Tag: VMware

Hyper-V dynamic memory allocation vs. VMware memory overcommit

Hyper-V Dynamic Memory is Microsoft’s answer to VMware memory overcommit.

Dynamic memory allocation and memory overcommit both aim to improve memory management in virtual server infrastructures, and they even use common technologies. But they take different approaches and offer very different user experiences.

These differences — plus the fact that Hyper-V lacked dynamic memory allocation until this year — have spurred much debate among VMware and Microsoft users about the merits of each feature. In this face-off, two virtualization experts debate the pros and cons of Hyper-V Dynamic Memory and VMware memory overcommit.

Hyper-V dynamic memory allocation: A superior approach
VMware memory overcommit: Do it right to begin with

Read the full article at searchservervirtualization.com…

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2004: A VMware Odyssey

VMware products have come a long way since the mid-2000s. Back then, virtualization was more of a niche technology with a cult following.

Today server virtualization has become ubiquitous, and VMware products dominate the market. The company has capitalized on this success and now offers other data center platforms, tools and services. Currently, VMware is making a concerted push into the cloud-computing market with products and initiatives such as vCloud Director, VMforce and Cloud Foundry.

Recently VMware has enjoyed record growth, as demonstrated by its recent acquisitions and Q1 revenue. To trace the company’s success, let’s review its recent milestones, product launches and initiatives. We’ll start in 2004, with the first VMworld conference.

In the Beginning: VMworld 2004

The first VMworld had 1,400 attendees — which isn’t bad, but far less than the 17,000 attendees in 2010. Over the past seven years, VMworld attendance has increased dramatically, which reflects the growing popularity of virtualization (see Table 1).

Read the full article at searchvmware.com…

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The importance of a vSphere health check to VARs

Your customer’s vSphere environment may seem healthy enough at first glance, but external appearances can be deceiving. Hidden problems may lurk under the cover that can eventually cause the environment to become unhealthy.

Not all problems that can occur are obvious to VARs because virtualization is much more complicated than traditional computing environments. There are many more moving parts that can lead to more complications. Seemingly trivial things such as simple configuration settings can have a ripple effect on the environment if they aren’t set correctly. Virtualization is all about sharing a limited set of resources amongst many virtual machines (VMs) and ensuring the optimum performance and availability you need to ensure the environment stays healthy.

A vSphere environment health check is one of the most valuable services that you can offer to customers because vSphere needs constant maintenance to keep it operating efficiently and problem-free. A good health check should be done on a periodic basis and is similar to a home inspection in that it documents the environment and checks the many different vSphere components to identify any existing or potential problems that can occur. Health check results can also be used to identify potential optimization and performance improvement opportunities that VARs can turn into value-adds.

Read the full article at searchsystemschannel.com…

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New vBookshelf launched

I just launched my new vBookshelf section of vSphere-land which can be found under the vInfo drop-down menu. I’ve gathered together over 30 books related to VMware and virtualization and have links and information on them. I think I’ve put together a pretty complete selection of good books that are available but if I’ve missed any please let me know. I’d also like to highlight 4 good books that have been recently released.

Click here to access the vBookshelf section of vSphere-land.com



Title: Visible Ops Private Cloud: From Virtualization to Private Cloud in 4 Practical Steps

Authors: Andi Mann, Kurt Milne, Jeanne Morain

Publish Date: April 8, 2011


Title: VMware vSphere Design

Authors: Scott Lowe, Maish Saidel-Keesing, Forbes Guthrie

Publish Date: March 8, 2011


Title: VMware vSphere PowerCLI Reference: Automating vSphere Administration

Authors: Luc Dekens, Alan Renouf, Glenn Sizemore, Arnim van Lieshout, Jonathan Medd

Publish Date: April 12, 2011


Title: VMware ESX and ESXi in the Enterprise: Planning Deployment of Virtualization Servers (2nd Edition)

Authors: Edward Haletky

Publish Date: February 18, 2011

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New free tools section is open

This one is long overdue, I had a section created on my website a year ago that correlated to a link in my book, Maximum vSphere that listed all the many free tools that would be useful to a VMware administrator. But I had forgotten about it until recently so I scoured the internet for free tools and put together a big list of them. The table currently has over 80 tools and is sortable by category, name and vendor to help you go through them. If there is anything missing be sure and let me know.

Click here to access the Free Tools section of vSphere-land.com

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Five VMware security breaches that should never happen

VMware security breaches should not be taken lightly, especially now that there’s a spotlight on regulatory compliance and the shift toward cloud computing.

Virtual hosts house many workloads, and if an unscrupulous individual gains unauthorized access to a host, that person can potentially compromise all of its virtual machines (VMs). That means virtualization administrators should pay special attention to preventable VMware security breaches. There are several potential weak points where VMware security breaches can occur.

Making VMware security less like Swiss cheese

Out-of-the-box, VMware vSphere is fairly secure, but you can make it more susceptible to security breaches if you’re not careful with its configuration and remote-access settings.

By default, VMware disables many features that would make administration easier, and enabling these features weakens security. In ESX, for example, administrators typically enable Web user interface. And in ESXi, many IT pros allow access to the remote console through Secure Shell (SSH) connections. These actions may make your job easier, but they open up attack vectors for unauthorized individuals.

An even bigger vulnerability is the host’s management console. It’s the door to your entire virtual infrastructure, so don’t pass out many keys. Lock up the management console tightly and use it only when absolutely needed — which typically isn’t often. Other areas of concern are VM data stores, management and storage network traffic, virtual networking, application programming interfaces, VM-host interconnects, vCenter Server roles and permissions and third-party add-ons.

The bottom line: Know your weak points and make them secure.

Read the full article at searchvmware.com…

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VSphere Client for iPad: VMware management on the go

The new VMware vSphere Client for iPad, a native iOS application that performs basic host and virtual machine (VM) administration and monitoring tasks, hit Apple’s App Store today.

The initial release of the VSphere Client for iPad doesn’t have the complete functionality of the vSphere Client. It’s designed to perform approximately 80% of the most common vSphere administration tasks, but this first release can perform roughly 50% of the most common tasks.

It’s also worth noting that VMware doesn’t officially support the vSphere Client for iPad. It’s part of VMware Labs, which issues experimental tools and applications.
Currently, the vSphere Client for iPad can execute the following tasks:

* monitor host and VM performance;
* manage VM power states;
* manage VM snapshots;
* place hosts in maintenance mode and restart them; and
* perform basic network troubleshooting using ping and traceroute.

A big feature that’s missing is performing a vMotion, which will be added later.

The VMware vSphere Client for iPad is not a standalone app. It requires the vCenter Mobile Access (vCMA) appliance, which is a free, pre-built virtual appliance that can be imported directly into vCenter Server. Before you can take advantage of the vSphere Client for iPad, you have to download and install vCMA, then connect it to the iPad app.

Read the full article at searchvmware.com along with part 2

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vCenter Mobile Access – now with https support

The vCMA is considered a “Fling” which means it is an experimental app that is not officially supported and more of technology preview. The vCMA has been out for over a year and can be used for mobile devices to provide web-based basic administration of vSphere. I first downloaded the vCenter Mobile Access (vCMA) virtual appliance from VMware’s website a few weeks ago in preparation for the iPad vSphere Client application that is due to be released soon,VMware released an updated version of the vCMA in February that added support for the vSphere Client iPad application.

After installing the vCMA I found a really big security hole with it, by default all client connections to it are made over http and there is no support for enabling https. This means all the traffic between your mobile devices and the vCMA is in plain text, including your login credentials to hosts and vCenter Server. I ran a sniffer on my PC to prove this and saw my login information clear as day. I looked around in the vCMA forum and found a post from someone at VMware that gave general instructions for enabling https. It was not an easy process at all and involved creating your own certificates and modifying files inside the vCMA operating system. Most users would not be able to do this on their own.

I brought this to VMware’s attention, I couldn’t believe that they did not have https support for the vCMA, this should of been the highest priority above everything else. Well VMware agreed and they quickly responded and turned around a new version of the vCMA inside of 2 weeks time. The new version now has https enabled by default using a certificate that VMware installed on the appliance so all network traffic is safe and sound.

So if you already have the vCMA installed make sure you download and install the new version of it as you run a great risk using it un-secured.


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