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vCenter Troubleshooting

Book Description

Resolve some of the most commonly faced vCenter problems with the use of this troubleshooting guide

In Detail

vCenter is the main component of vSphere and also the primary interface that administrators use to set up, manage, and monitor the vSphere environment.

This book will show you how to solve some common problems you face with vCenter. We will cover troubleshooting of vCenter areas such as SQL databases, single sign-on (SSO), password issues, monitoring, storage and configuration, and operations management. We then move onto grouping the problems into logical sections where the administrator can find the issues. One of the more important discussion points is around backup and recovery of vCenter.

The later sections of the book describe problems you could face and the solutions when it comes to the vCenter database.

What You Will Learn

  • Find out the importance of single sign-on passwords

  • Learn how to remove unwanted plugins from the vSphere environment

  • Diagnose and fix connection problems between vCenter server and the database that is used to keep the vSphere inventory

  • Understand storage problems such as how to remove a LUN from multiple ESXi hosts

  • Get knowledge on how to move your current C# (Windows) based vCenter appliance

  • Implement the components of vCenter and gain an understanding of how they can be configured to obtain the best performance

  • Explore how to recover an administrator's nightmare by knowing what to back up and how to recover it

  • Familiarize yourself with a troubleshooting approach and standard workflow that will help you discover the cause of many problems and find quick resolutions

  • Downloading the example code for this book. You can download the example code files for all Packt books you have purchased from your account at If you purchased this book elsewhere, you can visit and register to have the files e-mailed directly to you.

    Table of Contents

    1. vCenter Troubleshooting
      1. Table of Contents
      2. vCenter Troubleshooting
      3. Credits
      4. About the Author
      5. About the Reviewers
        1. Support files, eBooks, discount offers, and more
          1. Why subscribe?
          2. Free access for Packt account holders
          3. Instant updates on new Packt books
      7. Preface
        1. What this book covers
        2. What you need for this book
        3. Who this book is for
        4. Conventions
        5. Reader feedback
        6. Customer support
          1. Errata
          2. Piracy
          3. Questions
      8. 1. vCenter Upgrades and Migrations
        1. Best practices for upgrading to vCenter Server
          1. Verifying basic compatibility before upgrading the vCenter Server
          2. Preparing the database before the upgrade
          3. Verifying network prerequisites before upgrading
          4. Verifying whether ODBC communicates with the database
          5. Verifying whether time is synchronized across the vSphere environment
        2. New and updated information in vSphere 6
          1. Platform Services Controller (PSC)
          2. vCenter Server Appliance
          3. vSphere web client
          4. vSphere Client
          5. Steps for upgrading vCenter
        3. Migrating vCenter from SQL Express to SQL Server
          1. Migrating the SSO database
          2. Migrating the vCenter database
          3. Changing the vCenter ODBC connection
          4. Recreating the SQL jobs
        4. Deploying vCenter Server Appliance with no DHCP server
        5. Upgrading from Windows vCenter 5.1 to vCenter Server Appliance
        6. Summary
      9. 2. Working with the vCenter Database
        1. Changing the vCenter database location
        2. Growing the vCenter Server database
        3. Reinitializing the vCenter Server database
        4. Fixing the vCenter Server service and database connection issues
        5. Recovering from an improper shutdown of VCSA
        6. Resolving low and no space problems
          1. Low space problems
          2. Problems with no space
        7. Resources for other database issues
        8. Summary
      10. 3. Setting Access and Permissions
        1. Introducing vCenter Single Sign-On
        2. Unlocking and resetting the SSO administrator password
          1. vCenter SSO Version 5.1
          2. Resetting the administrator password with VCSA 5.1
          3. vCenter Single Sign-On for version 5.5
          4. Resetting the administrator password when using VCSA 5.6
          5. Expired passwords in vSphere 5.1
          6. VMware vCenter server 5.5 U1c release SSO and VCAC
          7. Updating the VCSA from a zipped update bundle
          8. Updating the VCSA from the CD-ROM drive
        3. Adding additional Active Directory authentication in vCenter SSO 5.5
        4. Permissions for vCenter and vCenter Operations Manager
        5. Tips for troubleshooting vCenter permissions
        6. Summary
      11. 4. Monitoring and Performance Considerations
        1. Overview of disk I/O performance
          1. Getting ESXi host and VM disk I/O information
          2. Getting information using the vSphere client
          3. Getting information using the service console ESXi Shell
        2. Pinpointing the most I/O-intensive virtual machines
          1. Other items to increase disk I/O performance
        3. Changing Java memory usage for performance
          1. Changing the Java heap setting for vCenter
          2. Making changes to the vCenter inventory services
          3. Making changes to the profile-driven storage services
        4. Fixing issues with performance data that do not appear in vCenter
          1. Method 1 – Log in to the ESXi host directly using the vSphere Client
          2. Method 2 – Restart the management agent using the Direct Console User Interface
        5. Summary
      12. 5. Working with Storage
        1. Deleting virtual machine snapshots that have locked files
          1. Troubleshooting the locked files
            1. Removing the file from a backup virtual appliance
            2. Performing the Delete All action from the Snapshot Manager
            3. Restarting the management agents
            4. Moving the Virtual Machine and rebooting the host
        2. Unmounting a LUN from ESXi hosts
          1. Unmounting a LUN using the vSphere Client
          2. Unmounting a LUN using the command line
          3. Automating datastores detaching with PowerCLI
        3. Using vCenter operations for troubleshooting storage devices
          1. Installing the Management Pack
          2. Installing the Management Pack in the vCOps vApp
          3. Installing the Management Pack in the vCOps Standalone Installation
          4. Performing the Management Pack installation procedure
          5. Installing Management Pack Dashboards in a standalone environment
          6. Adding a credential to the Management Pack
        4. Summary
      13. 6. Solving Some Not-so-common vCenter Issues
        1. Solving the problem of no objects in vCenter
        2. Fixing the VPXD must be stopped to perform this operation message
        3. Removing unwanted plugins in vSphere
        4. Summary
      14. 7. Backup and Recovery
        1. Procedure for backing up vCenter SSO 5.5
          1. Creating a backup of Windows registry keys
          2. Creating a backup of the VMware Inventory Service Database
          3. Restoring the vCenter SSO 5.5 configuration
            1. Restoring from a vCenter SSO 5.5 full operating system-level backup
            2. Restoring from a vCenter 5.5 database backup
        2. Summary
      15. 8. Additional Support Methods and Tools
        1. VMware vCenter Support Assistant
        2. Requirements for the vCenter Support Assistant
          1. Hardware
          2. Networking
        3. Installing and configuring the vCenter Support Assistant
        4. VMware Labs Flings
          1. The Latency Sensitivity Troubleshooting Tool
          2. The VM Resource and Availability Service
          3. The I/O Analyzer
          4. InventorySnapshot
        5. Finding resources to support your VMware environment
        6. Summary
      16. 9. Troubleshooting Methods
        1. Troubleshooting workflow
          1. A questionable incident is discovered
          2. Does the incident have a negative impact?
          3. Understand the incident to document the impact
          4. Is it possible to isolate the incident?
          5. Remove unrelated variables
          6. Are you able to repeat the incident?
          7. Attempt to reproduce and record variables
          8. Record relevant information
          9. Can the cause be found and corrected?
          10. Submitting the problem to the customer support team
          11. Close and document
        2. Summary
      17. Index