Archive for the ‘Virtualization’ category

Virtual Bridges Pengroid Contest

November 8th, 2011

I came across a fun contest over at Virtual Bridges (Enterprise Desktop Management & VDI Solutions partner) which is running through the end of November.  The basic goal is to disguise Pengroid, a penguin on steroids.

Flex your Photoshop skills and submit your Pengroid where it will be uploaded to and judged on Facebook. The winning Pengroid will be printed on t-shirts which will be distributed to the first 25 people who submit an eligible entry. Top 3 winners will be featured on the Virtual Bridges Website, Blog, Twitter and Facebook. Most importantly, bragging rights for the year.

The contest landing page and instructions can be found here and here.

Good luck!

VMware: Bring Back VMTN Subscriptions

November 6th, 2011

Snagit CaptureSix years ago I managed a few VMware environments which included GSX and vCenter 1.x/ESX 2.x.  At the time I also had a few VMware Technology Network (VMTN) Subscriptions.  This offering from VMware was very useful in the lab as it allowed me to kick the tires on many VMware products in a non-production environment.  The subscription included the following product licenses and related keys:

  • ESX2 2-CPU
  • SMP for ESX2 2-CPU
  • GSX3 2-CPU Windows
  • GSX3 2-CPU Linux
  • P2V Assistant 2.0 Enterprise Unlimited Use
  • Workstation 5 Windows
  • Workstation 5 Linux

To summarize, the VMTN Subscription bundled all of VMware’s products (at the time of purchase) for a non-production environment (typically for a lab).  This was very useful for me as someone who was just starting to get into larger scale virtual infrastructure.  Unfortunately, VMware discontinued the VMTN Subscription a short time after and enthusiasts were left to fend for themselves in order to try out the products in VMware’s expanding portfolio.

Fast forward just a few years and we find that the utility of virtualized datacenters combined with VMware’s innovation has catapulted their brand into the majority of businesses around the globe.  During this time, VMware’s loyalist population grows exponentially.  VMware responds by formally recognizing the top members in their grass roots community as vEXPERTs.

A few years later, hundreds of thousands of VMware enthusiasts, partners, vEXPERTs, and VMUG members/leaders, struggle to implement longer term evaluations of VMware software, which at this time has exploded in terms of product offerings through VMware’s own development as well as acquisitions.  It is no secret that VMware has been wildly successful and has grown at a rapid pace.  Those who have been working with and for VMware over the years recognize some of the growing pains and disjointed processes within the organization.  These are the among the things that make it difficult to get a fair and unified look at VMware’s products.

VMware needs to resurrect the VMTN Subscription or take a page out of the Microsoft playbook by instantiating a program similar to Microsoft TechNet.  The subscription will be an authoritative and adequately staffed clearninghouse offering 365 day evaluation or NFR licenses and keys for all VMware software.  Access to the subscription can be granted through various channels. Incentives and discounts can be offered to partners, resellers, vEXPERTs, VMUG members/leaders, as well as VMware Certified individuals.

VMware has come a long way in a short amount of time, garnering success up against the largest competitors in the world.  The formula for their success has been great leadership and innovation.  The key to their success is a strong community whose members have spent a great deal of their time over the years helping promote VMware to where they are today.  The community doesn’t demand large dividends in return. We do, however, ask that VMware get the products into our labs quickly and easily.  In my mind, this is essential as the product portfoilo continues to grow and mature.  Your talented community members work in leaned out environments.  Lab access is inconsistent.  60-day trials expire before we’ve had a chance to get through an adequate POC.  This doesn’t lend itself to a confident purchasing decision.  I think there are a lot of ways we can analyze this.  Every scenario I can think of benefits VMware and is consistent with the grass roots principal the company owes much of its success to.  This is also an opportunity for VMware to prove to its constituents that they aren’t all about consumption based or vRAM licensing.  It’s a win/win/win proposal.

VMware: Bring Back VMTN Subscriptions.

If you as a reader are in favor of this, please show your support here.

VMware vSphere 4.1 Update 2 Released

October 27th, 2011

As I sit here working on an SRM lab, VUM just sent an email to me reporting 28 new patches for ESX(i) 4.1 including the release of 4.1 Update 2.

What’s New

The VMware vCenter Server 4.1 Update 2 release offers the following improvements:

  • Support for new processors: vCenter Server 4.1 Update 2 supports hosts with processors on AMD Opteron 6200 series (Interlagos) and AMD Opteron 4200 series (Valencia).
    Note: For the AMD Opteron 6200 and 4200 series (Family 15h) processors, vCenter Server 4.1 Update 2 treats each core within a compute unit as an independent core, except while applying licenses. For the purpose of licensing, vCenter Server treats each compute unit as a core. For example, although a processor with 8 compute units can provide the processor equivalent of 16 cores on vCenter Server 4.1 Update 2, only 8 cores will be counted towards license usage calculation.
  • Additional vCenter Server Database Support: vCenter Server now supports the following databases.
    • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 Express (x32 and x64)
    • Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Express (x32 and x64)
  • Resolved Issues: This release delivers a number of bug fixes that have been documented in the Resolved Issues section.

What’s New

The following information describes some of the enhancements available in this release of VMware ESXi:

  • Support for new processors – ESXi 4.1 Update 2 supports AMD Opteron 6200 series (Interlagos) and AMD Opteron 4200 series (Valencia).Note: For the AMD Opteron 6200 and 4200 series (Family 15h) processors, ESX/ESXi 4.1 Update 2 treats each core within a compute unit as an independent core, except while applying licenses. For the purpose of licensing, ESX/ESXi treats each compute unit as a core. For example, although a processor with 8 compute units can provide the processor equivalent of 16 cores on ESX/ESXi 4.1 Update 2, it only uses 8 licenses.
  • Support for additional guest operating system ESX 4.1 Update 2 adds support for Ubuntu 11.10 guest operating system. For a complete list of guest operating systems supported with this release, see the VMware Compatibility Guide.

Resolved Issues In addition, this release delivers a number of bug fixes that are documented in the Resolved Issues section.

VMware View Client for iPad 1.2 Released

October 23rd, 2011

Back in September during the VMworld 2011 US time frame, I wrote New View Client for iPad Sneak Peak at VMworld 2011 which talked about an upcoming release and some of the new features to be expected for VMware’s tablet based View client.  I saw a tweet from Tedd Fox tonight that the new client has been released.  In checking the Apple App Store, indeed it has.

The new version is 1.2 and it boasts the following features and updates:

  • Optimized for VMware View 5 with improved performance
  • Support for iOS 5 including AirPlay
  • Presentation Mode for use with external display and AirPlay
  • Embedded RSA soft token simplifies login to desktop
  • Background tasking to move between Windows and iOS apps
  • Updated look and feel
  • Integrated online help
  • Buffered text input for multibyte text entry
  • Now in French, German, Japanese, Korean, Simplified Chinese
  • Bug Fixes

SnagIt Capture

Requirements: Requires iPad iOS 4.2 or later.

I just upgraded and right away I noticed the new interface as well as some advanced finger gestures I hadn’t seen before (these may or may not be new).

The next thing that I noticed was that I could multitask!  This is the feature I’ve wanted the most personally.  I can now stop in the middle of a session, switch to another application or exit out to the iPad desktop and the View desktop connection remains established when I go back to it.

If you have in iPad, go grab your free copy.  I don’t have an Android but I’m hearing a version was released for that platform as well.

Thank you VMware and Thank you Tedd!

VMworld Europe 2011 Party Entrance Video

October 20th, 2011

See what it was like to be among the first to walk through the doors of Altitude City and explore some of things a city in the clouds has to offer!

VMworld Europe – My Schedule

October 12th, 2011

VMworld Europe is coming fast!  Last week I wrote the article VMworld Europe Is Ready And Waiting For You which spoke broadly about the many things to see and experience at the European leg of the VMworld tour. Today I’m sharing some detail about the sessions I’m interested in by detailing my schedule.  As with each VMworld, scheduling is a big challenge.  I’m not able to sign up for every session I’d like to see in Copenhagen.  Add to that, I’ve already been to a few of the key sessions I wanted in on at the Las Vegas show six weeks ago.  So keep in mind you won’t see all the great sessions this event has to offer on my schedule alone.  Have a look and remember – There’s still time to register and attend!

  Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
09:00 Free Day PAR3269 Zimbra: The New SMB Game Changer     Free Day
10:30   BCO1432 VMware Data Recovery – Everything You Need To Know VSP1933 Storage I/O Control for Network-Attached Storage Datastores
11:00       EUC3158 VMware Zimbra: Better than Exchange  
12:00   BCO2395 Stretch Clustering – Now and Beyond CIM2916 What’s New in VMware vCloud Director    
12:30       VSP1700 VMware vSphere 5.0 Storage Features  
13:30   VSP3868 VMware vStorage Best Practices CIM2231 Making Sense of VMware vShield and VMware vCloud for the Average System Administrator    
14:00       VSP2376 Performance and Scalability Enhancements in VMware vStorage VMFS 5  
15:00     VSP2894 Virtual Distributed Switch Best Practices    
16:30     CIM1600 VMware vCloud Networking Finally Explained    

ESXi 4.0 Update 2 hosts may PSOD after vCenter Server is upgraded to 5.0

October 11th, 2011

This important notice just came across my radar:

VMware has become aware of some ESXi 4.0 hosts experiencing a purple screen after vCenter Server is upgraded to 5.0

The Knowledgebase Team has prepared KB article: ESXi 4.0 Update 2 hosts may experience a purple screen after vCenter Server is upgraded to 5.0 (2007269) and an alert has been placed on the Support page to alert customers of this issue.

This Knowledge Base article will be updated if new information becomes available (you can subscribe to rss feeds on individual KB articles for this purpose). If you have been affected by this, please read the KB.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused you. If you know how to spread the word to your friends and colleagues, please do so.


You may encounter an issue where:

  • You have recently upgraded your vCenter Server to version 5.0
  • You have ESXi 4.0 Update 2 hosts in the inventory of this vCenter Server
  • After the vpxa agents are upgraded, the ESXi 4.0 Update 2 hosts experience a purple screen that includes this error:NOT_IMPLEMENTED bora/vmkernel/filesystems/visorfs/visorfsObj.c:3391


This is caused by an issue in the handling of the vpxa agent upgrade.


This issue has been resolved in 4.0 Update 3. To avoid this issue, upgrade all ESXi 4.0 Update 2 hosts to at least version ESXi 4.0 Update 3 before upgrading vCenter Server to 5.0.
ESXi 4.0 Update 3 and later versions can be downloaded from the VMware Download Center.