Tag Archives: homelab

vSphere Lab Storage: Synology DS414slim Part 4 – VAAI-NAS Plugin

Chris Wahl wrote a good blog post about the VAAI-NAS plugin some days ago. I really recommend to read this posting. Because of his article, I will only describe the installation of the plugin. You can download the plugin on the Synology homepage for free.

There are two ways to install the plugin: With the vSphere Update Manager (VUM) and a host extension baseline, or with ESXCLI.

Plugin installation using the vSphere Update Manager

First of all, we need to import the plugin (host extension) to the patch repository. Open the vSphere C# client, switch to the “Home” screen and click “Update Manager” under “Solutions and Applications”. Switch to the “Patch Repository” tab and click “Import Patches”.

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vSphere Lab Storage: Synology DS414slim Part 3 – Storage

This blog post covers the setup of the volumes and shares. Depending on your disk config, variuos volume configurations are possible. The DS414slim supports all important RAID levels (Synology Hybrid RAID, Basic, JBOD, RAID 0, 1, 5, 6 and 10). I recommend to use RAID 5, if you use more then two disks. I decided to create a RAID 5 with my three Crucial M550 SSDs and use the Seagate Momentus XT as a single disk.

Volume1: RAID 5

nas_volume_setup_01

Volume2: Single disk

nas_volume_setup_02

Create a NFS share

This disk setup gave me about 880 GB of SSD and 450 GB of SATA storage. To use this storage, we need to create at least one NFS share. Voume1 contains only a single NFS share. Volume2 contains a NFS share and an additional CIFS share, that I use for my Veeam backups. Since I use the Volume2 only for VM templates, I put both shares, the CIFS and NFS share, on the a single volume and a single disk.

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vSphere Lab Storage: Synology DS414slim Part 2 – Networking

The next step is to connect the Synology DS414slim to my lab network. I use two HP 1910 Switches in my lab, a 8 Port and a 24 Port model. The Synology DS414slim has two 1 GbE ports, which can configured in different ways. I wanted to use both ports actively, to I decided to create a bond.

Create a bond

Browse to the admin website and go to Control Panel > Network > Network Interfaces and select “Create”. Then select “Create Bond”.

nas_networking_settings_01

To utilize both NICs, select the first option: “IEEE 802.3ad Dynamic Link Aggregation”. This option requires switches that are capable to create a LACP LAG! I will show the configuration of a LACP LAG on one of my HP 1910 switches later.

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vSphere Lab Storage: Synology DS414slim Part 1 – Unboxing and initial setup

A VMware vSphere cluster is nothing without shared storage. Most of the functions, like VMware HA or VMware vMotion (okay, vMotion is possible without shared storage), can only be used with a shared storage. The servers in my lab have Fibre Channel Host Bus Adapters (HBA), but buying an old and cheap Fibre Channel storage system wasn’t an option in my case. This left two options when choosing the right storage protocol: iSCSI or NFS. I tried to virtualize the local storage in my ProLiants with the HP StoreVirtual VSA and DataCore SANsymphony-V, but both were too complex for my needs and a lab environment. Because of this I decided to move the local storage into a small storage system and use iSCSI or NFS. I searched for a while for a suiteable system until Chris Wahl started blogging about the Synology DS414slim.

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VM deployment fails with “Authenticity of the host’s SSL certificate is not verified”

When you want to go fast, go slow. Otherwise you will get into trouble… Today I tried to quickly deploy a VM from a template and customize this VM with a customization specification. The codeword is “quickly”. The fun started with this error message:

vcsa_deploy_vm_error_01

Fortunately I asked the VMware Knowledge Base, which lead me to VMware KB2086930 (Deploying a template with customization fails with the error: Authenticity of the host’s SSL certificate is not verified). This KB article is all you need to know to fix this error.

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Power on HP ProLiant servers with iLO, SSH & Plink

Some weeks ago, Frank Denneman wrote a short blog post about accessing his Supermicro IPMI with SSH. He used this access to power on his lab servers.I don’t use Supermicro boards in my lab, but I have four HP ProLiants with iLO and iLO has a also a SSH interface. This way to power on my servers seemed very practical, especially because the iLO web interface isn’t the fastest. But I wanted it a bit more automated, so I decided to use Plink to send commands via SSH.

Create a new user account

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Homelabs: It’s evolution, baby

A discourse is going on in the community. I can’t say who has started the discourse, but the number of blog postings to this discourse is an indication for the interest at this topic. But what’s the topic?

Homelabs

A homelab is the datacenter of the poor man. Some people have the luck to use a fully populated data center for test and study purposes. Our job requires to work with the latest technology and products, so we need an environment for test- and study purposes. Back in the days it was sufficient to have some VMs on you computer or laptop. But as virtualization moved into the data center, it was necessary to have this in the lab. At this point homelabs began to explode.

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Enable VMware Fault Tolerance in nested enviroments

While playing around in my lab, I wanted to enable VMware Fault Tolerance (FT)  for a VM. In the absence of physical HW I use a nested enviroment, which is running on a HP ProLiant DL160 G6 (2x Intel Xeon E5520, 32G RAM, a RAID 0 with 4 SATA drives). FT isn’t available in nested enviroments, because HW virtualization features are required. This screenshot was taken from the web client.

vmware_ft_nested_host

But “isn’t available” doesn’t mean that you can’t enable it. ;) As always this isn’t supported by VMware. It’s for lab enviroments, trainings etc., but not for production. You have to set three configuration parameters for the VM that you want to use with FT. If you use the web client, you can set the configuration parameters as follows:

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