Archives For VMware

Veeam 6.5 Released

October 26, 2012 — Leave a comment

During VMworld Barcelona Veeam announced the latest iteration of their Backup and Recovery product. For the first time we are seeing Veeam break from a major release each year to be be a dot release with the latest version being 6.5. Although with the work to ensure the product is amongst the first backup products to not only support vSphere 5.1 but also Windows Server 2012 & Hyper-V 3.0 you can see why. 

But threat not Veeam have still managed to jam pack new features into this release. For a full and extensive list check out the whats new document on Veeam website here >>

Amongst the stand out features for me were

  • Exchange E-Discovery >> Allowing you to instantly browse, search and selectively restore, emails, notes, contacts etc from any Veeam backup or Exchange EDB file. Since the beta that I wrote about here >> https://virtualisedreality.com/2012/07/26/veeam-exchange-explorer-beta/ they have now included the option to restore to original location which I think rounds of the feature nicely. 
  • Chain Execution of jobs >> This feature has always been possible but you had to run a post script from each backup, with the new feature you can use the new scheduler to start a job automatically once the job it depends upon finishes. 
  • Configuration Backup >> Veeam is now automatically and periodically able to backup its configuration to a specified backup repository. Particularly useful if you have a physical Veeam server and want to backup your configuration.
  • Veeam Explorer for SAN Snapshots >> Utilise Veeam to recover any item from a HP Lefthand based SAN Snapshot with all the usual Veeam based features. I can’t wait for this functionality to support other SAN manufactures. 
  • Global Data DeDuplication with Windows Server 2012 >> You can utilise the power of Windows Server 2012 DeDuplication to reduce your repository size, you are also able to do file level recovery from a deduplicated volume inside a VM as long as you are running Veeam on a Windows Server 2012 sever. 

These are just a handful of the new features but it is great to see Veeam keeping ahead of the curve as usual and if this is just a dot release I can’t want to see what Veeam Backup and Recovery 7 will have in-store whenever that will be released. 6.5 was released yesterday and can now be downloaded from Veeam’s site  >> http://vee.am/65isGA

VMware have now released a patch for vSphere 5.1 that makes it compatible with View 5.1. I have been running the two in my lab for a little while whilst avoiding to use the storage accelerator where the problem previously existed but with this update we will now finally be able to start offering our customers upgrades to vSphere 5.1.

Note you will either need to download and install a patch to your vSphere hosts or download the new vSphere ISO

Full details are here

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=2035268

VMware have just released an update to vCenter 5.1, this update 5.1.0a is just a bug fix release full details of the corrected bugs can be found here

http://blogs.vmware.com/vsphere/2012/10/update-to-vsphere-vcenter-server-version-5-1-0a-released.html

The one that I was happiest to see as I spent a hours trying to rectify recently was as below.

Installing vCenter Single Sign On fails with the error: Unable to create database users: Password validation failed
When you attempt to install vCenter Single Sign On using an existing database or the bundled SQL Express database, the installation fails with the following error:

Error 29114. Cannot connect to DB

This issue is resolved in this release.

I was glad to read this was a bug as I was pulling my hair out for a while whilst trying to instal sso for an internal upgrade I was doing. If anyone does have problems I also found the resource below very useful

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/search.do?cmd=displayKC&docType=kc&externalId=2035831&sliceId=1&docTypeID=DT_KB_1_1&dialogID=466484664&stateId=1%200%20466500843

VMworld EMEA Day 2

October 12, 2012 — Leave a comment

The second day at VMworld EMEA started with the Steve Herrod’s keynote speech this time focusing on end user computing a great passion of mine.

The keynote discussed the importance of flexibility and allowing the end users choice in devices to ensure they were able to be more productive.

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Steve Herrod recapped the improvements in the View 5.1 release, going over functionality such as the storage accelerator and enhancements in PCoIP.

He went on to introduce the Horizon Suite, a collection of solutions we have previously seen or been aware of, but now coming together into a comprehensive suite of end user computing focused solutions.

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For the first time we saw Project Octopus renamed as Horizon Data, we will also see tight integration with Horizon Application manager and this will offer the first opportunity for for us to see the HTML5 remoting technology AppBlast in action for tablet users connecting into their View desktop via the Horizon Suite. No dates were announced for the availability of the Horizon Suite but it is currently in Alpha.

The next subject of the keynote was VMware Mirage which has come from the Wanova acquisition, as we have come to expect Vittorio Viarengo, Vice President Marketing for End User Computing came on stage to show us how Mirage works from an end users perspective. The demo entailed a laptop being upgraded from Windows XP to Windows 7 whilst the user was still using it, a simple reboot and the laptop booted into Windows 7 with the applications and data still in place, the desktop was then moved into a view desktop when then laptop was damaged and finally from View to VMware Fusion.

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I really enjoyed hearing about the announcements surrounding end user computing, it proves VMware are no longer a one trick pony in the end user computing space and that this is a serious direction for VMware.

Finally we saw a new addition to the CTOs keynote with the diamond sponsors being invited to stage for a quick fire demo, the audience were then given a chance to complete polls and vote for their favourite demo, with the winner getting a $10,000 to a nominated charity. Dell, Cisco, HP, EMC and NetApp all took part and EMC won with a VVol demo on the EMC vplex by storage god Chad Sakac. EMC will be donating the money to a down syndrome foundation in Madrid. However VMware announced they would also donate to all the other charities.

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Following the keynote I spent a lot of my time in the Solutions Exchange talking to various vendors, I had a long chat with Devin Hamilton of Nimble and it was really great to see how far they have come in the last year, their team has grown substantially, they have recently announced the ability to add disk shelves to their SANs to allow not only grid based expansion but now frame based to allow you to have the flexibility to grow the environment to your needs. They have also worked with a number of partners including Cisco to have their SANs included in many of the VMware Rapid Deployment Program solutions for View. I’m looking forward to doing some blog posts on the Nimble SAN shortly.

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I also spent some time with the guys from Fusion IO, they seem to be doing very well at the moment with their cards being featured in a number of solutions and reference architectures for VDI, one example of this is how it is being utilised in the Nutanix solutions. I will hopefully be working with Fusion IO to do a blog post on using their product in a View solution shortly.

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I was also given the opportunity to speak with David Angwin marketing director of Dell Wyse and Rafeal Colorado Cloud Client Computer Marketing Director to discuss end user computing with Dell. Dell had a very large end user computing presence at VMworld EMEA in my personal opinion this was at the loss of the storage division who had little to no presence at the show which was a big shame especially with all the competitors being heavily represented in that space.

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Dell were announcing 2 major new products at VMworld EMEA the first was its new Desktop as a Service solution now available within Europe from its Slough based datacenter, the solution is built around VMware View and pricing starts at £29 per month. I’m going to be interested to see how this works and how partners will be able to integrate with it to build complete cloud solutions for their customers, watch this space.

The second as mentioned yesterday was the announcement of the new Tera 2 thin client, the new P25 and the unfortunately named for the UK market P45 are now available, with the P25 being dual screen and the P45 being quad screen. They have also expanded support for their T50 ARM SoC thin client to include PCoIP support.

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I was only able to fit one lab in today and that was the delivering optimal performance with VMware vSphere 5.1, there was some good content in this lab but I think it spent a bit too long covering the Java application that we were using to cause the problems that we were then fixing. But overall I felt I recovered ground that I had previously looked at but equally it was good to refresh these skills and there were a number of elements that I was able to take away.

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The focus on the evening was a number of parties, the first being a small Xsigo champagne reception where it was good to catch up with a number of friendly faces on a balcony room near the conference centre. The second being the VMworld party making place in a transformed hall 8 at the Gran Fira venue, the party had an 8 bit computer game theme, there was pedal kart racing, costumes, retro games, pool tables and more. There was also a live band ‘black rock’ who in my opinion weren’t that good, more screaming than singing and didn’t fit well with the theme of the party, I think a good DJ would have gone down better if there wasn’t going to be a big name band. All together I did enjoy the party their was good food, a memorable theme and it was good to catch up with other VMworld attendees.

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Today was the first day of VMworld EMEA in Barcelona after yesterdays partner day. The morning kicked off with a keynote by Pat Gelsinger CEO and Steve Herrod. The keynote started the same as VMworld US earlier in the year with live music and drumming coming from the large VMworld 2012 drums.

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See the video below

During the keynote there were several announcements mostly around the vCloud Suite management, including VMware vCloud Automation manager which comes from the acquisition of Dynamic Ops.

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I really liked the look of this product and it will be interesting to see how in the future it integrates more highly with vCloud director. There were also live demos of vCloud director and its refreshed UI and lots more.

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My first session was regarding Zimbra 8 VMware’s mail and collaboration platform. This session was a little basic but gave a good overview of the latest version and the updated UI. I also liked the UC elements that have been integrated utilising partnerships with Mitel and Cisco.

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After my first session I headed over to the labs via the solutions exchange hall

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My first lab of the day was surrounding vCloud Director, i really enjoyed this lab it gave a good overview not only from and administrators perspective but also as a cloud consumer.

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I spent a lot of my time today in the Solutions Exchange hall chatting to many of the companies. Next generation storage has a heavy presence, Tintri, Nimble, Violin Memory and Fusion IO are amongst the ones I have enjoyed learning more about the most. It certainly is becoming and increasingly crowded market place though.

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Whilst in the solutions exchange it was good to catch up with Dell and see the new quarter height blades unfortunately the Equallogic storage blade wasn’t on display.

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It was also good to catch up with the Embotics and see their latest release of vCommander, they definitely win best USB stick award.

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I stopped by the Teradici stand who were displaying a pre release of RDSH utilising PCoIP for a brokered RDS session. This is something that I think some of my customers would use when available. They also had a collection of the now available tera 2 thin clients available including the 4 DVI Wyse P45

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Probably my favourite session of VMworld so far was VMware View Storage and Thinking outside the box, covering the usage of local flash based storage to bring down the costs of VDI. Wish one fusion IO card they could comfortably get 200 users per box and 500 when pushing to the Max. They also had a live environment white box for us to connect to and test it.

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My final lab of the day was auto deploy where we utilised auto deploy to upgrade a vSphere 5.0 host to 5.1. Most of this was done through the new vSphere web client with the repository configuration etc being completed via Powershell. I haven’t done much with Auto Deploy but compared to my experience with it during previous VMworlds and training courses the improvements in 5.1 seemed to have made it easier to use than ever before.

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Day 2 kicks off tomorrow with a second end user computing focused keynote.

Today was the partner day at VMworld EMEA taking place in Barcelona Spain.

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I started off by taking the short walk from my hotel in the beautiful morning sunshine a bit of a difference to the cold of Copenhagen last year, or indeed the rain in the UK at the moment!

The conference this year is taking place at the Fira Barcelona Gran Via, a large conference centre located between the airport and the centre of Barcelona

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Upon reaching the conference centre there appeared to be some confusion about where the hands on labs were and if anyone other than partners were allowed access. We were soon pointed around the corner from hall 8 and shown into the tradesman’s entrance of halls 6&7. When the conference is open to all tomorrow you will be able to access the hands on labs and the other halls by a bridge from hall 8.

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My main goal for today was to attend some of the partner sessions, but as I arrived early (8am) I wanted to get some labs in prior to the sessions starting at 10. This year was the first year that you could not only take a lab in the traditional fashion (a dual screen Wyse P20 with a view session to the lab) but also in a BYOD fashion. The labs can be ran either from a laptop or a tablet but recommendations on twitter from some of he US attendees were to use laptops only, as I have only bought my Nexus 7 tablet I went for the traditional labs.

I sat three labs in total in the time I had, my first lab was HOL-EUC-03 troubleshooting and optimising VMware View, some elements of this were very basic but I did like the tuning PCoIP section which used PCoIP Config by Mind Flux Inc. This free tool isn’t something I had seen before, but I really liked the way it allowed you to play with the PCoIP tuning settings to see the effect. Perfect to use when tuning your settings before putting the finalised tweaks in the PCoIP group policy.

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My second was HOL-EUC-07 the SocialCast lab giving a good overview from not only an end users perspective but also an admin, including implementing in your private cloud.

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My final lab was HOL-EUC-04 Horizon Application Manager, I have done a small amount of work with applicaion manager since it was released but it was nice to run through all the aspects of management from an administrators perspective. I do wish this lab also covered the implementation and configuration from the ground up though.

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That was it for my labs today I am pleased to report they were running well as we have come to expect and any queries were dealt with quickly and easily by the ever dedicated lab staff including a few familiar faces. Over the next few days I will be aiming for some of the vCloud Director labs. My only wish for the labs was that for every lab I take there was an option for me to receive a summary of what I have covered with links to white papers etc.

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My day continued with a number of partner sessions many under NDA so I can’t go into much detail.

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The sessions closed today with a keynote from Pat Gelsinger who was attending not only his first VMworld EMEA as CEO but was actually his first ever VMworld EMEA.

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Pat Gelsinger was followed on stage by Carl Eschenbach Chief Operating Officer and Co President who discussed the software defined datacenter and the VMware partner network.

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Finally on stage was Andy Hunt Vice President EMEA of Partners and General business who has now been working for VMware for 10 years! Andy discussed the important relationship between VMware and its partners as well as the trends and opportunities for the industry.

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The partner day was followed by the partner welcome party, including live music by a local band Sinaed and the Sinners, drink , food, awards and games.

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The partner day has been a great kick off and I’m really looking forward to the keynote by Pat Gelsinger and CTO Steve Herrod tomorrow followed by some more sessions and labs.

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Dell have recently released their latest VMware integration tools for EqualLogic, as usual in the first instance these tools are for early production access so unless you are happy being cutting edge I would wait for them to move from EPA before installing in production environments.

I haven’t had a chance to install this release just yet but from the release notes you will see the following changes

1. New name for the virtual appliance as it contains more than just HIT/VE it will now be referred to as VSM/VMware standing for virtual storage manager
2. The new VSM contains the MEM multipathing module and the SRM storage adapter as with as the host Integration tools
3. Finally we get support for managing multiple Equallogic groups, and this has been a problem for a number of my customers
4. The ability to manage replication from directly from VSM
5. Support for the recently released version 6 firmware

There are a number of updates which can be seen in the screen shot below. Keep an eye on my blog as over the coming weeks I will be working on a video covering this and version 6 of the firmware.

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I was recently asked if I would like to join a VMware Google+ Hangout discussing building a business case for VDI, as this is something that is very close to my heart and after recently finishing the EUC book I was more than happy to join in.

The recording is now available on youtube for those of you that may have missed the live broadcast. I was joined by fellow vExpert David Davis, Brian Gammage of VMware, Rick Varju, Director of Engineering and Operation at Foley & Lardner and Sean O’Mahoney, Vice President & Senior Manager of Technology Services, Republic Bank & Trust Company. This was a fantastic chat to be part of and I hope I can be involved in similar hangouts in the future.

It has been long awaited but VMware have finally launched their iPhone Client for VMware View, it offers full support for IOS6 and the iPhone 5. It’s design is very similar to the iPad and Android clients that we have seen before. 

Once you have connected to your desktop for the first time you will see a list of your desktops displayed when you open the application

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By holding your finger on the desktop you get a number of options such as reseting the desktop and logging off

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Once connected to the desktop you can pinch and zoom for greater control or you can use a trackpad style mouse similar to the iPad application. 

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You are also able to connect to your desktop and then display it on a screen via airplay, leaving the iPhone screen as a fullscreen trackpad, I think the use cases for using a Windows desktop on an iPhone are some what limited but it does give you another way to be able to access your desktop and data when you need to. 

You can download the application by searching the Apple App Store in the usual way. 

A big thank must go to my co-author Mike Laverick for persevering with some major technical problems trying to get a hardcopy of our book printed. But today we are pleased to announce that our book “Building End-User Computing Solutions with VMware View” is now available to be purchased as paperback as well as the PDF that we made available a few weeks ago.

If you missed the original announcement check out my early blog post regarding the book here >> https://virtualisedreality.com/2012/08/02/building-end-user-computing-solutions-with-vmware-view-book-released/

All proceeds are being donated to Unicef so if you are thinking about undertaking a project with View and the other end user computing projects or just looking to learn a bit more head over to the LuLu shop to get your copy.

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To make it a little easier to find we have registered the following domain and pointed it to Mike’s LuLu shop.

www.eucbook.com

To jump straight to the printed version visit

printed.eucbook.com

or for the pdf version

pdf.eucbook.com

Finally if you purchase the printed book or indeed are reading the pdf on your e-reader we would love to see some pictures to add to the site, include me in your tweet @virtualisedreal and I will start creating a dedicated page for all the pictures on eucbook.com

Here’s my pre release copy on my desk at work.

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