Setup Synology Syslog server for VMware ESXi

After performing my home lab upgrade, ESXi now runs from a USB stick and because of that vSphere would complain that the system logs where on non-persistent storage:

ESXi syslog error

If I wanted I could have ran the vCenter Server Appliance (vCSA) as it comes with it’s own syslog server, or I could have used something like KIWI or Splunk to be my syslog server. I instead went the route of my Synology NAS as it too has the ability to act as a syslog server and these are the steps I performed to setting it up.

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Become a VMware Certified Associate for FREE!

  • VMware
  • 10 comments

During the San Francisco VMworld 2013, VMware announced the start of their new VMware Certified Associate certifications.

There’s no training class requirement for the new exams although VMware offers a free self-paced e-learning course which is recommended to help you prepare for the exams. The exams normally run $120.00 but VMware is currently running a $60.00 discount for those who take the exam in 2013. NTPRO.nl has an additional coupon code (VCA13ICS) to take the remaining $60.00 off making the exam FREE!

VCA Exam for free

The VCA13ICS coupon code expires on October 30, 2013!

Update:
Global Knowledge also has a coupon code (VCA13GKN) which does not expire until January 31, 2014. Limit one free exam per individual!


VMware vSphere Client Download

  • VMware
  • 2 comments

vmware vsphere client download

So VMware hasn’t exactly made it easy to locate the vSphere client download and given the clients importance in managing your VMware environment I’ve compiled a list of the direct download links for both old and new vSphere clients.

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Easy ESXi 5.5 upgrade via command line

  • VMware
  • 17 comments

ESXi 5.5 was just released general availability (GA) on Sunday (9/22) and I’m itching to upgrade the home lab to run the latest version with all it’s goodies. I wanted to try upgrading my hosts without having to go through the same process that I followed setting up ESXi on the NUC in the first place, injecting custom NIC drivers, etc.

Enter the command line…

  1. Move all VM’s from the host and then put the host into Maintenance Mode.
  2. Go to the Configuration tab > Security Profile and Enable SSH under Services.
    ssh enabled
  3. Under Firewall, enable httpClient (outbound http).
    httpClient enable
  4. Open PuTTY (or other SSH client) and SSH into your host.
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VMware ESXi 5 home lab upgrade

In the past I’ve been using a single server to run my VMware ESXi home lab. it was slow, old, big and loud. I’ve been meaning to upgrade my home lab for a while and just never got around to it, until now! When looking for new hardware I wanted the servers to be as compact as possible, quiet, and low energy usage as possible while still having some horsepower.

I debated on going the whitebox solution as I build all my own desktops anyway, I also looked at several other solutions such as the HP ML310e server, Shuttle XH61V barebones machine, but ultimately decided to go with two Intel NUC i5’s.

Intel NUC i5 and 16GB ram

Intel NUC i5 DC53427HYE Features:

  • Uses very little energy
  • Completely quiet
  • Supports up to 16GB RAM
  • A dual core CPU that scores nearly 3,600 in PassMark benchmarking
  • Includes vPro which allows me to easily run both NUC’s headless
  • Extremely small, nearly 4 1/2″ inch square footprint

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ESXi 5.5 free edition removes 32GB memory limit

There have been a ton of exciting announcements coming out of VMword 2013, one of which is vSphere 5.5 and all of it’s improvements and additions. Along that note, VMware has changed ESXi 5.5 free version to remove the physical RAM limit which was limited to only 32GB in version 5.1.

The new virtual hardware, version 10, we can now grow our home labs into more powerful VM’s as most all configuration maximums have been doubled:

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