vSphere 5 Reference Card

Forbes Guthrie created a vSphere 5 Reference Card. The VMware documentation is about 1700 pages, but fortunately these notes are packed down into about 50 pages.
They’re all excerpts take directly from the official VMware PDFs. This makes it great to study from, as the VCP questions are often taken straight from their documentation. I occasionally added a few words to help clarify the context of the sentence, but the vast majority of the content is word-for-word. Being direct quotes makes it easy for you to search within the PDF if you are unsure on an area or need greater clarification surround a statement.

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To download just click on the picture Knipogende emoticon.

DPM Error 30126 DPM could not find find a valid recovery point on disk Or ‘Replica Inconsistent’ showing against System State and Bare Metal Recovery on Protected Server

This error normally occurs due to one of the following two possible causes:

  • Not enough disk space is available on the protected machine to store a backup of the system state files
  • The Windows Server Backup feature is not installed on the protected machine (Windows 2008 or Windows 2008 R2)

Solution:
Simply install the Windows Server Backup feature on to the protected machine from Server Manager. Installation of this feature doesn’t normally require a reboot.

If the protected machine doesn’t have enough disk space to store a backup of the system state files (you’ll need 10-12Gb free on the system drive by default to store these files) you’ll need to create some space on the system drive, or add another disk to the machine and modify the PSDataSourceConfig.xml file to allow DPM to use the new location.

The PSDataSourceConfig.xml file is normally located at %SystemDrive%\Program Files\Microsoft Data Protection Manager\DPM\DataSources. Modify the <FilesToProtect> section of the xml file to point to the new drive added. Maybe that you may need to remove protection for the machine from the DPM 2010 console and then re-enable protection to get DPM to read the new location for backup files from the PSDataSourceConfig.xml file.

Exchange 2007 SP3 Update Rollup 5

Today the Exchange Team released Rollup 5 for Exchange Server 2007 Service Pack 3 (KB2602324). This update raises Exchange 2007 version number to 8.3.213.1.

Here’s the list of changes included in this rollup:

981820 New X-headers of a message item do not appear when the message item is retrieved by IMAP4 or by POP3 in an Exchange Server 2007 SP2 environment

2292150 A deleted hyperlink remains in the HTML source of an email message if you create the email message by using OWA in an Exchange Server 2007 environment

2411423 The Msftefd.exe process constantly consumes up to 100 percent of CPU resources when your mailbox language is set to German on an Exchange Server 2007 server

2450078 The sent time in an email message body is incorrect when you reply or forward the email message by using an EWS application in an Exchange Server 2007 environment

2451415 “There was a problem logging onto your mail server” error message when you use a POP3 client to access a mailbox in an Exchange Server 2007 SP3 environment

2536652 EdgeTransport.exe randomly stops responding on a Hub Transport server after you configure public folder replication in Exchange Server 2007

2536695 “Some items cannot be deleted” error message when you try to delete or modify an email message in a public folder in an Exchange Server 2007 environment

2536697 DBCS characters in a rule name are converted to question marks after you move a mailbox from Exchange Server 2003 to Exchange Server 2007

2537783 The EdgeTransport.exe process crashes occasionally after you install Update Rollup 2 for Exchange Server 2007 SP3

2538958 Extended Protection Warning Displayed in Exchange Management Console and Exchange Management Shell After Installing RU2 for Exchange 2007 SP3

2554575 Items accumulate in the MRM submission folder when managed folder assistant journal items in an Exchange Server 2007 environment

2556751 The EdgeTransport.exe process crashes when processing certain email messages on an Exchange Server 2007 Hub Transport server

2557304 The Store.exe process may consume excessive CPU resources and memory resources intermittently when a user opens a calendar item by using OWA in an Exchange Server 2007 SP3 environment

When running ForeFront Protection for Exchange, make sure you disable ForeFront before installing the rollup and re-enable it afterwards, otherwise the Information Store and Transport services may not start. You can disable ForeFront using fscutility /disable and enable it using the fscutility /enable command.

Note that update rollups are cumulative, i.e. they contain fixes released in earlier update rollups for the same product level (RTM, SPx). This means you don’t need to install previous update rollups during a fresh installation but can start with the latest rollup available right away.

You can download Exchange 2007 SP3 Rollup 5 here.

Free Quest vWorkspace Desktop Optimizer

Quest vWorkspace Desktop Optimizer  is a free tool to optimize the virtual desktop.

Blindly deploying entirely the same Windows desktop image that was used for the physical desktops is not the smartest thing to do. Running Windows in a VDI environment requires a decent amount of optimizing. This optimizing is nothing new. Quest has been optimizing SBC environments for over ten years now and many of things that we learned there (the hard way) apply equally to VDI environments.

Quest created a piece of software that contains our entire ‘optimizing knowledge’ called the Quest vWorkspace Desktop Optimizer and it is Free!

Although optimized for Quest vWorkspace environments, the Quest vWorkspace Desktop Optimizer will work just as well in Citrix XenDesktop or VMware View environments. You can download the Quest vWorkspace Desktop Optimizer HERE. Read HERE important information on how to use the Quest vWorkspace Desktop Optimizer.

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Optimizing Windows 7 Images for use in VDI

One of our MCS deployment guys in the UK – Jonathan Bennett (you may know Jonathan as the author of the autoit tools and GImageX) has developed a tool for configuring Windows 7/Windows Vista/Server 2008 images for use in a VDI environment. The tool called VDI Optimizer outputs a VBScript (based on the selections you make in the GUI interface), which can then be used to apply performance and configuration settings to images that will be deployed via VDI platforms – this is particularly useful if you are using MDT 2010 for your image engineering process as the VBScript can bolted into the task sequence using a Run Command Line task.

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You can make machine based selections for turning off services and functions that may not be required when the operating system is running in a VDI environment such as hibernation, system restore, and background defrag, as well as adjusting some user based settings such as visual effects, font smoothing and off-screen composition for Internet Explorer.

The beta of this tool is available from http://www.autoitscript.com/files/tools/VDIOptimizer.zip but please remember The tool is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, confers no rights, and is not supported by the authors or Microsoft Corporation.

Source: Optimizing Windows 7 images for use in VDI

The Deployment Guys released Deployment Mindmaps

"Why deployment is so hard?", “Where can I find all related information?” What else I need to consider?”

Those or similar questions are normal during my any projects. After getting the same questions again and again, The Deployment Guys decided to create a Mindmap with all common links you need to know if you in the deployment space.

Attachment: MINDMAPS.zip Source:Deployment-Mindmaps

Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Performance on vSphere 5

A white paper has been published that examines how Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 performs on vSphere 5 in terms of scaling up (adding more virtual CPUs) and scaling out (adding more VMs). Having the choice to scale up or out while maintaining a positive user experience gives IT more flexibility to right-size system deployments and maximize total cost of ownership with respect to licensing and hardware purchases.

Testing shows the effectiveness of vSphere 5 to add compute power by scaling up Exchange Server VMs, in increments, from 2 to 12 virtual CPUs. This allowed the total number of very heavy Exchange users to increase from 2,000 to 12,000 while sendmail latency remained well within the range of acceptable user responsiveness. Processor utilization remained low, at about 15% of the total host processing capacity for 12,000 very heavy Exchange users.

Testing also shows that scaling out to eight Exchange Server VMs supports a workload of up to 16,000 very heavy users, with the load consuming only 32% of the ESXi host processing capacity.

Additional tests were undertaken to show the performance improvements of vMotion and Storage vMotion in vSphere 5. vMotion migration time for a 4-vCPU Exchange mailbox server VM showed a 34% reduction in vSphere 5 over vSphere 4.1. Storage vMotion migration time for a 350GB database VMDK showed an 11% reduction in vSphere 5 over vSphere 4.1.

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For the full paper, see Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Performance on vSphere 5.

VMware Workstation 8

What’s New

This release of VMware Workstation adds the following new features and support.

Installation Changes and Enhanced Keyboards

The hardware requirements to install this version of Workstation have changed. Workstation now requires a relatively modern 64-bit CPU. See Installation Requirements for details.

The keyboard filter driver is no longer installed by default. When the driver is not installed, the enhanced keyboard functionality is unavailable and you must press Ctrl-Alt-Ins instead of Ctrl-Alt-Del to send a Ctrl-Alt-Del keystroke to the guest. To use the enhanced keyboard functionality, you must perform a custom installation and select the component. If you select the component, you must reboot whenever you install or uninstall Workstation.

Virtual Hardware Improvements

This version of Workstation includes many hardware improvements. To try new hardware features, you must upgrade the hardware version of your virtual machine or create a new virtual machine that uses the latest virtual hardware version.

  • The display technology has been changed to provide a better experience for Unity users and users who have multiple monitors. These changes also allow you to add a projector to your laptop without restarting your virtual machine.
  • Virtual machines can now support up to 64GB of memory. The host system should have more than 64GB of memory to use this feature.
  • An HD Audio device is available for Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 2008, and Windows 2008 R2 guests. The HD Audio device is compatible with the RealTek ALC888 7.1 Channel High Definition Audio Codec.
  • USB 3.0 support is available for Linux guests running kernel version 2.6.35 or later (Ubuntu 10.10) through a new virtual xHCI USB controller. To enable this feature, add the following line to the .vmx file: usb_xhci.present = “true”. Do not enable this feature for Windows guests. Because Windows does not currently have a generic xHCI driver, this feature will not work in Windows.
  • Bluetooth devices on the host can now be shared with Windows guests. With the latest hardware version, Bluetooth devices that are paired to the host system radio are available to Windows guests and can be paired from within the guest. You should not pair Bluetooth audio devices, such as headphones, or Bluetooth input devices, such as keyboards and mice, to a guest.
  • You can now enable Virtual VT-X/EPT or AMD-V/RVI in the processor settings interface. With this feature, applications running in a guest can take advantage of these virtualization technologies. You can also run 64-bit guest operating systems inside of vSphere running inside Workstation.
New User Interface

The Workstation user interface has been updated to include new menus, toolbars, and an improved preferences screen.

  • The favorites sidebar has been replaced with a virtual machine library. Instead of identifying every virtual machine created in Workstation as a favorite, the library is a comprehensive list of all of the virtual machines that Workstation users create, open, or access.
  • A new folder summary page helps you to better manage a group of related virtual machines. Live thumbnails make it easy to see what is happening in running virtual machines.
  • The full screen toolbar has been updated so that you can do more without having to leave full screen mode. Quick switch mode is no longer needed.
What Happened to Teams?

Although at first it might appear that the teams feature has been removed, you can add team attributes to any virtual machine in this version of Workstation.

  • The team structure has been converted to a simple folder of virtual machines.
  • A new advanced settings dialog box has been added for network adapters to let you throttle the bandwidth of incoming and outgoing transmissions and simulate packet loss.
  • You can perform power operations on several virtual machines at the same time by selecting virtual machines on the folder tab and pressing the power button on the toolbar. If all of the virtual machines in a folder are in the same power state, you can select the folder to perform a power operation on all of the virtual machines in the folder.
  • You use a global Workstation preference to configure the delay between powering on virtual machines.
  • To implement LAN segments, you can use traditional VMnets or put all of the virtual machines that you want to communicate on the same custom VMnet.
Shared Virtual Machines and AutoStart

You can share virtual machines with remote users in this version of Workstation. A shared virtual machine can be accessed remotely by other instances of Workstation. Workstation moves virtual machines to the shared virtual machines folder, where the VMware Host Agent service manages them. The VMware Host Agent service is used by other VMware products, including VMware Server and vSphere, and provides additional capabilities required by professional users. An extensive permissions interface lets you control the users who can access and use shared virtual machines.

You can use the new AutoStart feature to configure shared virtual machines to start with the host system. You can also configure AutoStart for shared virtual machines on remote hosts running Workstation and ESX 4.x and later.

Remote Connections

In this version of Workstation, you are no longer constrained to working only with virtual machines that your computer has enough power to run. You can use the new Connect to Server feature to connect to remote hosts running Workstation, ESX 4.x and later, and VMware vCenter Server. After connecting to a remote host, all of the virtual machines that you have permission to access are displayed in the virtual machine library.

Upload to ESX/ESXi and vCenter Server

VMware OVF Tool is now integrated with Workstation so that you can upload a virtual machine from Workstation to a remote server running ESX, ESXi, or vCenter Server. After connecting to a remote server, you drag the virtual machine from the local My Computer section of the virtual machine library to the remote server. A wizard walks you through the process.

Documentation Changes

This version of Workstation includes several important documentation changes.

(NEW) Getting Started with VMware Workstation
Describes how to install and upgrade Workstation, create a typical virtual machine, and perform common virtual machine operations.

Using VMware Workstation
(previously VMware Workstation User’s Guide)
Describes how to create typical, custom, and shared virtual machines, add virtual devices, configure network connections, connect to remote servers and use remote virtual machines, upload virtual machines to remote servers, and perform all virtual machine operations.

Getting Started with VMware Player
(previously VMware Player Getting Started Guide)
Now contains complete information on installing and using Player.

Online help
Has been redesigned to provide context-sensitive help and information on performing common tasks. For complete information on using Workstation and Player, see the guides.

(NEW) Installing and Configuring VMware Tools
Contains comprehensive information on installing, upgrading, and configuring VMware Tools.

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Installation Requirements

When you install Workstation, the installer performs checks to make sure the host system has a processor that meets the following requirements. You cannot install Workstation if the host system does not meet these requirements.

  • 64-bit x86 CPU
  • LAHF/SAHF support in long mode

You can use CPU-Z or a similar utility to determine if the host system CPU is 64-bit capable. CPU-Z shows EM64T (Intel) or AMD64 (AMD) if the processor is 64-bit capable.

If you plan to install a 64-bit guest operating system in a virtual machine, the host system must have one of the following processors. Workstation will not allow you to install a 64-bit guest operating system if the host system does not have one of these processors.

  • AMD CPU that has segment-limit support in long mode.
  • Intel CPU that has VT-x support. VT-x support must be enabled in the host system BIOS. The BIOS settings that must be enabled for VT-x support vary depending on the system vendor. See VMware KB article 1003944 for information on how to determine if VT-x support is enabled.

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Known Issues

The known issues are grouped as follows:

Remote Connection and Remote Virtual Machine Issues
  • When Workstation is installed on a Linux host, VMware Workstation Server writes the core file to /usr/bin instead of to /var/core or /var/log/vmware.
  • You cannot use Workstation to create a remote virtual machine on an ESX or ESXi 4.1 host if the virtual machine name contains non-ASCII characters.
  • When you upload a virtual machine to a remote server (VM > Manage > Upload), Workstation modifies the MAC address and PCI slot number of the virtual Ethernet device in the newly created remote virtual machine. Network errors can occur in the remote virtual machine if the network settings in the guest operating system require the original network hardware configuration.
    Workaround: Change the network settings in the guest operating system in the remote virtual machine to match the new network hardware configuration.
  • VMware Workstation Server occasionally crashes on a 32-bit Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6.x host.
Role and Permission Issues
  • On a Windows host, if you edit a permission, assign the Administrator role, and then immediately click Remove to delete the permission, the original permission still exists when you reopen the Permissions dialog box.
Shared Virtual Machine Issues
  • On Windows hosts, if a shared virtual machine has a floppy drive that is configured to connect at power on, and a remote user powers on the virtual machine, a dialog box appears on the host system asking whether to connect the device every time the virtual machine powers on. If you click Yes to close the dialog box on the host system after the virtual machine is completely up and running on the host system, Workstation crashes on the host system.
  • On a 32 or 64-bit Windows 7, 64-bit Windows 2008 R2, or 32-bit Windows XP Professional SP3 host, if you uninstall Workstation, preserve the configuration, and then reinstall Workstation to a different path, the Shared VMs item is unavailable in the virtual machine library.
  • On a Windows host, if you create a virtual machine with a name that contains non-ASCII characters in the New Virtual Machine wizard, you cannot share the virtual machine with the Move the virtual machine option if the destination path is other than the system operating system location. The sharing process stops with the error message Failed to move VM to destination path.
    Workaround: If you want to share the virtual machine, you must use only ASCII characters in the virtual machine name when you create the virtual machine in the New Virtual Machine wizard.
Display and Input Issues
  • On an Ubuntu 11.04 host, the virtual machine icon does not appear on the system tray when you set the Show tray icon setting (Edit > Preferences > Workspace) to Always or When a virtual machine is powered on.
    Workaround: Whitelist vmware-tray as an application that can show system tray icons in Ubuntu 11.04. Alternatively, enable Notification Area (Systray) for all applications, for example:
    gsettings set com.canonical.Unity.Panel systray-whitelist "['all']"
    After you run the command, log out and log back in. The command can take several minutes to take effect.
  • On a Fedora 15 host, powering on a virtual machine that has DirectX 9 accelerated graphics enabled might fail with the error "Unable to change virtual machine power state: Cannot find a valid peer process to connect to."
    Workaround: Deselect the Accelerate 3D graphics setting (VM > Settings > Hardware > Display) to disable DirectX 9 accelerated graphics in the virtual machine.
  • When you enter Unity mode in an Ubuntu 11.04 guest, application menus do not appear for applications that were opened before entering Unity mode. Application menus do appear for applications that are opened from the Unity launch menu after entering Unity mode.
    Workaround: Disable the APPMENU (Global menu) in the Ubuntu 11.04 guest. See the Ubuntu documentation for more information.
  • After you upload a Windows XP virtual machine from the local host to a remote server, you cannot autofit the guest in full screen mode. This problem occurs because VRAM is reduced to 4 MB when the virtual machine is uploaded to the remote server.
Folder and Team Conversion Issues
  • When you select a newly created folder in the Workstation library, the toolbar power option button is dimmed and you cannot perform batch power operations on the virtual machines in the folder.
    Workaround: If you select a virtual machine in the folder, move the selection off the virtual machine (for example, click anywhere on the folder tab), and then select the folder in the library again, the toolbar power option button becomes available.
Device Issues
  • On Windows hosts, Player crashes if you click Connect or Disconnect in the Removable Devices menu before the console appears.
  • An Ubuntu 11.04 host might crash when you try to connect a USB device to a running virtual machine from the status bar icon’s context menu. This problem typically occurs after Workstation is freshly installed, the host is rebooted, and the first time the device is connected to the virtual machine.
Physical Machine Virtualization Issues
  • When simple file sharing or UAC is enabled on the physical machine, the Virtualize a Physical Machine wizard returns an "incorrect user credentials" error instead of an error message that indicates simple file sharing or UAC must be disabled before virtualizing the physical machine. See the online help or Using VMware Workstation for information on preparing a physical machine for virtualization.
  • You cannot use the Virtualize a Physical Machine wizard if the Workstation installation path contains non-ASCII characters.

Microsoft Lync Server 2010 Protocol Workloads Poster

This poster shows each workload in Lync Server 2010, describing relationships, dependencies, the servers that initiate connections, and certificate requirements. Relationships between Microsoft Lync 2010 communications software, Microsoft Lync 2010 Phone Edition, Microsoft Office Live Meeting 2007, Microsoft Lync Web App, and other communications software are also described. SIP and XMPP connection patterns are shown for Yahoo!, MSN, AOL, Gmail, and Jabber

To download: Click on the Picture

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