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VMware Site Recovery Manager – Post Installation Changes

Today, I was pleasantly surprised to learn hands-on that many settings that I made during the installation of VMware Site Recovery Manager (SRM) could be easily modified after installation.

I have been using SRM for several years and it seemed to me that many configuration changes actually required reinstallation of SRM.  Recently, I learned that SRM 6.1 installer could be run in modify mode, which would allow me to change many of my original settings.  Last week, in a test environment, I had a need to change the Listener Port from 9068 (which is the default for SRM 6.1) to 9007 (which is the default in SRM 5.5).  I assumed that this specific change would require reinstallation, but I was able to make the change by running the change in modify mode..

Specifically, I logged into Windows on the SRM Server, drilled into Control Panel > Programs and Features, right-clicked the SRM program and selected Change.  A wizard appeared that looked much like the original installer.  The only item I changed in the wizard was the Listener Port, which I set to 9007.   I did not have to provide any other data, because the wizard provided all of my original settings as defaults, except for passwords (for the PSC account and embedded database user), which I had to reenter.  The Wizard applied the change and restarted the SRM service.

I was further surprised to see that it worked the first time without requiring additional steps.  I was immediately able to logon to SRM and test the recovery plans that I previously built.  I expected to need to manually modify the Windows Firewall to allow the custom port (9007), but I did not actually have to do so.

For more details, see Modify a Site Recovery Manager Installation the SRM 6.1 documentation.

 

 

vRealize Operations: Improving Data Center Operations and Using Super Metrics

I gave this presentation on vRealize Operations (vROps)  in the Rackspace booth at VMworld USA 2016.  I covers improving operations, customizations, what-if scenarios and custom super metrics.

Audience: anyone who is interested in improving their data center operations using vROps.

In this session, learn how you can improve your datacenter operations by using vRealize Operations (vROps) to manage the health, risk and efficiency of your virtual, hardware, storage and network infrastructure.

Our experts will help you understand how to use vROps and management packs to provide alerts and remediation for current and predicted issues, as well as how to use “what-if” scenario projects for capacity planning.

You’ll also learn how to customize every layer of vROps, including the development of “super metrics,” such as a Datastore Cluster Time Remaining metric.

 

http://go.rackspace.com/dedicated-servers-learningseries-prac-5.html

 

 

Disaster Recovery with VMware SRM and vSphere Replication

I gave this presentation on Disaster Recovery (DR) with VMware Site Recovery Manager (SRM) and vSphere Replication in the Rackspace booth at VMworld USA 2016.

Audience:  anyone who is interested in building a DR solution based on VMware technologies, including VMware NSX, which can be used to provide networks for non-disruptive DR testing.

You can use VMware vSphere®, Site Recovery Manager™ (SRM) and vSphere Replication™ to build a reliable disaster recovery (DR) solution for your data center. Join John Davis to learn how to include technologies such as storage array replication and database replication in your DR solution. We’ll discuss how to leverage VMware NSX® and deploy VMware vRealize Automation across protected networks and other components necessary to facilitate non-disruptive, DR testing that includes application functionality.

http://go.rackspace.com/dedicated-servers-learningseries-prac-3.html

 

vRealize Automation: Use Cases

I gave this presentation on use cases for vRealize Automation in the Rackspace booth at VMworld USA 2016.

Audience:  anyone who is interested on learning what vRealize Automation is and potential use cases.

You can use vRealize™ Automation™ (vRA) to automate IT processes throughout your virtual machine lifecycle, such as those supporting provisioning, management and retirement, and those requiring interaction with multiple systems, including ticketing systems, change management databases (CMDB), and IP management systems. Learn how vRA can be applied to many use cases, from virtual machine (server or desktop) end-to-end lifecycle management to self-service deployment for DevOps, and multi-tier application management. See how you can integrate vRA with VMware NSX® to empower your IT to automate — and thereby accelerate — the implementation of logical networks, firewall protection, and routing and to secure and control your applications.

http://go.rackspace.com/dedicated-servers-learningseries-prac-4.html

 

VCAP6-DCV Deployment Exam – Preparation

Here is my advice for preparing to take the VCAP6-DCV Deployment Exam.

Whether you are already preparing for the VCAP6-DCV Deployment Exam or you are preparing for VCP6-DCV Exam, you may wish to review this free 135 page VCAP6-DCV Deployment Study Guide.

vcap6-deploy-study-guide-pdf

It contains details for each objective in the VCAP6-DCV Deployment Exam, which has similar coverage to the VCP6-DCV Exam, but is hands-on rather than multiple choice.  If you are preparing for VCP6-DCV, you should consider using the  VCP6-DCV Official Cert Guide (VMware Press) as your main preparation tool, but also review the VCAP6-DCV Deployment Exam Study Guide at least once and practice hands-on any of its items that are related to the VCP6-DCV objectives.  If you do this, then upon passing the VCP6-DCV Exam, you could immediately begin preparing for VCAP6-DCV Deployment and likely schedule to take it within weeks.

If you already VCP6-DCV, then you are ready to roll with the VCAP6-DCV Deployment Study Guide.

 

 

 

 

 

VCP6-DCV Exam Preparation

For those of you who may be ready to address the next step in your your career goals and achieve VCP6-DCV certification, you should give serious consideration to taking advantage of VMworld discounts.  If you attend VMworld, you have opportunities for great discounts on live training, self paced training and certification exams, including the VCP6-DCV exam.   Details at VMworld Training and Exams.

Whether or not you attend VMworld, you may be interested in resources to help you prepare and pass the VCP6-DCV exam.  Naturally, as the lead author of the VCP6-DCV: Official Cert Guide (VMware Press), I certainly recommend that you consider it.  It covers each exam objective, in depth, in order, and includes study tools, such as questions and memory tables.  The premium edition, includes 4 practice exams.   But, many of you may prefer a free tool, so here are a couple that are popular in the community:

Also, here is a popular VCP6-DCV Exam practice test (not a brain dump, but just some sample, potential questions).

If you are looking for some general advice, take a look at this VCP6-DCV Deep Dive Interview where Doug Denny  (@dhdenny) from Rackspace speaks with myself and a fellow Racker (Josh Williams @jcw366), who passed the VCP6-DCV exam.  In this, we share specific VCP6-DCV exam preparation information and advice as well as advice to apply on the day of the exam.

If you are at VMworld in Vegas and obtain a copy of our book, you can catch Owen Thomas, Steve Baca (@scbaca1) and me at the VMworld store on Wednesday August 31 at 3:30 PM.  We would love to sign your book!!    Or catch me at the Rackspace booth on Monday at noon for another book signing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

VMware Host Client 1.0 and vSphere HTML Client Fling

vSphere 5.x provided a web-based client user interface, the vSphere Web Client, for connecting to the vCenter Server and managing you vSphere environment; however, it did not provide a web-based client for connecting directly to an ESXi host.  Instead, whenever you needed to manage an ESXi host directly, you had to use another tool, such as the vSphere Client (the thick client).

VMware recently announced that beginning with vSphere 6.0 Update 2, a new HTML 5 based ESXi host client is shipped that can be used to connect directly to and manage an ESXi host.  The client is embedded into ESXi.  Immediately following the installation of ESXi 6.0 U2, you should be able to use a supported web browser to browse to the host’s management IP address (or https://host-ip-address/ui/#/host) and logon using the root account.  The client will allow you manage the ESXi host and virtual machines with a feature set similar to what you would expect using the vSphere Client to manage a host directly in vSphere 5.  Because you are connected directly to a specific ESXi host, you should not expect to be able to perform functions that require vCenter Server, such as vMotion operations.

To gain familiarity with this tool in vSphere version prior to 6.0 Update 2, you can experiment with this Host Client VMware Fling.  Don’t forget that Flings should not be used in production environments.

Another useful and interesting Fling is vSphere HTM5 Web Client which is effectively a new version of the vSphere Web Client, but uses HTML5 instead of Adobe Flash.  Apparently, this will eventually evolve and become part of the actual product, but for now the Fling is available for non-production use.  It gives you the opportunity to gain familiarity now and provide feedback.  The Fling does not contain the full feature set that the eventual product will contain, but it does provide these features:

  • ability to connect to vCenter Server
  • VM Power Operations (common cases)
  • VM Edit Settings (simple CPU, Memory, Disk changes)
  • VM Console
  • VM and Host Summary pages
  • VM Migration (only to a Host)
  • Clone to Template/VM
  • Create VM on a Host (limited)
  • Additional monitoring views (Performance charts, Tasks, Events)
  • Global Views (Recent tasks, Alarms–view only)