Yeah, I admit it. I want OS X Mavericks, and I want it now. Unfortunately, it´s not available yet from Software Update. So instead of manually checking every 5 minutes or so, I decided to create a small bash script that does it for me. It´s very, very simple, but I think it does the job: First off, pop into Terminal and get root access: h0bbel::h0bair { ~ }-> sudo su - Then create a small bash script, I named mine update.

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For the first time since 2010 I will actually be physically attending VMworld Europe! I fly over from the very cold, rainy and generally very autumny Norway to sunny Barcelona on Sunday the 13th. Based on my past experience from VMworld in Copenhagen, I have decided to go easy on the session scheduling and not fill my calendar to the brim. Sure, the sessions provide insane amounts of useful content, but for me the main reason to attend VMworld is to physically meet up and talk to a lot of the people I usually spend a lot of time communicating with.

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Rant alert [@Acronis](https://twitter.com/Acronis) sorry, not happening. — Christian Mohn (@h0bbel) [October 8, 2013](https://twitter.com/h0bbel/statuses/387562111972683776) In and of itself, this tweet is fair enough, even if borderline spam. My reaction to it however, tells a different story. _I admit it, it´s a bit harsh and straight to the point, but something has to have triggered such a response, right? _Rewind back to VMworld US, and Acronis posted this: [@sbeloussov](https://twitter.com/sbeloussov) [@veeam](https://twitter.com/veeam) [@VMworld](https://twitter.com/VMworld) fortunately we don't need to make our customers drunk to persuade them to buy our soft.

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With the new vSphere 5.5 release, the VMware vCenter Appliance (vCSA) has grown up to be a viable alternative to the traditional Microsoft Windows based vCenter deployment scenario. The new vCSA version supports up to 100 hosts and 3000 (with an external Oracle database the values change to 1000/10000) virtual machines, a big improvement from 5 hosts and 50 virtual machines in the previous version. Sadly, the only external database option available for vCSA 5.

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In VMware KB Upgrading vCenter Server Appliance 5.0.x/5.1 to 5.5 (2058441) the procedure for upgrading an existing 5.0/5.1 vSphere vCenter Server Appliance is outlined, walking you through the steps required including deploying a new 5.5 vCSA and transferring the data from the old instance to the new one. Straight forward procedure, but there is one small caveat in this process. One important thing to remember, and something I don´t feel that the knowledge-base article highlights well enough is that the new v5.

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One of the new features in vSphere 5.5 is the vSphere vFlash that enables you to use a SSD/Flash device as a read cache for your storage. Duncan Epping has a series of posts on vSphere Flash Cache that is well worth a read. vSphere vFlash caches your read IOs, but at the same time you can use it as a swap device if you run into memory contention issues. The vSphere vFlash Host Cache is similar to the older Host Cache feature, but if you are upgrading from an older version of ESXi there is a couple of things that needs to be done to be able to use this feature.

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While deploying a fresh vCenter Server 5.5 Appliance, I ran into an issue getting it configured. When the appliance is deployed, the first time you log in you get presented with the configuration wizard. The wizard clearly states that if you want to set a static ip, or hostname, you should cancel the wizard, do the network configuration and then re-run the wizard after the fact. Well, that´s what I did, and it resulted in the following error when trying to create the embedded database:

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As I´ve posted about earlier, you can update your ESXi hosts to a new release from the command line. Now that ESXi 5.5 has been released, the same procedure can be applied to upgrade once more. Place the host in maintenance mode, then run the following command to do an online update to ESXi 5.5: ~ # esxcli software profile update -d https://hostupdate.vmware.com/software/VUM/PRODUCTION/main/vmw-depot-index.xml -p ESXi-5.5.0-1331820-standard While this runs, monitor the log file to check upgrade process:

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Some times all it takes is one single tweet to set things in motion: Just a year after losing Dad to cancer, Mom's has now spread from lung to other areas. Too soon for this shit. — Gabriel Chapman (@Bacon_Is_King) [September 12, 2013](https://twitter.com/Bacon_Is_King/statuses/378283415839051776) This started a spiral of tweets, discussions and ideas being thrown around and has now resulted in Podcasting for Cancer. The current goal is to raise $5000 USD by November 12th - Let´s absolutely crush that goal!

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As Eric Siebert has pointed out, the VMware vSphere release cycles are shortening. While vSphere 5.1 could be seen as a bit rushed, especially in regards to SSO, when it was released, the shorter release cycles seem to work out pretty well. This does make me think though; vSphere 5.5 is pretty much ready to be released to the general public, and the new VSAN component will be in a public beta at the same time.

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This coming tuesday the first ever Veeam Webinar held in Norwegian will be held by yours truly. Feel free to sign up now and listen to me speak for an hour or so. Also, Veeam is continuing it´s support of the virtualization community and is yet again offering free 180-days Veeam Backup Management Suite v7 NFR licenses for VMware and Hyper-V. Note that this offer is only available to anyone who is one of the following: VMware vExpert, VMware Certified Professional (VCP), Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP), Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) and Most Valuable Professional (MVP)

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About a year and a half I go, I took the leap from running Microsoft Windows as my main operating system and switched into full «hipster mode», i.e. switched to a Macbook Air and OS X. Simply put, «the change» was not that hard and most everything has worked without problems, and for those things that still require Microsoft Windows, well, there is VMware Fusion for that. While I´m admittedly still a novice OS X user, and not even close to mastering OS X, I´d like to share my current Slate setup.

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When doing manual host upgrades, either through the direct method or via a locally placed upgrade bundle, there is a distinct lack of progress information available after running the esxcli command. Thankfully the ESXi host provides a running logfile of the upgrade process, which makes it much easier to keep track of what is going on and that the upgrade is indeed being performed. The esxupdate.log is located in /var/log, and by issuing the following command in a terminal window you can have a rolling log showing you the upgrade status and progress:

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A fellow IT-professional, who works with the non-wired flavor of networking, contacted me with the following scenario: A group of users, developers in this case, have VMware Workstation installed on their laptops. This makes it easy for them to manage, test and develop their applications in a closed environment without having to install a bunch of tools/services on their centrally managed laptop environment. An excellent use case for VMware Workstation if there ever was one.

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When configuring a new C7000 Blade Enclosure with a couple of FlexFabric 10Gb/24-port modules I ran into a rather annoying issue during setup. HP Virtual Connect 3.70 introduced support for Direct-Attach setups of HP 3Par StoreServ 7000 storage systems, where you can eliminate the need for dedicated FC switches. For full details, have a look at Implementing HP Virtual Connect Direct-Attach Fibre Channel with HP 3PAR StoreServ Systems. This is excellent for setups where all your hosts are HP Blades, and you have a Virtual Connect FlexFabric setup.

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A lot of the scripted installation tools that VMware offers allows the usage of a central HTTP based repository for hosting the files. Today I stumbled over a little gem that might just help you create a «quick and dirty» HTTP based deployment scenario by running a simple command in your terminal. By default, this command works on any system that has Python installed on it, so OS X and Linux should be ready to go as is.

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Now that VMware ESXi 5.1 Update 1 has been released I decided to do a quick and dirty upgrade of my home installation. I refuse to call it a lab these days, since it´s one singular host and all it does it contain my home domain controller… Anyway, the following procedure upgraded the host from 5.1b to 5.1U1, by downloading the upgrade directly from VMware and installing it. Make sure the host is in maintenance mode before attempting this procedure.

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While building my lab environment, I ran into a situation where I wanted to have a completely sealed off networking segment that had no outside access. This is a trivial task on it`s own, just create a vSwitch with no physical NICs attached to it, and then connect the VMs to it. The VMs will then have interconnectivity, but no outside network access at all. In this particular case, I was setting up a couple of nested ESXi servers that I wanted to connect to the «outside» vCenter Appliance (VCSA).

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Dell offers a Multipathing Extension Module (MEM) for vSphere, and in this post I´ll highlight how to «manually» install it on a ESXi 5.1 host. I will not cover the network setup part of the equation, but rather go through the simple steps required to get the MEM installed on the hosts in question. First of all, you need to download the MEM installation package. At the time of writing, the latest version is v1.

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So, what is the average airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow? As we all (should) know, that is very much a trick question. Now, consider this little non-trick question: I wonder what the avg disk size is for your virtual machine these days. I do most math with 60GB on avg, but wonder if that has changed [@DuncanYB](https://twitter.com/DuncanYB/status/317269670195507203) / March 28th 2013 And now, guess what?

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Duncan Epping rather unceremoniously published a blog post «New Beta Program offering: VMware Hosted Beta» yesterday, outlining the availability of the new hosted beta offering that companions some of the current VMware beta programs. _Due to the very NDA nature of the beta programs, I can´t really go into details on what is currently offered, but what I can say is this: Well done VMware!_ The VMware Hosted Beta runs on the same engine that runs the VMware Hands on Labs Online – Beta, but with a little added twist.

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It´s a well known problem that with Veeam Backup & Recovery Replication 6.5, and earlier, backing up the SQL server that hosts the vCenter DB poses a problem. KB1051 VSS for vCenter outlines the issue well, and provides a workaround. If you experience this problem, you will see entries like this in your Veeam B&R backup logs: Veeam vCenterDB Backup Error The workaround provided by Veeam is to create host VM-Host Affinity Rules, effectively pinning a VM to a given host, and then perform the VM backup through the host rather than through the vCenter.

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This week I´m working at a client site, upgrading their entire existing vSphere 4.1 infrastructure to vSphere 5.1. The customer engagement also includes upgrading Veeam Backup and Replication 6.0 to 6.5, and usually an isolated upgrade of Veeam B&R is a no-brainer next, next, next, done install. To complicate things in this particular environment, I also had to migrate the vCenter SQL DB from a local MS SQL Server 2005 Express instance to a full-fledged MS SQL Server 2008 R2 instance.

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Autolab, that awesome «little» thing that automagically builds a nested vSphere Lab environment for you, was definitely not put together by Flint Lockwood but by Alastair Cooke (www.demitasse.co.nz). Unlike Flint´s inventions, this one actually makes sense and serves a purpose! Now, how sweet would it be to deploy Autolab without having to invest time, money and effort into acquiring your own hardware? Well, thanks to baremetalcloud.com, you might now actually be able to do just that (and more, if you wish).

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I needed some new wall «art» for my home office, and decided that a couple of small «Keep Calm» posters would do the trick. Naturally I got a bit carried away, and created more than one, and of course, most of them are virtualization related: If you have some ideas, I´ll gladly create more, just leave a comment! I would also love photos if you printed out any of these and put them on a wall or in a frame somewhere.

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Our sponsor Veeam is giving away a free pass to TechEd 2013 in this months giveaway. Register now to be entered into the draw before March 18th when the winner will be announced.

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Trainsignal has just launched a new Online Training bundle, and for $49 a month you can get unlimited access to their entire set of training courses and practice exams for Cisco, Apple, Microsoft, Citrix, CompTIA, and VMware. The new pricing is very attractive, especially since you no longer need to buy access on a course by course basis. The courses are delivered in your browser, but Trainsignal also offers an offline player in case you need access when traveling or otherwise offline.

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VMware Labs has released a new fling called Makyo (魔境 _makyō_ means “ghost cave” or “devil’s cave.”) which basically is a tool to copy VMs or vApps from one vCenter instance to another. It works by doing an automated OVF export on the source vCenter, and then an import on the destination vCenter. The plugin integrates directly into the vSphere Web Client, and I hope to see this feature installed by default in future versions of the Web Client.

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Eric Siebert has yet again gone through the massive job of setting up his yearly Top VMware & Virtualization Blogs Vote. Huge kudos to Eric, I know this is a big undertaking for you, and myself and the rest of the community really appreciate the hard work you put into this each year! Go ahead and cast your vote before the cut-off date of March 1st. vNinja.net is listed in the general section, feel free to vote for us if you feel like we deserve it.

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My recent experience with setting up vCenter Operations Manager on a standalone ESXi host, and the always excellent William Lam´s post Automating VCSA Network Configurations For Greenfield Deployments got me thinking. There are several other appliances out there that require deployment to a vCenter, to be able to configure the networking options and not just default to DHCP. In many, and perhaps even most, cases you can work around that by running the _vami_set_network _command to change from DHCP to STATIC network configurations.

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