VMware – vSphere 5.5 U2 Workarounds and Random Things – Part 1

I’ve been in the field recently, deploying one of my designs for a customer as our normal resources were tied up elsewhere. I’m rusty, to be sure, and haven’t done a lot of VMware deployment work outside of a lab in the last few years. So I thought I’d do a series of posts about things that I didn’t think of when I did the design, and the various workarounds and random fixes that I came across to resolve the issues I encountered. I hope some of them are useful. I’ll break this up into a couple of parts, covering a few different things in each post.


Missing VMware Tools ISO

The first issue I came across was being unable to load the VMware Tools ISO when updating or installing VMware Tools on a VM. You’ll need the following VMware KB article – Unable to locate the ISO image for the VMware Tools installation (1036810) – to resolve the issue. I literally have no effing idea why this is happening. I can only assume that it has something to do with the fact we’ve used SD cards in these blades, and ESXi thinks, quite rightly, that the local storage on these blades is not so persistent.


Moving vCenter’s SQL Database

The Client also had made some SQL servers available as per my request prior to arriving on-site. However, The Client wanted me to build vCenter on a “temporary” SQL host and then migrate it elsewhere. I’ve found that life is not always as we planned it. If this happens to you, you’ll find the following article – Moving the VMware vCenter Server 4.x/5.x/6.0.x SQL database (7960893) – to be an invaluable. You should also get friendly with your local SQL DBA if you’re lucky to have one at hand. Again, I could talk about how planning and preparation are key to a successful engagement, but the reality is that sometimes The Client has outside pressures applied to them that I simply can’t appreciate.


ESXi NIC Teaming Options

Found yourself in a data centre? Touching a vSphere deployment? Teaming NICs in the dark of night? Not really knowing what’s going on? Wondering what all those options meant? Wonder no more. NIC teaming in ESXi and ESX (1004088) covers a lot of useful information, including the following summary of your options when it comes to uplinks:

  • Route based on the originating port ID: Choose an uplink based on the virtual port where the traffic entered the virtual switch.
  • Route based on an IP hash: Choose an uplink based on a hash of the source and destination IP addresses of each packet. For non-IP packets, whatever is at those offsets is used to compute the hash.
  • Route based on a source MAC hash: Choose an uplink based on a hash of the source Ethernet.
  • Use explicit failover order: Always use the highest order uplink from the list of Active adapters which passes failover detection criteria.
  • Route based on physical NIC load (Only available on Distributed Switch): Choose an uplink based on the current loads of physical NICs.

The impact of choosing the different options here is worthy of a future blog post, but in the meantime, have a look at this handy article at vLore Blog.


Okay, so hopefully that was useful for someone. More to follow …