Scott Lowe moving to EMC

Even during an economic slowdown there are bright spots and opportunities.  Scott Lowe from Blog.ScottLowe.org is taking a new position with EMC as a VMware-Cisco Solutions Principal.  Congratulations to Scott!

Scott has pledged to continue his already top-notch blogging, continuing in line with his new boss and another great blogger Chad Sakac.

Read Scott’s post on his site.  Read More

Thank you Scott for everything you have contributed and this opportunity, you deserve it.

VMware KB1016262 – vCenter Agent Install Fails on ESXi 4 Host

VMware just posted an alert on this for ESXi 4 Hosts managed by either vCenter 4 or 4 Update 1.  If you remove and re-add the Host to vCenter, or upgrade vCenter to Update 1 you may experience this issue.

At this time, there is no official fix, however it appears a reboot should fix the issue but with the Host disconnected from vCenter; vMotion is not an option and the disconnect may trigger HA, but I would hope that you have placed this host into Maintenance Mode prior to disconnecting from vCenter…right?  Also, HA should have been disabled prior to your Update 1 patch…you did that as well, right?

Read the official VMware Alert here.

Symantec Doc. ID – 330033 – MSSQL Netbackup DB Backup Skipped

There is an issue with all versions of Netbackup 6.5 through the latest 6.5.5.  This issue might cause the backup of a large number of databases to become unreliable and skip databases.

Read the full Document here.

We have seen this behavior on a few systems, and found that carving up the backups into smaller batch files has solved the issue for us but we plan to move back to large batch files with the upcoming 6.5.6 update in Q2 of 2010.

VMware ESX4 Update 01 Removed from Update Manager

If you are looking to update your ESX4 hosts to Update 01, don’t look in Update Manager.  VMware has removed the update because of a bug with the HP Management Agents preventing the update from completely successfully and rendering the host inoperable.

From KB1016070:

Note: If you want to install the update, you must download the update manually. The update is no longer available for automatic download in Update Manager and the vSphere Update Utility. You can find the update on the VMware Downloads site and copy the download to your local depot as needed.”

Note:  ESXi 4 is unaffected by this KB.

VMware KB1016070 – ESX 4 Update 01 and HP Management Agents Failed Upgrade

VMware has posted a bug when upgrading ESX 4 to Update 01 with HP Management Agents running.  (ESXi is unaffected)

You may have your host end the update unsuccessfully, and in a non-responsive state.  To avoid this, disable all the HP Management Agents prior to running the update.

Read the full article here.

VMware KB1009607 – Pegasus CIMSERVER Memory Leak

VMware has acknowledged an issue that we have been battling for some time with a Pegasus CIMSERVER memory leak.  It has been fixed under ESX 4, as it does not use Pegasus, otherwise setup a CRON job for restart Pegasus periodically.

This issue has been extremely frustrating in our environment for a very long time, and initially we suspected that HP SIM may be to blame, turns out we may have gotten that wrong.

We have worked with VMware Support many times, and this is the first time they have acknowledged this leak and that HP SIM is not the culprit.

Read the KB here.

VMware KB 1008886 – Unable to read partition from Add Storage Wizard

These are great instructions if you have received errors when trying to add a LUN to an ESX Host, and suspect that the LUN may not be READY, or write enabled these instructions can help you troubleshoot and/or fix the LUN.

Read the KB here.

If you are unable to re-write the LUN label, the disk is not READY or not write enabled.  Otherwise, if the label is something other than msdos, it should now be able to be added after following these instructions.

*Warning* Using Parted incorrectly could destroy data on LUNs in use, if not used properly!

VMware KB1005184 – Decoding ESX Purple Screen Error

VMware doesn’t use the “Purple Screen of Death” or “ESX PSOD” terminology in their documents so if you Google it, you won’t get directed to VMware.com and this document for this information.  I know in the past I have spent far too much time searching for PSOD information, so keep this link handy. This document applies to all versions of ESX, from 1.x to 4.x.

Thank you to Rick Blythe of VMware for the link from the VMTN Community site.

Document located here.