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VMware’s Photon and containers in VMware
Posted by Gary Williams on April 12, 2017
4.5/5 (2)

The past month has been categorized as something of a performance and upgrades challenge as one of the constant calls I hear is “application X is going to slow”, of course, a month ago it was fine but today it isn’t and normally this is just down to increasing load.
One of the common fixes for increasing load is to add more vCPU and RAM but often that can cause its own set of problems especially when NUMA boundaries are crossed and when vCPU contention pushes things a little too far.
The second part of the challenge is the upgrade challenge where various applications need upgrading but there are dependency chains to take into account, this is the sort of thing where application X needs a very specific version of application y. In those cases, an upgrade is much easier to do by reinstalling the OS and starting again then transferring the data across!

As a potential solution to these issues that I’ve been exploring is Docker on VMWare’s Photon OS.

 VMware Photon logo

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VMware vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) and after install tricks
Posted by Vladan Seget on April 10, 2017
5/5 (1)

It is not new that VMware vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) is a very popular option, especially for small businesses which can save money on an additional Windows Server license.

It is a prepackaged and preconfigured virtual appliance with PostgreSQL database, vCenter server 6.5 components and also (in case you deploy “all-in-one” VM) Platform services Controller that contain all of the necessary services for running vCenter Server such as vCenter Single Sign-On, License service, and VMware Certificate Authority.

The VCSA is running Photon OS which is a VMware own lightweight distribution, optimized for fast booting, security, and scalability. During a long time, VMware was using Suse Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) distribution, but the fact that VMware did not own the stack was a break to faster development.

Reset Root password on VMware VCSA

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vRealize Operations Manager Gems
Posted by Michael Ryom on March 29, 2017
5/5 (2)

Working with vRops over the last years has taught me one thing. The development of vRops goes so fast. Sometimes so fast that you do not realize when or what has changed. However, there are many “hidden” gems in vRops, which will make you and the product shine even more.

So come along, as I will show you my top ten hidden gems of vRops…

Datastore KPI view

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Virtual workload migration with VMware
Posted by Askar Kopbayev on March 27, 2017
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It is quite surprising how many companies migrate virtual workload nowadays. There could be different reasons – expiring contract with the service provider, move to the new office, consolidation of resources to minimize Capex and Opex, but in every case, companies need efficient and flexible V2V migration solution.

Very often people think of migration in terms of moving data from one place to another. However, migration is much more than that. For instance, you would probably want VMs to keep the same IP addresses after the migration. Which means you need to consider stretching VLANs between the source and target locations in case you cannot migrate all VMs in particular subnet in one go. You must plan a network cutover too.

Cross-vCenter vMotion

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Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager
Posted by Romain Serre on March 21, 2017
5/5 (2)

Veeam Backup Entreprise Manager is an optional component that enables to consolidate several Veeam Backup & Replication server through a single pane of glass. Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager provides a web-based interface to centrally control and manage all jobs. You can edit job, monitor them and have a consolidated view of the reporting of all Veeam Backup & Replication server. In this topic, we’ll see how to configure Veeam Backup Enterprise Manager.

2-node Cluster based on Hyper-V 2016 and ESXi 6.5

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vSphere 6.5: HA & DRS improvements. Part 2
Posted by Askar Kopbayev on March 3, 2017
5/5 (1)

In Part II we will review the remaining improvements in vSphere Availability and Resource Management brought by vSphere 6.5.

Challenge: HA Restart priorities are not flexible enough

Description

Modern applications can be very complex and may consist of more than one server. Very often multi-tier applications require specific restart order, e.g. classic scheme DB – App – Web.  For instance, if an application server powers on before the database server the application will fail to start. To make it worse, there is no guarantee that the application server will automatically recover after DB server is powered on.  Sometimes the application server will have to be rebooted to restore the service. Moreover, there could be inter-application dependencies which make the situation even more complicated.

DRS in vSphere 6.5 view

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vSphere 6.5: HA & DRS improvements. Part I
Posted by Askar Kopbayev on March 2, 2017
5/5 (3)

A number of improvements that have been introduced in vSphere HA and DRS in the last several years are impressive. vSphere 6.5 continues this tradition by bringing new features into HA Admission Control, by adding flexibility with HA Orchestrated Restart and by enabling DRS to make more intelligent balancing.

I will be trying a new format today. First, I will be explaining the challenges you might have had in previous vSphere releases and then I will show you how the new vSphere 6.5 HA & DRS features address those challenges.

vSphere admission control cluster resource percentage

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Design a ROBO infrastructure (Part 2): Design areas and technologies
Posted by Andrea Mauro on February 24, 2017
4/5 (1)

In the previous post, we have explained and described business requirements and constraints in order to support design and implementation decisions suited for mission-critical applications, considering also how risk can affect design decisions.

Now we will match the following technology aspects to satisfy design requirements:

  • Availability
  • Manageability
  • Performance and scaling
  • Recoverability
  • Security
  • Risk and budget management

ROBO Design areas and technologies

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Backup VMware environment with Veeam 9.5 Backup & Replication
Posted by Romain Serre on February 22, 2017
5/5 (2)

Veeam Backup & Replication is a backup solution which works for VMware & Hyper-V VM and physical servers (Windows and Linux). Veeam has many advantages over the other solutions on the market such as Instant VM Recovery, the easy graphical interface and the host-level backup for SQL Server, Active Directory or file servers. In this series, I’ll show step by step how to deploy Veeam, backup a first virtual machine and restore it.

Veeam Backup and Replication Install view

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3 useful tricks with VMware vCenter Server Appliance
Posted by Alex Samoylenko on December 29, 2016
5/5 (1)

As is well-known, VMware has released a new version of virtual VMware vCenter Server Appliance 6.5 in the new version of vSphere 6.5 platform. Now vCSA is Photon OS-based. It works faster; it is provided with built-in high availability tools and has a ready-to-use vCenter Update Manager (VUM).

Due to the numerous changes, many familiar features don’t work anymore, and the information below will help you to get back to the normal use of vCSA.

  1. How to turn on Bash Shell and use WinSCP for vCSA

If you try to access vCSA server with WinSCP to download or upload files there, you won’t be able to do that:

vCSA server with WinSCP

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