ESXi

vSphere 5 Homelab – ESXi on HP Microserver Gen8

Hewlett Packard has updated its widely distributed Microserver Series to Gen8. This extremely affordable server which was initially made for SMB and home servers has become very popular in the virtualization scene. Due to its low price and power consumption you can find this system in many virtualization home labs. The Generation 8 Microserver (Gen8 or G8) comes with more power, upgraded ports and an integrated iLO.

hp-gen8-microserver

The HP Microserver Gen8 is available in 2 versions - G1610T and G2020T. Both models are equipped with a 2 core CPU and can support up to 16GB of RAM. The system is shipped with 4 hard drive trays, which allows the installation of any SATA hard drive. It also has a CPU socket, so you can change the CPU.

  • HP Microserver Gen8 G1610T (2x 2.3 GHz)
  • HP Microserver Gen8 G2020T (2x 2.5 GHz)
  • HP Microserver Gen8 E3-1220V2 (4x 3.1 GHz)

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vmnic/vmhba sequence changed in ESXi 5.5

Looks like VMware has made a small but momentous change to the vmnic/vmhba numbering with the release of vSphere ESXi 5.5. In previous versions, the vmnic numbering was always determined by the the PCI ID. After adding a new ESXi Host to a Cluster that has been updated from ESXi 5.1 to ESXi 5.5 i noticed that the vmnic numbering was inconsistent although all host were identical. The newly installed host has a different vmnic to PCI ID assignment compared to the hosts that have been updated from ESXi 5.1:

esxi-vmnic-to-pciid-numbering

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Howto Install VMware tools on a virtual ESXi

Running an ESXi as Virtual Machine inside VMware Worksation or on another ESXi gets more and more useful for testing purposes. That installation, also called "Nested ESXi", is not officially supported by VMware but some VMware developers are willing to help in the VMware communities Nested Virtualization forum. Up to this point is was not possible to install VMware Tools on a nested ESXi, making the management a little bit cumbersome. During VMworld 2013 in Barcelona the news about an upcoming Fling called "VMware Tools for Nested ESXi" came out. The Fling contains a small vib package that can be installed on a virtual ESXi Host.

nested-esxi-vmware-tools-0

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HP Proliant Gen8 Agentless Management floods ESXi and vCenter Logs

Hewlett-Packard introduced a new component called HP Agentless Management within their Gen8 Series. This feature is extensible though an agent running inside the operating system, in that case the ESXi Host. The package (hp-ams) is included in all customized VMware images provided by HP and the HP ESXi Offline Bundles. Unfortunately this package create some issues caused by excessive local logins. This might pointlessly blow up the database and logfiles. You can check that problem by opening the Event-Log provided by the ESXi Host which is flooded with the following messages:

User root@127.0.0.1 logged in as
User root@ logged out (login time: , number of API invocations: , user agent: )
User root@127.0.0.1 logged in as
User root@ logged out (login time: , number of API invocations: , user agent: )

hp-ams

In this post i am going to show how to workaround this issue and remove the hp-ams from you ESXi Host, and how to build a new image without that package.

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Preview on HP ProLiant MicroServer Gen8 for ESXi

Hewlett-Packard has just released a Generation 8 Microserver which is going to replace the well known N36L/N40L/N54L Microservers. The new server has the same trendy design as the entire Gen8 series. The AMD Turion CPU has been replaced by an Intel Ivy Bride CPU which is way more powerful and the memory limit has been raised to 16GB. With that, the new server brings much more power to your VMware vSphere Homelab and allows you to run more virtual machines. In this post i am going to compare both specs to point out what's new and better.

Read More »Preview on HP ProLiant MicroServer Gen8 for ESXi