Planning for PCoIP on the Network

PC-over-IP is a purpose-built desktop remoting protocol designed to adapt to network conditions to deliver the best desktop experience possible. PCoIP renders desktop video, pixel by pixel, to the endpoint (thin client, zero client, Windows client, etc.), while receiving keyboard, mouse, and other peripheral device data (audio, USB) on the datacenter-hosted desktop. The UDP-based protocol uses a combination of codecs (graphics, text, icons, photographs, video, PDF), combined with compression and intelligent encoding, to deliver a lossless virtual desktop experience. Planning for PCoIP … [Read more...]

What You Didn’t Know You Needed To Know Before Implementing VMware View

I had the privilege of presenting at the Potomac Regional VMware User Group (VMUG) conference yesterday and at the inaugural Boston VMUG last week.  The Potomac Regional event was a combination of Washington DC, Northern Virginia, Maryland, and Federal VMUG’s.  Clearpath participated in both the Potomac and Boston events as a gold sponsor.  My session was entitled, “What You Didn’t Know You Needed To Know Before Implementing VMware View”. My session provided attendees with an overview of how VMware View integrates with existing infrastructures, Windows images, applications, and processes.  … [Read more...]

Free VMware View Load Balancer Using SUSE Studio and HAProxy

I've had several customers ask me what options they have for providing redundancy / high availability / load balancing for their VMware View Connection Servers and Security Servers.  VMware View does not provide its own load balancing functionality.  Many are smaller customers without any existing load balancers in place, or want something they can use during a View pilot or Proof of Concept engagement.  Administrators who find themselves in a similar situation have a few choices for providing high availability for View servers: Buy a load balancer - F5, A10, Cisco ACE.  Expensive, … [Read more...]

iSCSI Bug – Traffic Routed Out Wrong Interface – Update

One of my most popular posts to date has been 'vSphere 5 Networking Bug Affects Software iSCSI' with some 20,000 page views and a bunch of comments.  The problem is a bug that causes vmkernel traffic (including iSCSI) to be sent out the unused/inactive/null NIC on a vSwitch with a manual failover order and Active and Unused vmnics.  It still appears that the issue I covered is affecting customers - we just had a new Clearpath customer call for help with this very issue.  VMware's KB on the issue … [Read more...]

vSphere 5 Networking Bug Affects Software iSCSI

Update 1: This issue was fixed as of 3/15/2012 in ESXi 5.0 Update 1 per the original knowledge base article: VMware KB 2008144. To download ESXi 5.0/vCenter Server 5.0 Update 1, see the VMware Download Center.  Update 2 (Nov 7 2012): While VMware says the issue was fixed in vSphere 5.0 Update 1, I have not found this to be the case.  I've had several environments where the bug was still present, and in some cases this nasty bug still appeared when implementing the Failback = NO setting on the vSwitch.  Additionally, setting Failback = No may cause some other problems - see my update here … [Read more...]

The Skinny on ESXTOP

A reader named Mark contacted me today and asked if there was a way to reduce the size of the batch output from an ESXTOP run.  And he asks for good reason: Depending on the number of VM's on your host, the delay between ESXTOP samplings and the number of samples you collect, using the All Stats option (-a) can yield a massive file in a short period of time.  If written to a partition on your ESX Service Console you run the risk of filling the partition, and forget about actually being able to analyze the data in PERFMON or Excel.  For example, on an ESX host running ~15 VM's I produced 100MB … [Read more...]

VMware Networking Demysified

VMware vExpert and fellow Northern Virginian, Ken Cline, has posted an excellent article on his Ken's Virtual Reality blog that aims to demystify VMware networking.  The article, the first in a new series by Ken, provides an overview of networking in an ESX/ESXi environment and breaks down the intricacies of the vSwitch and VLANs.  The article comes complete with some nifty diagrams to help make sense of the topic. The timing of this article is great for me as it helps to frame my thoughts as I delve into the design of my latest VMware project on an IBM BladeCenter with IP SAN … [Read more...]