Preferential Treatment for DPM Hosts

February 7th, 2010 by jason Leave a reply »

Here’s a tip that’s so simple and probably well known that it could be categorized as a stupid pet trick.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, I leverage VMware DPM (an Enterprise licensing feature) in the lab so that during periods of lesser activity (while I’m at work or sleeping, or both), ESX hosts in the lab can be placed in standby mode to cut electricity consumption and save on the energy bill.  I haven’t taken the time to research how hosts in the cluster are arbitrarily chosen for standby mode.  Over the course of time, the pattern I have witnessed tells me it’s more of a round robin type selection.  For instance, today host A will be chosen for standby mode, tomorrow host B will be chosen, and the next day, again host A will be chosen.  Perhaps load is taken into the calculation.  I don’t honestly know.  It’s not important right now.

I’ve also mentioned in the past that I run both ESX and ESXi in the same vSphere cluster.  This is a VMware supported configuration. I do this so that I can get a daily dose of both host platform experiences.  I’m not shy in saying my platform preference is still ESX because of its Service Console. What can I say… old habits are hard to break, but I’m trying, I really am.  More often than not, I need ESX Service Console access for whatever reason.  When I pop in the lab and find out that the ESX host is in standby mode, it takes a good 5 minutes to wake it up and then work on the things I need to get done.

Enter DPM Host Options.  This feature lets me apply some rules in the host selection process for DPM.  In this case, I want DPM to do its thing and save me money, but I don’t want it to shut down the ESX host.  Rather, shut down the ESXi host instead.  To do this is simple.  Modify the cluster settings and disable DPM for the ESX host as shown below.

With this rule in place, DPM will always choose solo.boche.mcse for standby mode, which is the ESXi host.  The ESX host, lando.boche.mcse, has been disabled for DPM and should always remained powered on and ready for action.

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2 comments

  1. Jason Langer says:

    Jason,

    I have been following your threads on DPM, good information for those of us who don’t want to have to pay a lot for an idling home lab. 🙂 Espically like the host names, my file server is Jabba. hahah 🙂

  2. jason says:

    I have a jabba also; it’s a domain controller.

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