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vSphere ESXi 6.7 Unable to talk between subnets between hosts

Configuration was :

ESXi 6.7 – vSphere handling all the port groups tagged with VLANs

Firewall – CISCO ASA

 

Problem : New ESXi 6.7 hosts. A virtual machine if on the same host and vSwitch could communicate no problem. However if a virtual machince was communincating with another virtual machine on another host on a different, subnet they were unable to communicate between subnets and hosts. Both virtual machines could ping their local gateways. Firewall, CISCO ASA was just dropping all packets and showing the following error

Error on the Firewall when capturing ping traffic “No source port  on ping “Error (Type 8, Code 0), Denied ICMP type=8, code=0”

 

Solution

Sometimes its the simple tick box on the Firewall / ASA config

“Enable traffic between two or more interfaces which are configured with the same security levels”

All traffic started communicating and the virtual machines could talk between the subnets as per the rules on the Firewall.

Add VM Custom Annotation and Create a Report on Annotations

Add Custom Attributes for Notes Annotation
………………

A request to add custom attributes for Virtual Machines when using the fat client. (Web client in 5.1 and 5.5 requires a plugin, see “vsphere-web-client-plugin-for-custom”) 6.0 doesn’t see the attributes in the Web Client, 6.5 does, see the 6.5 KB.

Fields required : Applications, Company Name, Owner, Role, VM Cost

Code Below

Connect-VIServer VC6.test.domain
New-CustomAttribute -Name “Company Name” -TargetType VirtualMachine
New-CustomAttribute -Name “VM Cost” -TargetType VirtualMachine
New-CustomAttribute -Name “Role” -TargetType VirtualMachine
New-CustomAttribute -Name “Owner” -TargetType VirtualMachine
New-CustomAttribute -Name “Applications” -TargetType VirtualMachine
disconnect-VIServer VC6.test.domain -Confirm:$false

………………..

Add the details required

………………..

Bulk Virtual Machines Deployment and Zero Clicks Part 1

Add additional code code to add annotation in to the bulk script

$companyname = $item.companyname
$applications = $item.applications
$owner = $item.owner
$role = $item.role
$cost = $item.cost

#Get the Specification and set the Nic Mapping
New-OSCustomizationNicMapping -Spec $custspec -IpMode UseStaticIp –Position 1 -IpAddress $ipaddr -SubnetMask $subnet -DefaultGateway $gateway -Dns $pdns,$sdns

#Create VM using Template with the adjusted Customization Specification
New-VM -Name $vmname -Template $template -Datastore $datastore -VMHost $vmhost -ResourcePool $resourcepool | Set-VM -OSCustomizationSpec $custspec -Confirm:$false

#Set the Network Name
Get-VM -Name $vmname | Get-NetworkAdapter | Set-NetworkAdapter -NetworkName $vlan -Confirm:$false

#Set the CPU and Memory
Get-VM -Name $vmname | Set-VM -MemoryGB $ram -NumCPU $cpu -Confirm:$false

#Set some custom attribute fieds
#New-CustomAttribute -Name “VM Cost” -TargetType VirtualMachine
#New-CustomAttribute -Name “Role” -TargetType VirtualMachine
#New-CustomAttribute -Name “Owner” -TargetType VirtualMachine
#New-CustomAttribute -Name “Applications” -TargetType VirtualMachine

#Set annotation value for custom attributes
Set-Annotation -Entity $vmname -CustomAttribute “CompanyName” -Value “$companyname”
Set-Annotation -Entity $vmname -CustomAttribute “Applications” -Value “$applications”
Set-Annotation -Entity $vmname -CustomAttribute “Owner” -Value “$owner”
Set-Annotation -Entity $vmname -CustomAttribute “Role” -Value “$role”
Set-Annotation -Entity $vmname -CustomAttribute “VM Cost” -Value “$cost”

 

Reports

RV Tools can be used to produce an MS Excel file to output a list of virtual machines and custom annotations RV Tools download

………………

Alternative Report function used
https://psvmware.wordpress.com/tag/get-vm-annotation/

Function Code Below
(greg-get-annotations tested successfully in our lab)……………….

function greg-get-annotations {
<# .DESCRIPTION Greg-get-annotations function stores information about annotation fields for vms in given cluster or in all clusters in VC. It stores the result in an arraylist $vms, you can either create a csv report from this object or display it on screen greg-get-annotations |export-csv -NoTypeInformation c:\file1.csv will export it to csv file etc… greg-get-annotations |format-table VMname,Cluster,CreatedOn,Notes will just display on screen a table with annotations that include : vm name, its cluster and field “CreatedOn” and Notes   .PARAMETER clustername Specifies the clustername against wchi report will be built   .EXAMPLE greg-get-annotations -clustername ‘cluster01’|Export-Csv c:\annotation-report.csv Will procude report on vms that resides in ‘cluster01’ and store it in csv file   .EXAMPLE greg-get-annotations -clustername ‘cluster01’|ft * Will procude report on vms that resides in ‘cluster01’ output it to screen   .EXAMPLE greg-get-annotations |Export-Csv c:\annotation-report.csv Will procude report on vms that resides in all clusters and output it to screen   .EXAMPLE greg-get-annotations Without specified -clustername switch, it will do report regarding all clusters in VC   .NOTES AUTHOR: Grzegorz Kulikowski LASTEDIT: 05/30/2011     #>
param ([string]$clustername)
if(!($clustername)){$clusters=Get-Cluster}else{$clusters=Get-Cluster $clustername}
$VMs=New-Object Collections.ArrayList
foreach ($cluster in $clusters)  {
foreach ($vmview in (get-view -ViewType VirtualMachine -SearchRoot $cluster.id)) {
$vm=New-Object PsObject
Add-Member -InputObject $vm -MemberType NoteProperty -Name VMname -Value $vmview.Name
Add-Member -InputObject $vm -MemberType NoteProperty -Name Notes -Value $vmview.Config.Annotation
Add-Member -InputObject $vm -MemberType NoteProperty -Name Cluster -Value $cluster.Name
foreach ($CustomAttribute in $vmview.AvailableField){
Add-Member -InputObject $vm -MemberType NoteProperty -Name $CustomAttribute.Name -Value ($vmview.Summary.CustomValue | ? {$_.Key -eq $CustomAttribute.Key}).value
}
$VMs.add($vm)|Out-Null
}
}
return $VMs
}

greg-get-annotations |Export-Csv c:\annotation-report.csv

……………………………………..

CSV Out Put

 

 

Bulk Virtual Machines Deployment and Zero Clicks Part 1

A recent project revisited deploying virtual machines via PowerCli. Its fair to say this isn’t a new tool but sometimes over looked.

Part 1 /  Part 2

My requirements were to deploy :

  • 100+ virtual machines (within a few hours)
  • domain join all machines
  • license the OS
  • various virtual machine specifications
  • various Windows OS versions.
  • to two different data centers within a linked vCenter setup
  • to resource pools
  • to different data stores
  • to different networks

 

The constraints:

  • vSphere 6.0 update 2
  • no budget for third party automation tools
  • small window of opportunity to deploy the VMs

 

On the plus side there was:

o    Loads of available CPU and RAM
o    Large datastores presented
o    Subnets prepared
o    Stretched VLANs across Data Centers

 

The tools I used to the task

  • Excel (CSV)
  • Notepad++
  • PowerCLi

 

The CSV file example

# Example Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv

Template Datastore VMhost Custspec VMname IPaddress Subnet Gateway
2012_Template Storage1 ESXi.domain 2012_Spec test2003VL1 192.168.0.191 255.255.255.0 192.168.0.1
PDNS SDNS ResourcePool RAM CPU VLAN Size Format
192.168.0.10 127.0.0.1 resource1 2 2 VM Network 10 thin

 

The Script

# Automate the deployment of customised virtual machines deployed in vSphere 6.0. Tested against u2
#
# Prereq’s
# 1) Populate the a CSV file called Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv
# 2) Create a Windows Server template
# 3) Create a customization spec within vSphere for Windows
# 4) Run Bulk_VMs_Deploy.ps1 script via PowerCli as administrator (CSV file must be stored in the same location where the script is run from)
#
#https://blogs.vmware.com/PowerCLI/2015/03/powercli-6-0-introducing-powercli-modules.html
if ( !(Get-Module -Name VMware.VimAutomation.Core -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue) ) {

###### IMPORTANT, Check this file path is correct##########
. “C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\Infrastructure\PowerCLI\Scripts\Initialize-PowerCLIEnvironment.ps1”
}
Connect-VIServer VC6.test.domain
#connect to a VC. This also works with Linked VC’s
$vmlist = Import-CSV .\Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv
foreach ($item in $vmlist) {

#set variables to read from CSV
$template = $item.template
$datastore = $item.datastore
$vmhost = $item.vmhost
$custspec = $item.custspec
$vmname = $item.vmname
$ipaddr = $item.ipaddress
$subnet = $item.subnet
$gateway = $item.gateway
$pdns = $item.pdns
$sdns = $item.sdns
$resourcepool = $item.resourcepool
$cpu = $item.cpu
$ram = $item.ram
$vlan = $item.vlan
$size = $item.size
$format = $item.format

#Get the Specification and set the Nic Mapping
New-OSCustomizationNicMapping -Spec $custspec -IpMode UseStaticIp –Position 1 -IpAddress $ipaddr -SubnetMask $subnet -DefaultGateway $gateway -Dns $pdns,$sdns

#Create VM using Template with the adjusted Customization Specification
New-VM -Name $vmname -Template $template -Datastore $datastore -VMHost $vmhost -ResourcePool $resourcepool | Set-VM -OSCustomizationSpec $custspec -Confirm:$false

#Set the Network Name
Get-VM -Name $vmname | Get-NetworkAdapter | Set-NetworkAdapter -NetworkName $vlan -Confirm:$false

#Set the CPU and Memory
Get-VM -Name $vmname | Set-VM -MemoryGB $ram -NumCPU $cpu -Confirm:$false

#Additional Disk
#Get-VM -Name $vmname | New-HardDisk -CapacityGB $size -StorageFormat $format -Confirm:$false

#Remove the NicMapping
Get-OSCustomizationSpec $custspec | Get-OSCustomizationNicMapping | Remove-OSCustomizationNicMapping -Confirm:$false

#PowerOn VM
Start-VM $vmname

}
#Disconnect from VC.
disconnect-VIServer VC6.test.domain -Confirm:$false

 

 

Disclaimer Please take the code and evolve it into a different project? Credit / Tag me on your project Twitter #StephenHackers

Any use of this code is at your own risk. Remember bulk automation jobs require the right resources to be available.

This project & code was based on :
https://communities.vmware.com/thread/315193
Which progressed to : https://communities.vmware.com/thread/436734

Part 1 /  Part 2

Bulk Virtual Machines Deployment and Zero Clicks Part 2

Based on the CSV file used to create the VMs, re-use the CSV to control
Part 1 / Part 2

What else can I do now?

  • Delete Computer Objects from Active Directory
  • Bulk guest shutdown
  • Bulk power on virtual machines
  • Bulk power off virtual machines
  • Bulk Delete Virtual Machines from disk
  • Bulk change Computer Object OU

 

  • Delete Computer Objects from Active Directory

# Delete Computer Objects from Active Directory

$vmlist = Import-CSV .\Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv

foreach ($item in $vmlist) {

$template = $item.template
$datastore = $item.datastore
$vmhost = $item.vmhost
$custspec = $item.custspec
$vmname = $item.vmname
$ipaddr = $item.ipaddress
$subnet = $item.subnet
$gateway = $item.gateway
$pdns = $item.pdns
$resourcepool = $item.resourcepool

Remove-ADComputer -Identity $vmname -Confirm:$false

}

 

  • Bulk guest shutdown

# Guest power down is a gracefull shutdown of the VMs
# VM requires VMware Tools to be installed on the VMs

Connect-VIServer vc6.test.domain

$vmlist = Import-CSV .\Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv

foreach ($item in $vmlist) {

$template = $item.template
$datastore = $item.datastore
$vmhost = $item.vmhost
$custspec = $item.custspec
$vmname = $item.vmname
$ipaddr = $item.ipaddress
$subnet = $item.subnet
$gateway = $item.gateway
$pdns = $item.pdns
$resourcepool = $item.resourcepool

#Guest Shutdown VM
Shutdown-VMGuest $vmname
}
disconnect-VIServer vc6.test.domain -Confirm:$false

 

  • Bulk power on virtual machines

# Bulk power on virtual machines

Connect-VIServer vc6.test.domain

$vmlist = Import-CSV .\Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv

foreach ($item in $vmlist) {

$template = $item.template
$datastore = $item.datastore
$vmhost = $item.vmhost
$custspec = $item.custspec
$vmname = $item.vmname
$ipaddr = $item.ipaddress
$subnet = $item.subnet
$gateway = $item.gateway
$pdns = $item.pdns
$resourcepool = $item.resourcepool

# POWER ON vms
Start-VM $vmname
}
disconnect-VIServer vc6.test.domain

 

  • Bulk power off virtual machines

# Bulk Power OFF VMs (Big Button OFF the VMs)
Connect-VIServer vc6.test.domain

$vmlist = Import-CSV .\Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv

foreach ($item in $vmlist) {

$template = $item.template
$datastore = $item.datastore
$vmhost = $item.vmhost
$custspec = $item.custspec
$vmname = $item.vmname
$ipaddr = $item.ipaddress
$subnet = $item.subnet
$gateway = $item.gateway
$pdns = $item.pdns
$resourcepool = $item.resourcepool

#PowerOFF VM (Big Button OFF the VM)
Stop-VM $vmname -Confirm:$false

}

Disconnect-VIServer vc6.test.domain -Confirm:$false

 

  • Bulk Delete Virtual Machines from disk

# Delete Virtual Machines from disk
# VM should be already powered off

Connect-VIServer vc6.test.domain

$vmlist = Import-CSV .\Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csv

foreach ($item in $vmlist) {

$template = $item.template
$datastore = $item.datastore
$vmhost = $item.vmhost
$custspec = $item.custspec
$vmname = $item.vmname
$ipaddr = $item.ipaddress
$subnet = $item.subnet
$gateway = $item.gateway
$pdns = $item.pdns
$resourcepool = $item.resourcepool

Remove-VM -VM $vmname -DeleteFromDisk -Confirm:$false
}
disconnect-VIServer vc6.test.domain -Confirm:$false

 

  • Bulk change Computer Object OU#Move and AD Computer Object to a specific OU from a CSV file
    $vmlist = Import-CSV .\Bulk_VMs_Deploy.csvforeach ($item in $vmlist) {$template = $item.template
    $datastore = $item.datastore
    $vmhost = $item.vmhost
    $custspec = $item.custspec
    $vmname = $item.vmname
    $ipaddr = $item.ipaddress
    $subnet = $item.subnet
    $gateway = $item.gateway
    $pdns = $item.pdns
    $resourcepool = $item.resourcepoolGet-ADComputer $vmname|Move-ADObject -TargetPath “OU=VM,DC=TEST,DC=DOMAIN”
    }

 

Disclaimer Please take the code and evolve it into a different project? Credit / Tag me on your project Twitter #StephenHackers

Any use of this code is at your own risk. Remember bulk automation jobs require the right resources to be available.

Part 1 / Part 2

Learn NSX – VMware NSX for vSphere

Learn NSX – VMware NSX for vSphere -via Stephen Hackers Blog

Learn NSX – VMware NSX for vSphere

These are notes made during my study of VMware NSX for vSphere. Apologises if any of the detail is incorrect. Hopefully posts under “Learn NSX” help others to start learning about VMware NSX for vSphere.


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