RVTools 3.7

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RVTools

RVTools is a windows .NET 2.0 application which uses the VI SDK to display information about your virtual machines and ESX hosts. Interacting with VirtualCenter 2.5, ESX Server 3.5, ESX Server 3i, VirtualCenter 4.x, ESX Server 4.x, VirtualCenter 5.0, VirtualCenter Appliance, ESX Server 5.0, VirtualCenter 5.1, ESX Server 5.1, VirtualCenter 5.5, ESX Server 5.5. RVTools is able to list information about VMs, CPU, Memory, Disks, Partitions, Network, Floppy drives, CD drives, Snapshots, VMware tools, Resource pools, Clusters, ESX hosts, HBAs, Nics, Switches, Ports, Distributed Switches, Distributed Ports, Service consoles, VM Kernels, Datastores, Multipath info and health checks. With RVTools you can disconnect the cd-rom or floppy drives from the virtual machines and RVTools is able to update the VMware Tools installed inside each virtual machine to the latest version.

Version 3.7 (March, 2015)

VI SDK reference changed from 5.0 to 5.5
Extended the timeout value from 10 to 20 minutes for really big environments
New field VM Folder on vCPU, vMemory, vDisk, vPartition, vNetwork, vFloppy, vCD, vSnapshot and vTools tabpages
On vDisk tabpage new Storage IO Allocation Information
On vHost tabpage new fields: service tag (serial #) and OEM specific string
On vNic tabpage new field: Name of (distributed) virtual switch
On vMultipath tabpage added multipath info for path 5, 6, 7 and 8
On vHealth tabpage new health check: Multipath operational state
On vHealth tabpage new health check: Virtual machine consolidation needed check
On vInfo tabpage new fields: boot options, firmware and Scheduled Hardware Upgrade Info
On statusbar last refresh date time stamp
On vhealth tabpage: Search datastore errors are now visible as health messages
You can now export the csv files separately from the command line interface (just like the xls export)
You can now set a auto refresh data interval in the preferences dialog box
All datetime columns are now formatted as yyyy/mm/dd hh:mm:ss
The export dir / filenames now have a formated datetime stamp yyyy-mm-dd_hh:mm:ss
Bug fix: on dvPort tabpage not all networks are displayed
Overall improved debug information
Download link: http://robware.net/index.php/register

Documentation: http://robware.net/download/RVTools.pdf

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Installing Disk Cleanup In Windows 2008 Without Rebooting The Server

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The Disk Cleanup executable file cleanmgr.exe and the associated Disk Cleanup button are not present in Windows Server® 2008 or in Windows Server® 2008 R2 by default. This is by design, as the Disk Cleanup button is part of the Desktop Experience feature. In order to have Disk Cleanup button appear on a disk’s Properties dialog, you will need to install the Desktop Experience feature.

So in order to use cleanmgr.exe you’ll need to copy two files that are already present on the server, cleanmgr.exe and cleanmgr.exe.mui. Use the following table to locate the files for your operating system.

Windows Server 2008 R2 64 bit

C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr_31bf3856ad364e35_6.1.7600.16385_none_c9392808773cd7da\cleanmgr.exe

Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit

C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_6.1.7600.16385_en-us_b9cb6194b257cc63\cleanmgr.exe.mui

Windows Server 2008 64-bit

C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_en-us_b9f50b71510436f2\cleanmgr.exe.mui

Windows Server 2008 64-bit

C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_none_c962d1e515e94269\cleanmgr.exe.mui

Windows Server 2008 32-bit

C:\Windows\winsxs\x86_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_en-us_5dd66fed98a6c5bc\cleanmgr.exe.mui

Windows Server 2008 32-bit

C:\Windows\winsxs\x86_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_none_6d4436615d8bd133\cleanmgr.exe
Once you’ve located the files move them to the following locations:

1. Cleanmgr.exe should go in %systemroot%\System32

2. Cleanmgr.exe.mui should go in %systemroot%\System32\en-US

You can now launch the Disk cleanup tool by running Cleanmgr.exe from the command prompt or by clicking Start and typing Cleanmgr into the Search bar.

 

Dcdiag Overview

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Dcdiag.exe: Domain Controller Diagnostic Tool

The Dcdiag command-line tool is included when you install Windows Server 2003 Support Tools from the product CD or from the Microsoft Download Center

This command-line tool analyzes the state of domain controllers in a forest or enterprise and reports any problems to assist in troubleshooting. As an end-user reporting program, Dcdiag encapsulates detailed knowledge of how to identify abnormal behavior in the system. Dcdiag displays command output at the command line.

Dcdiag consists of a framework for executing tests and a series of tests to verify different functional areas of the system. This framework selects which domain controllers are tested according to scope directives from the user, such as enterprise, site, or single server.

All domain controllers in the same domain are peers of one another and any domain controller can make directory updates.

However, given the way in which directory updates are replicated from one domain controller to another, it is possible that difficulties can arise. For example, if the necessary domain controllers are not connected by a replication topology, the appropriate domain controllers do not receive directory updates when replication occurs.

Also, in order for the (Domain Controller) Locator to find a domain controller, it must have accurate information so that it can properly locate the resource. If a domain controller is incorrectly advertised, the Locator is unable to find it.

Restart the domain controller in Directory Services Restore Mode locally

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If you have physical access to a domain controller, you can restart the domain controller in Directory Services Restore Mode locally. Restarting in Directory Services Restore Mode takes the domain controller offline. In this mode, the server is not functioning as a domain controller.

When you start Windows Server 2003 in Directory Services Restore Mode, the local Administrator account is authenticated by the local Security Accounts Manager (SAM) database. Therefore, logging on requires that you use the local administrator password, not an Active Directory domain password. This password is set during Active Directory installation when you provide the password for Directory Services Restore Mode.

Administrative credentials

To perform this procedure, you must provide the Administrator password for Directory Services Restore Mode.

To restart the domain controller in Directory Services Restore Mode locally

  1. Restart the domain controller.
  2. When the screen for selecting an operating system appears, press F8.
  3. On the Windows Advanced Options menu, select Directory Services Restore Mode.
  4. When you are prompted, log on as the local administrator.

Change the static IP address of a domain controller

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Administrative Credentials

To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Domain Admins group in the domain of the domain controller whose IP address you are changing.

To change the static IP address of a domain controller

  1. Log on locally (also known as interactively) to the system console of the domain controller whose IP address you want to change. If you are not able to log on to the domain controller by using the domain, you may have to start the domain controller in Directory Services Restore Mode (DSRM). For more information, see Restart the domain controller in Directory Services Restore Mode locally (https://lazyadminblog.wordpress.com/2015/04/11/restart-the-domain-controller-in-directory-services-restore-mode-locally/).

On the desktop, right-click My Network Places, and then click Properties.

  1. In theNetwork Connections dialog box, right-click Local Area Connection, and then click Properties.
  2. In theLocal Area Connection Properties dialog box, double-click Internet Protocol (TCP/IP).
  3. In theInternet Protocol (TCP/IP) Properties dialog box, in the IP address box, type the new address.
  4. In theSubnet mask box, type the subnet mask.
  5. In theDefault gateway box, type the default gateway.
  6. In thePreferred DNS server box, type the address of the DNS server that this computer contacts.
  7. In theAlternate DNS server box, type the address of the DNS server that this computer contacts if the preferred server is unavailable.
  8. If this domain controller uses WINS servers, clickAdvanced and then, in the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box, click the WINS
  9. If an address in the list is no longer appropriate, click the address, and then clickEdit.
  10. In theTCP/IP WINS Server dialog box, type the new address, and then click OK.
  11. Repeat steps 11 and 12 for all addresses that need to be changed, and then clickOK twice to close the TCP/IP WINS Server dialog box and the Advanced TCP/IP Settings dialog box.
  12. ClickOK to close the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) Properties dialog box.

After you change the IP address of a domain controller, you should run the ipconfig /registerdns command to register the host record and dcdiag /fix command to ensure that service records are appropriately registered with DNS. For more information, see Dcdiag Overview and subordinate topics for additional information about the Dcdiag tool (https://lazyadminblog.wordpress.com/2015/04/11/dcdiag-overview/).

Changing the IP settings of a server does not affect the share resources or shared permissions on that server, if the name resolution structure DNS and WINS settings are correctly configured. However, if network drives or passive connections (connections that are made manually from a command prompt or run line) are mapped using the IP address, an update is required. For example, if a client computer has G: drive mapped using the following command net use g: \\192.168.0.199\data and the IP address of the server that hosts the Data shared folder is changed from 192.168.0.199 to 192.168.1.200, the new G: drive mapping command should be changed to net use g: \\192.168.1.200\data. A better solution would be to ensure that DNS name resolution is working properly and to use the server name, as opposed to the IP address, in the command. For example, if the server name is DC1, the command to map a G: drive to the Data share on the server is net use g: \\dc1\data. It changes only if the server name changes; it is not affected if the IP address of the server changes.

Using esxtop to identify storage performance issues for ESX / ESXi (multiple versions) (1008205)

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The interactive esxtop utility can be used to provide I/O metrics over various devices attached to a VMware ESX host.

Configuring monitoring using esxtop

 To monitor storage performance per HBA:

  1. Start esxtop by typing esxtop at the command line.
  2. Press d to switch to disk view (HBA mode).
  3. To view the entire Device name, press SHIFT + L and enter 36 in Change the name field size.
  4. Press f to modify the fields that are displayed.
  5. Press b, c, d, e, h, and j to toggle the fields and press Enter.
  6. Press s and then to alter the update time to every 2 seconds and press Enter.
  7. See Analyzing esxtop columns for a description of relevant columns. For more information, see Interpreting esxtop Statistics.

Note: These options are available only in VMware ESX 3.5 and later.

To monitor storage performance on a per-LUN basis:

  1. Start esxtop by typing esxtop from the command line.
  2. Press u to switch to disk view (LUN mode).
  3. Press f to modify the fields that are displayed.
  4. Press b, c, f, and h to toggle the fields and press Enter.
  5. Press s and then 2 to alter the update time to every 2 seconds and press Enter.
  6. See Analyzing esxtop columns for a description of relevant columns. For more information, see Interpreting esxtop Statistics.

To increase the width of the device field in esxtop to show the complete naa id:

  1. Start esxtop by typing esxtop at the command line.
  2. Press u to switch to the disk device display.
  3. Press L to change the name field size.Note: Ensure to use uppercase L.
  4. Enter the value 36 to display the complete naa identifier.

To monitor storage performance on a per-virtual machine basis:

  1. Start esxtop by typing esxtop at the command line.
  2. Type v to switch to disk view (virtual machine mode).
  3. Press f to modify the fields that are displayed.
  4. Press b, d, e, h, and j to toggle the fields and press Enter.
  5. Press s and then 2 to alter the update time to every 2 seconds and press Enter.
  6. See Analyzing esxtop columns for a description of relevant columns. For more information, see Interpreting esxtop Statistics.

 

Analyzing esxtop columns

Refer to this table for relevant columns and descriptions of these values:

Column  Description
CMDS/s This is the total amount of commands per second and includes IOPS (Input/Output Operations Per Second) and other SCSI commands such as SCSI reservations, locks, vendor string requests, unit attention commands etc. being sent to or coming from the device or virtual machine being monitored.In most cases, CMDS/s = IOPS unless there are a lot of metadata operations (such as SCSI reservations)
DAVG/cmd This is the average response time in milliseconds per command being sent to the device.
KAVG/cmd This is the amount of time the command spends in the VMkernel.
GAVG/cmd This is the response time as it is perceived by the guest operating system. This number is calculated with the formula: DAVG + KAVG = GAVG

These columns are for both reads and writes, whereas xAVG/rd is for reads and xAVG/wr is for writes. The combined value of these columns is the best way to monitor performance, but high read or write response time it may indicate that the read or write cache is disabled on the array. All arrays perform differently, however, DAVG/cmd, KAVG/cmd, and GAVG/cmd should not exceed more than 10 milliseconds (ms) for sustained periods of time.

Note: VMware ESX 3.0.x does not include direct functionality to monitor individual LUNs or virtual machines using esxtop. Inactive LUNs lower the average for DAVG/cmd, KAVG/cmd, and GAVG/cmd. These values are also visible from the vCenter Server performance charts. For more information, see the Performance Charts section in the Basic System Administration Guide.

If you experience high latency times, investigate current performance metrics and running configuration for the switches and the SAN targets. Check for errors or logging that may suggest a delay in operations being sent to, received, and acknowledged. This includes the array’s ability to process I/O from a spindle count aspect, or the array’s ability to handle the load presented to it.

If the response time increases to over 5000 ms (or 5 seconds), VMware ESX will time out the command and abort the operation. These events are logged; abort messages and other SCSI errors can be reviewed in these logs:

  • ESX 3.5 and 4.x – /var/log/vmkernel
  • ESXi 3.5 and 4.x – /var/log/messages 
  • ESXi 5.x and later – /var/log/vmkernel.log

The type of storage logging you may see in these files depends on the configuration of the server. You can find the value of these options by navigating to Host > Configuration > Advanced Settings > SCSI > SCSI.Log* or SCSI.Print*.

Connecting to a virtual machine console fails with the error: The VMRC Console has Disconnected. Trying to reconnect (2050470)

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Error: The VMRC Console has Disconnected.. Trying to reconnect

If this happens, then the VM will not be reachble on the network and you cannot see black screen on the VM console.

To fix this, kill the vmware-vmrc.exe*32 service from Windows Task Manager and then open the console again.