My Home Lab Converged Infrastructure Challenge

As I had some challenges with my Home Lab due to some hardware failure, I had to revert from using a dedicated storage box (White box + Windows + bunch of disk + StarWind Virtual SAN) as I no longer have the luxury of having that extra machine to use. I have ended up with two ESXi hosts (Specs: White box with i5 + 16GB RAM + 1x SSD + 2x Sata Drivers + 2 NICs). I have though to investigate if I could still come up with a way that would provide me with a reliable storage without having to acquire any extra hardware.

While I have considered to buy another dedicated box to use as storage, converged infrastructure seemed as a great viable alternative. I decided to investigate, which option I had within the popular converged infrastructure offering that I knew of would fit my needs best. I can see quite few small businesses that might fall in the same boat where they have been limited to two lower specs servers to run their small environment. Here are the different options I have considered, and why I could not use them.

Simplivity: I wanted to check them out as they have a very interesting offering especially when it comes to deduplication which could save me a good amount of disk space.… Read More

VMware vCloud Director Stuck While Canceling Task

I have a customer who called me yesterday for having a task in vCloud Director that has been stuck in the cancelling stage for over a month. The problem has started after a power outage they had in their datacenter. vCloud Director is operating just fine, just that particular task was doing nothing and in reality it was cancelled but in the vCloud GUI it kept saying “Cancelling Copy” as shown in the below screenshot.

vCloud Director Stuck on Canceling Copy

My customer was bugged by this and wanted to get rid of this message in his vCloud Director GUI, which we were able to do successfully by following the below procedure. Please note the following procedure will take your vCloud Director Portal down for few minutes, so you probably want to schedule it during an outage.  At a high level what is the below procedure will be doing is gracefully shutting down the vCD Cells then bringing them up, which should clean up any stuck cancellation tasks. Below is a step by step of how to do so:

  1. Log in to the target vCloud Director cells using SSH as root.
  2. Navigate to $VCLOUD_HOME/bin/ (typically /opt/vmware/cloud-director /bin/ ).
  3. Retrieve the current job status. This cell-management-tool command line supplies system administrator credentials and returns the count of running jobs (i.e.
Read More

VMware vExperts 2012 has been announced

At first I wanted to congrats every one who was elected as vExperts for 2012. Second I wanted to celebrate being on the list while being a VMware employee. As many of you know, that earlier years VMware employees could not be chosen as vExperts nonetheless of how much effort they spent in enlightening Virtualization & Cloud Computing. I am glad VMware has changed that and started giving some recognition to employees who take the extra effort to spread the words on blogs, VMware forums, Community, seminars, VMUGs & so on. Further, the election seems to be done separately for employees and non employees to ensure fairness. If you are not sure if you were elected as a vExpert for 2012 then you can have a look at the VMware vExpert 2012 list published at:

By the way, although I am on the list I still have not received any official e-mail from VMware informing me that. This means you might have already been awarded the vExpert title for 2012 and you don’t even know it which again should encourage you to search that list for your name. I did not know that I was on the list or that vExperts 2012 were announced till I received an e-mail from my colleague Hany Micheal this morning congrating me for being on the list.… Read More

My Canadian move and job shift

If you have been following my blog for a while, you would have noticed a non normal pause in the past 2 months with no new articles on my blog. The reason behind this gap is my move from Dubai to Canada and all what that bring with it from finding a place to stay, buying a car, & starting to catch up with the new job hitting me all at once. I have spent a great year with the SE team in VMware Dubai. It is such a great team that I will definitely miss, though the great part I have managed to stay withing the VMware Family. I have joined VMware Canada PSO team earlier this month, & looking forward to meet with the rest of our Canadian team & customers.

As I am almost done with my move process & paper work going along with it. I am hoping to start putting more stuff soon. Please keep checking back, as for sure I will be working on some more interesting stuff now that I am in the Professional Services team.

At last a funny incident, is while checking my e-mail today I have came across Veeam Press release talking about Mazda success in Virtualizing their datacenter with VMware & using Veeam backup & replication to protect it.… Read More

VMware Transformation from Virtualization Company to an Overall Solutions Company

Nonetheless the diversity of Solutions VMware is delivering today, many people still know VMware as a Virtualization Company. The efforts and solutions released by VMware over the past 2 years outside of the virtualization Arena has been as huge as the one to keep the lead of the Virtualization Solutions. Its no longer true that VMware is solely a Virtualization Company, but VMware is turning into a great overall IT Solutions Company.

The below video of Paul Maritz(VMware CEO) at VMworld 2011 Explain VMware Transformation from a Virtualization Company into IT Solutions Company.

For more VMworld 2011 Videos and the full Paul Maritz VMworld 2011 Keynotes, please check the below link:… Read More

7 reasons why VMware vSphere 5 vRAM Licensing is not as bad as it Look at First Glance

Note: VMware vSphere 5 vRAM has dramatically been amended since the original announcement. For more info about what was amended then please check my following article: vSphere 5 vRam Licensing Amendment. Further, this article has been updated accordingly.

While others have decided to cover up all the nice features that is coming up with vSphere 5 & vCloud Director 1.5, I was quite busy explaining to customers that most of them are not affected by the new vSphere 5 vRAM Licensing Schema. Actually none of the existing customers who called me asking about the licensing change was near being affected by the new licensing schema. Let’s be honest when I first heard about the new licensing schema I had panicked too, but only few hours laters of research I have discovered it actually make sense and not as bad as it look at first glance.

I don’t blame our customers for not grabbing the idea of our new VMware vSphere 5 vRAM based licensing as it take to understand the new licensing model to read beyond the surface to find out how it really work. Therefore before you complain about it, please make sure if you are affected by reading the Understand the vSphere 5 vRAM Licensing Model.… Read More

My honest review of @DuncanYB & @FrankDenneman vSphere 4.1 HA and DRS Technical Deepdive Book

I have order the “vSphere 4.1 HA and DRS Technical Deepdive” by @DuncanYB most famous by 007 & @FrankDenneman about 3 months back on Amazon. I received the book about one month after ordering due to the distance the book had to travel I guess, although I paid for shipping more than I paid for the book. I can not blame the authors for the long shipping time, as I had this same problem with Amazon with every book I have ever ordered.  So if you are in rush for the book, then you might want to look at buying the e-book edition at even a cheaper price than the paper back. This was not available at the time I ordered, though hey having the paper back was worth the wait.

I believe the book was well worth reading for me, although I had a good idea of many of the concepts it had covered it was great to have a refresh of these concepts in one place with the updated best practices. Further, quite few concepts were totally new to me. Over all I think the book was worth my money and time. Further, I believe if I had read the book before going multiple times over  HA DeepDive & DRS DeepDive posts on @DuncanYB, I would have got even a ton more surprises in the book.… Read More

VMware vExpert 2011 Program is now open even for VMware Employees

For all of you vExperts out there I am sure you have already received an e-mail from John Troyer informing you to fill the forum for VMware vExpert 2011. The nomination/registration process for the VMware vExpert 2011 program has already started, & the last day for registration will be: May 6th, 2011. If you have been a vExpert for 2010, then make sure you fill the required forum to be considered for vExpert 2011 as being a vExpert 2010 does not automatically register you for vExpert 2011. Further, I have noticed the registration form for VMware vExpert 2011 require you to fill much more info about your actual contribution than it did in 2010. Further, even if you nominate someone he will still have to fill the form him self. It seems the vExpert 2011 criteria will be tougher than vExpert 2010.

Further, an important change in the vExpert 2011 program is that it allow VMware Employee to apply, where in the vExpert 2010 VMware employee were not allowed to apply for the vExpert program. I have though noticed that the results for the VMware Employee vExpert 2011 program will be declared separately, which make me feel we will be competing at a different slots from non VMware Employee & maybe at a different criteria set.… Read More

VMware Compatibility Guide 2.0 Preview is now available

While VMware Compatibility Guide has always been quite helpful in finding the compatibility between different part of the virtual infrastructure. Vmware are currently working on releasing a next generation of the tool which can provide more details and better search options. You can start utilizing the tool by trying it out in beta at:

Enjoy the ride, & make sure to take the survey to help the development team enhance it with features you require. Make the difference & contribute!!!… Read More

VMware KB Mobile App for Android & iPhone is VMware November Gift!!

VMware has just releases a new Official VMware KB Mobile App for Android & iPhone to keep VMware customers up to date on new KBs, news & so on all the time.

VMware KB app gives you the ability to:

Below is a great picture of the new Official VMware KB APP for Android & iPhone:

Android & iPhone VMware KB App

The KB App is definitely free of charge & can be found at: Get the VMware KB mobile app now!

you wouldn’t know it by looking at it, but the App is actually not a native app, but rather, implemented in HTML 5 (As BlackBerry moves to support this technology on future devices, we look forward to testing compatibility). This makes it easier to maintain and available to more up and coming platforms. That’s also why you don’t install the iPhone version from the iTunes store; you merely open a URL in your browser, and then install it to your Home screen.

Installation To Your Home Screen Instruction:

1- Open the following link in your iPhone or Android phone:… Read More

My first week as a System Engineer at VMware

For those who know me closely have already heard the news, for those who did not then yes I have just started to carry the VMware badge beginning of this month. Hmmm, I have started holding the VMware badge virtually I guess as I have not been handed that yet, but I have started as a VMware employee beginning of this month. My experience with the team has been great so far. Every one is interested in helping me adjust to the new role.

I have notice though that the time has started to slip faster after joining VMware. It reminded me of how the virtual machines time start slipping if you don’t sync the ESX host with an NTP server or the hardware clock. Although I had started being slowly involved with customers, most of my first week was trying to get used to the system. I did not expect to ever has as many systems that I have to get used to inside VMware. Though its for the good of every one they have systematized almost everything. Further, I have been granted with a great lab access that I have not yet used as much I would like to though I am sure I will in the soon future.… Read More

KFH is another VMware great success story in EMEA

I can hear many people wonder what makes me write about KFH (Kuwait Finance House) virtualization story. Further, why now although I had conducted virtualization projects in there over the past three years. The idea has actually crossed my mind only after one of my colleagues passed by me today in office & mentioned that KFH Virtualization story is all over the media for the past week. I thought then to share their success and point out few of these news articles on my blog. You will find quite few of the news media articled linked to in my post below.

Before I mention Kuwait Finance House Virtualization story its important to mention that Kuwait Finance House (KFH) is a pioneer of the banking phenomenon known as Islamic Finance or Shari’a compliant banking. They were the first Islamic bank established in the State of Kuwait and today we are one of the foremost Islamic Financial Institutions in the world.

Before I give you the links to the news, I just thought to mention that KFH (Kuwait Finance House) has been one of the great virtualization success stories in the region. They have virtualized most of their IT Infrastructure based on VMware.… Read More

VMworld vExperts Discount is no where!!

I know VMware has never promised vExperts any discounts to VMworld, but I was giving it a thought. How much of a good publicity can vExperts make of the VMworld event. Would not vExperts contribution to the VMware community be worth giving them a discount to VMworld. I mean Microsoft has been giving their MVPs discount to their trainings and events for ever. I believe VMware should step a head and reward its troops outside VMware a discounted tickets to VMworld.

I understand that many vExperts get their ticket paid by the corporate they work for, but that does not seems to be the case for everyone. I have not yet been able to attend any VMworld so far as my current employer did not fund any of it. Although my current employer is great about funding training courses, they have always considered VMworld some kind of knowledge conference and never accepted to fund it.

To make it more fun, the cost of attending VMworld to me & many other vExperts in my case are not only the VMworld tickets but a huge travel expenses. No VMworld have ever been held closer than 5 hours flight from where I am located.… Read More

VMware MENA available positions!!

It has been posted by Hany Michael that VMware is currently looking to expand their MENA team with talented people. It seems VMware is finally gathering their troops in the MENA and ready to hit the market with new innovate vCloud products.

If you think you are interested & got the talent you might want to contact Hany for recommendation at: hany [AT] vmware [DOT] com.

Below are the earlier positions mentioned by Hany, which I assume at least one or two of them still open.

Please note the original post by Hany can be found at: More

Congrats to all 2010 VMware vExperts

I know I am late on this one, but as many of you have noticed I have not got a chance to blog much lately. As I have been traveling for training between London & Budapest with a very limited internet access & a very busy schedule for the past month. I am actually still in Budapest at the moment, but I thought I must Congrats all the 2010 vExperts announced by VMware last week. I would like to thank every one who has helped vExpert award to continue in 2010 (Specially John Troyer).

Ok, so what is the big news. Well, I am quite proud that I have been awarded the status of vExpert for the first time. I have received an e-mail few days back from John Troyer informing me that I have been awarded a vExpert status for 2010. I am really excited of the award & I will do my best to continue my contribution to the community.

I would like to send a big thank you to Deepak Narin from VMware Dubai , as without him I would never got awarded. I had been blogging for over 3 years, but my blog had never revealed my name & info for the first two years.… Read More