Network Virtualization (NSX) and vSphere Data Protection Interop

In this third article in the series of backing up the vCloud Suite, we turn our attentions to NSX, VMware’s Network Virtualization product. Before starting, I should point out that NSX has a recommended way of backing up and restoring configuration information via the use of an FTP server, which you need to configure in your infrastructure to hold this exported metadata. However this exercise looks at how you might be able to use VDP to back up and restore an NSX configuration using image level backups. Once again, I wanted to see whether I could restore the NSX environment…

Heads Up! Patches now available for NFS APD Issue

Very quick update … Many readers will be aware of an ongoing issue with NFS in ESXi 5.5U1. My colleague, Duncan, wrote an article about it on his blog site recently entitled – Alert: vSphere 5.5 & NFS issue. Essentially, your NFS datastore may experience an APD (All Paths Down) condition. The issue is also described in KB article 2076392. I’m pleased to say that VMware has now produced a patch to address this issue. The patch is 5.5EP4 (June 2014) and can be downloaded from VMware’s patch repository site here and will address this issue. Search on ESXi (Embedded…

Adding bespoke firewall rules to ESXi

In my new role, I get to work with a lot of new products and features that are not yet in a state to be used for beta, never mind being close to GA. This means, from time to time, that we needs to work around a few specific problems to get the product/feature to work. On this particular occasion, we were trying to add a custom firewall rule to an ESXi host. The rule took fine, but did not persist through reboots of the ESXi host, which is what was required. This is the solution we came up with.

VSAN Part 15 – Multicast Requirement for networking – Misconfiguration detected

This is an issue which has caught a number of customers out during the Virtual SAN beta, so will probably catch some folks out when the product goes live too. One of the requirements for Virtual SAN (VSAN) is to allow multicast traffic on the VSAN network between the ESXi host participating in the VSAN Cluster. However, as per our engineering lead on VSAN, multicast is only used for relatively infrequent metadata operations. For example, object creation, change in object status after a failure and publication of statistics such as a significant change of free disk space (the publication of…

Heads Up! EMC VNXe & iSCSI issue

Hmm, it seems to be the week that’s in it for storage issues. After publishing the DELL EQL & VMFS issue earlier this week, I have now been given a heads-up on an EMC VNXe & iSCSI issue. The symptoms are ESXi hosts being unable to boot from an iSCSI LUN on the VNXe or ESXi hosts losing connectivity to iSCSI datastores.