VMware Tools Shrink Option Unavailable?

In my recent post on using svMotion to reclaim disk space, I talked about using SDelete to zero out blocks for free space reclamation.  Another way to do this is to use the Shrink option which is part of the VMware Tools.  Duncan’s post here gives details on using the VMware Tools Shrink option so I won’t go into much…

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Reclaiming disk space with Storage vMotion and Thin Provisioning

I’ve seen a number of posts on the VMTN forums as well as had discussions with folks regarding reclaiming disk space with Storage vMotion so I thought it made sense to do a quick write-up on how this process works. The situation is unfortunately all too common – virtual machines are deployed and treated like a physical machine in terms…

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Watch Your Guest Maintenance When Using VM Monitoring in HA, or “Why does my VM keep rebooting?!”

I’m taking the vSphere Design Workshop class this week, and during class one of my classmates mentioned a scenario he encountered that I hadn’t heard of.  The situation involves using VM Monitoring as part of VMware HA and performing guest maintenance. VM Monitoring is a feature of HA that will automatically restart virtual machines when the VMware Tools heartbeat is…

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Exploring the performance benefits of VAAI

Over the long Thanksgiving weekend I decided to do some testing of one of the coolest new features in vSphere 4.1 – vStorage APIs for Array Integration.  My original thought was to see if the performance benefits of using VAAI would justify more heavily using the eagerzeroedthick VMDK format because of the faster deployment times.  I’ll get to the results…

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Right or wrong, go with what’s supported…

There has been a lot of drama recently between Microsoft and VMware with respect to virtualizing Exchange 2010.  The background and details are summarized well in this article (in which I’m quoted).  I think this situation brings up some important points about virtualizing critical Tier 1 applications – vendor support is very important, and disregarding vendor requirements for support can…

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Three (important) things you might not know about the vmkiscsid.log file

While working on an issue for a client recently I discovered a few things about the vmkiscsid.log file that I didn’t know.  I thought I’d share them in case others didn’t know this information. The vmkiscsid.log file, located in /var/log on your ESX host, maintains information and errors about iSCSI connections.  We had a problem with our SANs where a…

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More vSphere 4.1 Enhancements – Welcome Back PVSCSI Driver!

As I keep digging into documents and KB articles I keep finding more and more things to like about vSphere 4.1.  Today’s find has to do with the PVSCSI driver. With the release of vSphere 4.0, VMware added a new paravirtualized SCSI driver into the VMware Tools that provides better virtual disk performance than the standard LSI driver.  The PVSCSI…

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Nice Addition to vSphere 4.1 Enterprise License

When vSphere 4.1 was released a lot of people were talking about all of the amazing new features available in the product.  Along with introducing many new features, VMware also shuffled around some existing features into different license levels.  The one that got the most press was that vMotion was now available in vSphere Standard as well as the Essentials…

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vMotion of clustered VMs is supported in vSphere 4.1..or is it?

While looking over some of the new vSphere 4.1 documentation I noticed that VMware had updated their Setup for Failover Clustering and Microsoft Cluster Service document.  As clustering becomes a bigger component of Microsoft’s enterprise applications, support for clustering in vSphere becomes even more important. As in previous versions of this document they list the limitations for clustering on vSphere. …

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Issues updating VMware Tools with Update Manager

I recently updated a lab environment to vSphere 4 Update 2 and wanted to upgrade VMware Tools on several VMs at once.  I decided to use Update Manager to push out the VMware Tools update, and during the process discovered an issue between Update Manager and newer versions of Windows.  I didn’t try any of the following with vSphere 4.1.…

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