VMware vLaunchpad – Awesome VMware Links and Resources

I was browsing around looking for some other useful VMware stuff and came across vSphere-Land.com’s VMware vLaunchpad site they setup. I almost browsed away from it at first as it didn’t look very useful, but man was I wrong. I looked closely at it and man-o-man, there are a ton a useful links on there. I really like the drop down links at the top of the page. It has tons of links that I use all the time or even show customers when I’m onsite.

Here’s the link: http://vlp.vsphere-land.com/

Here’s the screenshot of the site in case you’re wondering:
vLaunchpad Screenshot

How-To: Upgrade ESXi 3.x to vSphere 4.0 Video

Here’s the other video I alluded to in the vCenter upgrade post. Here’s the post with the video for upgrading ESXi 3.x to vSphere 4.0. Remember, you’ll need to upgrade your vCenter server first and then you can upgrade your ESX servers using Update Manager. There is also the vSphere Host Update Utility method, which is installed when you install the vSphere Client. This is also a simple way of doing your host upgrades. I’ll try and find and post videos or something using that method.

http://vmwaretips.com/wp/2009/06/07/upgrade-esxi-3x-to-40-video/

How-To: Upgrade VMware vCenter 2.5 to 4.0 Video

I found this on another blog called VMwareTips.com by Rick Scherer (a VMware vExpert) that I frequent. He walks you through a VMware vCenter upgrade from 2.5 to 4.0. He also shows some “gotchas” that would normally come up during the upgrade, so I though it can be extremely useful for our customers who are planning on doing the upgrade themselves. Of course, if you need help or even just best practices on upgrading your enviornment, just contact your Lewan Sales Representative who can then engage one of the SE’s on our team! ;-) I’ll also add a new post for another video he has using Update Manager to upgrade ESX 3.5 to vSphere 4.

http://vmwaretips.com/wp/2009/06/01/upgrade-vmware-vcenter-25-to-40-video/

Do you need an archiving solution?

If the answer to any of these questions is “yes” you might consider implementing an e-mail or file system archiving solution:

Do you spend more time trying to get your systems backed up than you do at home with your loved ones? Do you even have loved ones at home any more?

Have you ever had a discussion with your organization’s legal team? Has it involved something other than your personal conduct?

Do the letters “PST” make you break out in sweats?

Do you regularly add capacity to your file servers because they are always out of space? Is the new capacity in the form of drives duck taped to the sides of the servers?

Have you reduced everyone’s mailbox capacity so low that the nightly “mailbox full” notifications now exceed the amount of SPAM in your system?

Do you have certain mailbox users for whom you have memorized their extension so you can avoid their calls?

Is your backup window encroaching on business hours? Your “Halo” time?

How To Collect Data From a Fibre Channel (FC) Switch

Sometimes you will be asked by either the manufacturers support or perhaps by Lewan for data from your Fibre Channel switch. Here is how you can gather that information in a format that helps support and/or Lewan:

Brocade – How-To Collect a “supportshow” from a Brocade Switch from a Windows Host with HyperTerminal
Follow these steps:

  1. Start the HyperTerminal program by selecting Start -> Programs -> Accessories -> Communications -> HyperTerminal.
  2. Make a new connection and select a name and icon for the connection.
  3. A “Connect to” window is displayed.
  4. Change the Connection using modem to TCP/IP (Winsock) and enter the IP address of the Brocade switch.
  5. Click the OK button.
  6. Log in to Brocade switch (default user: admin/default password: password), and then start to capture text. Select Transfer -> Capture text -> File C:supportshow.wri.
  7. Run the Brocade supportshow command.
  8. After the command completes, stop the “capture text” process (Transfer -> Capture text -> Stop).
  9. After completing this for all switches in all related fabrics, type quit and close the HyperTerminal session.

Cisco Support Logs

To capture support logs for a Cisco FC switch, following these instructions:

1) For firmware 1.2(x) and above telnet to the switch and open a capture session.
2) Run the following commands:
    term len 0
    show tech-support details
3) For firmware 1.0(4):  There is not a single command like a supportshow or data collection. There are two ways to get the outputs needed to troubleshoot most Cisco switch issues. Contact Lewan for additional information.

McDATA Switch Data Collection

In order to collect data from a McDATA switch being managed by McDATA’s EFCM utility, follow these instructions:

  1. Select the switch that you want to collect data from.
  2. Select Maintenance and then Data Collection.
  3. Enter a file name to call the file and then select save. Note the directory where the data is saved.  Once you select save, the data collection takes over and the files is downloaded to the local PC and stored in the directory specified.

How to collect switch information and related data from a McDATA DS-16M, DS-32M or another switch with EWS:

These switches (also known as ES3016 and ES3032)  have an Embedded Web Server (EWS) GUI. You can access this through a web browser by entering the IP Address in the URL address line  (that is, http:/10.14.1.92).  Once you have logged in you can run a script that collects switch information including: Network Info, Operating Parameters, Zone Info, Port Login Data, Port Data and Port Types, and Switch Status.

Note:  These model switches do not support serial port connectivity for information retrieval.

To collect this information, follow these steps:

  1. Once you have logged in to the EWS GUI, click on ” Operations ” from the left frame of the EWS GUI.
  2. Click the third tab called “Maintenance.”
  3. Click the secondary tab labeled Product Info.
  4. Click Product Information. This will generate a report.
  5. Click “File” on the web browser toolbar and select “Save As” to save the .txt file with either the default name or one that you rename it to. Save it on the desktop or to a directory where you can locate it so that you can email it to Technical Support.

To locate the switch firmware revision, follow these steps:

  1. Click “View” from the left frame of the EWS GUI.
  2. Select Unit Properties. The last entry of that page has the firmware level.