VCSServiceManager not uninstalling



Summary:
So here is the scenario.  I'm uninstalling vCenter, but leaving SSO because I am testing something.  I go to upgrade SSO 5.5 to 6.0, I get an error of "Cannot start vCenter Service" or something close to that effect.  Uh ok, why?  vCenter Service isn't even there,  Turns out, my uninstallation of vCenter did not uninstall VCSServiceManager service properly and it now is stuck there.



Workaround:

  1. Visit this page from the affected system
    1. Make sure to add http://*.microsoft.com and https://*.microsoft.com to your trusted sites list in IE.
    2. If you don't, well, you'll likely end up in IE hell.
  2. Run FixIT and run through the wizard to have it remove the VCSServiceManager install.


Details:
The vCenter installation for 6.0, I guess, detects this VCSServiceManager and bombs on the upgrade even if it is just SSO.  So I'd run the uninstall manually and the entry wouldn't go away.  No interactive error, nothing.  Looking at event logs would show that the uninstall bombed w/ a MSI error of 1603.  Basically you have to debug it from what I read.

Then I was dealing w/ wonderful IE security while trying to run the above Microsoft FIXit app.  Once I got around that, it was able to successfully cleanup the stale/broken entry and SSO 5.5 to PSC 6.0 upgrade worked perfectly.

Outlook for Mac _underscores_ turn to italics?

I finally took the time to find and turn off this incredibly annoying 'feature' in Outlook.  Figured I'd post for anyone else loving this wonderful feature.  Honestly, 'most' people will probably not have this problem, but when working in the IT world, everything has an underscore.

  1. Outlook Preferences--> 
  2. AutoCorrect --> 
  3. AutoFormat
  4. Uncheck *Bold* and _italic_ with real formatting




NetApp VSC Performance

This is related to the 4.2.2 version.  Essentially, the JVM that is installed for the NetApp VSC, defaults to the following:

  1. Initial Heap Size : 64MB
  2. Max Heap Size: 1024MB
What does this mean?  It means that if you deploy a VM w/ 8GB of RAM to install VSC on, it will only EVER use 1GB of RAM.  The VSC (4.2.2) also tends to have performance issues when dealing w/ larger environments.  There is an article somewhere, but I can't find it for the life of me right now.  Anyway to fix this issue, you need to modify the wrapper.conf file.

This is typically in the installation directory of C:\Program Files\NetApp\Virtual Storage Console\wrapper\wrapper.conf

The lines you need to modify are:

# Initial Java Heap Size (in MB)
wrapper.java.initmemory=1024

# Maximum Java Heap Size (in MB)
wrapper.java.maxmemory=4096

Now you 'can' up the heap to 4GB max if you think it needs it, but I'd recommend looking @ "Active Memory" stats of the VM this VSC runs on to make sure it 'actually' needs that much.  I found in my environment (2000+ VM's), I didn't need to go above this number since it never breached more than 3.5GB.  Since it was staying steady around 3GB, I decided to change the initial heap to 3GB so it wouldn't have to keep building it up on startup.

Later version of VSC 'might' not have this same issue, but you can this same logic if it does.

Extra Note:
You may need to apply this to the NetApp SnapManager Service as well, that is located in:
C:\Program Files\NetApp\Virtual Storage Console\smvi\server\etc\wrapper.conf


vCenter Client for Mac/Linux!? No, not completely, but a most useful tool.


I was lucky enough to play w/ some early builds that Steve put together and now it's finally a 1.0 product.  I highly recommend downloading and playing with it in the very least.  It is a free download.

The one bug that I remember reporting, that doesn't appear to have been fixed yet though is that the client doesn't understand folders in the hosts & clusters view.  So if you have clusters/hosts in folders, it will not enumerate those in the client.  So it's rather useless to me currently, but should work fine for most people.

You can read more about it here:
http://www.doublecloud.net/product/ice.php
http://www.doublecloud.org/2015/03/doublecloud-ice-the-ide-for-managing-clouds/

Download here:
http://www.doublecloud.net/downloads.php

vSphere NFS Connection Status Alarm Auto-Remediation

One minor annoyance I had when moving to a new company was a load of alerts that were simply noise.  Not to anyone's fault, but simply poor default VMware implementation.

VMware comes packaged w/ an alert to notify when a storage path is down.  The problem is that, that's all it does.  So say you have the SNMP traps generated from that to create a ticket.  Great, now you have a ticket, but little did you know that the problem fixed itself via some failover method.

So now you have a ticket, you were woken up in the middle of the night for something that was benign.  Wouldn't it be great if another SNMP trap were sent that said "Hey, I'm ok now, close out the ticket"?

The assumption is that the SNMP trap collector, like HP's BSM/SiteScope tool, were smart enough to associate a trap to the same alarm.  Which, in my case, it does.  So here is how I redesigned an NFS alarm to send trap stating a problem and then having that alarm send a trap designating everything is ok.