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Category Archives: Resolution Paths

Resolution Path Knowledgebase Articles

Take note of those KB articles we present

When filing a Support Request in the My VMware Support Portal, you may notice there is a selection of five KB articles presented underneath the form after you tell us a few things about your issue. These articles are put there to help you resolve your issue before you have even spoken to someone, but did you know there is some intelligence behind what we show you? Today we will explore how we pick these KB articles. It is a rather involved and complicated process, but read on to discover how it’s done.

When you file a Support Request with VMware, everything related to what is done to resolve your issue, is kept as a record. This helps us spot trends, and keep track of issues that may occur frequently. After a certain amount of time, we gather reports to see what common KB articles are used to resolve an issue by the support engineers. The engineers document which KB articles they used in each and every support request they resolve. We then look at the ratings of the article, and how many times it has been linked to. If the KB article maintains a rating above three stars and is linked-to quite frequently, we know that KB article is particularly useful in helping people to resolve that issue. That’s not the only thing we do. We also comb through the case notes of Support Requests to pick up out trends, such as did a virtual machine lock up, did your ESXi host crash, did vCenter Server stop responding, etc.

This is all categorized by different selections our Technical Support Engineers make as they work your support request. We call these vCats which is the problem category, for example Host/Installation, and then a subcategory to describe the issue, a vSubCat, such as a Storage Failure. All this information is trended and tracked. We analyze the data with utilities that can spot these trends automatically although there is a manual component to it. Combing through this data can be a time consuming task. We have ways to automate our reports, but much of the qualitative aspect of analyzing this data is done by perusing spreadsheets, reading comments from the Technical Support Engineers, and the feedback we receive from customers.

Finally, when choosing the KB articles for the My VMware Support Portal we tend to target KB articles that utilize multiple steps and checks to troubleshoot the issue. We call these types of articles Resolution Paths. These step through specific issues step by step, and provide you a process for which to resolve your issue, such as an issue of virtual machine not being able to start up. In this way, it is also revealed how a Technical Support Engineer may troubleshoot the issue.

All in all, the idea is that these KB articles will help you save some time. Hopefully, you find these useful, and think about taking a gander at these KB articles next time an issue arises.

Implementing CA signed SSL certificates with vSphere 5.1

SSLOne of the most common things we see in VMware Global Support Services (GSS), regardless of product, version, or customer, is the need to implement custom certificates. This could be for a number of reasons:

  • Security
  • To get rid of the warning when you first login
  • You like a challenge

Whatever the case may be, in vSphere 5.1, the process has changed due to the addition of vCenter Single Sign On (SSO), which adds complexity to the procedure. This is because the majority of services register themselves to SSO. As a result of changing the certificates, the services also need to be re-registered.

As a result of repeated question from customers coming in on this, we gathered our Professional Services, Engineering, and Technical Writers to develop the following Resolution Path to guide you through the various steps through to completion (you can read more about resolution path articles here).

Resolution Path Article:

Child articles in the resolution path are:

Note: It is recommended that you follow the articles in the sequence provided as many steps are dependent on each other.

 

We have also created an article with the steps for vCenter Server Appliance 5.1:

Finally, we have updated these vSphere 5.0 articles thanks to feedback received on them:

Note: The vCenter Service fails to start up issue is now resolved in vCenter Server 5.1.0a. For more details, refer to KB article:
vCenter Server Services hang on startup after upgrading to vCenter Server 5.1 (2035623).

We hope that this helps everyone through their SSL implementation. If you find any errors or anomalies, there’s a feedback form at the bottom of every article. We will be keeping an active eye on your feedback!

vSphere SSO Resources

Ever since vSphere 5.1 launched we’ve been getting a fair number of support calls about Single Sign On, or SSO for short. It is a requirement now, and many of you are getting caught on some aspect of the upgrade/implementation.

We don’t like our customers having to call into support. Not that we don’t love to hear from you, but we’d rather document how to deal with different issues and push the information out to you before you run into them. Then, you don’t have to waste time calling us!

Let’s start with two particularly important KB articles. These are classified as ‘Resolution Paths’. They walk you through an ordered set of steps in resolving a problem. You can read more about resolution path articles here.

 

If those two don’t address your problem, here are a few more resources to help you along your way on the upgrade path. Enjoy!

Installation and Deployment
Single Sign On installation details matrix (2036922)
How vCenter SSO Deployment Scenarios Affect Log In Behavior
Setting up Apache load balancing software with vCenter Single Sign On (2034157)
Troubleshooting VMware Single Sign-On configuration and installation issues in a Windows server (2033880)
Configuring SSO for HA (2033588)
Manually Replicate Data in a Multisite vCenter Single Sign On Deployment
Installing vCenter Single Sign On in a multisite deployment (2034074)
Deploying SSO at each site in multi site mode
SSO server Deployment Modes
Configuration
Replacing Default SSL Certificates for vCenter components (pdf)
When you log into the vSphere Client, linked vCenter Server systems do not appear (2033213)
vCenter Single Sign On and dependent services fail to start after you reboot the system (2032749)
After updating SSL certificate for SSO, a newly installed instance of VC fails to start (2033215)
Unable to connect to vCenter Inventory Service (2032356)
Repointing and reregistering vCenter Server and components (2033620)
Configuring SSO for HA (2033588)
Troubleshooting SSO on Windows (2033208)

  • autodiscovery fails
  • Single Sign On Installation fails completely
  • error occurs that references the vCenter Inventory or Web Client
vCenter Single Sign On fails to start at startup or initialization (2033164)
Troubleshooting Single Sign On with the vCenter Server Appliance configuration on an external database (2033624)
Troubleshooting vCenter Server Appliance configuration with an external vCenter Single Sign On server (2033737)
Troubleshooting Single Sign On and Active Directory domain authentication with the vCenter Server Appliance (2033742)
Change the vCenter Single Sign On Mode in VCVA
Update vCenter Single Sign On settings after you change the hostname or port of the database server (2033516)
Admin and Login
Troubleshooting SSL certificates updates and SSO (2033240)
Troubleshooting vSphere Web Client login errors (2033253)

  • provided credentials are invalid
  • user account is locked
  • Single Sign On server fails to respond
  • vCenter Server administrator permissions are not valid by default on Single Sign On
Troubleshooting SSO on VCVA (2033338)
Updating SSL certificates for vCenter Single Sign On servers behind a load balancer (2034181)
Unable to log in to vCenter Server with the vSphere Client (2034798)

Here are a few more links for good luck:

Index of Resolution Path KB Articles

We have featured many Mind Maps in this blog and gotten fabulous feedback on them, so today we are presenting an Index so you can easily locate and download the ones most relevant to you.

Mind Maps are a visualization of our Resolution Path KB articles, which are collections of modular steps that can be used to solve tech support issues. Being modular, they can be re-used in other resolution paths. A good example is using the ping command to test network connectivity. This step is used in all kinds of troubleshooting procedures. Put a number of these steps together, and you have a method.

  1. Troubleshooting ThinApp Issues
  2. Troubleshooting Storage Issues
  3. vSphere Install Troubleshooting
  4. Vsphere Licensing Troubleshooting
  5. Resolution Paths for VDR Issues
  6. Resolution Paths for VMware Site Recovery Manager Issues
  7. Unpresenting LUNs from ESX/ESXi 4.x
  8. Resolution Paths for OS Issues
  9. Resolution Paths for Converter Issues
  10. Resolution Paths for Lab Manager Issues
  11. vSphere Troubleshooting Network Issues
  12. VMware View Resolution Paths
  13. vSphere Troubleshooting Management Issues
  14. VMware Update Manager Resolution Paths
  15. VMware Fusion Resolution Paths
  16. VMware Workstation Resolution Path
  17. Fault Resolution Paths
  18. Capacity Planner Resolution Paths

New Mind Map – Troubleshooting ThinApp Issues

Here’s our newest mind map, for all issues associated with using ThinApp and virtualized applications.

As before, this PDF has a clickable Flash object embedded so that you can drill down into the various topics and articles.  We list the steps to take, and link to articles (or documentation) describing the steps in detail. Some steps have multiple sub steps, so be sure to expand fully. Each main Resolution Path article has more information than we list here, however, so we recommend reading the full article if you ever encounter this issue.

Today’s Mind Map details our Resolution Paths for ThinApp Issues.

  Screen Shot 2011-07-29 at 9.44.32 AM

Click here to open the download page

Note: Some users have reported seeing only a blank page when viewing these new mind maps. Make sure to use version 9 or later of Adobe Reader to open these.

As a reminder, you can see all of our blog posts – and download the mind maps – about Resolution Path Mind Maps by clicking the Resolution Paths category from the toolbar on the right. We’ll be updating the download pages for each mind map with the raw mind map file (.mmap), so that you can import it into your own favorite mind mapping program.

New Mind Map – Troubleshooting Storage Issues

Here’s our newest Mind Map, for Storage issues.

As before, this PDF has a clickable Flash object embedded so that you can drill down into the various topics and articles.  We list the steps to take, and link to articles (or documentation) describing the steps in detail. Some steps have multiple sub steps, so be sure to expand fully. Each main Resolution Path article has more information than we list here, however, so we recommend reading the full article if you ever encounter this issue.

Today’s Mind Map details our Resolution Paths for Storage Issues.

  Screen shot 2011-07-26 at 1.18.35 PM

 

Click here to open the download page

Note: Some users are complaining about seeing only a blank page when viewing these new mind maps. Make sure to use version 9 or later of Adobe Reader to open these.

vSphere Licensing Mind Map

Today's mind map has articles for troubleshooting the licensing of VMware product (enterprise and desktop alike). It is slightly different from the others we've recently posted, in that most topics are single articles rather than actual Resolution Paths. This mind map lists important licensing components and articles related to licensing topics, such as support contracts and license keys. For example, the 'Product Licensing' topic has several sub-topics like ESX 3.x Licensing, vSphere Licensing, and Desktop Licensing. For each sub-topic, you will find a list of important articles related to that area.

Screen shot 2011-06-13 at 2.44.46 PM
Click here to get the downloadable pdf file.

This mind map does feature a Troubleshooting component, and it does list some resolution paths. We have articles for issues such as missing licenses and not being able to license some of the core VMware products. It'll all make sense when you see it.

New Mind Map, Resolution Path for VDR Issues

We have a new mind map and Resolution Path to round out this week, this one is for VDR issues. As you’ll recall from this post, VDR is the replacement for the VCB backup system for ESX/ESXi hosts. And also of particular note: New major or minor versions of the vSphere platform beyond vSphere 4.1 will not be supported with VCB. Nudge nudge… there’s your gentle reminder.

As before, this PDF has a click-able Flash object embedded so that you can drill down into the various topics and articles. We list the steps to take, and link to articles (or documentation) describing the steps in detail. Each main Resolution Path article has more information than we list here however, so we recommend reading the full article if you ever encounter this issue.

Resolution Paths for VDR Issues: Click here to open the download page

Resolution Path for VMware VDR Issues

Note: Some users are complaining about seeing only a blank page when viewing these new mind maps. Make sure to use version 9 or later of Adobe Reader to open these.

New Mind Map, Resolution Path for VMware Site Recovery Manager Issues

One more mind map to round out the week, this one is for VMware Site Recovery Manager issues. SRM for short.

As before, this PDF has a click-able Flash object embedded so that you can drill down into the various topics and articles. We list the steps to take, and link to articles (or documentation) describing the steps in detail. Each main Resolution Path article has more information than we list here however, so we recommend reading the full article if you ever encounter this issue.

Today’s Mind Map details our Resolution Paths for VMware Site Recovery Manager Issues: Click here to open the download page

Resolution Path for VMware Site Recovery Manager

Note: Some users are complaining about seeing only a blank page when viewing these new mind maps. Make sure to use version 9 or later of Adobe Reader to open these.

New Mind Map, Resolution Path for OS issues

Today we have yet another mind map for OS issues. Those are issues that pertain to the guest operating system you are running in your vm.

As before, this PDF has a click-able Flash object embedded so that you can drill down into the various topics and articles. We list the steps to take, and link to articles (or documentation) describing the steps in detail. Each main Resolution Path article has more information than we list here however, so we recommend reading the full article if you ever encounter this issue.

Today’s Mind Map details our Resolution Paths for OS Issues: Click here to open the download page

Resolution Path for OS issues 

Note: Some users are complaining about seeing only a blank page when viewing these new mind maps. Make sure to use version 9 or later of Adobe Reader to open these.