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Top 20 Articles for February 2015

Top 20 KBs Here is our Top 20 KB list for February 2015. This list is ranked by the number of times a VMware Support Request was resolved by following the steps in a published Knowledge Base article.

  1. ESXi host cannot initiate vMotion or enable services and reports the error: Heap globalCartel-1 already at its maximum size. Cannot expand (2085618)
  2. VMware ESXi 5.x host experiences a purple diagnostic screen mentioning E1000PollRxRing and E1000DevRx (2059053)
  3. Manually deleting linked clones or stale virtual desktop entries from the View Composer database in VMware View Manager and Horizon View (2015112)
  4. Installing async drivers on VMware ESXi 5.0, 5.1, and 5.5 (2005205)
  5. Installing vCenter Server 5.5 best practices (2052334)
  6. Purging old data from the database used by VMware vCenter Server 4.x and 5.x (1025914)
  7. Investigating virtual machine file locks on ESXi/ESX (10051)
  8. Re-pointing and re-registering VMware vCenter Server 5.1 / 5.5 and components (2033620)
  9. Collecting diagnostic information for VMware ESX/ESXi using the vSphere Client (653)
  10. Determining Network/Storage firmware and driver version in ESXi/ESX 4.x and ESXi 5.x (1027206)
  11. Correlating VMware products build numbers to update levels (1014508)
  12. Resetting the VMware vCenter Server 5.x Inventory Service database (2042200)
  13. Installing or upgrading to ESXi 5.5 best practices (2052329)
  14. Commands to monitor snapshot deletion in VMware ESX/ESXi (1007566)
  15. Restarting the Management agents on an ESXi or ESX host (1003490)
  16. Unmounting a LUN or detaching a datastore/storage device from multiple VMware ESXi 5.x hosts (2004605)
  17. Upgrading to vCenter Server 5.5 best practices (2053132)
  18. An ESXi 5.x host running on HP server fails with a purple diagnostic screen and the error: hpsa_update_scsi_devices or detect_controller_lockup_thread (2075978)
  19. Methods for upgrading to ESXi 5.5 (2058352)
  20. VMware Response to CVE-2015-0235 – glibc gethostbyname buffer overflow, aka “Ghost” (2105862)

Horizon View PCoIP issues?

Here’s our latest top list of KB articles you should know about when encountering issues with PCoIP with Horizon View. It can be a tricky thing to configure and troubleshoot even for the best of us, so here’s some golden nuggets to help you on your way.

New Free Webinars

VMware Support Delivery has announced a new series of webinars for our customers. Customers can join these live sessions on Thursdays. There is something for both beginners and more advanced customers. Anyone that is unable to attend the live events will be able to view the recorded versions of the sessions on the Friday of the same week.

To register to these webinars, open the attached 2015 Webinar catalog [pdf].

All webinars start at 15:00 GMT and will run for 45 – 60 min

26th Feb Journey to the Horizon from View to FLEX
(LEVEL) Beginner – Intermediate
* Wide focus from Horizon View over Mirage to FLEX
* New features in View, technology and features behind Mirage and FLEX
* Best practices for successful implementations and known issues

5th March vSphere Data Protection Extra
(LEVEL) Intermediate
* Broken Comms to vCenter
* Some MCS/GSAN views
* Manual Disk Restore via command line
* VMRun
* Q+A

12th March vCloud Director – Design and Scale
(LEVEL) Intermediate
* Highlight a recommended design
* How you can scale that design without hitting the config maximums and still getting the most out of your setup
* Some commonly encountered issues that occur due to bad practice rather than bad design

19th March vRealize Business
(LEVEL) Beginner
* vRB Standard: “How much does my VM cost?”
* vRB Advanced: “How much does my IT cost?”
* vRB Enterprise: “Are my IT Providers complying with their SLA’s?”

26th March NSX
(LEVEL) Beginner
* SDDC and network virtualization (concepts and connection between them)
* NSX components and features explained
* A typical lab walk-through with commands
* Q&A

9th April SSL Certificate handling in vSphere 6.0
(LEVEL) Beginner
* What’s new in 6.0
* Introduction to VECS and VMCA
* Demo of common replacement tasks
* Q&A

16th April vRealize Automation
(LEVEL) Intermediate
* Tuning for scale

23rd April vCloud Air – Disaster Recovery
(LEVEL) Intermediate
* What’s new
* Architecture
* How does it work
* Use case study

30th April Introduction to vRealize Orchestrator
(LEVEL) Beginner
* Orchestrator Overview
* What’s new in 6.0
* vRealize Orchestrator Elements
* Create a Simple Workflow
* Workflow Parameter Binding
* Invoking/Creating Actions

7th May Database maintenance
(LEVEL) Intermediate
* Backing up your database
* Getting the best performance from your vCenter
* Avoiding corruption on the vCenter appliance
* Q+A

14th May Overview of Storage I/O Control
(LEVEL) Intermediate- Advanced
* Why SIOC
* SIOC features
* Noisy Neighbour
* How SIOC helps
* Shares and increasing priorities
* Recommended latency thresholds
* Limit IOPS and SIOC

21st May What’s new in vSphere 6
(LEVEL) Beginner
* An overview of new features in vSphere 6
* Feature changes from vSphere 5.5
* New best practices

28th May vSphere Networking – Best Practices and Troubleshooting
(LEVEL) Beginner – Intermediate
* NIC Teaming
* Redundancy and Load Balancing
* VLANs
* vDS
* Common Issues

4th June Datacentre to vCloud Air over IPSec VPN
(LEVEL) Intermediate
* Overview of vCloud Air and vCloud Air networking
* Discussion on IPSEC VPN and how it is implemented in vCloud Air
* Setup example to an Edge Gateway in vCloud Air

11th June Migrating workloads to vCloud Air with vCloud Connector and Datacentre Extension
(LEVEL) Intermediate
* What is vCloud Connector and what does it do
* Configuration and setup of vCloud Connector Server and Node
* Copy templates from private datacentre to vCloud Air
* What is the Datacentre Extension
* Additional setup of vCloud Connector for Datacentre Extension
* Demonstration of a vm being stretched to vCLoud Air

Ghost – glibc gethostbyname* buffer overflow

In case you missed it, on January 27th, 2015 a buffer overflow vulnerability in the glibc gethostbyname() function was disclosed. The issue is identified by CVE-2015-0235 and was given the name “Ghost.”

The VMware Security Engineering, Communications, and Response group (vSECR) began investigating this issue immediately.

The security blog at VMware released a blog post concerning this vulnerability, and a KB article was published:
VMware Response to CVE-2015-0235 – glibc gethostbyname buffer overflow, aka “Ghost” (2105862).

VMware has an established software security engineering group that integrates these techniques into the software development cycle, provides security expertise, guidance on the latest security threats and defensive techniques, and training within the development organization. This group is also responsible for driving VMware products through external security accreditations and certifications.

Many VMware products, including vSphere™, VMware vCenter™ Server, and vCloud Networking and Security (vCNS) have achieved Common Criteria certification under the Common Criteria Evaluation and Certification Scheme (CCS).Common Criteria is an international set of guidelines (ISO 15408) that provides a common framework for evaluating security features and capabilities of Information Technology (IT) security products.

For more information, visit VMware’s Common Criteria and FIPS-140 Certifications.

Top 20 Articles for January 2015

Here is our Top 20 KB list for January 2015. This list is ranked by the number of times a VMware Support Request was resolved by following the steps in a published Knowledge Base article.

1. ESXi host cannot initiate vMotion or enable services and reports the error: Heap globalCartel-1 already at its maximum size.Cannot expand (2085618)

2. Troubleshooting Fusion virtual machine performance issues (1015676)

3. VMware Response to CVE-2015-0235 – glibc gethostbyname buffer overflow, aka “Ghost” (2105862)

4. VMware ESXi 5.x host experiences a purple diagnostic screen mentioning E1000PollRxRing and E1000DevRx (2059053)

5. Installing async drivers on VMware ESXi 5.0, 5.1, and 5.5 (2005205)

6. Installing Windows in a virtual machine using VMware Fusion Easy Install (1011677)

7. Installing vCenter Server 5.5 best practices (2052334)

8. Installing VMware Tools in a Fusion virtual machine running Windows (1003417)

9. Purging old data from the database used by VMware vCenter Server 4.x and 5.x (1025914)

10. Investigating virtual machine file locks on ESXi/ESX (10051)

11. Re-pointing and re-registering VMware vCenter Server 5.1 / 5.5 and components (2033620)

12. Determining Network/Storage firmware and driver version in ESXi/ESX 4.x and ESXi 5.x (1027206)

13. Installing or upgrading to ESXi 5.5 best practices (2052329)

14. Manually deleting linked clones or stale virtual desktop entries from the View Composer database in VMware View Manager and Horizon View (2015112)

15. Upgrading to vCenter Server 5.5 best practices (2053132)

16. Correlating VMware products build numbers to update levels (1014508)

17. Methods for upgrading to ESXi 5.5 (2058352)

18. Resetting the VMware vCenter Server 5.x Inventory Service database (2042200)

19. Converting a physical machine for Fusion, Workstation, or Player using Converter Standalone (2005129)

20. Troubleshooting networking and internet connection issues in VMware Fusion (1016466)

Troubleshooting Composer for VMware Horizon View

***UPDATE: We just published a great troubleshooting KB article for Composer that covers a lot of the common issues customers encounter here.

At some point, every View administrator who uses a linked clone pool is going to need to do some troubleshooting. Most linked clone troubleshooting involves a component called Composer.
What is composer, and what does it do?
Composer is an add-on for VMware Horizon View and is used to build linked clone desktops. Details about linked clones and Composer operations can be found in my previous posts, What is a linked clone? and part II of that topic.

Today we will focus on troubleshooting Composer when it breaks.

We are in the process of compiling a KB which will serve as the go-to article for Composer. This will contain links to important KBs, common issues, and procedures for repair. In the meantime, I thought this tactic would be good to share.

Compatibility

Compatibility is more important than many admins realize. VMware builds, tests, certifies and supports components that are built to work together.

The Connection Server talks to:

  • Composer
  • View Agent
  • vCenter
  • Security Server
  • and the clients

Composer in turn, talks to:

  • vCenter,
  • Connection Server
  • The hosts
  • Active Directory
  • The guest OS

As you can imagine, it’s easy for problems to balloon out of control if a component doesn’t talk properly to another. So, you need to ensure that every component is compatible and is designed to work with every other.

Here’s how-

Identifying where a problem exists is the first step to solving it. Composer can be nonfunctional because of factors that are entirely outside of Composer itself. For example, View doesn’t build desktops, that step is done by vCenter through API calls. If you are trying to build desktops and nothing is happening, it doesn’t mean View or Composer are at fault. vCenter needs to be fully functioning properly for View to be able to provision desktops. Along the same lines, Composer needs to be able to talk to all of the hosts in a cluster plus your Active Directory to be able to customize VMs, so if you have a dead host, Composer will fail.

Is Composer at fault then if it doesn’t work? Well, what about the guest VM? Does it get an IP address? Does it boot? If the answer to any of these is no, then Composer can’t do its job.

One of the tactics I take when Composer fails is to manually step though all of the processes involved.

  • Can I clone the base image?
  • Can I change customize it?
  • Can I activate it?
  • Is it network accessible?

If the answer to any of these questions is no, the problem is outside of Composer. Understanding where the linked clone process fails is the key to resolving problems.

Top 20 Horizon with View KB articles

announcementHappy New Year VMware View implementers! We have a fresh new top 20 list of VMware View specific KBs to help you avoid these issues. Pass it on!

  1. Manually deleting linked clones or stale virtual desktop entries from the View Composer database in VMware View Manager and Horizon View (2015112)
  2. Generating and importing a signed SSL certificate into VMware Horizon View 5.1/5.2/5.3/6.0 using Microsoft Certreq (2032400)
  3. Pool settings are not saved, new pools cannot be created, and vCenter Server tasks are not processed in a Horizon View environment (2082413)
  4. VMware Horizon View Best Practices (1020305)
  5. Finding and removing unused replica virtual machines in the VMware Horizon View (2009844)
  6. Network connectivity requirements for VMware View Manager 4.5 and later (1027217)
  7. Collecting diagnostic information for VMware Horizon View (1017939)
  8. Forcing replication between ADAM databases (1021805)
  9. Manually deleting replica virtual machines in VMware Horizon View 5.x (1008704)
  10. Connecting to the View ADAM Database (2012377)
  11. Restart order of the View environment to clear ADLDS (ADAM) synchronization in View 4.5, 4.6, 5.0, and 5.1 (2068381)
  12. Removing a standard (replica) connection server or a security server from a cluster of connection/security servers (1010153)
  13. Provisioning View desktops fails due to customization timeout errors (2007319)
  14. Generating a Horizon View SSL certificate request using the Microsoft Management Console (MMC) Certificates snap-in (2068666)
  15. Performing an end-to-end backup and restore for VMware View Manager (1008046)
  16. Manually deleting linked clones or stale virtual desktop entries from VMware View Manager (1008658)
  17. View Connection Server reports the error: [ws_TomcatService] STDOUT: java.lang.OutOfMemoryError: Java heap space (2009877)
  18. Location of VMware View log files (1027744)
  19. Troubleshooting Persona Management (2008457)
  20. Administration dashboard in VMware Horizon View 5.1/5.2/5.3 reports the error: Server’s certificate cannot be checked (2000063)

Top 20 Articles for December 2014

Here is our Top 20 KB list for December 2014. This list is ranked by the number of times a VMware Support Request was resolved by following the steps in a published Knowledge Base article.

  1. VMware ESXi 5.x host experiences a purple diagnostic screen mentioning E1000PollRxRing and E1000DevRx (2059053)
  2. Installing async drivers on VMware ESXi 5.0, 5.1, and 5.5 (2005205)
  3. Investigating virtual machine file locks on ESXi/ESX (10051)
  4. Commands to monitor snapshot deletion in VMware ESX/ESXi (1007566)
  5. An ESXi 5.x host running on HP server fails with a purple diagnostic screen and the error: hpsa_update_scsi_devices or detect_controller_lockup_thread (2075978)
  6. Determining Network/Storage firmware and driver version in ESXi/ESX 4.x and ESXi 5.x (1027206)
  7. Broadcom 5719/5720 NICs using tg3 driver become unresponsive and stop traffic in vSphere (2035701)
  8. Unmounting a LUN or detaching a datastore/storage device from multiple VMware ESXi 5.x hosts (2004605)
  9. VMware ESXi 5.x host experiences a purple diagnostic screen mentioning E1000PollRxRing, E1000DevRx and Net_AcceptRxList (2079094)
  10. vSphere handling of LUNs detected as snapshot LUNs (1011387)
  11. Recreating a missing virtual machine disk descriptor file (1002511)
  12. Using esxtop to identify storage performance issues for ESX / ESXi (multiple versions) (1008205)
  13. Storage device performance deteriorated (2007236)
  14. Committing snapshots when there are no snapshot entries in the Snapshot Manager (1002310)
  15. Snapshot consolidation in VMware ESXi 5.5.x fails with the error: maximum consolidate retries was exceeded for scsix:x (2082886)
  16. Testing VMkernel network connectivity with the vmkping command (1003728)
  17. Information about the error: state in doubt; requested fast path state update (1022026)
  18. Identifying and addressing Non-Maskable Interrupt events on an ESX/ESXi host (1804)
  19. Understanding virtual machine snapshots in VMware ESXi and ESX (1015180)
  20. Best practices for virtual machine snapshots in the VMware environment (1025279)

Downgrading from VMware Workstation 11.x to VMware Workstation 10.x

This video tutorial demonstrates how to downgrade VMware Workstation 11.x to VMware Workstation 10.x.

Before attempting to downgrade, be advised that VMware Workstation 11.x and VMware Workstation 10.x use different virtual machine hardware compatibility. When downgrading Workstation, you must change the virtual machine hardware compatibility version of your virtual machine to Workstation 10.0.

Full instructions are available in VMware Knowledge Base article Downgrading from VMware Workstation 11.x to VMware Workstation 10.x (2082119).

Upgrading from Workstation 10 to 11

This video tutorial demonstrates how to upgrade from Workstation 10 to Workstation 11.

Before upgrading to VMware Workstation 11, ensure that your physical machine meets the system requirements. For more information, see Introduction and System Requirements in the Getting Started with VMware Workstation 11.x guide. You will also need to shutdown any virtual machines that you may have running before attempting the upgrade.

Full details and instructions are available in VMware Knowledge Base article Upgrading from VMware Workstation 10 to VMware Workstation 11 (2081971).