Book Image

vCenter Troubleshooting

Book Image

vCenter Troubleshooting

Overview of this book

Table of Contents (16 chapters)
vCenter Troubleshooting
About the Author
About the Reviewers


vCenter is the main component of vSphere and also the primary interface that administrators use to set up, manage, and monitor the vSphere environment. It allows the user to dynamically provision new services, balance resources, and automate high availability.

vCenter Troubleshooting will show you how to approach some of the most common problems when vCenter is not working the way it should. It will also help you isolate the problems and then use a troubleshooting method to resolve the problems you are facing. We will cover the troubleshooting of vCenter areas such as SQL Database, single sign-on (SSO), password issues, monitoring, storage and configuration, and operations manager. We will then move onto grouping similar problems into logical sections, where the administrator can find solutions.

What this book covers

Chapter 1, vCenter Upgrades and Migrations, provides an understanding of the best practices and the typical steps when upgrading to vCenter 6.0. The chapter also addresses instances where an installation has started with SQL Express as the vCenter database, but there was a desire or need to upgrade to the full version on SQL Server. It shows the SQL Server upgrade steps. When installing the VCSA, there is usually a DCHP service for that installation, but if not, this chapter will show you how to deploy VCSA without a DCHP server. Further, it will also cover the migration process from the Windows-based (C#) vCenter to the VMware vCenter server appliance.

Chapter 2, Working with the vCenter Database, helps diagnose and fix connection problems between the vCenter server and the database that is used to keep the vSphere inventory. vCenter uses the database to keep track of all vSphere information and cannot function without it. The chapter will also help the administrator understand how to recover from an improper shutdown as it pertains to the database.

Chapter 3, Setting Access and Permissions, shows you how to reset or unlock the single sign-on password, which is essential to vCenter. This chapter will also cover the permission difference VCOps and vCenter and assist in the translation of permissions from vSphere to vCOps and how they work together. It will cover the relationship between Active Directory (AD) and vCenter and how to solve possible problems when connecting AD and vCenter.

Chapter 4, Monitoring and Performance Considerations, covers topics with operations manager and how it is used to monitor components of vSphere. It will show how Operations Manager can identify I/O-intensive virtual machines in your environment. The chapter will also explore how vCenter uses Java and how to configure it to obtain the best performance. The chapter will help the administrator correct the problem caused by changes made to vCenter that prevents performance information from being displayed.

Chapter 5, Working with Storage, deals with a select number of storage issues. It will show the administrator how to remove a LUN from multiple ESXi hosts. It will also help you troubleshoot and resolve the problem of snapshot files that are locked and cannot be deleted. It will also cover using vCenter operations for troubleshooting storage devices.

Chapter 6, Solving Some Not-so-common vCenter Issues, helps you fix the problem when no objects show up in your vCenter inventory. The chapter will also help resolve the error message VPXD must be stopped to perform this operation in the VCSA. Finally, the chapter will also show the administrator how to remove plugins that are no longer wanted in the vCenter environment.

Chapter 7, Backup and Recovery, helps the administrator plan for the worst. Protecting the vCenter environment is essential to prevent partial data loss, or a complete loss of the vSphere environment. This chapter will show you how to prepare and recover from this administrator's nightmare. It will show not only what to backup, but also the method you can use to perform the backup. Your backups are useless unless you can recover the information from them. It will also provide the guidance needed to perform a successful recovery.

Chapter 8, Additional Support Methods and Tools, shows the administrator how to use the vCenter support assistant to obtain quicker responses when problems are reported. It also provides information and links to some of the free tools used to support the vSphere environment.

Chapter 9, Troubleshooting Methods, puts together a standard workflow to be used to help solve problems that might arise in your environment. Part of finding a resolution is having an approach that helps you discover and isolate the cause of the problem. Using the workflows will also help collect the information needed for you to resolve the problem yourself or submit the problem to a support service.

What you need for this book

The reader should have a basic understanding of the following concepts, which are integral to the implementation and management of vSphere:

  • LAN and WAN networking

  • Storage

  • Server Hardware

  • Microsoft Active Directory

  • Microsoft Windows Server (2008 and/or 2012)

  • VMware vCenter

  • VMware vSphere along with basic administration

  • VMware vCops (vRealize)

The following software applications are required to implement the solutions described in this book:

Who this book is for

This book is for vSphere administrators who understand that troubleshooting vCenter can be frustrating and in some cases downright difficult. The vSphere Enterprise infrastructure is made up of complex pieces of both hardware and software. The contents of this book will not only help you isolate the problem you are facing, but will also help you use a troubleshooting workflow to get a resolution. The focus of this book is vCenter, configuration manager, and operations troubleshooting. This book will give you the problem-solving methods to build confidence in dealing with the day-to-day problems an administrator might encounter in the vSphere environment.


In this book, you will find a number of styles of text that distinguish between different kinds of information. Here are some examples of these styles, and an explanation of their meaning.

Code words in text, database table names, folder names, filenames, file extensions, pathnames, dummy URLs, user input, and Twitter handles are shown as follows: "Run regedit again and move to HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\ and remove the old service values from SQL Express from the DependOnService Multi string found in the vCenter services."

A block of code is set as follows:

com.rsa.db.instance=RSA. (your RSA instance dbname is)
com.rsa.db.msserverinstance= . (Leave empty when using the default MSSQLSERVER instance on the target server)
com.rsa.db.hostname=destinationSQL server.

Any command-line input or output is written as follows:

vi /etc/sysconfig/networking/devices/ifcfg-eth0

New terms and important words are shown in bold. Words that you see on the screen, in menus or dialog boxes for example, appear in the text like this: "Navigate to Start | Run, type regedit, and then click on OK."


Warnings or important notes appear in a box like this.


Tips and tricks appear like this.

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