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Archive for the ‘Virtualization’ Category

Virsh Commands: Why They Are Important

June 21st, 2013 No comments

After installing Openstack, I got KVM/QEMU installed as a by-product. To get myself familiar with the functionalities, I played with Virtulization Manager and the virsh command line. By comparing with the libvirt API, I found they are pretty similar. Therefore, I think it’s a good starting point before jumping to the APIs. Also, the virsh is implemented on top of the libvirt APIs.

Categories: Virtualization Tags: , ,

Better Way for Workflow Design in Orchestration and Automation?

May 28th, 2013 4 comments

In my last article on orchestration, I talked about the issues with the current workflow design. Although intuitive and easy to get started, it’s really inefficient and hard to handle for complicated workflows. A natural follow up question is, “is there any better way to design workflows?”

Like everything else, there is hardly an approach that is better than others in every aspect. The alternative approach, coding, may not be as intuitive as the visualized flow chart approach, but it’s highly productive. So the quick answer for the above question is yes if you can combine them together.

Tips For Developers Using VMware vCenter Orchestrator

May 19th, 2013 3 comments

I recently spent some time on vCenter Orchestrator and really liked it with nice integration with vSphere Web Client, even though the Web Client has to improve quite some before it can overtake the standalone vSphere Client.Coming from the programming background, I find the workflow design is pretty easy to understand. Although targeted mostly for people with no programming background, workflow has in fact stronger typing than typical scripting. That may explain why having programming background helps a lot to quickly ramp up on workflow development.

Categories: Virtualization Tags: , ,

Can The Success of Server Virtualization Be Repeated in Networking?

May 6th, 2013 6 comments

The software-defined networking is the new buzzword for network centralization, which is also known as OpenFlow or network virtualization. The idea is to centralize the control to a server (or a cluster of servers) called controller.

With the acquisition of Nicira by VMware, the software-defined networking has caught many eyeballs from the community. From there, VMware extended it to a new vision called software-defined datacenter which includes three elements of computing: compute, network, and storage.

What Software-defined Networking Is and Is Not and Where It Fits

April 29th, 2013 5 comments

After server virtualization took off, virtualization became a buzzword which made it easy to get attention from market, and for startup companies, to get funding. Therefore you’ve seen many technologies claiming it’s * virtualization mostly for marketing purpose. Network virtualization is such a case. The even newer term for it is called software defined network, or simply SDN.

It’s Centralization, Really!

Categories: Cloud Computing, Virtualization Tags:

How to Avoid “127.0.0.1” in SNMP Trap With vCenter Server Virtual Appliance

April 24th, 2013 1 comment

SNMP trap provides a very useful way to monitor vSphere. You can use either GUI or vSphere API to configure up to 4 trap receivers. With that I can use alarm to monitor events or state changes.

If you use vSphere API to add SNMP receivers, you will need the OptionManager managed object. The related options you want to set are: snmp.receiver.1.name, snmp.receiver.1.port, snmp.receiver.1.community, snmp.receiver.1.enabled. There are 3 more sets with similar names but different numbers (2, 3, 4).

Categories: Virtualization Tags: , ,

A Bug with Disabling SSH Service Port in vSphere 5.1

April 23rd, 2013 6 comments

While playing vSphere API last week, I got into an issue that I cannot disable the SSH server with Firewall APIs (see HostFirewallSystem). The following call would throw an exception:

hfs.disableRuleset(“sshServer”);

There are many other different services like “sshClient” whose ports can be enabled and disabled via the API. As a nice surprise, they all work just fine.

Categories: vSphere API Tags:

UI Extensibility of System Center Virtual Machine Manager, Compared with vSphere

April 17th, 2013 4 comments

To my curiosity, I attended the session “Building UI Add-ins for System Center 2012 SP1 Virtual Machine Manager” by Jonobie Ford, who is the program manager of the add-in SDK. As you may know, I wrote several docs on vSphere Client plug-in and helped many partners to develop their plug-ins during my days at VMware.

Categories: Virtualization Tags: , ,

A Quick Hack to Database Failure in vCenter Appliance

April 14th, 2013 2 comments

After playing with the vCenter appliance simulator feature documented by William, I got into a show stopper that vCenter service (VPXD) could not be started. I don’t think it’s related to the simulator feature at all. My guess is that it’s caused by a sudden power off of the virtual machine but didn’t try to reproduce the problem that way – I care more to fix it than anything else.

How to Use the Missing Virtual Network Editor in VMware Player

March 13th, 2013 18 comments

For most people who use the VMware Player, DHCP is good enough for the NAT network. That means the IP addresses of your virtual machines may change after each powering on.

What if you want to have static IP addresses? It’s pretty easy as long as it’s in the same subnet. For example, if the VMnet8 has IP address of 192.168.47.1, your virtual machines should be configured in the same network say 192.168.47.x, where X can be any value from 3 to 254 (2 reserved for gateway, 255 broadcast by default).

Categories: Virtualization Tags: ,

Configure Static IP Address on Linux VM in VMware Player

March 12th, 2013 19 comments

If you run VMware Player, you would have 3 networking options for virtual machines running there: Bridged, NAT, Host-Only. In the latest 5.0.1, I also found a new one: LAN Segment. This blog has a nice explanation on these three settings if you want to get more details.

In most of cases, I use NAT for networking because the virtual machine can have Internet access which allows me to install additional software as needed. By default, VMware Player uses DHCP to dynamically assign IP address while using NAT. So you cannot guarantee to get same IP address after each rebooting.

vSphere vs. Hyper-V: Difference of Virtual Machine States

January 6th, 2013 7 comments

While reading articles about Microsoft Hyper-V, I found that Hyper-V seemed to have different states for virtual machines from VMware vSphere. The virtual machine in Hyper-V is represented by the Msvm_ComputerSystem class. If you are familiar with VMware vSphere, you know the equivalent in vSphere is VirtualMachine. At first sight, the Hyper-V APIs may not look straight-forward. The Hyper-V APIs is actually based on Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI), which is essentially CIM from DMTF.

Cisco Nexus 1000V Distributed Virtual Switch: Command Line Examples

January 3rd, 2013 10 comments

I just took three day Cisco Nexus 1000V training before Christmas. It’s a pretty good experience to play with the commands in the VSM appliance although I am still not quite familiar with these commands yet. Nevertheless, I managed to run through all the 9 labs thanks to the online lab that I could access even after class. To help myself to remember what I did, I listed a few commands that often needed in managing Nexus 1000V.

VI Java API Project Upgrade

December 18th, 2012 5 comments

During the past weekend, I upgraded the vijava API project to the new Allura platform provided by Sourceforge.net. That’s really a button click and then waited for incoming emails for status updates. It went smoothly and didn’t take long before it finished.

Note that the upgrade is limited to the project hosting, not the Web site (http://vijava.sf.net) which remains the same and continues to work as before.

DoubleCloud VM Connector for Remote Desktop Connection Manager in VMware Environment

December 2nd, 2012 7 comments

In my previous article, I introduced the Remote Desktop Connection Manager. It’s highly recommended to use it over the virtual machine console which all goes through the ESXi management IP therefore is not good for performance especially when there are many concurrent connections to virtual machines running on a same physical host.

Even if you are convinced on connecting to virtual machines directly, you will find it’s not convenient to add many virtual machines to the Remote Desktop Connection Manager. That is why I decided to write a small tool to automate it.

Announcing GA of VI Java API 5.1 Supporting vSphere 5.1

November 27th, 2012 11 comments

It’s been two months since I announced beta of VI Java API 5.1 supporting vSphere 5.1 on September 23. I got many emails asking for the GA date from ISVs and IHVs as the API is now a corner stone in their products. With the long (could be longer, BTW) Thanksgiving holidays, I got some time to review the fixes and release the GA version. I intended to announce it yesterday but somehow extra spam comments pushed the database behind over 100MB limit thus I could not post any new article.

Categories: vSphere API Tags: ,

Conceptual Deep Dive in VMware vCenter Single Sign On

November 4th, 2012 3 comments

One of the key new features in vSphere 5.1 is the Single Sign On. Because it’s new and also complicated, I’ve heard it’s not easy to get it right the first time. Experts recommend that you should play with it in a test or staging environment before upgrading your production environment.

What’s New in vSphere 5.1 SDK and APIs

October 31st, 2012 2 comments

I know it’s well past the GA date of the product on September 10, but I still decide to write this what’s new for the completeness of vSphere SDK FAQs.

As I always emphasize, the SDK/APIs are “view” to the product (you can think it as “model” here). Therefore to understand a SDK/APIs, it’s important to check out the product first. No exception for the new features: what’s new in vSphere decides what’s new in vSphere SDK/APIs. For that, you want to check out the What’s New in VMware vSphere 5.1 at VMware website.

VMware vSphere SDK with Visual Studio 2012

October 30th, 2012 7 comments

While trying latest Microsoft Visual Studio 2012 Express, I also played with the C# samples of the VMware vSphere SDK. Unfortunately, there isn’t direct support for VS 2012 but for VS 2010, 2008, and 2005. However, you can easily create project files for the VS 2012 by yourself assuming you are already familiar with the Visual Studio environment.

A Quick Hack With vSphere Web Client Timeout

October 24th, 2012 8 comments

Last week I released a tiny tool called DoubleCloud Client, which eases the usage of vSphere Web Client. I didn’t have time to add another hack which can bypass the session timeout of vSphere Web Client.

By default, vSphere Web Client times out after 30 minutes of inactivity according to VMware Doc. After timing out, you got to re-login and click back to the page you left out. It’s good for the security, but also not convenient. If you use it on your own desktop and have set up screen saver with password protection, you don’t really need this security feature.