Newsletter: April 23, 2016

Hello all,

So my first week on the job at Veeam.  Wow, I am quite lucky. Some great products and a lot of smart people and I certainly like that.  The team I am part of is the Evangelist team so everyone is very smart and knowledgeable so that is awesome.  I have been on teams like this before and I missed it. So pretty excited.  But one thing that is funny is I am back in the dark.  Meaning like the last bit at VMware I am working on stuff I cannot talk about yet.  But it means I get to spend serious time working on something very cool that I get to share later.  And this is pretty exciting stuff too!  I hope to make this blog the very best place to learn more about this very cool product!

When I think about it, I have been very lucky to work on some amazing things before they were public – Site Recovery Manager, Log Insight, and DataGravity.  I am very happy to be working again on something new!

But, as you can imagine, I do have a few things to share today, so as always I hope something for everyone, so lets get started!

Have a great week,


Automation is not difficult with vRealize Automation 7
An interesting article with lots of good info and videos too!  But, I think that automation is in fact difficult even with vRA 7 – and Jad, Kim, don’t hold it against me and let me explain – the hard part of automation is the people, process part.  What should be automated and who should it impact or not impacted are on the surface easy but sometimes actually a bit harder to figure out.  Once you have that, and have the very detailed flow chart, that will help make automation possible, then the tool – in this case vRA is the next step.  And it is actually much easier to work with then in the past.  But, that is not as important as what it can actually do.  If it is a little complex and hard for the consultant or syadmin working with it, that is in my opinion, OK because once they are done it will be a solution that is very easy for the end user, or business person to work with.  And that is key, much more important than how easy or hard it is for the syadmin.

Recovering from a full VSAN datastore scenario
Cormac has a good article about a problem they got themselves into, and how they go out of it.  I suspect this is something that occasionally customers run into as well.  Hopefully most avoid it by noticing the warning but for certain some won’t.  I don’t have VSAN in my home lab any longer, but I wonder if the alarm that Cormac talks about is one that can in fact fire an email?  If so that means a best practice might be to enable that email.

VMRC updated to 8.01
I often do most of my sysadmin stuff on a Mac and so for VMware that means if I want a console it is VMRC.  Works great but it was updated a few days ago and I missed it. You can find the Mac or Windows version here.

Unable to administer vC SSO after adding a User Group and users from a Directory Service
This is an interesting problem that could be frustrating to diagnose and it can impact all vSphere 5.5 and 6.0 customers.  Good thing the article has the solution too!

ESXi 6.0 Update 2 host fails with PSOD containing the error: Vmxnet3VMKDevRxWithLock and Vmxnet3VMKDevRx
This is a serious issue, and I have heard of it occurring in the field.  There is a workaround but no solution yet.  It is another example of why I say – always take a picture of a PSOD as it sometimes has extra info in it that is NOT in the logs. That extra info is often exactly what GSS needs to support you better.

Backing Up Virtual Volumes
I expected there to be not much issue around this for VMs that were backed up via VADP but it is very good to see info like this article to help educate people. And yes, Veeam is on the list.

In vC 6.0 the vmware-dataservice-sca and vsphere-client status change from green to yellow continually
I really dislike this issue.  It has crept into and out of various versions and builds over the years and it really bothers me.  It sort of teaches you to not pay attention to some of the alerts in the Client and that is not good.  I hope they keep working on it and get it stamped out as soon as they can!

Enhanced Disaster Recovery with Cross-vC NSX and SRM
NSX can help SRM out in a variety of ways as networking is tough in the world of disaster recovery.  Here is an article that points at a TWP on the subject.

Proving your VDI is performing well
This is an update article to an earlier article that was pretty good.  If you want a vR Ops dashboard to help you support your VDI users it is a good article to check out. It even includes the dashboard!

A closer look at Get-EsxCLI v2
This is quite an interesting way to make a disruptive change.  This change will be disruptive in the future but for now you need to enable it.  Some great info in this article – thanks Luc.

VMware Horizon View 7: Deployment and Installation [Part 1]
A nice article about installing View v7, with some good detail.  If you need help getting View going this will get it done! I like the article that includes firewall info, as well as the one doing a Win10 template although it makes no mention of removing the template from the domain – I wonder if that is not required any longer?

Hands-on Labs Spring Release and vForum Online Spring 2016
An interesting article about the resource load of the vForum recently on the HOL, and some of the numbers.  Doug also talks about the new labs.  I remember before the HOL, when it was Instructor led, and how that grew into something else, which at one point after a couple of VMworlds changed into what Doug does now.  And wow, is HOL pretty darn good but it was quite the journey to get to it.

Adding Veeam Proxies to jobs via Powershell
Good to know how to add Veeam Proxies via PowerShell, and even has some info on scaling out or up. Here is the article.

Incremental vs. differential methods and how Veeam writes backups
Rick explains clearly what incremental, differential, and how forward / reverse impacts the traditional methods in this article.

Managing your virtual datacenter and home lab with a Mac
Frank has a nice article about using your Mac to run your datacenter.  I agree with him as it works pretty darn good. To his list I would add the Mac VMRC, SecureCRT / SecureFX, and Jump Desktop.  Both SecureCRT and SecureFX can come with Windows and Mac versions, and SecureCRT even has a iPad version that works pretty good. I particularly like Jump Desktop as it can handle a wide range of customization with graphics.  I saw in some twitter traffic that the next release of Royal TSX will potentially replace the VMRC / SecureCRT / SecureFX and Jump – and include 1Password integration.  And it has a vExpert free license.  Very interesting this is.  One of the things I like in Jump Desktop is that it syncs – via Dropbox or iCloud your config and that is very handy if you have multiple machines.  But being able to collapse all of these tools into one is attractive.

Windows Server 2016 Active Directory Improvements
This article only talks of the new AD related stuff in Win2K16 and in other articles I have seen they have been about other things so it was good to see this one.  After all more people will be impacted by the AD related changes I think.

FlashArray Deprecation of TLS 1.0 Support and the vSphere Web Client Plugin
If you use Pure, the latest version of the Purity Operating Environment has depreciated TLS 1.0 and that impacts a number of things so you should understand what – and how to deal with it.  See the article for more info.

VCIX-NV Follow-UP: Wearable Heart Rates and VCP Inheritance
Interesting to see the heart rate chart during the VCIX-NV test!  Check out the article for more info.

Scottish VMUG – Keynote by Scott Lowe
You can see here about what Scott talked about at the Scottish VMUG.  I quite like Scott and he always has interesting things to chat about.   Some good points – don’t automate broken processes, and NSX enables network automation – are both very good!

The “Cobra Effect” that is disabling copy / paste on password fields
This is something I have seen, and I really disagree with it.  You should be able to paste your password and that means – especially for people like me that use 1Password and have a different account / password to every site – that I can use very large and complex passwords as that is more secure and in fact easy with 1Password.  Check out this article.

Review of My Model X, Tesla, and the Car Industry
A very interesting article about a car, and a car company.  I think an amazing car, and I would love to buy one, but I am not home enough to justify it.  And there is a distinct chance I might have to buy two. Plus we need some additional SuperChargers in Western Canada.

The Real Story of How Amazon Built the Echo
I can only dream about owning an Echo, as the performance of Amazon outside the US is fairly poor in terms of bringing other property to other geography. Here is an interesting article about how the Echo was built.

How to use Force Touch on the Mac: the ultimate guide
If you have one of those new Mac’s that have the Force Touch, here is a guide.  I know that Force Touch is one of those things that is simple, but in fact is hard to start with.

Upgraded my DC from Win2K8R2 to Win2k12 R2
I recently upgraded my DC to Win2K12 R2 and it went mostly smooth.  I did the adprep /foresetprep and adprep /domainprep manually first and then just did a normal install / upgrade.  I hit a little snag as I did not have a new license for it handy so the DC / DNS / DHCP stuff didn’t work but was quickly fixed.  While it worked fine when I finished the backup didn’t and you can see more of that there.  I did a bunch of research for the upgrade but it all boiled down to it would go fine and it mostly did.

Thanks for reading, or skimming this far,


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