5 year flashback

Today I looked at my ADSL router and had a flashback about five years ago. Back then I was working for the university and used a dual line ISDN link for internet which had about the same bandwidth as my ADSL currently has …Synchronous DSL speed

After that experience I know how people must feel in some areas where internet isn’t as advanced as my normal 2MBit ADSL line … Loading YouTube or even a simple forum is a real waiting game (took me about two minutes to load up a hit out of Google), and I even attest myself a dependency on even normal ADSL (not one of that superfast 32MBit lines – just 2MBit).

I can’t even use VPN/Citrix over those 164 KBit (yeah, it’s too slow). So guess I’m rooting for the Telekom technician today. *shrug*

UCS Manager 2.0.2r KVM bug

Well, we’ve been battling with a KVM bug in our UCS installation, that’s been driving me (and apparently the Cisco L3 support and development) nuts. But lets back up a bit. If you’ve worked with UCS before, once you open up the KVM console you’ll see the KVM and a shortcut commands (Shutdown, Reset) and another tab that allows you to mount virtual media.

Once you open it up, it should look like this:

UCS Manager: KVM console working fine

UCS Manager: KVM console working fine

Now, when we¬†re-installed¬†some of our servers (mostly the XenServer’s) and out of a sudden the KVM virtual media didn’t work for some reason. The UCS KVM would suddenly reject us from switching to the virtual media tab, saying that either the Login timed out or we’d have the wrong user and/or password, even if we tried with the most powerful user the UCS has, the local admin account.

UCS Manager - KVM virtual media tab rejecting authentification

UCS Manager – KVM virtual media tab rejecting authentification

 

So I opened a TAC, and Cisco got to work on it immediately. After poking around in the depths of the fabric interconnect with a dplug extension from Cisco with a Cisco L3 guy, and after about two months of development I just got a call back from the Cisco support guy. Apparently development figured out why we’d get the above error message.

Once you put a hash tag (#) in the Service Profiles User Label you’d get the error message.

UCS Manager - User Label

UCS Manager – User Label

Once I removed the hash tag, the KVM started working like it’s supposed to do. So if anyone ever comes across this, that’s your solution. Apparently Cisco is going to fix this in an upcoming release, but just removing the hash tag and everything is fine.

VMware ESXi – Free memory limits corrected

Well, a coworker of mine asked me about this. Since I didn’t know (yeah, I don’t know everything) I went to my trusted friend – Google – and searched for it. There seems to be a lot of confusion about this, so I thought I’d clarify this.

I ended up putting a license to one of my hosts in vCenter.

VMware ESXi Free Edition  Memory Limit

 

Yeah well, the host has a bit more memory than the allowed 32GB vRAM per Socket (the host has two sockets) – thus you’re allowed to have 64GB RAM if your host has two sockets.

Dealing with SnapVault replication issues

Well, for the past two months I had a case open with NetApp to figure out this SnapVault replication issue we were seeing. The initial transfer of the SnapVault relation would complete with a hick up, manual snapshot transfers also work – just the scheduled, auto-created Snapshots won’t replicate.

At first I (and the NetApp support) thought this was an issue with SnapVault itself, however after being away for the last four weeks I looked at the issue with fresh eyes. After a short peek into the logs, I found what I had found back when I first looked into this.

SnapVault would create the daily snapshot on the SnapVault Primary and start the replication. However something (or someone, wasn’t clear at this point) then created a FlexClone of a volume … And as, back when we first encountered this, I was kinda puzzled.

But then I decided (please don’t ask me what made me look there) to look at the logs of the NetApp Filer on our logserver. As it turns out, back when I enabled syslogging to an external logserver I seem to have enabled debug logging … and it was great to have that! Below you’ll find the log I found – and as you can see there’s at least a clue as to from where that ghost snapshot is coming from.

Now, with knowing from which corner this issue originated it dawned on me, we have had a similar issue before. A quick peek into TSM Manager and I knew I was on the right track. The daily system backup starts around 21:15. Now our TSM backup includes the System State backup (which in turn utilizes VSS – which triggers the NetApp Snapshot!).

After excluding the System State from the Daily Backup the SnapVault stuff worked without a hickup. I ended up removing SnapDrive from the Server in question, since we don’t really need it there. Snapshots created from SnapDrive of the boot lun are gonna be inconsistent anyhow (doesn’t matter if I do ‘em from SnapDrive or the NetApp CLI).

That restored the default VSS handler, which enables TSM to backup the System State again.

Synology: New openvpn init script

My VPN provider isn’t being supported by the Synology VPN client (because they aren’t using the standard port 1194, instead 1195). After tinkering with the ovpn files the Synology VPN client uses to store the connection settings (and failing), I just installed openvpn with ipkg.

However after tinkering around with the init-script provided by the openvpn ipkg from the NSLU2 feed, I got tired and just rewrote the damn thing:

Place the file in /opt/etc/init.d/S20openvpn, and the client daemon will start on boot.

Synology DS213+: Disable Blue Status LED 6

Well, the title pretty much says what I want to do. Even if the DS213+ is on top of a living room cupboard, it’s still way to bright .. as I don’t need really need the LED, here’s a quick hack (the ID and the device is taken from the Synology Wiki) on how to disable it on each startup:

 

Just place the file in /opt/etc/init.d/S01leds and the script is gonna turn the LED off during a boot/reboot.

Generate Nagios config for check_netapp-api.pl

As so often, I wanted a script, that’ll crawl my filers and regenerate the configuration if there are any new volumes/snapvaults/snapmirrors or if one of them has been removed.

Generate Nagios config for NetApp filers

At some point in the last few weeks, I repeatedly had to recreate my Nagios config for currently six filers. After doing that a few times, I ended up (like sooo often) writing a short Bash script, that’ll do this for me – without any fuss.

The only thing the script needs, is that the filers and the filers are registered in DNS … Here’s an example:

With that done, the script will create the necessary Nagios config for those filers.

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NetApp: Establishing SnapMirror relationships

After figuring out the SnapVault stuff, I needed to implement a whole bunch of SnapMirror relations. As I am lazy (as in click-lazy), I ended up writing a somewhat short Bash script, that’ll either establish a bunch of SnapMirror relations (for a single host) or just for a single volume.

The script expects, that SSH public key authentification has been set up, and that the source for the SnapMirror exists and is online/not-restricted.

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NetApp: Establishing SnapVault relations 1

I’ve been spending a lot of my time the last week on getting SnapVault with out FAS-filers to work. Out came a script, which does this for a given volume (and of course SnapVault Primary and Secondary).

The script expects, that SSH public key authentification has been set up.

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