Dell-EMC-VMware Event: Star Wars: The Last Jedi – Let The Transformation Begin

Dell-EMC-VMware Event:

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

“Let The Transformation Begin”



Dell EMC and VMware invite you to Star Wars: The Last Jedi. Watch our heroes transform and learn about the future of digital transformation with the Dell EMC VxRail/VxRack SDDC appliances powered by VMware vSphere 6.5, vSAN 6.6 and VMware Cloud Foundation. Transform your data center with a fully integrated, pre-configured, and pre-tested hyper-converged solution.

Whether your datacenter needs are large or small, Dell EMC VxRail and VxRack SDDC are the easiest and fastest hyper-converged options to stand up or extend a VMware environment while dramatically simplifying IT operations and lowering capital and operational costs.

Together, Dell EMC and VMware bring you highly configurable solutions to enable your digital transformation.

Be sure to register soon, limited availability in each city!

This exclusive early premiere will be in the following cities:

Denver, CO
Dublin/East Bay, CA
Orange County/San Diego, CA

Phoenix, AZ
Chicago, IL
Cincinnati, OH
Cleveland, OH
Indianapolis, IN
Pittsburgh, PA
Minneapolis, MN
Kansas City, MO
Louisville, KY
Charlotte, NC
Dallas, TX
Jacksonville, FL
Memphis, TN
Nashville, TN
Raleigh, NC
San Antonio, TX
Hartford, CT
Philadelphia/Oaks, PA
Long Island, NY
Rochester, NY
Silver Springs, MD
Jersey City, NJ


NSX Logical Views – Cheat Sheet

NSX Logical Views – Cheat Sheet

Back about two years ago I took a NSX Bootcamp. After the bootcamp, I wanted to create a cheat sheet for myself since I don’t have a networking background and it was the first time working with NSX. That way I had something to look at later to refer to as a reminder. So I created these two pages where the one is a “simple” logical view and the other is a more detailed logical view. Although I created this two years ago, it covers the core components and concepts of NSX, so it is still accurate and relevant to the latest versions of NSX.

The detailed page (shown in the picture above) shows all the components of NSX, each component’s function, the intercommunication between them, what plane (Management, Control, or Data) they are in, etc.

I think most individuals will find it useful, especially those that are new to NSX. If you have any questions on the PDF that my overview video doesn’t answer, feel free to email me from this site.

NSX Logical View – Overview Video:

NSX Logical Views – PDF:


Attending VMworld And Interested In vSphere 6.5 Security? Try My “vSphere 6.5 Security – Getting Started” Lab!

Attending VMworld And Interested In vSphere 6.5 Security?

Try My “vSphere 6.5 Security – Getting Started” Lab!

If you are attending VMworld US 2017 from August 27-31st in Las Vegas, NV and you are interested in the new vSphere 6.5 Security feature sets, then I have a lab for you! I am a lab captain for the Hands On Labs and have two labs that I created for this years VMworld sessions.

These new labs as well as the many other will only be available at the VMworld US and Europe conferences initially. After both conferences are over, we slowly release most of the new labs to the public-facing Hands On Labs environment that anyone can get to with an internet connection. You will see some labs to start showing up on the public side right after VMworld and then the rest typically will be released within or month or so. No guarantee on what labs will make it to the public site and when they will show up though, that is just what I’ve typically seen over the past few years.

This is my first time as a lab captain and creating labs, so I would love to see some HUGE numbers of people taking my labs! It would make me feel good knowing that people learned something by taking my labs. If you end up taking either lab at VMworld or even after they have been released to the public-facing HOL site, let me know what you think! You can reach out to me on my social media outlets, the links to them are on the right side of the page.

Public Facing – Hands On Labs Site:

Below are the labs that I have built and a summary of each of them:

  • (HOL-1811-01-SDC) vSphere 6.5 – What’s New:
    • Description:  Explore some of the new features of vSphere 6.5 including VM Encryption, vCenter High Availability, and the new HTML5 vSphere Client. You will also learn about the improved vCenter Server Appliance and how to migrate from a Windows-based vCenter Server installation.
  • (HOL-1811-04-SDC) vSphere 6.5 Security – Getting Started:
    • Description:  Experience new security features of vSphere 6.5, including VM Encryption, Audit Quality Logging, Encrypted vMotion, Key. We also use our vRealize Log Insight solution to look at the enhanced logging of the vCenter server logs. Add Key Management Servers (KMS) to the vCenter server and create a trust between them. Then we use PowerCLI commands to encrypt/decrypt virtual machines as well as other encryption related tasks.

Don’t forget to stop into the Hands On Labs at VMworld and take some labs…see you there!




New Content – vSphere 6.5 Upgrade/Migration & VMware Posters Links!

New Content – vSphere 6.5

Upgrade/Migration & VMware Posters Links!



Many VMware customers tend to wait to upgrade to the next version for several reasons. Some of these are no time to do the upgrade, scared of issues that may arise during the upgrade process especially from vSphere 5.x versions, or wanting to wait until the first update is out so that all the fixes have been addressed. These are all valid concerns in which I can appreciate due to my operation experience and background supporting vSphere environments!

On July 21, 2017, VMware released vSphere 6.5 Update 1 which has many enhancements. Once of the enhancements that most are excited about is the fact that the new HTML5-based vSphere Web Client is now at approximately 90% feature parity to the old Java-based vSphere Web Client which was know for being slow and clunky. Hopefully, by the next update of vSphere, the HTML5 client will be at full feature parity. At which time, VMware will retire the old Java-based client.

The HTML5 client enhancements are just one of numerous reasons why you should consider updating to vSphere 6.5. Another primary reason is that there are many new featured within the vCenter Server Appliance (VCSA) like embedded Backup/Restore Tool, vSphere Update Manager is embedded, and the new vCenter Server Appliance High Availability (HA) configuration option. So there are some great enhancements that should encourage you to upgrade to the latest version of vSphere and vCenter server!

VMware has created a Migration Assistance Tool to help migrate your vSphere 5.5/6.x environments to the new vSphere 6.5. Even if you are currently running a Windows based version of vCenter in the older version, the tool can migrate the vCenter database, performance data and metrics, etc. to the new vCenter Server Appliance 6.5. There are several supported migration options based on your vCenter server, Single-Sign-On (SSO), or Platform Service Controller (PSC) architectures you may be currently running.

So take a look at my Useful Links page on this site to see the links to below resources that can help you migrate to the new vSphere 6.5!

  • Top Reasons to Upgrade to vSphere 6.5 Infographic
  • vSphere 6.5 Upgrade Considerations – Part 1
  • vSphere 6.5 Upgrade Considerations – Part 2
  • Announcing the vSphere 6.5 Topology and Upgrade Planning Tool
  • vCenter Server Appliance 6.5 Migration Walkthrough
  • VMware Doc’s – Migration Assistance Tool
  • vSphere 6.5 – Upgrade Guide
  • VMware vCenter Server Appliance Poster
  • Platform Services Controller Topology Decision Tree Poster


Click here to go to the Useful Links tab within my website!

vSphere 6.5 U1 Added Benefit – vCenter Foundation Supports (4) Hosts Now!

vSphere 6.5 U1 Added Benefit – vCenter

Foundation Supports (4) Hosts Now!

VMware vCenter Server Foundation provides powerful management tools for smaller environments looking to rapidly provision, monitors, and control virtual machines. Previously, vCenter Server Foundation only support managing up to (3) hosts much like the vSphere Essentials Kits. With the release of vSphere 6.5 U1, VMware has changed the licensing to now support up to (4) hosts!

Key Features:

  • Analyze and remediate issues quickly with visibility into vSphere virtual infrastructure.
  • Deliver the security and availability of vSphere through automated proactive management features such as automated load balancing and out-of-the-box automation workflows.

Key Capabilities:

  • Management service
  • Database server
  • Inventory service
  • VMware vSphere Clients
  • VMware vCenter APIs and .NET
  • vCenter Single Sign-On


vRealize Log Insight 4.5 is Now Live!

vRealize Log Insight 4.5 is Now Live!


On June 13th, 2017, VMware released vRealize Log Insight 4.5! vRealize Log lnsight delivers heterogeneous and highly scalable log management with intuitive, actionable dashboards, sophisticated analytics and broad third-party extensibility. It provides deep operational visibility and faster troubleshooting across physical, virtual and cloud environments. Below, you can fins a list of what’s new in this release of vRealize Log Insight 4.5!

Whats New?
This release of VMware vRealize Log Insight delivers product improvements and updates to the previous release, including these features:

Server Features

  • Added API to query alert execution and notification history
  • Added ability to specify basic authentication for webhooks
  • New product configuration APIs added
  • The source field is maintained when forwarding from vRealize Log Insight forwarder to a vRealize Log Insight server
  • Hosts on the /admin/hosts page can now be exported
  • Support for external load balancers has been deprecated
  • VMware Identity Manager (vIDM) is recommended for vRealize Log Insight. Native AD support is now deprecated. See the following Knowledge Base article for migration information:

General User Interface Items

  • Dashboard legend mouse-over in one widget now highlights corresponding chart items across widgets
  • Added ability to show a given time across all dashboard chart widgets simultaneously
  • Separate options are available for descriptions and recommendations for user alerts.
  • User alert history for aggregation queries now includes count

Agent Items

  • Added ability to send unaltered raw syslog to destination server
  • Added ability for agent syslog parser to parse structured data (SD), PRI, PROCID, and MSGID syslog fields
  • Added auto-update checkbox option on MSI user interface
  • Added support for sending logs to multiple destinations
  • Added directory wildcard support
  • Added support for Photon OS
  • Support for Ubuntu 12.04 LTS has been deprecated

Content Packs

  • Updated General and vSphere content packs
  • VSAN and vROps content packs included out of the box


vRealize Operations Manager 6.6 Now Live!

vRealize Operations Manager 6.6 Now Live!


On June 13th, 2017, VMware released its updated vRealize Operation Manager 6.6 solution! VMware vRealize Operations integrated with vRealize Log Insight and vRealize Business for Cloud helps plan, manage and scale SDDC and multi-cloud environments with unified monitoring, automated performance management, cloud planning and capacity optimization. Check out the below list of enhancements that have been made to the vRealize Operations Manager solution!

Whats New?

vRealize Operations Manager 6.6 focuses on enhancing product usability, accelerating time to value and improving troubleshooting capabilities.

  • Simplified usability and faster time to value capabilities:
    • New HTML5 user interface provides an easier and consistent experience.
    • The Getting Started dashboard allows for quick navigation.
    • Persona based dashboards provides for answers in one place. Dashboards are separated into categories such as Operations, Capacity and Utilization, Performance Troubleshooting, Workload Balance, and Configuration and Compliance.
    • Out of the box integration with vSAN and vRealize Automation provides quick time to value.
  • Watch videos related to the new dashboards that are introduced with vRealize Operations Manager 6.6 here.
  • Added Native vSAN management capabilities:
    • Allows for centralized management across stretched clusters.
    • Ability for complete vSAN management, which includes administering performance, capacity, logs, and configuration and health.
  • Fully Automated Workload Balancing:
    • Ensures performance across the datacenter’s with fully automated workload balancing, across clusters and across data stores.
    • Ensures DRS Configurations and provides the option to set DRSautomation level for individual objects.
    • Predictive DRS takes action to preempt resource contention.
    • Utilizes operations analytics to optimize initial placement of workloads through vRealize Automation.
  • Watch this video for a demo about automatic workload placement.
  • Additional out-of-the-box compliance capabilities: 
    • Ability to tackle compliance problems through the new vSphere hardening dashboard
    • Extends compliance through PCI & HIPAA compliance for vSphere.
    • Ensures business configurations through new cluster, host, and VM configuration dashboards
Documentation and Links: