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Category Archives: Automation

PowerCLI for Site Recovery Manager

Along with the release of vSphere 5.5 U1 and the VSAN general availability, there is some other pretty exciting news that might risk getting overlooked:  The release of PowerCLI 5.5 R2.

Why is that so exciting for an availability guy?  Because for the first time you can now use PowerCLI with the SRM API directly!    Check it out in the PCLI release notes.

You can now manage the vCenter Site Recovery Manager Public API through the Connect-SRMServer and Disconnect-SRMServer cmdlets.

Great, what does *that* mean?  Well my friend Alan Renouf who now manages the product informs me that it means:

Full management of the vCenter SRM Public API: Using the Connect-SRMServer and Disconnect-SRMServer you are now able to connect to vCenter SRM and access all public APIs available, use of the $global:DefaultSrmServers object properties and methods after connection allow for access to recovery group and protection group automation, see the built in help and examples for more information.

Now be aware that this does not mean we have a full and rich set of PowerCLI cmdlets for SRM, just that PowerCLI can now view the entire existing API that SRM presents.  But for those of you who want to do things like running tests programmatically – here’s a much easier way than cracking out the java code!

Make sure you take a look at the PowerCLI User’s Guide and also examine the sample scripts for SRM.  They sure make it easy to call API functions like ListProtection Groups, GetInfo, ProtectVMs, etc.  The samples include handy things like:

  • Connecting to an SRM server with PowerCLI
  • Protecting a virtual machine
  • Creating a report on protected virtual machines
  • Creating a report of virtual machines associated with all protection groups

For more info stay tuned here as well as at the Official PowerCLI Blog where Alan and others will doubtless be providing more examples on use.  You might want to check out the SRM API Documentation as well for the context of what exactly you are capable of doing with SRM via API/PowerCLI.


Updated VMware Mobile Knowledge Portal

The VMware Mobile Knowledge Portal iOS and Android app has recently been updated. It sports a great new look and feel and makes finding the information you need even easier by grouping it by area in our SDDC vision.

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Hadoop meets Virtualization – a Primer


You have probably heard the terms “Big Data” and “Hadoop” mentioned somewhere in the industry lately – they are both very popular subjects of discussion at the moment. This blog gives you an introduction to the core technology and explains some of the contributions that VMware continues to make to the Hadoop world.

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VMware vCloud Automation Center (vCAC) 6 installation pre-req automation script

Save time deploying vCAC by using the vCAC6-PreReq-Automation script. This article will get you up to speed on the changes with the vCAC6 installation and provide you with an automated installation script for the vCAC 6 prerequisites, allowing you to more quickly and efficiently deploy your server.

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Pivotal CF

Today Pivotal announced the availability of Pivotal CF. Jointly developed with VMware, the Pivotal CF product includes a packaged and supported version of the Cloud Foundry open PaaS for VMware vSphere.

In April 2011 VMware first launched Cloud Foundry, an Apache-licensed open source Platform as a Service (PaaS) and an associated vSphere-based public cloud service. A year later, in April 2012, we announced a DevOps toolchain called BOSH, used to deploy and manage Cloud Foundry at scale on virtualized infrastructure. In April 2013 VMware and EMC formed Pivotal, a spinout company using technology from both companies including Cloud Foundry.

VMware’s vision for Cloud Foundry has always been to deliver maximum agility to application developers across both public and private cloud environments. In working with Pivotal to deliver Pivotal CF we have fulfilled that vision, bringing the incredible productivity of Cloud Foundry to vSphere customers.

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Are ESXi Patches Cumulative

Updated based on feedback.  Thanks for the comments!

I’d like to revisit the question “are ESXi patches cumulative”?  This time I hope to hammer home the point with an example.

In short, the answer is yes, the ESXi patch bundles are cumulative.  However, when applying patches from the command line using the ESXCLI command you do need to be careful to ensure you update the complete image profile and not just select VIBs.

There are two ways to update VIBs using the ESCLI command.  You can use either the “esxcli software vib update … command or the “esxcli software profile update …” command.  The “vib” namespace is typically used with the optional “-n <vib name>” parameter in order to update individual VIBs, where the “profile” namespace is typically used to update the host’s image profile, which may include multiple VIB updates.  The key is when applying patches use the “profile” namespace to update the complete image profile opposed to using the “vib” namespace to update selected VIBs.

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2013 VMware Fling Contest – Call for Entries

The 2013 VMware Fling Contest is now open. Do you have an idea on how certain features or functionality could be improved upon? Can you think of an app that would make the life of a system administrator so much easier? Do you have a repetitive task that you wished you could have automated in your vSphere environment? Or a decision making tool for certain tasks? We are looking for you, our customers & users, to propose ideas for new VMware Flings.  Our panel of judges will pick the winner.  The submitter of the winning entry will win a free pass to VMworld 2014.

Last year we got over 120 submissions.  We’re also planning to release a new Fling (Proactive DRS) at VMworld that was built based on last year’s winning winning idea.

 The 2013 VMware Fling Contest URL is: https://flingcontest.vmware.com

The contest will remain open for submissions through November 15.

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Log Insight bulk ESXi host configuration with PowerCLI

Recently I installed vCenter Log Insight, which by the way has one of the easiest and intuitive installers and configuration wizards ever!

After the Install and during the configuration you can easily add your vCenter server and vCOPs server so that monitoring can start straight away.

As an extra configuration step you can extend the default logging by setting up each ESXi host to use the Syslog server which is built into Log Insight, the process for this can be found in the documentation located here.

As per the documentation this means either going to each host and configuring the Syslog settings, configuring them manually through the shell or running the configure-esxi script through an SSH session.

As I already had a PowerCLI session open to my environment I wrote a quick PowerCLI script to achieve the same thing, the following script will configure the Syslog settings for each ESXi host to send their events to Log Insight…..

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Help us to improve vCenter Orchestrator

Would you like to see new plugins for a specific product or area of your business?

Is there something that bugs you about vCO?

Help us to make your vCO lives better!

As part of the ongoing improvement initiatives at VMware, we would like to collect your feedback through a list of questions in the following areas:

  1. Your vCO Usage and Plug-in requirements
  2. Overall feedback and needed enhancements
  3. Some brief information about your organization

Your feedback is CRITICAL to help us improve vCO and the benefits it can provide to your organization.

Please take a minute to complete all questions as your opinion matters to us.




Thanks for taking the time to make VMware products better!

Reporting on RPO Violations From vSphere Replication

A commonly requested thing that people ask for from vSphere Replication is more consolidated reporting.  You can set alerts in vCenter to key off of various things that surface from vSphere Replication, but it is not exactly a consolidated list when doing so.  What people are looking for is a common interface to pull together *just* vSphere Replication alerts for things like RPO violations.

My good friends and colleagues Alan Renouf and Lee Dilworth have identified a really elegant way to pull this information from vCenter to generate a report that will tell you about any RPO related alerts, such as historical RPO that is violations, when they occurred, and for how long using the ever useful PowerCLI.

Check out the blog post that covers this scripting solution over at Virtu-Al.net that solves this enigma for you.  It’s a great job by Alan and Lee!