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Anything related to virtualization.

How to add a vLAN to a Cisco UCS using Unified Computing System Manager

Cisco’s UCS platform is an amazing blade infrastructure.  They are extremely reliable, very fast, and easily expanded.  Today, I’m going to briefly go over how to add a vLAN to your Cisco UCS setup, using the Cisco Unified Computing System Manager.  This guide assumes you have already configured the vLAN on your network and you have trunk-enabled ports being fed into your UCS and/or Fabric switches.

 

Go ahead and log into the Cisco UCS Manager.  Once you have logged in, select the LAN tab, then VLANs (in the left column).  Once there, click the New button, up at the top, and then Create VLANs.

 

For the VLAN Name/Prefix, give the VLAN a unique identifiable name.  In the VLAN IDs field, you need to enter to exact vLAN ID that was assigned to the vLAN when you configured it on your network infrastructure.  Once you have filled in those two fields, click OK.

 

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How to add a vLAN to VMware vSphere 5, 5.5, or 6, / ESXi virtual machine network

This is a simple step-by-step guide to adding / assigning a vLAN to a vSwitch virtual machine network on VMware ESXi and vSphere 5, 5.5, and 6.  Another way of putting it is adding a port group to a vSwitch.  It is a pretty straight forward process, but if you’ve never done it before it can be a little confusing.  We are going to create a Virtual Machine Port Group (network) that is assigned exclusively to a vLAN ID.  This guide assumes you have already created the vLAN on your switch and configured a trunk port to your virtualized infrastructure.

 

First, go ahead and log into the vSphere Client.  Once you have done so, navigate to Home > Inventory > Hosts and Clusters (if using vSphere).  If you are logging directly into an ESXi server, you should already be where you need to be immediately upon logging in.  Select your ESXi host in the left column, and then select the Configuration tab.  Once you are on the Configuration page, select Networking.  Select the Properties of the vSwitch you would like your vLAN to be assigned to.  In my case, I’m selecting the properties of vSwitch0.

 

2016-03-05 10_12_02-74.51.99.238 - vSphere Client

 

Now, we need to add a port group exclusive to the vLAN.  Click on Add.

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How to install GlusterFS + NFS on CentOS 7 for Virtual Machine Storage

GlusterFS is one of the fastest growing Open Source storage platforms in existence. It’s very simple to install, scale, and manage. What makes Gluster so amazing, is its ability to scale and replicate. It really sets the bar for software defined storage systems. It runs on whitebox hardware, or virtual machines. Lately, I’ve come across quite a few people that seem to be scared of Gluster and don’t know where to begin. I am here to help! Today, we’re going to install and configure GlusterFS on a CentOS 7 virtual machine; and, we’re going to make it NFS accessible for VM storage. Every hypervisor in existence supports NFS storage for virtual machines, including VMware ESXi / vSphere, Proxmox, Xen, KVM, oVirt, OpenStack, and all the others.

Installing GlusterFS Server and Client on CentOS 7 (two nodes)

I am using two virtual machines, each running CentOS 7. Their hostnames are gfs1 and gfs2. I have added a 40GB second disk to each VM that will be dedicated to GlusterFS. I suggest you have an identically sized second partition or drive on each of your systems as well.

As always, after connecting via SSH or console, go ahead and make sure everything is updated and upgraded on both nodes.

yum -y update

And, let’s go ahead and install a few useful packages (both nodes).

yum -y install nano net-tools wget

Edit the hosts file on both nodes. Make sure both nodes can resolve to each other via hostname.

nano /etc/hosts

Screen Shot 2015-06-03 at 1.44.35 PM

Now we can download and install Gluster (both nodes).

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How to setup oVirt 3.4 virtualization on CentOS 6.6

oVirt, in my opinion, is the biggest contender with VMware vSphere. oVirt has the weight and development resources of Red Hat behind it, which has undoubtedly slingshotted it ahead of the rest of the open source virtualization solutions out there. It has almost all of the “out of the box” features vSphere has, and it works extremely well.

There have been two major holdback concerning oVirt in the past. First, early on it only supported Fedora. This definitely scared many people away, myself included. That is no longer the case as it now supports Fedora, RHEL, and CentOS. The second major drawback is the complexity of installation. Overall the methodology is pretty simple. At a minimum, you need two machines. An oVirt Engine, which is the brains of the operation and powers the web interface, and you have the oVirt Node, which is the “hypervisor.” Although the overall methodology is simple enough, it can really be a pain to install and get working. But, that’s improving as well.

I wrote this guide to help you get your oVirt infrastructure built on CentOS 6.6 easily, and quickly. You will need two servers, at minimum. The good news is that one of them, the oVirt Engine, can be virtualized, running on your currently configured hypervisor of choice. As far as specs, you’ll want to try to be close to the following.

oVirt Engine Minimum Server Specs (can be virtual or physical machine)

  • CentOS 6.6 x64
  • 4 CPU Cores
  • 4GB Memory
  • 25 GB Hard Disk Space

oVirt Hypervisor Node (must be on physical machine)

  • oVirt Node 3.4 ISO installed as OS
  • 4 CPU Cores
  • 6GB Memory
  • 40GB Hard Disk (or iSCSI / NFS storage available)

This is enough to work with and get a good idea of what the oVirt platform is capable of. It’s also a solid foundation that can be grown and expanded on to form a production worthy infrastructure. So, lets get started.

How to build an oVirt infrastructure on CentOS 6.6

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How to monitor a VMware ESXi 5 / 6 host with Check_MK & OMD

Recently I posted a guide detailing how to install OMD (Open Monitoring Distribution) on Ubuntu 14.04. Part of OMD is the Check_MK network monitoring platform. I consider it the best available in the Open Source world. Check_MK supports monitoring VMware ESXi hosts, as well as vSphere servers. It uses the vSphere API to communicate with the host, so it’s able to pull much more data than SNMP. It’s not exactly a very intuitive process to get an ESXi host added to Check_MK, but it’s very easy if you know what to do. The documentation available is sub par, at best. So, I’m going to change that! This guide applies to all versions of ESXi 5 or later. So, ESXi 5, 5.1, 5.5 and 6.

Check_MK is capable of monitoring all sorts of valuable data from an ESXi host. This includes, CPU usage, RAM usage, Datastore usage, Network bandwidth statistics, health sensors and virtual machine power state.

How to add an ESXi 5, 5.1, 5.5 or 6 host to Check MK

Go ahead and log in to your Check_MK web interface. In the Configuration navigation area of the left, click on Host & Service Parameters.

Screen Shot 2015-05-26 at 3.23.21 PM

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How To Add An iSCSI Target To Proxmox VE 3.4 And Create LVM Group

I’ve been digging into Proxmox VE 3.4 quite a bit lately. I have a FreeNAS server on my network that I use for VM storage in my lab. When I went to add an iSCSI target on Proxmox for virtual machine and image storage, it was a bit confusing. So, I thought I would put a quick step by step guide together to help other folks in the same boat. Here goes.

How to add an iSCSI target in Proxmox

First, log into your Proxmox VE 3.4 server via the web interface. Make sure Datacenter (top level) is selected in the left pane, and make sure you are on the Storage tab on the right pane. It should look like this.

Screen Shot 2015-05-23 at 9.08.23 PM

Now, click on the Add pull down menu, and select iSCSI.

Screen Shot 2015-05-23 at 9.10.31 PM

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How To Enable SSH on VMware ESXi 5 / 5.5 / 6 & All Other Versions

Many necessary administrative functions on ESXi requires SSH access. For example, offline bundles, third party management utilities, backup utilities, and many other tasks require you to log in to the ESXi console, via SSH or physically. This post will guide you through the process of enabling the SSH service, and opening up the firewall to allow access. This process works on all versions of ESXi, including the newer versions such as 5, 5.5, and 6. Lets get started.

Enabling SSH on an ESXi host

There are two steps involved in getting SSH access set up on an ESXi host.

  • Enabling the SSH service
  • Opening port 22 (SSH port) on the firewall

First, log into the VMware vSphere Client. You can login directory to the host, or to a vSphere server, it doesn’t matter. Select the host in the left panel, then navigate to Configuration > Security Profile, once you are there, click on the Properties option to the right of Services.

Screen-Shot-2015-05-19-at-11.31.26-AM

Now, select SSH, then Options.

Screen Shot 2015-05-19 at 11.34.29 AM

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