HVNL01: vSphere 4.1 release, VCB Support, IBM Virtual Fabric, Mobile Noter for iPad, New vBooks

Yes, I’m still alive. It’s been over three months now without blogging, and yes it’s crazy!

Apart from being a Sr.Consultant and a TAM at VMware with 100% utilization in this huge and active region, I’ve been also doing lots of reading and studying lately to prepare for the VCAP exams. Not to mention my growing obsession with the Redwood project whether through testing and evaluating it, or following its daily discussions on our developers & PMs mailing lists. Add all that to the frequent traveling and you won’t find a time to scratch your head!

I won’t take much time in this introduction, so straight to the point: I decided to start a newsletter (or whatever they call it these days). I have to admit though that this is not my most original idea. Firstly I was inspired by one of my colleagues in VMware (Michael White – who’s also one of the SRM legends out there). He has an internal weekly newsletter with lots of invaluable information and I really enjoy reading it! I thought of doing the same on my blog, but I wasn’t sure about this idea until I started receiving another mind-blowing weekly newsletter written by our CTO, Steve Herrod. At that point I realized that I’m a newsletter person and I do like the idea of having everything consolidated in one place at a time. I won’t do this letter however on weekly basis, at least at the beginning. Let’s make it casual every two weeks or so until I see my readers feedback.

At least I get to blog, and that’s all what it matters. Here we go.

News flash: vSphere 4.1 is released!

Yes the debate around the numbering (4.1 Vs. 4.5) is finally over. Most of this debate was driven mainly by the fact that it’s a quite powerful release with major enhancements and rich features normally found only in major releases. There is no point of copying and pasting the release notes here if you can read it directly on VMware’s website. Here you go:

 

The password issue with ESX/i 4.1

You’ve probably heard about the 8-char password issue with ESX/i 4.1, but in case you haven’t heard yet about its solution, you can find the details here in this KB article:
http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=1024500

 

VCB Support in vSphere 4.1

I had a couple of customers asking me about the VCB support and whether it has been removed, and the answer is no. VMware extended the support in 4.1, but I personally recommend moving to the vStorage API for Data Protection (VADP) in case you are upgrading or starting a new vSphere environment.

From our internal mailing list I also quote this: “Several backup vendors have released VADP based backup solutions. These include VMware Data Recovery 1.x, Symantec NetBackup 7.0, Symantec Backup Exec 2010, CA ArcServe 12.5, EMC Avamar 5.0, IBM TSM 6.2, Veeam 4.0 and VizionCore 4.5

 

vSphere on IBM BladeCenter H Part II

I’ve been getting many questions about the second part of the BCH, and when I will release it. I actually finished nearly all the Visio diagramming, but the problem is simpler than this. The HX5 and Virtual Fabric expansion card from IBM are not been certified yet by VMware! I was really hoping that both will be on our HCL by the release of vSphere 4.1, but nothing so far. I see no point to publish my article if you won’t be able to use it. Besides, it can cause lots of unnecessary confusions to the partners and customers. I won’t leave you disappointed however, and I’ll direct you to an awesome new redpaper written by IBM on the Virtual Fabric.

http://www.redbooks.ibm.com/redpapers/pdfs/redp4673.pdf

 

Mobile Noter for iPad!

Every day I find more value for the iPad! I’m not really into games or apps in general, and my main reason for buying an iPad was PDF reading and web surfing while traveling, but I have to admit that it has a lot more value than that. A couple of weeks ago I came to know about this cool App called “Mobile Noter” and it was like a dream came true! I used to take notes and document things on OneNote since it was released back in 2003, and till this moment I still do. The MN simply allows you to synchronize your iPad with either you desktop over a WiFi network, or to the cloud over 3G or WiFi. I can now have all my notes on the go with me either on the iPhone or iPad, and also keep them all synchronized.

 

New books:

Interesting 2 books talking about the forensic investigations in our virtualization and cloud computing worlds.

 

To the partners

I know there are a quite big number of VMware partners subscribed to my blog (as I see from the email domains), so I’ll try to keep you updated with any important news whenever applicable.

A new version of the HealthAnalayzer appliance has been released with strong support for the vSphere best practices. Make sure to download, test and patch this appliance to the latest updates before going to the customers. Great tool as it has always been!

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