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Configuring CA signed certificates is a challenge with vSphere as with any complex enterprise environment. Securing an environment is a requirement in many large organizations. You need either public certificates (such as Verisign or Globaltrust), Microsoft CA certificates, or OpenSSL CA certificates to ensure a secure communication.
This article provides steps to allow configuration of these certificates on vSphere components in an environment. The article also assumes that all components are installed and running already with self-signed certificates.
Please validate each step below. Each step provides instructions or a link to a document that provides information on configuring the certificates in your environment.
  1. Generate certificate requests and certificates for each of the vCenter Server components. For more information, seeCreating certificate requests and certificates for the vCenter Server 5.1 components (2037432).

  2. Replace the vCenter SSO certificates. For more information, see Configuring CA signed SSL certificates for vCenter SSO in vCenter Server 5.1 (2035011).

  3. Replace the Inventory Service certificates. For more information on this, see Configuring CA signed SSL certificates for the Inventory service in vCenter Server 5.1 (2035009).

  4. Replace the vCenter Server 5.1 certificates. For more information, see Configuring CA Signed Certificates for vCenter Server 5.1 (2035005).

  5. Replace the vSphere Update Manager Update Manager Certificates. For more information, see Configuring CA signed SSL certificates for VMware Update Manager in vSphere 5.1 (2037581).

  6. Replace ESXi 5.x host certificates. For more information, see Configuring CA signed SSL certificates with ESXi 5.x hosts (2015499).

If your issue persists even after trying these steps:

 

Source: VMwareKB

A new version of the vSphere vCenter Server has been released to address some of the issues encountered with various scenarios of deploying and operating the 5.1.0 version. This release is a full version and you can upgrade from 4.0-5.1GA to 5.1.0A

 

vCenter Server™ Appliance 5.1.0a | 25 Oct 2012 | Build 880472

What’s New

This release of VMware vCenter Server 5.1.0a includes a number of bug fixes that have been documented in theResolved Issues section.

Upgrades for This Release

For instructions about upgrading vCenter Server and ESX/ESXi hosts, see the vSphere Upgrade documentation.

Resolved Issues

  • This release resolves issues in the following subject areas.

    Upgrade and Installation

    • vCenter Server Services fail on startup after upgrade to vCenter Server 5.1
      After you upgrade to vCenter Server 5.1, the vCenter Server services fail to start up and generate vpxd dumps. This issue occurs if old certificates are removed during upgrade of vCenter Server or if you attempt to perform a fresh install of vCenter Server with an already upgraded vCenter Server 5.1 database.

      This issue is resolved in this release. If you have encountered this issue in the past, upgrading to vCenter Server 5.1.0a will resolve the issue.

    • Users unable to log in to vCenter Server after upgrading to vCenter Server 5.1
      After upgrading to vCenter Server 5.1, you might be unable to log in with the user or group administrator privileges provided by the vCenter Server installer during the upgrade process. This issue can occur if vCenter Server finds a vCenter Server Administrator user or group that can be authenticated against vCenter Single Sign On while searching the vCenter Server database.

      This issue is resolved in this release.

    • Invalid solution certificate. Certificate already expired. error message occurs when upgrading to vCenter Server 5.1 and registering the vCenter Server instance to vCenter Single Sign On 
      The vCenter Server installer does not allow upgrade if the certificate is invalid or already expired. To regenerate expired SSL certificates, see KB 1009092: Regenerating expired SSL certificates.

      This issue is resolved in this release.

    • vCenter Server takes an unusually long time to start and the vSphere Client might time out
      When a large number of permissions are assigned to objects in the vCenter Server inventory, the vCenter Server service does not start as quickly as expected as vCenter Server verifies that the users and groups exist in the identity source. Also, the connection to the vSphere Client might time out when you log in with Windows session credentials.

      The following messages appear in the vCenter Server logs while the service is starting:

      [SSO] [SsoAdminFacadeImpl] [FindGroup]
      [UserDirectorySso] GetUserInfo (DOMAIN\ *USER OR GROUP*, true) res: DOMAIN\ *USER OR GROUP*
      [UserDirectorySso] NormalizeUserName (DOMAIN\ *USER OR GROUP*, false) re: DOMAIN\ *USER OR GROUP*

      This issue is resolved in this release.

    • Upgrading to vCenter Server 5.1 might fail with error 29107 even though the service or solution user is already registered
      Attempts to upgrade vCenter Server 5.1 might fail with the following error message:

      Error 29107. The service or solution user is already registered. Check VM_ssoreg.log in system, temporary folder for details.

      This issue is resolved in this release.

    • Installing or upgrading vCenter Server 5.1 fails with the error: Could not contact Lookup Service
      vCenter Simple Install might fail with the following error if the Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) contains the string port during the installation:

      Error 29102 . Could not contact Lookup Service. Please check VM_ssoreg.log in system temporary folder for details.

      This issue is resolved in this release.

    • Installing vCenter Single Sign On fails with the error: Unable to create database users: Password validation failed
      When you attempt to install vCenter Single Sign On using an existing database or the bundled SQL Express database, the installation fails with the following error:

      Error 29114. Cannot connect to DB

      This issue is resolved in this release.

    vCenter Server and vSphere Client

    • Unable to log in to the vSphere Web Client due to incorrect proxy settings
      Slow network speeds caused by incorrect proxy settings might result in delay during the interaction between the vSphere Web Client, domain controller, and external vCenter Single Sign On. You might encounter the following issues due to this delay:

      • Attempts to log into the vSphere Web Client fail with the following error:The vSphere Web Client cannot connect to the vCenter Single Sign On server.
      • A delay in excess of 20 minutes to list all domain users
      • A delay in excess of 20 minutes to load the whole vCenter Server inventory after domain use login

      This issue is resolved with this release.

    vMotion and Storage vMotion

  • Unable to access the cross-host Storage vMotion feature from the vSphere Web Client with an Essentials Plus license
    If you start the migration wizard for a powered on virtual machine with an Essentials Plus license, the Change both host and datastore option in the migration wizard is disabled, and the following error message is displayed:

    Storage vMotion is not licensed on this host.
    To perform this migration without a license, power off the virtual machine.

    This issue is resolved in this release

     

    Source: blogs.vmware.com

 

Take a look at the kendrickcoleman Web site and found a very cool list of free VMware VSphere tools.It’s not trials..it’s a really free stuff.

Also, look at the compilation of Free tools for Advanced Tasks and you can download them as an .iso format.

Source: kendrickcoleman

 

VMware Education has released a new video site with over 50 of our free instructional videos, on products including: vSphere, vCloud Director, Site Recovery Manager (SRM), vFabric, and more. Now you can grow your IT skills with free training, expertise, and insights on VMware products, all in one convenient location.

Take a look on VMwareLearning

 

 

To mount the partitions of a vmdk file (read and writeable) under windows you can use the tool vmware-mount (part of the vSphere 5 Disk Development Kit).

After installation you need a commandline. With the parameter -h you will get a quick overview about the syntax and the possible parameters:

To mount a vmdk file (saved at C:\temp) in read-only mode use the following command:

vmware-mount.exe X: “C:\Temp\TestVM.vmdk”

Now you have a read-only access to the vmdk file using your windows explorer (navigate to driveletter X:).

If the vmdk file contains more than one partition you can use the parameter /v:x to mount the other volumes:

vmware-mount.exe /v:2 X: “C:\Temp\TestVM.vmdk”

If you need a writeable access just use the parameter “/m:w“.
This is extremly helpful if you need to replace a broken systemfile for example:

vmware-mount.exe /m:w X: “C:\Temp\TestVM.vmdk”

To delete the mapping to driveletter X: use the parameter /d:

vmware-mount.exe /d X:

And last but not least – if you want to list all the mounted virtual drives use /L:

vmware-mount.exe /L

 

You can download it here: vSphere Disk Development Kit

The Microsoft Virtual Machine Converter (MVMC) Solution Accelerator is a Microsoft-supported, stand-alone solution for the IT pro or solution provider who wants to convert VMware-based virtual machines and disks to Hyper-V®-based virtual machines and disks.

MVMC provides the following features:

  • Converts and deploys virtual machines from VMware hosts to Hyper-V hosts including Hyper-V on Windows Server® 2012. As part of the machine conversion MVMC converts the virtual disks attached to the source virtual machine. It also migrates configuration such as memory, virtual processor and so on from the source virtual machine to the converted virtual machine deployed on Hyper-V. It adds virtual network interface cards (NICs) to the converted virtual machine on Hyper-V.
  • Converts VMware virtual disks to Hyper-V based virtual hard disks (VHDs).
  • Supports conversion of virtual machines from VMware vSphere 4.1 and 5.0 hosts to Hyper-V.
    • Note MVMC also supports conversion of virtual machines from VMware vSphere 4.0 if the host is managed by vCenter 4.1 or vCenter 5.0. You have to connect to vCenter 4.1 or 5.0 through MVMC to convert virtual machines on vSphere 4.0.
  • Offers fully scriptable command-line interfaces for performing virtual machine and disk conversions that integrates well with data center automation workflows and Windows PowerShell scripts.
  • Has a wizard-driven GUI, making it simple to perform virtual machine conversion.
  • Uninstalls VMware tools prior to conversion to provide a clean way to migrate VMware-based virtual machines to Hyper-V.
  • Supports Windows Server guest operating system conversion, including Windows Server 2008 R2, Windows Server 2008 and Windows Server 2003 SP2.
  • Enables conversion of Windows® client versions including Windows 7.
  • Installs integration services on the converted virtual machine if the guest operating system is Windows Server 2003 SP2

 

Source: Microsoft

UCS Central Manager is serves as the UCS central nervous system and integrates all UCS components across multiple UCS domains, managing server blades, VMs, storage and networking—across multiple chassis—as a single logical domain. UCS Central Manager provides an intuitive GUI with a command-line interface (CLI) and XML API options. It enables real-time configuration and reconfiguration of resources. The built-in XML API provides an open management framework for customers, developers, system integrators and managed service providers to interoperate with Cisco Unified Computing System resources.

his tool is ideal for customers who are using multiple Cisco UCS systems on the same location or across different locations in standalone or distaster recovery scenarios. The tool will be free of charge for a limited number of Cisco UCS systems (probably 5). Above that it’s not free but who cares if you can manage 25 Cisco UCS domains with one single management tool as Cisco is doing in their labs right now.

UCS Central Manager is a tool Cisco is working on to manage multiple Cisco UCS systems/domains. At the moment it is still in beta but they expect to release it Nov/Dec 2012.

Source: Cisco

RVTools is a windows .NET 2.0 application which uses the VI SDK to display information about your virtual machines and ESX hosts. Interacting with VirtualCenter 2.5, ESX Server 3.5, ESX Server 3i, ESX Server 4i, VirtualCenter 4.0, ESX Server 4.0, VirtualCenter 4.1, ESX Server 4.1, VirtualCenter 5.0, VirtualCenter Appliance or ESX Server 5 RVTools is able to list information about VMs, CPU, Memory, Disks, Partitions, Network, Floppy drives, CD drives, Snapshots, VMware tools, ESX hosts, HBAs, Nics, Switches, Ports, Distributed Switches, Distributed Ports, Service consoles, VM Kernels, Datastores and health checks. With RVTools you can disconnect the cd-rom or floppy drives from the virtual machines and RVTools is able to update the VMware Tools installed inside each virtual machine to the latest version.

 

Latest Version: 3.4 | September, 2012
Download

Intro to VMware vVol

For awhile now, HP Storage has been working with VMware as a design partner to define and develop a VM-granular storage architecture to potentially replace vSphere’s VMFS/datastore model. This new model is called VMware Virtual Volumes (vVols). Virtual Volumes introduces a 1:1 mapping of VMs (more specifically VMDKs or VM LUNs) to storage volumes—in other words, each VM will be associated with its own, unique storage volume. With vVols we could finally have the VMDK representation in vSphere match the representation on storage.

 

As a result, the storage system could now have the ability to operate at the same level of granularity as vSphere, which means that vSphere could better leverage, and take advantage of, the native strengths and capabilities of modern, intelligent storage arrays, like HP 3PAR.

Why vVol?

I think the big thing VMware and storage partners like HP want to overcome is the inefficiencies and the challenges that exist today as a result of working at the LUN or volume level with vSphere. Despite all the advances that have been made, when a VM and VMDK is the unit of data management, a LUN is too coarse to gain the efficiency and flexibility customers need. The granularity mismatch between vSphere and storage systems needs to be resolved. Enter vVols.

 

More Information on this in HP Blogs

 

VMware just published a cool application which just does this all, the VMware Mobile Knowledge Portal. You can now watch videos and read collateral on how to install and use VMware products, stay up to date on what’s new at VMware, and explore best practices for our products and solutions. At home. In the office. On the go. Offline or online.

It is available now from the Apple App store

 

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