vToolBelt – May 2017

Upcoming Events

Central Ohio VMUG UserCON (May 23) – Created by VMware users for VMware users.  Plan to be at the Hyatt Regency in downtown Columbus on May 23 for one of the largest VMware events in the Midwest.  Visit the VMUG.COM site to view the agenda & register.

Ohio SLED VMUG (June 13) – Save the date!  Planning is underway for the next SLED VMUG.  As soon as the agenda is finalized and the registration open we will get the information to you.

VMworld 2017

Registration for VMworld 2017 in the US is open now.   Early Bird pricing is in  effect now through June 12.  This provides discounted conference prices through June 12.    You can view pricing on the VMworld.com Registration Packages Page.

The Schedule Builder will be available mid-July.  Once this date is finalized, I will let you know.  The Schedule Builder will allow you to register for break out sessions at the conference.  Many sessions will fill up quickly – it is important to register as soon you can.

VMworld Customer Boot camps are back this year by popular demand.  These are optional add-ons you can choose during registration.  This year, there are 3 – Oracle on vSphere, SQL Server on vSphere, and vSphere Top Gun Performance.  Get more details at VMworld.com.

Notes from the Field

Documentation for Storage and Availability products have been consolidated at StorageHub.vmware.com.  This includes vSAN, Site Recovery Manger, vSphere Replication, Virtual Volumes, and Core Storage.  From Design and Implementation documentation, to Whitepapers and Videos – you can find it at the Storage Hub.

New VMware Guides – The official guide to running SQL Server on vSphere has been released. The vSphere 6.5 Hardening guide is out.  You can get it and guides for all products at the Security Blog.

For many of you, summer is upgrade time.  It is important to plan your upgrades to make sure new versions are compatible.  The TAM Blog has an article which helps highlight the tools you can use in your upgrade planning.

Which comes first, vSAN or vCenter?  If you are setting up a new environment and planning on using vSAN, which do you setup first – vCenter or vSAN?  vSAN requires vCenter to operate.  The VM for vCenter has to live on storage.  If you are building hosts for vSAN you may not have storage in the host for items other than vSAN.  To solve this chicken or egg conundrum, you can use a bootstrap method. This is the process of installing vCenter onto a single ESXi host, and standing up a vSAN cluster from that host. VMware’s William Lam (virtuallyGhetto) has written this up before.    These techniques have gone mainstream with vSAN 6.6.  There is now a native bootstrap installer to make this process simpler.

vMotion is probably one of the most used and relied upon features in virtualization.  However, with the ever-increasing size of virtual machine RAM, migrations are taking longer and longer – particularly if you don’t have the benefit of 10gb switching.  Did you know you can enable vMotion on multiple NICs on your host?  This will not help move that single large VM any faster; but could help you migrate more VMs at the same time.  Check out this blog for details.

Have you considered dipping your toes into the water of Containers?  Learn more about running Containers as a Service.  Find out how to do this using your VMware environment  – vSphere Integrated Containers Quick Start.

Blog site ESXi.COM has a very detailed NSX Install guide. There are multiple parts to this series and walks through most every component.

Tools you can use – RVtools is a tool that can gather detailed information about your VMware environment.  It can create an Excel sheet with multiple tabs that will detail your environment very nicely.  My favorite feature is a tab that can show general health infomration you might want to check up on – including Zombie VMs (or VMs that have been removed from Inventory; but not deleted.  These can eat up your disk space without your knowledge) It is free.  You can download a copy at RobWare.net

Many are beginning to look at using Instant Clones of their Windows desktops.  Did you know that in Horizon 7.1 you can use Instant Clones with RDSH servers?

For those of you with an embedded Platform Services Controller (PSC) and have thought about migrating to an external PSC.  While it is not a trivial task – it can be done.

I’ll end this month’s newsletter with a little bit of Internet history that I ran across.  How did SSH get assigned to port 22 anyway?  The intriguing thing to me was that the port number was assigned in less than 24 hours.  Ahh – when the Internet was a bit younger and smaller.  I wonder how long that would take today…

Have a good month!