Newsletter: December 18, 2016

Hello all,

I am actually writing this from home!  I had a longish trip of just over two weeks.  I am not used to traveling in December for sure!  But glad I am home, and soon will be able to relax over the holidays.  But I also have some big lab things to deal with – a new SuperMicro host, Nexenta shared storage on 10 GB, and even a bunch of design stuff over Christmas for the new work lab. Very excited about that! I also have some presents to wrap too.  But the clock is ticking, and lots to do so lets get to work!

I did a Win2K16 VMware template article, as well as iOS 10.2 and macOS 10.12.2 articles. I also updated my SuperMicro install article.  BTW, this second one – I just bought – does not have the current IPMI and BIOS on it which sort of sucks since that means no HTML5 console for me, and sort of awkward update process.

Have a great week,

Michael

Decoupling of Cores per Socket from Virtual NUMA Topology in vSphere 6.5
Frank has another amazing article related to NUMA architecture in vSphere 6.5.  For me, this is a three read article in that I need to work through it three times before I understand it as well as I should. Amazing stuff! And a reminder of how happy I am he is back at VMware.

Cost Reduction for Home Lab … Instant clone ESXi for vSAN testing
This is quite an article in that it shows how you can use Instant Clone – nee Project Fargo – to spin up ESXi hosts with the least resource usage.  I think that is quite handy and useful.  I am a physical server guy in that I am trying to have a very production ready lab for testing things.  But I can definitely see a use case for this interesting way to spin up a bunch of hosts.

Building a Nested ESXi lab for your Company
This article has all the info you need to get a nested ESXi lab working – at home or work.  Well setup info and easy to follow.

vSphere APIs for IO Filtering
Ken has a good explanation on what vSphere API for IO Filtering (VAIO) is and how it works.  Was talking about this recently with someone who did not really know what it was but it is very cool technology and I look forward to the different things we might see it used for.

PowerCLI for VM Encryption
Mike talks about the new PowerCLI module to allow for working with VM Encryption using PowerCLI.  Nice!

VMware – vSphere Basics – vCenter 6.5 Upgrade Scenarios
Some info on the different architecture you may end up with after upgrades.  Something good to think about.

Top 10 things you must read about vSphere 6.5
A very good collection of information on vSphere 6.5.  There is in fact a lot to learn about vSphere 6.5 – as it is no point release after all – and it all starts in this collection.

VMware VCSA 6.5 Active-Passive Setup with Simple Config
A nice article about how to setup the HA for the VCSA in vSphere 6.5.  A very nice feature and it looks like a smooth setup too!

Virtual machines residing on NFS storage become unresponsive during snapshot removal operation
This issue ( KB 2010953) has come up recently and got me thinking. I have most of my VMs on NFS, and have not seen this issue at all.  I wonder if that due to my use of NFS Direct (in Veeam – see this for more info) to access the VMs for backup? Not sure but I don’t see this issue so that is good. The resolution in the KB article sucks since it suggests moving to NFS v4 but that means you lose out on other VMware goodness at this time.

ESXi 6.5 Upgrade OEM VIB Conflict
Another hiccup during a 6.5 upgrade, but one that may occur to more people than you might expect, and so this article is helpful in that it can help you solve your issue that is the same or similar to this one.

OVF Choices When Deploying vSphere Replication 6.5
Thanks to Jeff you can easily learn what to deploy, or not to deploy, and what to include when you are deploying vSphere Replication.  I thought this interesting since it is quite different than what it was in the past.

Quickly See the Major Enhancements to Host Profiles in vSphere 6.5
I have used host profiles a lot in the past, and they were very helpful, and sometimes a little tricky.  So happy to see they have improved and have grown.

License key requirements for new version of VMware products
This KB article has all the details on licenses for new or updated products. Good info actually, although not sure how often you will need it.

VMware releases the SDDC Management Health Solution 2.0
This is a management pack that will manage your SDDC – in the previous version it was only vCenter and vR Ops but now in 2.0 it is a lot more.  The full story is right here. Once my new work lab is built a lot of the components that this MP monitors will be there so it will be interesting to see how it works out.

What’s new with vRealize Operations 6.4
I missed when vROps 6.4 was dropped but here is an article that covers off the new stuff. And, there is a lot of new stuff!

vRealize Operations 6.4: Improved Alert Management
This is a key feature, and it is very nice to see it improved in 6.4.  Find the story here.

Monitor Microsoft Exchange with vRealize Operations Manager
An interesting article about how you can monitor Exchange using vRealize Operations and that is of course quite useful for many people.  After all, how many people have both vROps and Exchange?  A lot it turns out. It also mentions a management pack for helping out.

vR Ops dashboard best practices
A very nice article about things to know if you are going to make your own vR Ops dashboards – and who doesn’t do that?

Top 20 Horizon View Articles for November 2016
Some interesting articles in this list – and good to know about too. For example, there is one about backing up View and how to restore it and it is not quite what I thought.  It seems to suggest only 3.x, 5.x, and 6.x.

Log Insight: How to Install and Upgrade Content Packs
If you use Log Insight, and you may want to think about that as it is pretty cool, and are not sure about Content Packs you can learn all about them in this article.  They are important and how you get clarity out of the swarm of events.

Linux + PowerShell = Awesome, Not Awkward, Together!
Would you like to know how to manage your Linux machines via Windows and PowerShell?  Here is the info to do that – sort of anyway.

Getting Started with PowerCLI 6.5 and Horizon View
Alan has an excellent article to get you started with PowerCLI and View.  Thanks Alan!

A VMware guy’s perspective on containers
A nice article on containers.  If you are like me, and hear a lot of talk about containers on the internet, and yet none from customers, and are curious then this article will help! I agree with author in that most of us should learn more about containers next year.

VMware vRealize Network Insight Overview – v3.2
This very powerful product has a new version and you can learn about it here.  I had a great demo recently about vRNI and it is most impressive – thanks Sean!

Veeam Direct Restore to Microsoft Azure: How to Restore to MS Azure
Clint has finished off his series with the article on how to do the actual restore to Azure.  Once you have the architecture in place to support this functionality it is pretty easy.

Recovery Magic with Veeam Agent for Linux
If you are interested in learning more about how to restore backups done with the Veeam Agent for Linux this article is for you!  BTW, here is the announcement for the availability of the Veeam Agent for Linux.

Ask Gostev #1 – ReFS integration FAQ
Anton Gostev is Veeam’s VP of Product Development and a seriously smart guy.  Also, he doesn’t sleep much.  I get emails from him, or answers from him, at any time. I quite like working with him, as he is smart but also down to earth.  He has started to do a series on helping people learn more about working with Veeam products. The first episode is about ReFS – which is a very cool part of 9.5 – and you can find the first episode here. The good stuff starts at 8:38 into the video.

Want to learn more about ReFS?
If you have an ReFS formatted partition in Win2K16 and make it your Veeam Repository, everything will work. And the first time after a full backup you have a synthetic operation it will be very efficient.  Sort of like magic.  But, if you want to learn about why that happens, you need to learn about ReFS. Here is an overview, and then article 1, and article 2.

Ransomware Survey: By the Numbers
Some good reminders about ransomware and how common it is as seen in this article.  It also connects to an article that talks about how you can protect yourself. I know people that have been hit by ransomware and lost, and some that paid and likely were hit a second time but also some that were hit, and were able to recovery without paying.  Protect yourself, and if you get hit make sure you call the police!

Backup and restore vSphere SPBM policies with Veeam Backup & Replication
A very well done article that shows how Veeam supports the backup and restore of SPBM service polices.  Which means of course that Veeam supports – very nicely – both VVOLs and vSAN.  Thanks Luca!

Veeam 9.5 – What’s in it for Service Providers?
Anthony looks at the new features in 9.5 from the point of view of Service Providers.  Some good info!  My fav’s are the Infrastructure cache, Advanced Data Fetcher, and ReFS support.  And I think that is true for anyone – SP or Enterprise.

Comments from Anton’s last Veeam Community digest
In Anton’s last weekend (Sunday the 11th) Community Digest there was several comments worth sharing and I share them here exactly – “This week I do finally have one common Veeam Backup & Replication 9.5 issue to report, and it is upgrade-related. As every real bug, this one resulted in dozens of support cases in a matter of one day – surfaced only now because the issue is time-sensitive. Essentially, if you have an monthly active full backup scheduled for your jobs, during the upgrade this schedule will reset to the first Monday of the month. The easiest fix is to just correct the schedule manually or with a PowerShell script (in case you have many jobs). We are planning to address this issue in Update 1, so if you’re wanting for that before upgrading to 9.5 – you won’t have to deal with this at all. Also, I did see a couple of reports on the Internet of what can potentially become another common upgrade issue. If your Veeam backup infrastructure is over-provisioned in terms of the number of backup proxies, you may want disable some proxies after upgrade – especially virtual ones. Remember that 9.5 is way more efficient in fetching data when using Hot Add, Direct NFS and Backup from Storage Snapshots transport modes. As the result, together those proxies may throw way too much load at your productions storage and fabric (or even simply overload the host running proxy VMs). Now, of course those of you who have Backup I/O Control enabled don’t have to worry about this issue – however, Backup I/O Control is not enabled by default.”

10 Reasons you’ll love Veeam 9.5 for Win2K16 and Hyper-V
Here is an article about the cool stuff in 9.5 but from a Microsoft centric point of view.

Storage Basics: When to use SAN v. NAS
A very well done article that explains nicely everything you need to think of in this area – SAN v. NAS and it is most excellent education.

Why Guaranteed Quality of Service (QoS) Matters
A nice article that has some good info and it has a very good point – QoS does matter, and it sounds very interesting on how SolidFire is different in this space.

VMware Digital Badges
While on the road recently I got an invite kind of thing about a digital badge.  I was suspicious of it, but it seemed to be about something I know about – VMware, and my VCP6. So I filled out things and accepted it.  Then a few days or a week later I found this, and this that explains things. Probably a good idea for them, and I think it will over time become normal for us to see this sort of thing.  I don’t think I will be able to easily add it to my About page but will try at some point to do exactly that.

New exams, new training, new badges, new certifications – November / December 2016
An update from VMware education with several surprises in it.

Will Advanced Threat Analytics help me with all operating systems?
I have not used this interesting tool before, but it certainly sounds interesting.  In this article it talks about ATA and how it handles detecting threats involving macOS, Windows and even Linux.  A good tool to be used / tested I think if you handle security.

How to be an SE – My Guiding Principles
Here is an excellent article about how to be an SE.  I was an SE for a long time, a long time ago, but I remember much of what made me successful as an SE, and still use that info! So good article!

How to quickly add your own locations in Apple Maps
You can use the info in this article to add your own locations to the Maps in your iOS device.  Things like your fav restaurant or the kids school can be seen in Maps if you want.  Makes it very quick to select it if you want to navigate to it, or it is very handy for a quick look so you know where to walk.

How do you fix battery life problems after updating to iOS 10 or upgrading to iPhone 7?
The first thing they mention in this article is the only one I have seen necessary.  Once you upgrade you need to let your device run until it runs out of juice.  Then charge it up and you should be good.  This is to let indexes and other things get finished after the upgrade – where in this phase much more power is used.

iBooks App: the Ultimate Guide
While I mostly read in Kindle, the fact is my favorite reader is iBooks. So I read there when I can.  If you would like to learn more about iBooks this article is for you.

AirPods: Ultimate guide
You can now buy AirPods and I think they look pretty interesting.  I have heard from people who have worn them while playing tennis and they have not fallen out. So that is good!  But here is a lot of info on AirPods.

These 2 hidden iPhone features will change the way you get your texts
Did you know that you can have custom vibration alerts, or use your flash to signify a text arriving?  Check out this video.  I do not like these auto play videos but in this case there is good reason to share.  Custom vibrations is very cool.

Thanks for reading or skimming this far!

Michael

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2 comments on “Newsletter: December 18, 2016
  1. wolruf says:

    To repro the VM backup/NFS issue, you need to have Veeam Proxy VM on a different host than the VM you’re backing up.

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