ESXi 5.1: can’t create multiextent node Error

I just upgrading my VMware ESXi 5.0 to VMware ESXi 5.1 using installation disc and I found one of my VM inside this machine cannot be started using vSphere client with following error:

Cannot open the disk '/vmfs/volumes/4a365b5d-eceda119-439b-000cfc0086f3/examplevm/examplevm-000002.vmdk' or one of the snapshot disks it depends on.

Further troubleshooting required me to SSH into the ESXi host and analyze the vmware.log under datastore for this VM and I found following error:

DISKLIB-CHAINESX : ChainESXOpenSubChainNode: can't create multiextent node 6b8b4567-MyServer-flat001.vmdk failed with error The system cannot find the file specified (0xbad0003, Not found)

It turn out that the multiextent module is not loaded inside ESXi 5.1 and following command fix my problem:

$ vmkload_mod multiextent
Module multiextent loaded successfully

Add the command into /etc/rc.local.d/local.sh to make sure it will auto start on boot:

/sbin/vmkload_mod multiextent

Once done, try to turn on the VM once again using vSphere client.

Reference:

http://kb.vmware.com/selfservice/microsites/search.do?language=en_US&cmd=displayKC&externalId=2036572

Clone VM in VMware ESXi 5 using vSphere Client

I am a free VMware ESXi user. Cloning VM is no way to be as easy as VMware Workstation or vCenter. As you know, for free user, you can only manage your ESXi host directly using vSphere client. Cloning will save your time tremendously when you want to have several machines with same configuration inside one host.

I will be cloning a VM which run under CentOS 6.3 64bit platform with VMtools installed and using following details:

ESXi version: VMware ESXi 5.0.0 build 768111
ESXi host: 192.168.0.10
Main VM name: CentOS-Test
Main VM IP: 192.168.0.51
Cloned VM name: CentOS-Clone1
Cloned VM IP: 192.168.0.52

1. We will use SSH to do cloning. You can enable SSH service (if disabled) by using vSphere client and connect to your ESXi host. Go to Configuration > Security Profile > Services > Properties > select SSH > Options > Start as refer to screen shot below:

esxi_ssh

 

2. Create the cloned VM using similar specification with the main VM. There is one different thing here that we DO NOT need to create the disk for this cloned VM because we will use the clone virtual hard disk which we will create in step #3:

esxi_vm1

 

3. Now we need to clone the disk from main VM to the cloned VM directory. Connect to ESXi host using SSH and run following command:

~ # vmkfstools -i /vmfs/volumes/datastore1/CentOS-Test/CentOS-Test.vmdk /vmfs/volumes/datastore1/CentOS-Clone1/CentOS-Clone1.vmdk
Destination disk format: VMFS zeroedthick
Cloning disk '/vmfs/volumes/datastore1/CentOS-Test/CentOS-Test.vmdk'...
Clone: 100% done.

4. Once done, we will need to add the virtual hard disk into cloned VM using vSphere client. Edit the VM Properties > Add > Hard Disk > Use an existing virtual disk > locate the hard disk as screenshot below > Next > Next > Finish.

esxi_vm1_add

 

 

5. You will then should have the virtual machine properties summary as below:

esxi_vm1_summary

 

6. Start the cloned virtual machine. Once you login into CentOS, you will realized that the network interface will be converted into eth1:

vm_eth1

We need to run following command and restart the CentOS box to bring back the eth0 as this is actually the nature of VMware in cloning:

$ rm -Rf /etc/udev/rules.d/70-persistent-net.rules
$ init 6

 

7. After reboot, you should see the network interface has been changed to eth0 as screen shot below:

vm_eth0

 

Done! Even though it required more steps to clone, it still can save a lot of your time doing OS installation especially if you just want to use the VM temporarily.

 

Enable Intel 82579LM NIC in VMware ESXi 5.0

We have just bought a new server with Supermicro X9SCL-F motherboard for our backup server. This server comes with 2 NICs:

  • Intel 82579LM Gigabit
  • Intel 82574L Gigabit

Unfortunately, once the hypervisor installation completed, only one network interface is detected by VMware ESXi 5.0 which is Intel 82574L port. Since our architecture required to have 2 different cards so we can use it as fault tolerance to bring high availability features.

What we need to do is basically like this:

  1. Download the driver here: http://dl.dropbox.com/u/27246203/E1001E.tgz
  2. Use ESXi-Customizer to merge the driver and generate a new VMware installation ISO
  3. Burn the custom ISO into disk or USB drive
  4. Reinstall the server

 

Using ESXi-Customizer

1. Download it from here: http://esxi-customizer.googlecode.com/files/ESXi-Customizer-v2.7.1.exe

2. Double click on it and extract the files. Open the folder (ESXi-Customizer-v2.7.1) and double click at ESXi-Customizer.cmd

3. You will see following windows. Kindly enter required details as screenshot below:

Note: My installation ISO is VMware-VMvisor-Installer-5.0.0.update01-623860.x86_64

4. Click Run. The process will start and you will be see following prompt:

Just accept it by clicking “Yes”.

5. Once finished, you will find your new ISO as ESXi-5.x-Custom.iso. You will use this new ISO for VMware ESXi hypervisor installation.

After the installation finish, you can verify this using vSphere > host > Configuration > Network Adapters and you should see similar screenshot as below:

Fixing Auto Start and Auto Shutdown Issue in VMware ESXi 5.0

I am a free VMware ESXi 5.0.0 user. The biggest problem with this release is the failure of auto-start and auto-shutdown for VM after/before the hardware node reboot. Whenever you start or restart the ESXi node, you will need to manually turn on every single virtual machine inside it. This has caused a lot of inconvenience especially when your ESXi was in production server line.

VMware has described this bug in details as refer to this link: http://blogs.vmware.com/vsphere/2012/07/clarification-on-the-auto-start-issues-in-vsphere-51-update-1.html.

1. As for me, I will need to download the patch for ESXi 5.0.0. Go to this page: http://www.vmware.com/patchmgr/findPatch.portal and login into your VMware account. Search with following criteria in that page:

 

I will be downloading this into my Windows 7 PC and will be using SSH method to apply the patch.

 

2. Enable SSH. Go to vSphere Client > ESXi host > Configuration > Security Profile > Services > Properties and make sure SSH is running as screenshot below:

 

3. Go to vSphere Client > ESXi host > Configuration > right click storage > Browse Datastore. Create a new folder called ‘update’ inside the datastore and upload the patch as screenshot below:

 

4. Login into the ESXi server using SSH. Run following command to verify the image profiles:

$ esxcli software sources profile list --depot=[datastore1]/update/ESXi500-201207001.zip
Name                              Vendor        Acceptance Level
--------------------------------  ------------  ----------------
ESXi-5.0.0-20120701001s-standard  VMware, Inc.  PartnerSupported
ESXi-5.0.0-20120704001-no-tools   VMware, Inc.  PartnerSupported
ESXi-5.0.0-20120701001s-no-tools  VMware, Inc.  PartnerSupported
ESXi-5.0.0-20120704001-standard   VMware, Inc.  PartnerSupported

 

5. Put the host into maintenance mode. Go to vSphere client > right click to the ESXi node > Enter Maintenance Mode > Yes.

 

6. Start the update process by running following command. We will use profile ESXi-5.0.0-20120701001s-standard for this update:

$ esxcli software profile update --depot=[datastore1]/update/ESXi500-201207001.zip --profile=ESXi-5.0.0-20120701001s-standard

 

7. Reboot the ESXi node using command line or using vSphere client. Once up, exit the maintenance mode and you can verify whether it is fixed by enabling Virtual Machine Startup/Shutdown options under vSphere client > ESXi node > Configuration > Software >  Virtual Machine Startup/Shutdown > Properties and enable the VM auto start as screen shot below:

 

 

Done. Try to reboot the ESXi host and you should see something like below on your vSphere client: