Month: July 2019

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Hello readers,

This is part two on my multi-part series of posts where I explain how I deploy my Horizon Lab. You can view part one here.

In the last part, we finished with my working PowerCLI script to deploy three ESXi VMs. Now, we will install the three VMs.

We start by booting it up until we are given the welcome screen:

We press F11 to accept the End User License Agreement.

Select the drive that you want to install ESXi on, and press enter to continue.

Select your keyboard layout and press enter.

Type in a password to use for the root user.

You may get this screen when running on older hardware.

You may get this screen. I do, since I am running this on older hardware. This error means that in future versions, your current CPU may not be supported. Press enter to continue.

Press F11 to install and wait for the installation to finish.

The installation is finished! Press enter to reboot, and depending on how many other VMs there are left to install, you will have to do this a few more times. (in my case two more times)

After repeating it two more times, we can now mount our vCenter Server Appliance ISO and go through the deployment steps.

On a sidenote, if you are doing this nested like I do, please make sure to double check the security settings of the vPortGroup or dvPortGroup:

We start by mounting our vCenter ISO. After that (On Windows), start with installer by going to the vcsa-ui-installer folder and then open the win32 folder, and run installer.exe

We are greeted with this screen. In our case, we want to install the appliance, so we click on install.

On the deployment type, go with “vCenter Server with an Embedded Platform Services Controller.”

Fill in the information of the ESXi machine that you want to install vCenter on. In this case, I have chosen for the first VM of my Horizon lab.

You will get a pop-up, click yes to accept the certificate.

Give the virtual machine a name, and give it a root password.

Select the deployment size. For this lab, Tiny will be sufficient.

Select the datastore that you want to use, and enable Tiny Disk Mode. This will allow you to install the appliance on a datastore that does not have enough space for the 300GB thick provisioned drive.

In here, select what network you want the virtual machine to be on. Also, select if you want to use IPv4 or IPv6 and give it a static IP, or choose to let a DHCP server assign it an IP.

Review the information that you have filled in. If you are happy with it, press Finish to start the first stage of the installation.

Now that the installation is done, we can continue and configure vCenter. Let’s do that next shall we?

You can manually visit vCenter in your webbrowser (https://ip-or-fqdn:5480/) or do this directly from the installer. Click on set-up and login with your root username and password that you set during the installation.

Click on next to start the configuration.

In here, you can configure networking, time synchronization and SSH access. In my case, all settings are what I want.

Here you configure the SSO domain. This is the vCenter domain that will be used to login. The default is vsphere.local (later you can configure AD authentication if you wish.)

In this screen, you can opt-in or opt-out of VMware’s Customer Experience Improvement Program.

Verify your settings and click on finish to start the configuration process. Please do keep in mind that this takes a while.

That was it! Part two of the series is finished, we successfully installed the ESXi hosts and deployed vCenter. In the next part, we will be deploying the virtual machines for Horizon.

Thank you for reading and see you next time.

Hello readers,

In this first part of my blog post series, where I will be talking about setting up my Horizon Lab, which is creating the Virtual Machines and the sub network.

I started by calculating on what I will need, this is what I was thinking:

  • 6 cores/18GB RAM/200GB Space –> ESXi 1
  • 6 cores/18GB RAM/200GB Space –> ESXi 2
  • 6 cores/18GB RAM/200GB Space –> ESXi 3
  • 1 core/512MB RAM/2GB Space –> NSX Edge

First, I set-up a Logical Switch and a NSX Edge, like so:

After that, I started to create the virual machines. When I had the idea of just manually creating three VMs, I thought to myself: “This is an advanced platform. We can do better than this.” So, I made one virtual machine, configured the hardware like it should be, and then I turned it into a template:

After that, I fired up PowerShell and wrote this PowerCLI script:

New-VM -vmhost -Name ESXi01 -Template "VMware ESXi" -Datastore "HDD 2"
New-VM -vmhost -Name ESXi02 -Template "VMware ESXi" -Datastore "HDD 2"
New-VM -vmhost -Name ESXi03 -Template "VMware ESXi" -Datastore "HDD 2"

It worked great, in part two I will be installing the VMs and deploying vCenter.

Thank you for reading this and I will see you in part two.

Applied for vExpert

July 12, 2019 | vExpert, VMware | No Comments

Hi readers,

You might have heard of it, the VMware vExpert program. It is a program that I have been looking at since I started playing with virtualization, and I especially started to look into it when I became a VMware fan.

If you don’t know what the VMware vExpert program is, here is an explanation from VMware’s site:
“The VMware vExpert program is VMware’s global evangelism and advocacy program. The program is designed to put VMware’s marketing resources towards your advocacy efforts. Promotion of your articles, exposure at our global events, co-op advertising, traffic analysis, and early access to beta programs and VMware’s roadmap. The awards are for individuals, not companies, and last for one year. Employees of both customers and partners can receive the awards. In the application, we consider various community activities from the previous year as well as the current year’s (only for 2nd half applications) activities in determining who gets awards. We look to see that not only were you active but are still active in the path you chose to apply for.”

Now that I have this blog, and now that I am writing tutorials for wikis, I decided to give it a go and apply to be a VMware vExpert.

I will update this post when the results are there, I’m excited to see how it goes.

Thank you for reading and see you next time.

Hi readers,

Tomorrow I’m getting a 2TB drive that I can put in my server. I plan to use it for an apt mirror, and to run a test environment on it for VMware Horizon.

It has been a while since I have used VMware Horizon, so I hope that my memory won’t let me down. If it does, then there’s always the documentation… (and YouTube).

For a short while it will also be used for my to make screenshots of VMware tutorials that I write for Hetzner’s wiki. I’ve written a vCenter and NSX one, and I’m almost done with the screenshots for the vCenter PR. The NSX tutorial does not have a PR yet.

On that note, currently I am working on two blog posts. One is about my adventure with NSX, and the other post is about BGP, and how I peer with HE to use my own IPv6 subnet at home.

Stay tuned for that! I will update this blog post when the drive arrived and when it’s installed.

Thanks you for reading this post.

UPDATE 09/07/2019: Hard drive got delayed in shipping, have to wait another day.

UPDATE2 09/07/2019: ProLiant Dl380G6s and Seagate drives don’t work well.. Getting a new one on 12/07/2019

UPDATE 12/07/2019: The new drive (WD Blue) has arrived and it is working great!:

Server update: it’s all (almost) set-up

July 1, 2019 | BGP, VMware | No Comments

Hi readers,

Welcome to this server update post. I’ve made some changes to the system, and it’s almost done! Sadly, right now it’s come of a stop, because of lack of storage space.

It’s not a big update. Hardware-wise, nothing changed. I am planning to go 10 gigabit though, whenever I have more monthly income, because with what I earn right now, it would me impossible.

VM-wise, I added a virtual machine for peering with a Virtual Internet Exchange. Currently I am working on my own Virtual Internet Exchange, which would be for people who want to learn BGP, routing and more.

Sadly, the thing holding me back from expanding (A Horizon lab, Steam Cache and apt mirror), is that I am out of storage space.

In the server, there are two 500GB SSDs that I already had. Both come from my old servers. There is a second 320GB HDD in there, a very old one, that I put in as an emergency. The server only takes 2,5″ drives, so I’m limited to that. It supports SAS, but I have all SATA disks in them, since SAS drives are too expensive for me. I’m trying to get a 2TB SATA drive, which hopefully I will be able to buy in August or September.

Stay tuned, there will still be blog posts, I have one planned for my GNS3 lab, and a to-do post where I will explain what I’m saving up for and trying to get.

Thank you for reading this and see you soon.