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Category Archives: Hidden Gems

User account locked in vCenter Server Appliance

vCSAWe’ve recently noticed a number of cases where vSphere administrators become locked out of their accounts or receive reports of incorrect passwords in the vCenter Server Appliance. If you find yourself in this position, here are two articles that address these issues:

KB 2034608
When attempting to log into the VMware vSphere 5.1, 5.5, or 6.0 Web Client you observe the following symptom: “User account is locked. Please contact your administrator.” This often occurs if the wrong password was entered multiple times. Waiting the default 15 minutes lockout period will allow to attempt the login again. If after multiple attempts, you are still not successful, you may need to reset the password.

KB 2069041
When attempting to log into the vCenter Server 5.5 and 6.0 Appliance, you experience symptoms where the root account is locked out. This often occurs because the vCenter Server appliance has a default 90 password expiration policy. Steps on how to modify the password expiration policies and to unlock the password.

View Composer DiskFault: Disk customization failed due to an internal error

There’s a glitch some customers are encountering  whereby a Linked Clone desktop is created on vCenter Ok, but is deleted soon after vCenter complains about either “disposable” or “internal” .vmdk files this desktop. Creating and recomposing linked clone desktops fails on VMware Horizon View 6.1.x and all older releases after you have applied an upgrade patch.

On View Administrator, recomposing of pool fails with the error:

View Composer DiskFault: Disk customization failed due to an internal error

This issue occurs when older versions of Horizon View Composer prior to VMware Horizon 6.2 attempt to communicate with VMware ESXi hosts, but SSL v3 is disabled beginning in VMware ESXi 5.5 Update 3b and 6.0 Update 1 hosts.

We’ve created a KB article to address this scenario here: Linked Clone pool creation and recompositon fails with VMware Horizon View 6.1.x and older releases (2133018)

Note: There is a workaround provided in the KB but it is not advised to use it. The workaround makes the VMware ESXi 5.5/ 6.0 hosts vulnerable to security threats reported for SSL v3

Dealing with issues with View Event Database

We’d like to focus today on a KB article which tries to address all the issues encountered by the users with regard to View Event Database deployment. The article includes a list of basic steps that will help you address all the issues that might be encountered during or after your deployment.

Configuring VMware View Event database on an SQL server fails with the error: An error occurred while attempting to configure the database (1029537)

Users actions are recorded about View Manager events. If this database is not configured you would need to look in the log files to gather information about events, and the logs contain very limited information.

Configuration of the event database will fail if the user has not met the prerequisites required. Our KB article helps users meet all the required prerequisites needed, from network connectivity, to SQL server, to correct credentials for database accounts, ports and firewall status.

If you find your issue persists after validating all the 12 steps mentioned in the article, then the potential cause for the issue might be an older version of the JDBC driver. Newer versions have a number of bug fixes for SSL certificate issues. Following the steps to install new version of JDBC driver should address all the issue and completes the configuration of VMware View event database successfully. Of course, if you’re unsure or still struggling, by all means contact our support team.

Basic Troubleshooting Guide for View Composer

Today we’d like to highlight one specific KB article related to View Composer. You might consider it a first step in addressing composer problems. The KB we’re talking about is:

VMware View Composer resolution guide (2104915)

This guide includes basic troubleshooting steps, issues observed in the process of composer installation or composer uninstall process, and finally operational issues. At the bottom of the KB there is a long list of related KBs that are also of interest if View composer problems are encountered.

  • Basic Troubleshooting Questions
  • Install and Uninstall VMware View Composer
  • VMware View Composer Error Messages
  • VMware View Composer Customization Failures
  • Unknown VMware View Composer Failures

Disk is already managed by View

Horizon ViewToday we will highlight one of our KB articles that is getting some traction with our Horizon View customers. The  issue can occur if the ADAM database contains an invalid entry for a persistent disk.


  • Attempting to import the disk from vCenter Server fails with the error:
This disk is already managed by View
  • Cannot detach a Persistent User Data Disk in View Manager.
  • Cannot import a Persistent Disk from vCenter Server for a virtual machine that was deleted in View Administrator.
  • The Persistent disk is visible when the option to show incompatible files is selected.

If you are encountering any of these symptoms in your environment, please refer to KB article: Cannot detach a Persistent Disk in View Manager 4.5 and later (2007076). This article has a 5 star customer rating.

Note: This KB contains two Warnings. Be sure you completely understand the article, and as always check that your backups are working and are valid.

Database issues when upgrading vSphere

For today’s post, we’d like to focus on issues surrounding DB validation during upgrade. Many of you are running into one of the issues when moving to vSphere 6.0

Does anything here look familiar?

Web Client issues in vSphere 6

Today we’d like to talk about some common issues that have been seen when customers were upgrading to the latest version of our vSphere Web Client.

Perhaps you, during an upgrade, missed some products that were no longer supported (ie: removing plugins that are no longer supported), and now are proving to be reluctant to be removed. Most of these are not production stopping, though they are problematic when it is not expected.

KBs 2111224 and 211292 For customers who have upgraded and may have not seen the documentation on what other products are no longer supported in vSphere 6.0.

KB 1025360 Helps with removing plugins that are no longer compatible with vCenter 6.0.

KB 2119011 To help introduce customers to the feature changes in the vSphere Client and vSphere Web Client in 6.0 and any corresponding errors.

KB 2121185 After upgrading to vSphere 6.0 you may run into items no longer appearing in your inventory. This KB assists in troubleshooting to the services to find the cause.

KB 2121717 Troubleshoots login issues that customers may see in the vSphere environment using the Use Windows Session Credentials check box.


50 articles that fix EVERYTHING in Horizon View!

Ok, our title may exhibit a teenie-tiny hint of hyperbole, but seriously the following list of articles covers the majority of issues that you can solve yourself. We’ve posted these lists before but limited the number to twenty, but why do that? Your problem might be number twenty one.

  1. Manually deleting linked clones or stale virtual desktop entries from the View Composer database in VMware View Manager and Horizon View (2015112)
  2. Correlating VMware products build numbers to update levels (1014508)
  3. Generating and importing a signed SSL certificate into VMware Horizon View 5.1/5.2/5.3/6.0 using Microsoft Certreq (2032400)
  4. Pool settings are not saved, new pools cannot be created, and vCenter Server tasks are not processed in a Horizon View environment (2082413)
  5. VMware Products and CVE-2014-3566 (POODLE) (2092133)
  6. VMware Horizon View Best Practices (1020305)
  7. Network connectivity requirements for VMware View Manager 4.5 and later (1027217)
  8. Manually deleting replica virtual machines in VMware Horizon View 5.x (1008704)
  9. Finding and removing unused replica virtual machines in the VMware Horizon View (2009844)
  10. Restart order of the View environment to clear ADLDS (ADAM) synchronization in View 4.5, 4.6, 5.0, and 5.1 (2068381)
  11. Collecting diagnostic information for VMware Horizon View (1017939)
  12. View Connection Server reports the error: [ws_TomcatService] STDOUT: java.lang.OutOfMemoryError: Java heap space (2009877)
  13. Legacy applications fail to start with the VMware View 6.0 or 6.0.1 agent installed (2091845)
  14. Provisioning VMware Horizon View desktops fails with error: View Composer Agent initialization error (16): Failed to activate software license. (1026556)
  15. Cannot detach a Persistent Disk in View Manager 4.5 and later (2007076)
  16. Provisioning View desktops fails due to customization timeout errors (2007319)
  17. The View virtual machine is not accessible and the View Administration console shows the virtual machine status as “Already Used” (1000590)
  18. Forcing replication between ADAM databases (1021805)
  19. Administration dashboard in VMware Horizon View 5.1/5.2/5.3 reports the error: Server’s certificate cannot be checked (2000063)
  20. Troubleshooting SSL certificate issues in VMware Horizon View 5.1 and later (2082408)
  21. Removing a standard (replica) connection server or a security server from a cluster of connection/security servers (1010153)
  22. Troubleshooting Persona Management (2008457)
  23. View Persona Management features do not function when Windows Client-Side Caching is in effect. (2016416)
  24. Resolving licensing errors when deploying virtual Office to a system with Office installed natively. (2107369)
  25. Manually deleting linked clones or stale virtual desktop entries from VMware View Manager (1008658)
  26. Troubleshooting a black screen when logging into a Horizon View virtual desktop using PCoIP (1028332)
  27. The PCoIP server log reports the error: Error attaching to SVGADevTap, error 4000: EscapeFailed (1029706)
  28. Connecting to the View ADAM Database (2012377)
  29. Disabling SSLv3 connections over HTTPS to View Security Server and View Connection Server (2094442)
  30. The Event database performance in VMware View 6.0.x is extremely slow (2094580)
  31. Intermittent provisioning issues and generic errors when Composer and vCenter Server are co-installed (2105261)
  32. Performing an end-to-end backup and restore for VMware View Manager (1008046)
  33. Installing VMware View Agent or View Composer fails with the error: The system must be rebooted before installation can continue (1029288)
  34. View Connection Server fails to replicate (2014488)
  35. Provisioning View desktops fail with the error: View Composer Fault: VC operation exceeded the task timeout limit set by View Composer (2030047)
  36. Calculating datastore selection for linked-clone desktops in Horizon View 5.2 or later releases (2047492)
  37. VMware Horizon View Admin dashboard for vCenter Server 5.1 displays the message: VC service is not working properly (2050369)
  38. Generating a Horizon View SSL certificate request using the Microsoft Management Console (MMC) Certificates snap-in (2068666)
  39. Reconnecting to the VDI desktop with PCoIP displays a black screen (2073945)
  40. PCI Scan indicates that TCP Port 4172 PCoIP Secure Gateway is vulnerable to POODLE (CVE-2014-3566) (2099458)
  41. Troubleshooting USB redirection problems in VMware View Manager (1026991)
  42. Location of VMware View log files (1027744)
  43. Migrating linked clone pools to a different or new datastore (1028754)
  44. Error during provisioning: Unable to find folder (1038077)
  45. Unable to connect to a VMware View Manager desktop via the Security Server from outside the firewall (1039021)
  46. VMware View Agent fails to uninstall (2000017)
  47. View Manager Admin console displays the error: Error during provisioning: Unexpected VC fault from View Composer(Unknown)(2014321)
  48. Consolidating disks associated with a backup snapshot fails with the error: The file is already in use (2040846)
  49. Troubleshooting VMware Horizon View HTML Access (2046427)
  50. USB redirection may not work on cloned images after upgrading master image from VMware Horizon View 5.1 to 5.2 and 5.3 (2051801)

Popular tweets

Here’s an interesting top 20 list. In the last 30 days, these were the tweets form our @vmwarekb account that got the most sharing from our customers. Perhaps you missed something on our list you’d be interested in.

Oh, and if you don’t follow us on Twitter, why not?

How to restart the Management agents on a VMware vSphere ESXi or ESX host
Poor network performance when using VMXNET3 adapter for routing in a Linux guest operating system (2077393)
Configuring the ESXi host with Active Directory authentication
Configuring the ESXi host with Active Directory authentication (2075361)
ESXi host initiates ARP Broadcast storm to NFS server (2080034)
Veeam virtual machine backups fail with the error: The host is not licensed for this feature (2080352)
Downgrading device drivers in VMware ESXi 5.x (2079279)
ESXi 5.5 … purple … screen error:#PF Exception 14 in world 33426: vmkeventd IP 0x418002c71507 addr 0x0 (2061842)
Storage Controllers previously supported for VSAN that are no longer supported (2081431)
VMware ESXi 5.1, Patch Release ESXi510-201406001 (2077640)
VM loses network connectivity during migration … in vCNS 5.1.4 and 5.5.2 and NSX for vSphere 6.0.4 (2080479)
Copying a file is slow on HTTP connections in vCenter Server (2081624)
VMware ESXi host in the vSphere Distributed Switch (vDS) are out of sync (2081052)
Preparing Windows 2008 R2 SP1 Server as a desktop to be deployed by Horizon DaaS (Desktone) (2080765)
Adding an Integrated Active Directory (IWA) Identity Source without the vSphere Web Client for vCenter SSO (2063424)
Upgrade paths and product compatibility for PowerCLI versions that feature OpenSSL security fixes (2082132)
Upgrading VMware vCenter Server 5.5 to a 5.5.x version using Simple Install fails (2074676)
VMware ESXi 5.1, Patch ESXi-5.1.0-20140604001-standard (2077642)
Dell EqualLogic Multipathing Extension Module (MEM) in View environments storage performance degradation (2078451)
Booting the ESXi host fails at Initializing scheduler (2077712)

Using VisualEsxtop to troubleshoot performance issues in vSphere

What is VisualEsxtop?

VisualEsxtop is a new performance monitoring tool that was recently posted on the VMware Labs Flings project. On Flings, apps and tools built by VMware engineers for fun are available for download. The intent is to make VMware Administrators’ lives easier in their daily work.

Note:  VisualEsxtop is not an official VMware tool. For support and feedback please contact VMware Labs : http://labs.vmware.com/contact-us

VisualEsxtop is an enhanced version of resxtop and esxtop. VisualEsxtop can connect to VMware vCenter Server or ESX hosts, and display ESX server stats with a better user interface and more advanced features.

How to install VisualEsxtop ?

  1. Download visualEsxtop.zip from http://labs.vmware.com/flings/visualesxtop
  2. Unzip visualEsxtop.zip to folder
  3. Make sure Java 1.6 is in the PATH.
    1. On windows, to verify if Java is in the path,
      Click on Start > run > TYPE cmd and press ENTER > TYPE java and press Enter.
      If java is not in path, you will notice error like this –
    2. If JDK 1.6 or later is already installed on your machine but not in the path, here is how you add it (Instructions for Windows 7, other versions might be slightly different)
      -Go to Control Panel > System and Security > System >
      -Click Advanced system settings
      -Click on Environmental Variables
      -Click on New
      -Under Edit User Variable type the following and click OK
      Variable name: path
      Variable value: The path to the JDK 1.6 binary folder (C:\Program Files (x86)\Java\jdk1.6.0_14\bin\  for example)
    3. Then, open cmd again (Start > Run> Type cmd) and type “java”. This should successfully return usage options for java command.

What can you do with VisualEsxtop?

  • Real-time Performance monitoring of individual ESX(i) hosts or vCenter Server. The default interval (5 seconds) is modifiable. Type Ctrl+N and change to the new value
  • Multiple sessions to different hosts or same host at the same time. This comes in very handy when you are comparing stats between hosts or between multiple views/fields.
  • Flexible counter selection and filtering. This is in my opinion the best feature of this tool. You can filter results to get specific outputs. The examples in the next section will show you how to.
  • Save data to a batch file. You can now pick and choose relevant tabs and fields and also chose intervals, number of snapshots for the output. Type Ctrl+S to get the save option
  • Load batch output and replay them. Type Ctrl+B to load a saved csv file.
  • Line chart for selected performance counters
  • Embedded tooltip for counter description
  • Color coding for important counters

Running the tool:

  1. Run visualEsxtop.sh (Linux) or visualEsxtop.bat (Windows) from the extracted files.  (Note: Type export JAVA_OPTS=-Xmx2048m  if loading large amounts of data)
  2. On the VMWARE VisualEsxtop window, select File > Connect to Live server.
  3. Choose the IP address of the host or vCenter and the credentials to connect.

Examples of using the tool:

Example 1:

The example below is listing only the devices that have DAVG value of above 20ms. The filter used is DAVG/cmd under Disk World tab.  Typically we do not want DAVG (device driver level  latency) to be over 20ms for lengthy period. Note that by using the filter, it is very easy to list only the devices that currently have high latency values.

Example 2:

The example below is listing the vmkernels and virtual machines that are currently running on vmnic0. The filter used is TEAM-PNIC  under Network tab. You can also sort by %DRPTX , %DRPRX to filter for any devices reporting packet drops. Note that the vmnic number will only show up if the uplink ports are not in an etherchannel binding.

Tips on working with Charts:

  • To build a new chart, under Chart tab click twice on Object Types to start to select fields
  • To add a field to the chart, expand the related object and click twice on the field
  • To remove a field from the current chart, click twice on the field from the bottom left window pane
  • The chart allows you to add any fields from any objects at the same time. You have to be the judge regarding what fields are relevant. For example, listing DAVG and Physical CPU Core Util% in the same chart may not provide much value.

Chart view (tab) screenshot:

Where do I get tips on Troubleshooting performance on ESXi ?

Details about different fields in esxtop tool can be found in this communities blog post: Interpreting esxtop Statistics.

There are many great articles and tips on performance troubleshooting in the VMware Knowledgebase. Here are a couple that I recommend to give you a start –