Sunday, 3 May 2020

Configuring your first ESXi host after install

As we saw in a previous post, installing your first VMware vSphere ESXi 7.0 host is not a complicated task.

Once it’s installed, you will have to perform some basic tasks, and these are generally based around networking.

Your ESXi hosts management network that you connect to, will have been assigned a DHCP IP address, and the chances are, you’ll want to configure a static IP address information, you’ll also want to add it to a valid DNS zone, and also give the host a name that conforms to your naming convention for servers.

To configure these initial settings, we can use the Direct Console User Interface or DCUI. This involves logging in directly to the ESXi Host. Once at the main screen press F2 and enter root username and password.

 This will then lead to the main screen.

The options are as follows:

·         Configure Password – This allows the changing of the root password, and this requires a complex password, uppercase, lowercase, numeric, and special characters
·         Configure Lockdown Mode – This is only available for vCenter controlled ESXi hosts and restricts root access.
·         Configure Management Network – Allows setting static or DHCP IP address for the management network, as well as DNS information, hostname, and domain.
·         Restart Management network – Restarts network, after making changes, or for troubleshooting purposes.
·         Test Management network – Sends Pings against DNS servers, default gateway, and resolves hostname against DNS server.
·         Network Restore Options – Allows restoring both standard, and distributed switches, as well as restoring networking to default settings.
·         Configure Keyboard – Allows configuring language settings for keyboard.
·         Troubleshooting options – Allows enabling local shell, which can then be accessed by pressing Alt-F1, and exiting by Alt-F”, and also enabling SSH, for accessing ESXi host from a remote device. Also allows for setting of Shell, SSH, and DCUI timeouts.
·         View System Logs – Allows viewing of system logs from DCUI
·         View Support Information – Gives details of product, used by VMware GSS
·         Reset System Configuration – Resets ESXi Host back to factory defaults.

The majority of configuration of an ESXi host is done via the vSphere host Client, or a vCenter server.

Sunday, 26 April 2020

Installing your first VMware vSphere ESXi 7.0 Server

Installing VMware vSphere 7.0 is a fairly straight forward task, in simplistic terms, it involves grabbing hold of the ISO, whether that be from VMware or from the hardware vendor of your servers.

Once the ISO is obtained, mount it, boot your ESXi host hardware and follow the instructions that get presented on the screen.

The installation is really broken down into 4 steps.

Installing ESXi does have some requirements and the Hardware requirements are as follows. Make sure that you have the supported platform and for more information, visit the VMware compatibility guide

vSphere ESXi requires

·         At least two CPU cores
·         The NX/XD bit to be enabled for the CPU in BIOS
·         Requires a minimum of 4 GB of physical RAM, however provide at least 8 GB of RAM to run virtual machines.
·         To support 64-bit VMs enable hardware virtualisation on the host.
·         One of more Gigabit or faster NICs
·         A boot disk of 8 GB for USB or SD devices, if using HDD, SSD, or NVMe, then at least 32 GB of disk space. Also provide space for VMs if storing locally.

Once the ESXi host is installed, the host’s basic configuration will need to be configured, and this will be covered in a later blog.

Friday, 17 April 2020

ESXi 7 Evaluation and License mode considerations

I’ve been a keen user of the VMware vSphere and previous versions of their bare metal hypervisor for a number of years now.

When I first get hold of the product, I usually build a test lab, purely so that I can install and play with the product in an environment that I’m not going to break, and if I do, it’s not a business critical system that will bring the company crashing down.

With VMware vSphere 7.0, VMware have allowed the product to be installed and used in full Enterprise Plus mode for 60 days.

As the evaluation is a full edition of Enterprise Plus, you can use all of the features that makes the product the market leading virtualisation platform, these features include vSphere vMotion, vSphere HA, vSphere DRS, etc.

The 60 evaluation starts when you first turn on the ESXi host. At any time during the evaluation period, you can convert the product to a licensed mode from evaluation mode, but the evaluation mode has only decreased by the time it was in evaluation mode.

For example, I install ESXi on 1st April 2020 and convert to Standard license on 7th April 2020, that means I have only used 7 days of my Enterprise Pus evaluation.

Now let’s say that I really need to test vSphere Distributed switches, unfortunately these are not available with Standard edition.

If we set the product back to evaluation mode, we’ll be able to explore the entire feature set for an additional 53 days.

VMware and Pearson VUE now delivering remote exams

If you're worried about how you'll get that VMware exam done that you've been studying for, the here's some good news.

From April 20th 2020 you will be able to sit your exam remotely, for some of us who have had the luxury of being able to sit our Microsoft and AWS exams, this will come as a welcome addition to the number of exams we can now do from the comfort of our own homes and offices.

For more information, please visit Karl Childs of VMware Education post

Regards and stay safe


Wednesday, 1 April 2020

A great place to access VMware vSphere 7 resources

Hope everyone is doing as well as can be expected.

As you may or may not be aware VMware are soon to announce their latest version of vSphere, that being vSphere 7

There are new features coming.

For a central resource that you can access to find information relating to this new version of vSphere, visit.

VMware vSphere 7 Blogs

Short post, but I hope you find it useful

Tuesday, 31 March 2020

VMware vSphere with Kubernetes Deploy and Manage V7

In this little series of blogs we're going to introduce the new courses coming to enable people to learn and get to grips with the New version of vSphere that was announced March 2020

The next course is the

VMware vSphere with Kubernetes: Deploy and Manage V7

During this 3-day course, you focus on deploying and managing VMware vSphere with Kubernetes.

You learn about how vSphere with Kubernetes can be used to orchestrate the delivery of Kubernetes clusters and containerised applications in a VMware vSphere environment.

The course covers the following objectives

  • Describe vSphere with Kubernetes and use cases in on-premises environments
  • Deploy vSphere with Kubernetes
  • Describe the VMware NSX networking requirements for vSphere with Kubernetes.
  • Create and manage vSphere with Kubernetes namespaces
  • Deploy and run container applications on vSphere with Kubernetes
  • Deploy and configure VMware Harbor
  • Describe the VMware Tanzu Kubernetes Grid service
  • Deploy a Tanzu Kubernetes Grid cluster
  • Deploy and run container applications on a Tanzu Kubernetes Grid cluster
  • Describe the vSphere with Kubernetes lifecycle
  • Use logs and CLI commands to monitor and troubleshoot vSphere with Kubernetes

For more information about the course, please watch Feidhlim O'Leary overview video.

Monday, 30 March 2020

VMware vSphere Design V7

In this little series of blogs we're going to introduce the new courses coming to enable people to learn and get to grips with the New version of vSphere that was announced March 2020

The next course is the

VMware vSphere: Design V7

This three-day training course equips you with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to design a VMware vSphere 7 virtual infrastructure.

You follow a proven approach to design a virtualisation solution that ensures availability, manageability, performance, recoverability, and security, and that uses VMware best practices.

This course discusses the benefits and risks of available design alternatives and provides information to support making sound design decisions.

Given a case study, you practice your design skills by working with peers on a design project.

The course covers the following objectives

  • Identify the business objectives for the vSphere environment
  • Identify business requirements, constraints, assumptions, and risks for all layers in the vSphere environment
  • Apply a framework to a design
  • Analyse design choices and best-practice recommendations
  • Create a design that ensures availability, manageability, performance, recoverability, and security
  • Design the core management infrastructure for an enterprise
  • Design the virtual data center for an enterprise
  • Design the compute infrastructure for an enterprise
  • Design the storage and networking infrastructures for an enterprise
  • Design virtual machines to run applications in a vSphere infrastructure
  • Design security, manageability, and recoverability features for an enterprise

For more information about the course, please watch Alistair Sutherland overview video.