Newsletter: June 21, 2015

Hello all,

I hope everyone is enjoying the weekend, and had a good week?  Happy Fathers Day to all the Dads out there - an important job and very worth doing!  I have been at the DG HQ for the week, and it has been a lot of fun.  We have hit an important milestone with our product and I am very happy about that.  This week we have Virtualizaton Field Day in our office and some serious rock stars will be in the office.  Very cool as they will be seeing some great things and it will be cool as I love seeing people introduced to our technology.  I see that there will even be another Canadian so that is cool too.  I expect some interesting blog articles to come out from this event and I quite appreciate that.

I use to suggest PC Syncback Pro but now there is a new tool that I think will do a better job for long into the future.  It is called ViceVersa and you can learn about it here.  One of the key differences between them for me is that ViceVersa can work with the last access time (atime) and PC SyncBackPro cannot.  I have also been working with PernixData FVP (install and configure) and I am amazed at how well it works.  I really like having it in the lab.

I have a range of things this week and as always I hope something for everyone!


vRealize Operations for Horizon adds Citrix XenApp support
This caught me by surprise but it is pretty cool.  vR Ops for Horizon is an amazing tool to monitor the performance of desktops.  It has a dashboard that you can look up a desktop by user name and see the performance of that desktop through the stack.  Wonderful for help desk guys!  Adding in Citrix desktops to this is a pretty smart decision I think.  See the announcement on this here.

When CPU metrics with Hyperthreading, Monster VMs and VMware makes no sense!
This is a good, and deep read, about vR Ops and CPU utilization.  Definitely good reading and something that I think many of us might see.

Log Insight and vRealize Operations
Someone asked me why this was important to me.  I mentioned launch in context, and having LI alerts show in vR Op but there is really a lot more to like.  See this and this for better answers on why. Thanks for this Steve!

Copytruncate and Log Insight Linux Agent don’t get along
If you are using Log Insight with Linux Agents in use, and if you have a log ration scheme in use called copytruncate you will have an issue.  Find out more here.

Log Insight: Ingestion API vs Syslog protocol
Here is part 1 of this article that Steve has done about using the Ingestion API to get events into LI rather then syslog.  He followed it up with part 2. The reason I use this API when I can is simple - I get events via it that look the same way they look at the source.  They are not ‘made’ to fit syslog.  Plus, they are bigger too which is important for the events that come from Windows event logs.  Steve has a lot of other reasons that using this API is the right way to do things if you can.

Extend vRealize Operations Actions with vRealize Orchestrator and Workflow Package
This is pretty handy I think.  It will help you get going with symptoms in vRealize Operations that execute vRealize Orchestrator workflows.  This new functionality, and the help getting it going in the article is pretty useful.  Check it out here.  I will be part of a panel on this subject at VMworld and that should be interesting too.

vSphere Replication Synchronization Types
Jeff has a good article that explains the different types of synchronization that VR has and how vSphere 6 has changed things.  Good info.  I am still impressed with how VMware provides VR with most editions.  It really means that almost every VMware customer has the power of very good replication!

PowerActions 1.5 is now available for vSphere 6 Web Client
This is a pretty big deal.  Not just because it now supports vSphere 6 - though that is good, but this is a way for a Mac user to execute easily a PowerCLI script.  From a menu, inside of the vSphere Web Client.  Even has a script library too make it easy to share scripts.  Very cool indeed! Thanks Alan and Brian for this!

The value of Virtual Volumes (VVols)
While Cormac normally dives in deep on something, and always explains it so well this article is a little different but no less important.  It is the why of VVols and important to understand.  Well done and thanks too Cormac! Here is another view by someone else but still chatting about the value of VVols.  Good stuff!

VMFS Datastore Sizing
You can find an interesting and handy VMFS datastore sizing guide here.  Very handy I think.

Can’t vSphere Datastore unmount a datastore?
Thanks to Anthony Spiteri I saw this KB article.  VSAN not in use but the traces file for VSAN stored on a datastore you are trying to unmount will in fact stop the unmount!  Nice.  But Update 2 avoids this issue.

vSphere 6.0 Hardening Guide is now available!
Mike has released the vSphere 6 Hardening Guide - it takes a little different shape this release but I think that is a good idea.  A great deal of work goes into this Guide so I am quite happy that Mike makes it all happen!  Find it here.

All replicated Platform Services Controller should be joined to AD
This is something quite useful to know - and of course explains why William is sharing it!  But it is in fact easy to miss and you can lose time figuring it out and fixing it.  So check out the story here.

ESXi 5.5 upgrade to 6.0 via CLI
This is pretty interesting - an upgrade via the CLI and using an online repository.  While I normally use VUM it is great to know how to do this!  Good to have a big toolbox!

Using PowerCLI with Site Recovery Manager Shared Recovery Site
An interesting issue and how to work through it in this article.  PowerCLI support in SRM enables a range of different things.  I had no idea it reached to Shared Recovery Sites! Here is another article by Chris on fun with NetApp in the SRM world.

What happened on June 15th?  Something with EUC?
Yes, there was some interesting things on the 15th.  You can find out more here.  I like the renewed commitment to iOS, and I think that the VMware Identity Manager will be interesting too. Here is  THE  video of the event.

Horizon 6 for Linux
Here is the announcement for this, and the product page.  But I do not know yet if this is a separate product or what.  It seems like it is a separate product to me.  But I would love to provision both Windows and Linux desktops but not sure if I can do that in the same View 6 server I have now. Update - thanks to Kyle Ruddy I heard that this is the same product / management point but separate pools.  I expect to see in next View update the ability to do this.   Wow.

Horizon View 6.11 now GA
I missed this and it answers a tweet I sent out earlier today.  This is the version of View that supports Linux.  I can’t wait to test it out!  Here is the release notes and bits.  Wait.  It looks like I do not have access to the Linux View agents so until I can sort that out you will not hear from me on this subject!  BTW, here is the overview announcement on this. Updated View Clients can be found here.

Why document your environment?
I saw this recently and I can absolutely agree.  I love / hate to document my build process / environment and even when it is current, it doesn’t take long to be out of date and need updating.  So yes, a tool that could help with this would be nice!

Ravello Systems Free Lab Service for all 2015 vExperts
I am a big fan of what Ravello can do.  I had the opportunity some time ago to play with it and was very impressed.  Home labs are changing!  But I must admit I was surprised when they said they would provide a home lab service to all of the 2015 vExperts - that is very generous.  Find out more here.  BTW, here is a good introduction for VMware type people to Ravello.

A very tough problem - When Solid Sate Drives are not that solid
This is quite an interesting story of a very complex problem.  The guys who worked through it did pretty amazing!

Finding Sensitive Data on Endpoints with Veeam Endpoint Backup Free
My co-worker Gabe has an excellent article about using Veeam Endpoint to do a backup to a DataGravity array and then unpacking the backup so that the array can discover the sensitive data or not find it.  Great example of how different DataGravity is but also isn’t it cool that Veeam has such a great free tool!

Rubrik and Converged Data Management
Scott has done an amazing article on this very interesting new product.  It sounds pretty interesting to me in that while it is backup and restore - which is a very old topic, they have truly thought differently about it and come up with not only a solution, but an architecture.  The fact that their UI is simply an API client is a big deal to me.  It is a clue I use when I look at products to indicate some smart design thinking.  So if you don’t know much about Rubrik, and quite frankly you should, check out Scott’s articles and he has links in it to more info as well.

Veeam 8.0 Patch 2b now GA
Several days ago this update was released and since it is not a mandatory patch I guess that explains why my Veeam console did not alert me.  I am having a small issue with Veeam right now and starting to work with support so I have not done this update but I expect it to be as easy and smooth as they normally are.  My issue, BTW, is that Backup Copy jobs cannot seem to successfully copy vSphere templates to SMB shares.  Once I figure that out - with the help of Veeam support - I will let you know what the heck.

Going to PuppetConf 2015?  Are you a puppet user?
If you answer yes to either of these questions maybe you can help.  Check this out.

The Pure Storage FlashArray vR Ops Adapter v1
Cody has done a nice job introducing the Pure MP and helping you get it going.  Looks pretty good!

Test driving vCloud Air On-Demand - part 1
If you have not played with vCloud Air, this is a very nice intro to that interesting tool.  The On-Demand part is an important addition to it that is relatively new.

Adios Active Directory Services
This is an interesting and thoughtful article from Andre.  I do believe he has a point about how AD might end up being slowly replaced by SaaS Open Authentication services.  It is already happening all over!  This will not be fast but rather slow, but it mostly certainly has already started.

Reclaiming Windows Update Space in Win7
This is quite an interesting article that Cody has on reclaiming space.  This is something I do in Win2K12 as part of building / updating a template.  But Cody talks about it for Win7 and saving disk-space at the array level.  Remember you need to start the Disk Cleanup tool as Admin to see the new options about Windows Update.

What’s .NEXT - Erasure Coding!
This is pretty interesting - Nutanix has a way to minimize overhead and maximize usable capacity that is certainly not like the RAID level stuff I used to juggle.

Nest reveals new Nest Cam, 2nd generation Nest Protect and updated iOS app
I saw this a while back and since not only do I have Nest stuff in the house I know some of you do so when I saw this I kept it for my newsletter.  But as I wrote it up today I checked the new iOS app.  Pretty nice and I love the new integration between the Cam and Protect.  If Protect detects CO it will notify Nest to turn off the furnace.

Want to get into 3d printing?
Here is an interesting idea I think.  Get a cheap 3d printer like this one, and test / prototype with it, and maybe work in sections.  When you are ready send your design to Shapeways and get your fancy and complex stuff printed.

Thanks to Stephen Foskett for this suggestion - PowerPhotos - which he is right about - very cool.  I particularly like how it helps me with duplicate photos.

Thanks for reading, or skimming this far!


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