default at the bottom. After deleting the state Identity Source I was able to login again.


Creating a template for Server 2012 R2 – Part 1

I have borrowed items from http://www.boche.net/blog/index.php/2012/08/16/microsoft-windows-server-2012-tips/ to create this post. I encourage you to take a moment to check out that post.

This is the step by step document that I used to build my 2012 and 2012 R2 VMs.

VM values will start at:

Hardware: Value:
Memory 4 GB
CPU’s 1
Video card Auto-detect video settings
VMCI device None
SCSI Controller 0 VMware Paravirtual
Hard disk 1 40 GB, Thin
CD/DVD Drive 1 Client Device
Floppy Drive 1 Removed (when done)
Network Adapter 1 VMXNET3
General Options OS: Microsoft Windows Server 2012 and 2012 R2
VMware Tools Default Settings
Virtual Machine Version 9

Creating the VM

  1. In vCenter click “File” then “New” then “Virtual Machine”
  2. Choose the “Custom” radio button and then “Next”.
  3. Name the SM and choose the folder location.
  4. Choose the datastore for the VM and then click “Next”.
  5. Make sure that the “Virtual Machine Version: 8” radio button is selected. (5.1 is using version 9 so I am not sure why this can’t be selected here. We will change this later.
  6. Select the “Windows” radio button and then choose “Microsoft Windows Server 2012 (64-bit).
  7. Take the default of 1 virtual socket and 1 core per virtual socket.
  8. Take the default of 4GB memory and click “Next”
  9. Choose your Network and change the adapter to “VMXNET 3” then click “Next”.
  10. Change the SCSI controller to “VMware Paravirtual” and then click “Next”.
  11. Select the “Create new virtual disk” radio button and then “Next”.
  12. Take the default of 40GB and click “Next”.
  13. Take the default virtual device node. For the system partition you want this to be SCSI 0:0. Click “Next”.
  14. On the summary screen click the “Edit the virtual machine settings before completion” box and then click “Continue”.
  15. Click on the Video Card and then change the radio button to “Auto-detect settings”.
  16. Click on the CD/DVD and then choose the datastore location that you have the 2012 R2 install ISO. Make sure under Device Status that “Connect at power on” is checked. Now click “Finish”.
  17. Right click on your newly created VM and click “Edit Settings”.
  18. Click on the Floppy drive 1 and choose the “Use existing floppy image in datastore” radio button. Then click “Browse”. At the bottom of the datastores you should see a folder called “vmimages”. Double click this folder. (For some reason until the VM is created this folder does not show up and that is why we had to create the VM and then go back into the settings to change this).
  19. Double click on the “floppies” folder.
  20. Choose the “pvscsi-Windows2008.flp” and then “OK”.
  21. The Floppy drive 1 settings should look like this and then click “OK”.
  22. On the list of VMs click the one you are building and then click the “Power On” button.
  23. Now click the “Open Console” button.
  24. The VM should boot into the 2012 R2 setup screen. Choose your language and then “Next”.
  25. Click “Install”.
  26. Choose the version of server that you are using. We use the Datacenter here. Then click “Next”.
  27. Agree to give up your first born to Microsoft by clicking the “I accept the license terms” box and then click “Next”.
  28. Choose “Custom: Install Windows only (advanced).
  29. Uh oh, there is no location to install Windows. Luckily you configured the floppy drive 1 earlier right? Click the “Load Driver” button.
  30. Click “Browse”.
  31. Look for the Floppy Disk Drive and then double click “amd64”.
  32. Select the “VMware PVSCSI Controller (A:\amd64\pvscsi.inf) and click “Next”.
  33. Hey look there is our drive!! Click “Next”.
  34. Windows should now be installing.
  35. Enter a password for your admin account. Do not lose this password!
  36. You should have the login screen now.

Installing APC Network Shutdown for ESXi – Part 3

In Part 3 we are going to install Powerchute Network Shutdown on the OVA that we deployed, then we are going to configure it to shut down the VMs in case of a problem.

  • See APC pdf FA159776. Open Putty.exe, insert the name or IP of the VMA you just deployed, and then click “Open“. Click “Yes” if you get a security alert. Login with vi-admin and your password that you set earlier.
  • Create a temp directory in opt using the command (You will be prompted for the vi-admin password): sudo mkdir /opt/temp
  •   Next we need to change the permissions to this temp directory: sudo chmod 777 /opt/temp
  • Now to check the permissions: ls -la /opt The permissions should now read drwxrwxrwx
  • Now using WINSCP we need to transfer the .tar.gz file that we downloaded earlier up to the ESXi host. Enter the appropriate information and then click “Login“. Click “Yes” or “Proceed” if prompted with a security warning.
  • Check the “Never show this banner again” box and then click “Continue“. You should now see a screen with two windows. The window on the left is your local computer and the screen on the right is the VMA. Navigate on the left window until you find the .tar.gz file.
  • On the right window the drop down where it says “vi-admin“. Change this to /<root>. Then navigate to “opt–>temp 
  • Drag the .tar.gz file from the left window to the right window. Click “Copy” when prompted.
  • Verify that the file has been copied successfully.
  • Now go back to Putty.exe and we are going to uncompress the file. The commands are: gunzip pcnsname.tar.gz then: tar -xvf pcnsname.tar
  • Use the ls-la command and you should see a new ESXi folder. Use the command cd ESXi to change to this folder.
  • List the contents of ESXi with the ls -la command. We need to change the permissions for the installation file: sudo chmod 777 install_en.sh
    Now do another ls -la to see that the permissions have changed to rwxrwxrwx.
  • Now we are ready to install PCNS. Use the command: sudo ./install_en.sh
    Press “Enter” and then use the “z” key to scroll to the end of the agreement. If you agree then type “yes” and then press “Enter“.
  • Accept the default installation path (or insert a different one if you prefer). Press “Enter“. Type “yes” and “Enter” that you are sure about the path.
  • Take the default for the java directory. Press “Enter“.
  • Next the installation looks for the ESXi host that will be shut down. First add the IP of the host and then it will ask for the username and password for the host to make this change.  Update:  Almost all of the deployments failed to add the ESXi host here, so I would choose “q” to skip and then at the command line do: sudo vifp addserver <hostname/ IP address of ESXi host>
  • Verify that the server has been added with the command: vifp listservers
  • To ensure Powerchute can shutdown the VMs on the host, we need to add the ESXi host to the fasspass. Use the command: vifptarget -s <server name or ipaddress>
    Now type the command: vicfg-nics -l
    You should see a list of nics on the ESXi host.
  • One the server has been added you should be able to open a browser and go to the powerchute configuration wizard: https://vmahostnameorip:6547
  • Click “Next” and you should see the Configuration Wizard: Security page. Insert the username and password and the authentication phrase. This must match the card in your APC device. By default this is apc/apc with the passphrase: “admin user phrase” then click “Next“.
  • On the UPS Electrical Configuration page choose the correct configuration for your company and then click “Next“.
  • On the UPS Details page choose the protocol, port, and IP for the APC network card.
  • On the Miscellaneous page check the box for “Automatically check for updates to PCNS” and then click “Next“.
  • Confirm the details and then click “Apply“.
  • Hopefully you see that the computer is now protected. Click “Next“.
  •  You should now see that the wizard is complete, now click “Finish”.
  • You will now see the main page for the Network Shutdown. Click “Configure Events” and then click the check box for “Shutdown System” on “UPS: On Battery“.
  • The “Shut Down Operating System” page will display and input 300 into the “Shut down the PCNS operating system only when the event lasts this long (seconds)
  • Finally, we need to set up the virtual machine shutdown options on the ESXi host. Open the vSphere Client, select the host, and then choose the “Configuration” tab. Under the “Software” pane click on “Virtual Machine Startup/Shutdown“.
  • In the top right corner click “Properties“. Click the box “Allow virtual machines to start and stop automatically with the system“. Set the shutdown delay (120 default) and then set the shutdown action to “Guest Shutdown“.
  • Leaving VMs under the Manual startup will make it so when the host turns back on, the VMs will not start up by themselves. Usually you want to make sure power is restored and stable before bringing up VMs. You can change your VMs to start automatically if you really wanted to. 

THAT’S IT!!

Installing APC Network Shutdown for ESXi – Part 2

In Part 2 we are going to configure the OVA that we just deployed

  • Click on your new VMA and then click the “Open Console” button.
  •  There should be a Network Configuration menu. I have found that if I set the gateway first that it will not save when I set the IP. I am going to set that last. Choose option “3” to set the hostname.
  •   Make your hostname match your VM name.
  •  Select option “4” to set the DNS servers. Type the appropriate primary (Server 1) DNS IP and then press “Enter“. If used, also add your secondary (Server 2) DNS IP and press “Enter” again.
  • Select option “6” to set the IP for eth0. I only use IPv4 so type “n” to not configure IPv6, then “y” to configure IPv4, and then “n” to not use DHCP. Type the IP and Subnet for your VMA and then “y” to confirm it is correct.
  • Now I set the Gateway. Choose option “2” and the press “Enter” to set the gateway for eth0. Type the IP of your IPv4 Default Gateway and the press “Enter“. Press “Enter” again to skip the gateway for IPv6.
  • Choose option “1” to “Exit this program“. This will boot the VMA with the network settings that we just configured.
  • Next the VMA will ask for the old password for the vi-admin account. Press “Enter” for the Old Password. Then type your new password “Enter” and then retype it when prompted. “Enter” again.
  • The VMA should boot and you should see the following screen. Browse to https://VMA-IP:5480 to verify connectivity. 

Great, now you have configured the new VMA, it is now time to install Powerchute in Part 3.

Can’t power off/on a VM — VM is stuck

We had an issue the other day with our filers and because of it, some our machines orphaned themselves and VMware didn’t know what to do with them.  If I tried to power off the machine I would get the error,

Image

Basically, I don’t even think the machine was on, but my vCenter server showed it as being powered on.  Luckily I found a KB article that deals with this.    http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=1014165.

SSH into the host that the VM is said to be running from.  Then run the command:

esxcli vm process list

This gives you a list of all the running VMs, and the important piece you want is the World ID.  Copy that, and then run the command:

esxcli vm process kill –type=[soft,hard,force] –world-id=WorldNumber

Note: Three power-off methods are available. Soft is the most graceful, hard performs an immediate shutdown, and force should be used as a last resort.

As you can see, I ran this command and it killed the VM.  After doing this, I was able to power on the VM without issue.  I used soft and it worked.

Image

That’s all I have for today.

Storage Vmotion Problem

We have two vCenter servers that are in linked mode.  After upgrading to Vsphere 5 I have been having problems deploying machines.  I get this error:

Image

Strange right…  Well, I then decided to do a vStorage migration of a machine and got the same error:

Image

Turns out that this is a bug with no fix right now when you link two vcenter servers together.  To get around this, make sure that your VIC client is logging into the vCenter server that you are going to do the vStorage migration or deplate deployment from.  If I have vCenter Server A and B and I want to deploy from a template on B; you would log into the B vCenter to deploy.

Here is the KB article http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=2013516