vSphere Troubleshooting
Update 1
ESXi 5.0
vCenter Server 5.0
This document supports the version of each product listed and
supports all subsequent versions until the document is replaced
by a new edition. To check for more recent editions of this
document, see http://www.vmware.com/support/pubs.
EN-000849-01
vSphere Troubleshooting
You can find the most up-to-date technical documentation on the VMware Web site at:
http://www.vmware.com/support/
The VMware Web site also provides the latest product updates.
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Contents
About vSphere Troubleshooting
5
Updated Information 7
1 Troubleshooting Virtual Machines 9
Troubleshooting Fault Tolerant Virtual Machines 9
Troubleshooting USB Passthrough Devices 13
Recover Orphaned Virtual Machines 14
Virtual Machine Does Not Power On After Cloning or Deploying from Template 15
2 Troubleshooting Hosts 17
Troubleshooting vCenter Server and ESXi Host Certificates 17
Troubleshooting vSphere HA Host States 19
Troubleshooting Auto Deploy 23
Troubleshooting vCenter Server Plug-Ins 28
Linked Mode Troubleshooting 29
Configuring Logging for the VMware Inventory Service 31
Authentication Token Manipulation Error 31
Active Directory Rule Set Error Causes Host Profile Compliance Failure 32
3 Troubleshooting Clusters 33
Troubleshooting vSphere HA Admission Control 33
Troubleshooting Heartbeat Datastores 35
Troubleshooting vSphere HA Failovers 36
Troubleshooting vSphere Fault Tolerance in Network Partitions 38
Troubleshooting Storage I/O Control 39
Troubleshooting Storage DRS 41
Cannot Create Resource Pool When Connected Directly to Host 46
4 Troubleshooting Storage 47
Resolving SAN Storage Display Problems 47
Resolving SAN Performance Problems 49
Virtual Machines with RDMs Need to Ignore SCSI INQUIRY Cache 52
Software iSCSI Adapter Is Enabled When Not Needed 53
Failure to Mount NFS Datastores 53
Understanding SCSI Sense Codes 54
5 Troubleshooting Licensing 55
Troubleshooting Host Licensing 55
Troubleshooting License Reporting 57
Unable to Power On a Virtual Machine 60
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Unable to Hot Plug Memory to a Virtual Machine 61
Unable to Assign a License Key to vCenter Server 62
Unable to Configure or Use a Feature 62
Index 63
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About vSphere Troubleshooting
vSphere Troubleshooting describes troubleshooting issues and procedures for vCenter Server implementations
and related components.
Intended Audience
This information is for anyone who wants to troubleshoot virtual machines, ESXi hosts, clusters, and related
storage solutions. The information in this book is for experienced Windows or Linux system administrators
who are familiar with virtual machine technology and datacenter operations.
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Updated Information
This vSphere Troubleshooting publication is updated with each release of the product or when necessary.
This table provides the update history of vSphere Troubleshooting.
Revision
Description
EN-000849-01
The topic “Recover Orphaned Virtual Machines,” on page 14, contains the correct procedure for
recovering orphaned virtual machines in both the vSphere Web Client and the vSphere Client.
EN-000849-01
Initial release.
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Troubleshooting Virtual Machines
1
The virtual machine troubleshooting topics provide solutions to potential problems that you might encounter
when using your virtual machines.
This chapter includes the following topics:
n
“Troubleshooting Fault Tolerant Virtual Machines,” on page 9
n
“Troubleshooting USB Passthrough Devices,” on page 13
n
“Recover Orphaned Virtual Machines,” on page 14
n
“Virtual Machine Does Not Power On After Cloning or Deploying from Template,” on page 15
Troubleshooting Fault Tolerant Virtual Machines
To maintain a high level of performance and stability for your fault tolerant virtual machines and also to
minimize failover rates, you should be aware of certain troubleshooting issues.
The troubleshooting topics discussed focus on problems that you might encounter when using the vSphere
Fault Tolerance feature on your virtual machines. The topics also describe how to resolve problems.
You can also see the VMware knowledge base article at http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1033634 to help you
troubleshoot Fault Tolerance. This article contains a list of error messages that you might encounter when you
attempt to use the feature and, where applicable, advice on how to resolve each error.
Hardware Virtualization Not Enabled
You must enable Hardware Virtualization (HV) before you use vSphere Fault Tolerance.
Problem
When you attempt to power on a virtual machine with Fault Tolerance enabled, an error message might appear
if you did not enable HV.
Cause
This error is often the result of HV not being available on the ESXi server on which you are attempting to power
on the virtual machine. HV might not be available either because it is not supported by the ESXi server
hardware or because HV is not enabled in the BIOS.
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Solution
If the ESXi server hardware supports HV, but HV is not currently enabled, enable HV in the BIOS on that
server. The process for enabling HV varies among BIOSes. See the documentation for your hosts' BIOSes for
details on how to enable HV.
If the ESXi server hardware does not support HV, switch to hardware that uses processors that support Fault
Tolerance.
Compatible Hosts Not Available for Secondary VM
If you power on a virtual machine with Fault Tolerance enabled and no compatible hosts are available for its
Secondary VM, you might receive an error message.
Problem
The following error message might appear in the Recent Task Pane:
Secondary VM could not be powered on as there are no compatible hosts that can accommodate it.
Cause
This can occur for a variety of reasons including that there are no other hosts in the cluster, there are no other
hosts with HV enabled, data stores are inaccessible, there is no available capacity, or hosts are in maintenance
mode.
Solution
If there are insufficient hosts, add more hosts to the cluster. If there are hosts in the cluster, ensure they support
HV and that HV is enabled. The process for enabling HV varies among BIOSes. See the documentation for
your hosts' BIOSes for details on how to enable HV. Check that hosts have sufficient capacity and that they
are not in maintenance mode.
Secondary VM on Overcommitted Host Degrades Performance of Primary VM
If a Primary VM appears to be executing slowly, even though its host is lightly loaded and retains idle CPU
time, check the host where the Secondary VM is running to see if it is heavily loaded.
Problem
When a Secondary VM resides on a host that is heavily loaded, this can effect the performance of the Primary
VM.
Evidence of this problem could be if the vLockstep Interval on the Primary VM's Fault Tolerance panel is yellow
or red. This means that the Secondary VM is running several seconds behind the Primary VM. In such cases,
Fault Tolerance slows down the Primary VM. If the vLockstep Interval remains yellow or red for an extended
period of time, this is a strong indication that the Secondary VM is not getting enough CPU resources to keep
up with the Primary VM.
Cause
A Secondary VM running on a host that is overcommitted for CPU resources might not get the same amount
of CPU resources as the Primary VM. When this occurs, the Primary VM must slow down to allow the
Secondary VM to keep up, effectively reducing its execution speed to the slower speed of the Secondary VM.
Solution
To resolve this problem, set an explicit CPU reservation for the Primary VM at a MHz value sufficient to run
its workload at the desired performance level. This reservation is applied to both the Primary and Secondary
VMs ensuring that both are able to execute at a specified rate. For guidance setting this reservation, view the
performance graphs of the virtual machine (prior to Fault Tolerance being enabled) to see how much CPU
resources it used under normal conditions.
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Chapter 1 Troubleshooting Virtual Machines
Virtual Machines with Large Memory Can Prevent Use of Fault Tolerance
You can only enable Fault Tolerance on a virtual machine with a maximum of 64GB of memory.
Problem
Enabling Fault Tolerance on a virtual machine with more than 64GB memory can fail. Migrating a running
fault tolerant virtual machine using vMotion also can fail if its memory is greater than 15GB or if memory is
changing at a rate faster than vMotion can copy over the network.
Cause
This occurs if, due to the virtual machine’s memory size, there is not enough bandwidth to complete the
vMotion switchover operation within the default timeout window (8 seconds).
Solution
To resolve this problem, before you enable Fault Tolerance, power off the virtual machine and increase its
timeout window by adding the following line to the vmx file of the virtual machine:
ft.maxSwitchoverSeconds = "30"
where 30 is the timeout window in number in seconds. Enable Fault Tolerance and power the virtual machine
back on. This solution should work except under conditions of very high network activity.
NOTE If you increase the timeout to 30 seconds, the fault tolerant virtual machine might become unresponsive
for a longer period of time (up to 30 seconds) when enabling FT or when a new Secondary VM is created after
a failover.
Secondary VM CPU Usage Appears Excessive
In some cases, you might notice that the CPU usage for a Secondary VM is higher than for its associated Primary
VM.
Problem
When the Primary VM is idle, the relative difference between the CPU usage of the Primary and Secondary
VMs might seem large.
Cause
Replaying events (such as timer interrupts) on the Secondary VM can be slightly more expensive than recording
them on the Primary VM. This additional overhead is small.
Solution
None needed. Examining the actual CPU usage shows that very little CPU resource is being consumed by the
Primary VM or the Secondary VM.
Primary VM Suffers Out of Space Error
If the storage system you are using has thin provisioning built in, a Primary VM can crash when it encounters
an out of space error.
Problem
When used with a thin provisioned storage system, a Primary VM can crash. The Secondary VM replaces the
Primary VM, but the error message "There is no more space for virtual disk <disk_name>" appears on the
vSphere client.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Cause
If thin provisioning is built into the storage system, it is not possible for ESX/ESXi hosts to know if enough disk
space has been allocated for a pair of fault tolerant virtual machines. If the Primary VM asks for extra disk
space but there is no space left on the storage, the primary VM crashes.
Solution
The error message gives you the choice of continuing the session by clicking "Retry" or clicking "Cancel" to
terminate the session. Ensure that there is sufficient disk space for the fault tolerant virtual machine pair and
click "Retry".
Fault Tolerant Virtual Machine Failovers
A Primary or Secondary VM can fail over even though its ESXi host has not crashed. In such cases, virtual
machine execution is not interrupted, but redundancy is temporarily lost. To avoid this type of failover, be
aware of some of the situations when it can occur and take steps to avoid them.
Partial Hardware Failure Related to Storage
This problem can arise when access to storage is slow or down for one of the hosts. When this occurs there are
many storage errors listed in the VMkernel log. To resolve this problem you must address your storage-related
problems.
Partial Hardware Failure Related to Network
If the logging NIC is not functioning or connections to other hosts through that NIC are down, this can trigger
a fault tolerant virtual machine to be failed over so that redundancy can be reestablished. To avoid this problem,
dedicate a separate NIC each for vMotion and FT logging traffic and perform vMotion migrations only when
the virtual machines are less active.
Insufficient Bandwidth on the Logging NIC Network
This can happen because of too many fault tolerant virtual machines being on a host. To resolve this problem,
more broadly distribute pairs of fault tolerant virtual machines across different hosts.
vMotion Failures Due to Virtual Machine Activity Level
If the vMotion migration of a fault tolerant virtual machine fails, the virtual machine might need to be failed
over. Usually, this occurs when the virtual machine is too active for the migration to be completed with only
minimal disruption to the activity. To avoid this problem, perform vMotion migrations only when the virtual
machines are less active.
Too Much Activity on VMFS Volume Can Lead to Virtual Machine Failovers
When a number of file system locking operations, virtual machine power ons, power offs, or vMotion
migrations occur on a single VMFS volume, this can trigger fault tolerant virtual machines to be failed over.
A symptom that this might be occurring is receiving many warnings about SCSI reservations in the VMkernel
log. To resolve this problem, reduce the number of file system operations or ensure that the fault tolerant virtual
machine is on a VMFS volume that does not have an abundance of other virtual machines that are regularly
being powered on, powered off, or migrated using vMotion.
Lack of File System Space Prevents Secondary VM Startup
Check whether or not your /(root) or /vmfs/datasource file systems have available space. These file systems can
become full for many reasons, and a lack of space might prevent you from being able to start a new Secondary
VM.
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Chapter 1 Troubleshooting Virtual Machines
Troubleshooting USB Passthrough Devices
Information about feature behavior can help you troubleshoot or avoid potential problems when USB devices
are connected to a virtual machine.
Error Message When You Try to Migrate Virtual Machine with USB Devices
Attached
Migration with vMotion cannot proceed and issues a confusing error message when you connect multiple USB
devices from an ESXi host to a virtual machine and one or more devices are not enabled for vMotion.
Problem
The Migrate Virtual Machine wizard runs a compatibility check before a migration operation begins. If
unsupported USB devices are detected, the compatibility check fails and an error message similar to the
following appears: Currently connected device 'USB 1' uses backing 'path:1/7/1', which is not
accessible.
Cause
When you connect USB devices from a host to a virtual machine, you must select all USB devices on the virtual
machine for migration for vMotion to be successful. If one or more devices are not enabled for vMotion,
migration will fail.
Solution
1
Make sure that the devices are not in the process of transferring data before removing them.
2
Re-add and enable vMotion for each affected USB device.
USB Passthrough Device Is Nonresponsive
USB devices can become nonresponsive for several reasons, including unsafely interrupting a data transfer or
if a guest operating system driver sends an unsupported command to the device.
Problem
The USB device is nonresponsive.
Cause
A data transfer was interrupted or nonsupported devices are being used. For example, if a guest driver sends
a SCSI REPORT LUNS command to some unsupported USB flash drives, the device stops responding to all
commands.
Solution
1
Physically detach the USB device from the ESXi host and reattach it.
2
Fully shut down the host (not reset) and leave it powered off for at least 30 seconds to ensure that the host
USB bus power is fully powered down.
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Cannot Copy Data From an ESXi Host to a USB Device That Is Connected to the
Host
You can connect a USB device to an ESXi host and copy data to the device from the host. For example, you
might want to gather the vm-support bundle from the host after the host loses network connectivity. To perform
this task, you must stop the USB arbitrator.
Problem
If the USB arbitrator is being used for USB passthrough from an ESXi host to a virtual machine, or if the USB
device is formatted with a FAT16 partition and is the maximum size of 2GB, the USB device appears under
lsusb but does not mount correctly.
Cause
This problem occurs because the usbarbitrator service has claimed the device to make it available for
passthrough from the host to virtual machines.
Solution
1
Stop the usbarbitrator service:/etc/init.d/usbarbitrator stop
2
Disconnect and reconnect the USB device.
By default, the device location is /vmfs/devices/disks/mpx.vmhbaXX:C0:T0:L0.
After using the device, restart the usbarbitrator service:/etc/init.d/usbarbitrator start
Recover Orphaned Virtual Machines
Virtual machines appear in the vSphere inventory list with (orphaned) appended to their name.
Problem
Virtual machines that reside on an ESXi host managed by vCenter Server might become orphaned in rare cases.
Such virtual machines exist in the vCenter Server database, but the ESXi host no longer recognizes them.
Cause
Virtual machines can become orphaned if a host failover is unsuccessful, or when the virtual machine is
unregistered directly on the host. If this situation occurs, move the orphaned virtual machine to another host
in the datacenter that has access to the datastore on which the virtual machine files are stored.
Solution
1
In the vSphere inventory list, right-click the virtual machine and select Migrate.
2
Click Change Host and click Next.
3
Select the host on which to place the virtual machine.
If no hosts are available, add a host that can access the datastore on which the virtual machine's files are
stored.
4
Click Finish to save your changes.
The virtual machine is connected to the new host and appears in the inventory list.
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Chapter 1 Troubleshooting Virtual Machines
Virtual Machine Does Not Power On After Cloning or Deploying from
Template
Virtual machines do not power on after you complete the clone or deploy from template workflow.
Problem
When you clone a virtual machine or deploy a virtual machine from a template, you can select the Power on
this virtual machine after creation check box on the Ready to Complete page. However, the virtual machine
might not automatically power on upon creation.
Cause
The swap file size is not reserved when the virtual machine disks are created.
Solution
n
n
n
Reduce the size of the swap file that is required for the virtual machine. You can do this by increasing the
virtual machine memory reservation.
a
In the vSphere Client inventory, right-click the virtual machine and select Edit Settings.
b
Select the Resources tab and click Memory.
c
Use the Reservation slider to increase the amount of memory allocated to the virtual machine.
d
Click OK.
Alternatively, you can increase the amount of space available for the swap file by moving other virtual
machine disks off of the datastore that is being used for the swap file.
a
In the vSphere Client inventory, select the datastore and click the Virtual Machines tab.
b
For each virtual machine to move, right-click the virtual machine and select Migrate.
c
Select Change datastore.
d
Proceed through the Migrate Virtual Machine wizard.
You can also increase the amount of space available for the swap file by changing the swap file location
to a datastore with adequate space.
a
In the vSphere Client inventory, select the host and click the Configuration tab.
b
Under Software, select Virtual Machine Swapfile Location.
c
Click Edit.
NOTE If the host is part of a cluster that specifies that the virtual machine swap files are stored in the
same directory as the virtual machine, you cannot click Edit. You must use the Cluster Settings dialog
box to change the swap file location policy for the cluster.
d
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Select a datastore from the list and click OK.
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Troubleshooting Hosts
2
The host troubleshooting topics provide solutions to potential problems that you might encounter when using
your vCenter Servers and ESXi hosts.
This chapter includes the following topics:
n
“Troubleshooting vCenter Server and ESXi Host Certificates,” on page 17
n
“Troubleshooting vSphere HA Host States,” on page 19
n
“Troubleshooting Auto Deploy,” on page 23
n
“Troubleshooting vCenter Server Plug-Ins,” on page 28
n
“Linked Mode Troubleshooting,” on page 29
n
“Configuring Logging for the VMware Inventory Service,” on page 31
n
“Authentication Token Manipulation Error,” on page 31
n
“Active Directory Rule Set Error Causes Host Profile Compliance Failure,” on page 32
Troubleshooting vCenter Server and ESXi Host Certificates
Certificates are automatically generated when you install vCenter Server. These default certificates are not
signed by a commercial certificate authority (CA) and might not provide strong security. You can replace
default vCenter Server certificates with certificates signed by a commercial CA. When you replace vCenter
Server and ESXi certificates, you might encounter errors.
vCenter Server Cannot Connect to the Database
After you replace default vCenter Server certificates, you might be unable to connect to the vCenter Server
database.
Problem
vCenter Server is unable to connect to the vCenter Server database, and therefore cannot be restarted after you
replace default vCenter Server certificates.
Cause
The database password must be reset.
Solution
Reset the database password by running the following command: vpxd -P pwd.
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vCenter Server Cannot Connect to Managed Hosts
After you replace default vCenter Server certificates and restart the system, vCenter Server might not be able
to connect to managed hosts.
Problem
vCenter Server cannot connect to managed hosts after server certificates are replaced and the system is
restarted.
Solution
Log into the host as the root user and reconnect the host to vCenter Server.
New vCenter Server Certificate Does Not Appear to Load
After you replace default vCenter Server certificates, the new certificates might not appear to load.
Problem
When you install new vCenter Server certificates, you might not see the new certificate.
Cause
Existing open connections to vCenter Server are not forcibly closed and might still use the old certificate.
Solution
To force all connections to use the new certificate, use one of the following methods.
n
Restart the network stack or network interfaces on the server.
n
Restart the vCenter Server service.
Regenerate Certificates for an ESXi Host
Under certain circumstances, you might be required to force the host to generate new certificates.
Problem
You might need to generate new certificates if you change the host name or accidentally delete a certificate.
Solution
1
Log in to the ESXi Shell and acquire root privileges.
2
In the directory /etc/vmware/ssl, back up any existing certificates by renaming them using the following
commands.
mv rui.crt orig.rui.crt
mv rui.key orig.rui.key
NOTE If you are regenerating certificates because you have deleted them, this step is unnecessary.
3
Run the command /sbin/generate-certificates to generate new certificates.
4
Run the command /etc/init.d/hostd restart to restart the hostd process.
5
Confirm that the host successfully generated new certificates by using the following command and
comparing the time stamps of the new certificate files with orig.rui.crt and orig.rui.key.
ls -la
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Chapter 2 Troubleshooting Hosts
Cannot Configure vSphere HA When Using Custom SSL Certificates
After you install custom SSL certificates, attempts to enable vSphere High Availability (HA) fail.
Problem
When you attempt to enable vSphere HA on a host with custom SSL certificates installed, the following error
message appears: vSphere HA cannot be configured on this host because its SSL thumbprint has not
been verified.
Cause
When you add a host to vCenter Server, and vCenter Server already trusts the host's SSL certificate,
VPX_HOST.EXPECTED_SSL_THUMBPRINT is not populated in the vCenter Server database. vSphere HA obtains the
host's SSL thumbprint from this field in the database. Without the thumbprint, you cannot enable vSphere HA.
Solution
1
In the vSphere Client, disconnect the host that has custom SSL certificates installed.
2
Reconnect the host to vCenter Server.
3
Accept the host's SSL certificate.
4
Enable vSphere HA on the host.
Troubleshooting vSphere HA Host States
vCenter Server reports vSphere HA host states that indicate an error condition on the host. Such errors can
prevent vSphere HA from fully protecting the virtual machines on the host and can impede vSphere HA's
ability to restart virtual machines after a failure. Errors can occur when vSphere HA is being configured or
unconfigured on a host or, more rarely, during normal operation. When this happens, you should determine
how to resolve the error, so that vSphere HA is fully operational.
vSphere HA Agent Is in the Agent Unreachable State
The vSphere HA agent on a host is in the Agent Unreachable state for a minute or more. User intervention
might be required to resolve this situation.
Problem
vSphere HA reports that an agent is in the Agent Unreachable state when the agent for the host cannot be
contacted by the master host or by vCenter Server. Consequently, vSphere HA is not able to monitor the virtual
machines on the host and might not restart them after a failure.
Cause
A vSphere HA agent can be in the Agent Unreachable state for several reasons. This condition most often
indicates that a networking problem is preventing vCenter Server from contacting the master host and the
agent on the host, or that all hosts in the cluster have failed. This condition can also indicate the unlikely
situation that vSphere HA was disabled and then re-enabled on the cluster while vCenter Server could not
communicate with the vSphere HA agent on the host, or that the agent on the host has failed, and the watchdog
process was unable to restart it.
Solution
Determine if vCenter Server is reporting the host as not responding. If so, there is a networking problem or a
total cluster failure. After either condition is resolved, vSphere HA should work correctly. If not, reconfigure
vSphere HA on the host. Similarly, if vCenter Server reports the hosts are responding but a host's state is Agent
Unreachable, reconfigure vSphere HA on that host.
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vSphere HA Agent is in the Uninitialized State
The vSphere HA agent on a host is in the Uninitialized state for a minute or more. User intervention might be
required to resolve this situation.
Problem
vSphere HA reports that an agent is in the Uninitialized state when the agent for the host is unable to enter
the run state and become the master host or to connect to the master host. Consequently, vSphere HA is not
able to monitor the virtual machines on the host and might not restart them after a failure.
Cause
A vSphere HA agent can be in the Uninitialized state for one or more reasons. This condition most often
indicates that the host does not have access to any datastores. Less frequently, this condition indicates that the
host does not have access to its local datastore on which vSphere HA caches state information, the agent on
the host is inaccessible, or the vSphere HA agent is unable to open required firewall ports.
Solution
Search the list of the host's events for recent occurrences of the event vSphere HA Agent for the host has an
error. This event indicates the reason for the host being in the uninitialized state. If the condition exists because
of a datastore problem, resolve whatever is preventing the host from accessing the affected datastores. After
the problem has been resolved, if the agent does not return to an operational state, reconfigure vSphere HA
on the host.
NOTE If the condition exists because of a firewall problem, check if there is another service on the host that is
using port 8192. If so, shut down that service, and reconfigure vSphere HA.
vSphere HA Agent is in the Initialization Error State
The vSphere HA agent on a host is in the Initialization Error state for a minute or more. User intervention is
required to resolve this situation.
Problem
vSphere HA reports that an agent is in the Initialization Error state when the last attempt to configure vSphere
HA for the host failed. vSphere HA does not monitor the virtual machines on such a host and might not restart
them after a failure.
Cause
This condition most often indicates that vCenter Server was unable to connect to the host while the vSphere
HA agent was being installed or configured on the host. This condition might also indicate that the installation
and configuration completed, but the agent did not become a master host or a slave host within a timeout
period. Less frequently, the condition is an indication that there is insufficient disk space on the host's local
datastore to install the agent, or that there are insufficient unreserved memory resources on the host for the
agent resource pool. Finally, for ESXi 5.0 hosts, the configuration fails if a previous installation of another
component required a host reboot, but the reboot has not yet occurred.
Solution
When a Configure HA task fails, a reason for the failure is reported.
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Chapter 2 Troubleshooting Hosts
Reason for Failure
Action
Host communication
errors
Resolve any communication problems with the host and retry the configuration operation.
Timeout errors
Possible causes include that the host crashed during the configuration task, the agent failed to
start after being installed, or the agent was unable to initialize itself after starting up. Verify that
vCenter Server is able to communicate with the host. If so, see “vSphere HA Agent Is in the Agent
Unreachable State,” on page 19 or “vSphere HA Agent is in the Uninitialized State,” on page 20
for possible solutions.
Lack of file space
Free up approximately 75MB of disk space. If the failure is due to insufficient unreserved memory,
free up memory on the host by either relocating virtual machines to another host or reducing
their reservations. In either case, retry the vSphere HA configuration task after resolving the
problem.
Reboot pending
If an installation for a 5.0 or later host fails because a reboot is pending, reboot the host and retry
the vSphere HA configuration task.
vSphere HA Agent is in the Uninitialization Error State
The vSphere HA agent on a host is in the Uninitialization Error state. User intervention is required to resolve
this situation.
Problem
vSphere HA reports that an agent is in the Uninitialization Error state when vCenter Server is unable to
unconfigure the agent on the host during the Unconfigure HA task. An agent left in this state can interfere
with the operation of the cluster. For example, the agent on the host might elect itself as master host and lock
a datastore. Locking a datastore prevents the valid cluster master host from managing the virtual machines
with configuration files on that datastore.
Cause
This condition usually indicates that vCenter Server lost the connection to the host while the agent was being
unconfigured.
Solution
Add the host back to vCenter Server (version 5.0 or later). The host can be added as a stand-alone host or added
to any cluster.
vSphere HA Agent is in the Host Failed State
The vSphere HA agent on a host is in the Host Failed state. User intervention is required to resolve the situation.
Problem
Usually, such reports indicate that a host has actually failed, but failure reports can sometimes be incorrect. A
failed host reduces the available capacity in the cluster and, in the case of an incorrect report, prevents vSphere
HA from protecting the virtual machines running on the host.
Cause
This host state is reported when the vSphere HA master host to which vCenter Server is connected is unable
to communicate with the host and with the heartbeat datastores that are in use for the host. Any storage failure
that makes the datastores inaccessible to hosts can cause this condition if accompanied by a network failure.
Solution
Check for the noted failure conditions and resolve any that are found.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
vSphere HA Agent is in the Network Partitioned State
The vSphere HA agent on a host is in the Network Partitioned state. User intervention might be required to
resolve this situation.
Problem
While the virtual machines running on the host continue to be monitored by the master hosts that are
responsible for them, vSphere HA's ability to restart the virtual machines after a failure is affected. First, each
master host has access to a subset of the hosts, so less failover capacity is available to each host. Second, vSphere
HA might be unable to restart a Secondary VM after a failure (see “Primary VM Remains in the Need Secondary
State,” on page 38).
Cause
A host is reported as partitioned if both of the following conditions are met:
n
The vSphere HA master host to which vCenter Server is connected is unable to communicate with the
host by using the management network, but is able to communicate with that host by using the heartbeat
datastores that have been selected for it.
n
The host is not isolated.
A network partition can occur for a number of reasons including incorrect VLAN tagging, the failure of a
physical NIC or switch, configuring a cluster with some hosts that use only IPv4 and others that use only IPv6,
or the management networks for some hosts were moved to a different virtual switch without first putting the
host into maintenance mode.
Solution
Resolve the networking problem that prevents the hosts from communicating by using the management
networks.
vSphere HA Agent is in the Network Isolated State
The vSphere HA agent on a host is in the Network Isolated state. User intervention is required to resolve this
situation.
Problem
When a host is in the Network Isolated state, vSphere HA applies the power-off or shutdown host isolation
response to virtual machines running on the host. vSphere HA continues to monitor the virtual machines that
are left powered on. While a host is in this state, vSphere HA's ability to restart virtual machines after a failure
is affected. vSphere HA only powers off or shuts down a virtual machine if the agent on the host determines
that a master host is responsible for the virtual machine.
Cause
A host is network isolated if both of the following conditions are met:
n
Isolation addresses have been configured and the host is unable to ping them.
n
The vSphere HA agent on the host is unable to access any of the agents running on the other cluster hosts.
Solution
Resolve the networking problem that is preventing the host from pinging its isolation addresses and
communicating with other hosts.
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Chapter 2 Troubleshooting Hosts
Troubleshooting Auto Deploy
The Auto Deploy troubleshooting topics offer solutions for situations when provisioning hosts with Auto
Deploy does not work as expected.
Auto Deploy TFTP Timeout Error at Boot Time
A TFTP Timeout error message appears when a host provisioned by Auto Deploy boots. The text of the message
depends on the BIOS.
Problem
A TFTP Timeout error message appears when a host provisioned by Auto Deploy boots. The text of the message
depends on the BIOS.
Cause
The TFTP server is down or unreachable.
Solution
u
Ensure that your TFTP service is running and reachable by the host that you are trying to boot.
Auto Deploy Host Boots with Wrong Configuration
A host is booting with a different ESXi image, host profile, or folder location than the one specified in the rules.
Problem
A host is booting with a different ESXi image profile or configuration than the image profile or configuration
that the rules specify. For example, you change the rules to assign a different image profile, but the host still
uses the old image profile.
Cause
After the host has been added to a vCenter Server system, the boot configuration is determined by the vCenter
Server system. The vCenter Server system associates an image profile, host profile, or folder location with the
host.
Solution
u
Use the Test-DeployRuleSetCompliance and Repair-DeployRuleSetCompliance PowerCLI cmdlets to
reevalute the rules and to associate the correct image profile, host profile, or folder location with the host.
Host Is Not Redirected to Auto Deploy Server
During boot, a host that you want to provision with Auto Deploy loads gPXE. The host is not redirected to the
Auto Deploy server.
Problem
During boot, a host that you want to provision with Auto Deploy loads gPXE. The host is not redirected to the
AutoDeploy server.
Cause
The tramp file that is included in the TFTP ZIP file has the wrong IP address for the Auto Deploy server.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Solution
u
Correct the IP address of the Auto Deploy server in the tramp file, as explained in the vSphere Installation
and Setup documentation.
Package Warning Message When You Assign an Image Profile to Auto Deploy
Host
When you run a PowerCLI cmdlet that assigns an image profile that is not Auto Deploy ready, a warning
message appears.
Problem
When you write or modify rules to assign an image profile to one or more hosts, the following error results:
Warning: Image Profile <name-here> contains one or more software packages that are not statelessready. You may experience problems when using this profile with Auto Deploy.
Cause
Each VIB in an image profile has a stateless-ready flag that indicates that the VIB is meant for use with Auto
Deploy. You get the error if you attempt to write an Auto Deploy rule that uses an image profile in which one
or more VIBs have that flag set to FALSE.
NOTE You can use hosts provisioned with Auto Deploy that include VIBs that are not stateless ready without
problems. However booting with an image profile that includes VIBs that are not stateless ready is treated like
a fresh install. Each time you boot the host, you lose any configuration data that would otherwise be available
across reboots for hosts provisioned with Auto Deploy.
Solution
1
Use Image Builder PowerCLI cmdlets to view the VIBs in the image profile.
2
Remove any VIBs that are not stateless-ready.
3
Rerun the Auto Deploy PowerCLI cmdlet.
Auto Deploy Host with a Built-In USB Flash Drive Does Not Send Coredumps to
Local Disk
If your Auto Deploy host has a built-in USB flash drive, and an error results in a coredump, the coredump is
lost. Set up your system to use ESXi Dump Collector to store coredumps on a networked host.
Problem
If your Auto Deploy host has a built-in USB Flash, and if it encounters an error that results in a coredump, the
coredump is not sent to the local disk.
Solution
1
Install ESXi Dump collector on a system of your choice.
ESXi Dump Collector is included with the vCenter Server installer.
2
Use ESXCLI to configure the host to use ESXi Dump Collector.
esxcli conn_options system coredump network set IP-addr,port
esxcli system coredump network set -e true
3
Use ESXCLI to disable local coredump partitions.
esxcli conn_options system coredump partition set -e false
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Chapter 2 Troubleshooting Hosts
vmware-fdm Warning Message When You Assign an Image Profile to Auto Deploy
Host
When users run PowerCLI cmdlets that assign an image profile to one or more hosts, an error results if the
vmware-fdm package is not part of the image profile. This package is required if you use the Auto Deploy host
with vSphere HA.
Problem
When users write or modify rules to assign an image profile to one or more Auto Deploy hosts, the following
error appears:
WARNING: The supplied image profile does not contain the "vmware-fdm" software
package, which is required for the vSphere HA feature. If this image profile
is to be used with hosts in a vSphere HA cluster, you should add the vmware-fdm
package to the image profile. The vmware-fdm package can be retrieved from the
software depot published by this vCenter Server at the following URL:
http://<VC-Address>/vSphere-HA-depot
You can use the Add-EsxSoftwarePackage cmdlet to add the package to the image
profile and then update any hosts or rules that were using the older version
of the profile.
Cause
The image profile does not include the vmware-fdm software package, which is required by vSphere HA.
Solution
If you will not use the Auto Deploy hosts in an environment that uses vSphere HA, you can ignore the warning.
If you will use the Auto Deploy hosts in an environment that uses vSphere HA, follow the instructions in the
warning.
1
At the PowerCLI command prompt, add the software depot that includes the vmware-fmd package.
Add-EsxSoftwareDepot http://VC-Address/vSphere-HA-depot
2
(Optional) If the image profile that generated the warning is read-only, clone the image profile.
New-EsxImageProfile -CloneProfile My_Profile -name "Test Profile Error Free"
This example clones the profile named My-Profile and assigns it the name Test Profile Error Free.
3
Run Add-EsxSoftwarePackage to add the package to the image profile.
Add-EsxSoftwarePackage -ImageProfile "Test Profile Error Free" -SoftwarePackage vmware-fdm
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Auto Deploy Host Reboots After Five Minutes
An Auto Deploy host boots and displays gPXE information, but reboots after five minutes.
Problem
A host to be provisioned with Auto Deploy boots from gPXE and displays gPXE information on the console.
However, after five minutes, the host displays the following message to the console and reboots.
This host is attempting to network-boot using VMware
AutoDeploy. However, there is no ESXi image associated with this host.
Details: No rules containing an Image Profile match this
host. You can create a rule with the New-DeployRule PowerCLI cmdlet
and add it to the rule set with Add-DeployRule or Set-DeployRuleSet.
The rule should have a pattern that matches one or more of the attributes
listed below.
The host might also display the following details:
Details: This host has been added to VC, but no Image Profile
is associated with it. You can use Apply-ESXImageProfile in the
PowerCLI to associate an Image Profile with this host.
Alternatively, you can reevaluate the rules for this host with the
Test-DeployRuleSetCompliance and Repair-DeployRuleSetCompliance cmdlets.
The console then displays the host's machine attributes including vendor, serial number, IP address, and so
on.
Cause
No image profile is currently associated with this host.
Solution
You can temporarily assign an image profile to the host by running the Apply-EsxImageProfile cmdlet.
You can permanently assign an image profile to the host as follows.
1
Run the New-DeployRule cmdlet to create a rule that includes a pattern that matches the host with an image
profile.
2
Run the Add-DeployRule cmdlet to add the rule to a ruleset.
3
Run the Test-DeployRuleSetCompliance cmdlet and use the output of that cmdlet as the input to the
Repair-DeployRuleSetCompliance cmdlet.
See vSphere Installation and Setup documentation for details about vSphere Auto Deploy.
Auto Deploy Host Cannot Contact TFTP Server
The host you provision with Auto Deploy cannot contact the TFTP server.
Problem
When you attempt to boot a host provisioned with Auto Deploy, the host performs a network boot and is
assigned a DHCP address by the DHCP server, but the host cannot contact the TFTP server.
Cause
The TFTP server might have stopped running, or a firewall might block the TFTP port.
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Chapter 2 Troubleshooting Hosts
Solution
n
If you installed the WinAgents TFTP server, open the WinAgents TFTP management console and verify
that the service is running. If the service is running, check the Windows firewall's inbound rules to make
sure the TFTP port is not blocked. Turn off the firewall temporarily to see whether the firewall is the
problem.
n
For all other TFTP servers, see the server documentation for debugging procedures.
Auto Deploy Host Cannot Retrieve ESXi Image from Auto Deploy Server
The host you provision with Auto Deploy stops at the gPXE boot screen.
Problem
When you attempt to boot a host provisioned with Auto Deploy, the boot process stops at the gPXE boot screen
and the status message indicates that the host is attempting to get the ESXi image from the Auto Deploy server.
Cause
The Auto Deploy service might be stopped or the Auto Deploy server might be unaccessible.
Solution
1
Log in to the system on which you installed the Auto Deploy server.
2
Check that the Auto Deploy server is running.
3
a
Click Start > Settings > Control Panel > Administrative Tools.
b
Double-click Services to open the Services Management panel.
c
In the Services field, look for the VMware vSphere Auto Deploy Waiter service and restart it if it is
not running.
Open a Web browser and enter the following URL and check whether the Auto Deploy server is accessible.
https://Auto_Deploy_Server_IP_Address:Auto_Deploy_Server_Port/vmw/rdb
NOTE Use this address only to check whether the server is accessible.
4
If the server is not accessible, a firewall problem is likely.
a
Try setting up permissive TCP Inbound rules for the Auto Deploy server port.
The port is 6501 unless you specified a different port during installation.
b
As a last resort, disable the firewall temporarily and enable it again after you verified whether it
blocked the traffic. Do not disable the firewall on production environments.
To disable the firewall, run netsh firewall set opmode disable. To enable the firewall, run
netsh firewall set opmode enable.
Auto Deploy Host Does Not Get a DHCP Assigned Address
The host you provision with Auto Deploy fails to get a DHCP Address.
Problem
When you attempt to boot a host provisioned with Auto Deploy, the host performs a network boot but is not
assigned a DHCP address. The Auto Deploy server cannot provision the host with the image profile.
Cause
You might have a problem with the DHCP service or with the firewall setup.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Solution
1
2
Check that the DHCP server service is runningon the Windows system on which the DHCP server is set
up to provision hosts.
a
Click Start > Settings > Control Panel > Administrative Tools.
b
Double-click Services to open the Services Management panel.
c
In the Services field, look for the DHCP server service and restart the service if it is not running.
If the DHCP server is running, recheck the DHCP scope and the DHCP reservations you configured for
your target hosts.
If the DHCP scope and reservations are configured correctly, the problem most likely involves the firewall.
3
As a temporary workaround, turn off the firewall to see whether that resolves the problem.
a
Open the command prompt by clicking Start > Program > Accessories > Command prompt.
b
Type the following command to temporarily turn off the firewall. Do not turn off the firewall in a
production environment.
netsh firewall set opmode disable
c
Attempt to provision the host with Auto Deploy.
d
Type the following command to turn the firewall back on.
netsh firewall set opmode enable
4
Set up rules to allow DHCP network traffic to the target hosts.
See the firewall documentation for DHCP and for the Windows system on which the DHCP server is
running for details.
Auto Deploy Host Does Not Network Boot
The host you provision with Auto Deploy comes up but does not network boot.
Problem
When you attempt to boot a host provisioned with Auto Deploy, the host does not start the network boot
process.
Cause
You did not enable your host for network boot.
Solution
1
Reboot the host and follow the on-screen instructions to access the BIOS configuration.
If you have an EFI host, you must switch the EFI system to BIOS compatibility mode.
2
In the BIOS configuration, enable Network Boot in the Boot Device configuration.
Troubleshooting vCenter Server Plug-Ins
In cases where vCenter Server plug-ins are not working, you have several options to correct the problem.
vCenter Server plug-ins that run on the Tomcat server have extension.xml files, which contain the URL where
the corresponding Web application can be accessed. These files are located in C:\Program
Files\VMware\Infrastructure\VirtualCenter Server\extensions. Extension installers populate these XML
files using the DNS name for the machine.
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Chapter 2 Troubleshooting Hosts
Example from the stats extension.xml file: <url>https://SPULOV-XP-VM12.vmware.com:
8443/statsreport/vicr.do</url>.
vCenter Server, plug-in servers, and the vSphere Clients that use them must be located on systems under the
same domain. If they are not under the same domain, or if the DNS of the plug-in server is changed, the plugin clients will not be able to access the URL, and the plug-in will not work.
You can edit the XML files manually by replacing the DNS name with an IP address. Reregister the plug-in
after you edit its extension.xml file.
Linked Mode Troubleshooting
If you are having trouble with your Linked Mode group, consider the following points.
When you have multiple vCenter Server instances, each instance must have a working relationship with the
domain controller and not conflict with another machine that is in the domain. Conflicts can occur, for example,
when you clone a vCenter Server instance that is running in a virtual machine and you do not use sysprep or
a similar utility to ensure that the cloned vCenter Server instance has a globally unique identifier (GUID).
If the domain controller is unreachable, vCenter Server might be unable to start. You might be unable to change
the Linked Mode configuration of the affected vCenter Server system. If this occurs, resolve the problem with
the domain controller and restart vCenter Server. If resolving the problem with the domain controller is
impossible, you can restart vCenter Server by removing the vCenter Server system from the domain and
isolating the system from its current Linked Mode group.
The DNS name of the machine must match with the actual machine name. Symptoms of machine names not
matching the DNS name are data replication problems, ticket errors when trying to search, and missing search
results from remote instances.
NOTE Make sure your Windows and network-based firewalls are configured to allow Linked Mode.
Joining a Linked Mode Group
There is correct order of operations for joining a Linked Mode group.
Procedure
1
Verify that the vCenter Server domain name matches the machine name. If they do not match, change one
or both to make them match.
2
Update the URLs to make them compatible with the new domain name and machine name.
If you do not update the URLs, remote instances of vCenter Server cannot reach the vCenter Server system,
because the default URL entries are no longer accurate.
3
Join the vCenter Server system to a Linked Mode group.
If a vCenter Server instance is no longer reachable by remote instances of vCenter Server, the following
symptoms might occur:
VMware, Inc.
n
Clients logging in to other vCenter Server systems in the group cannot view the information that
belongs to the vCenter Server system on which you changed the domain name because the users
cannot log in to the system.
n
Any users that are currently logged in to the vCenter Server system might be disconnected.
n
Search queries do not return results from the vCenter Server system.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
To resolve these problems, make sure that the Virtualcenter.VimApiUrl key points to the location where
the vSphere Client and SDK clients can access the vCenter Server system, and the
Virtualcenter.VimWebServicesUrl key points to the location where vCenter Server Webservices is
installed. For the Virtualcenter.Instancename key, change the value so that the modified name appears in
the vCenter Server inventory view.
What to do next
If you cannot join a vCenter Server instance, you can resolve the problem with the following actions:
n
Ensure that the machine is grouped into the correct organizational unit in the corresponding domain
controller.
n
When you install vCenter Server, ensure that the logged in user account has administrator privileges on
the machine.
n
To resolve trust problems between a machine and the domain controller, remove the machine from the
domain and then add it to the domain again.
n
To ensure that the Windows policy cache is updated, run the gpupdate /force command from the
Windows command line. This command performs a group policy update.
If the local host cannot reach the remote host during a join operation, verify the following:
n
Remote vCenter Server IP address or fully qualified domain name is correct.
n
LDAP port on the remote vCenter Server is correct.
n
VMwareVCMSDS service is running.
Configure a Windows Firewall to Allow a Specified Program Access
vCenter Server uses Microsoft ADAM/AD LDS to enable Linked Mode, which uses the Windows RPC port
mapper to open RPC ports for replication. When you install vCenter Server in Linked Mode, you must modify
the firewall configuration on the local machine .
Incorrect configuration of firewalls can cause licenses and roles to become inconsistent between instances.
Prerequisites
n
The Windows version must be earlier than Windows Server 2008. For Windows Server 2008, Windows
automatically configures the firewall to permit access.
n
No network-based firewalls can exist between vCenter Server Linked Mode instances. For environments
with network-based firewalls, see “Configure Firewall Access by Opening Selected Ports,” on page 31.
Procedure
30
1
Select Start > Run.
2
Type firewall.cpl and click OK.
3
Make sure that the firewall is set to allow exceptions.
4
Click the Exceptions tab.
5
Click Add Program.
6
Add an exception for C:\Windows\ADAM\dsamain.exe and click OK.
7
Click OK.
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Chapter 2 Troubleshooting Hosts
Configure Firewall Access by Opening Selected Ports
vCenter Server uses Microsoft ADAM/AD LDS to enable Linked Mode, which uses the Windows RPC port
mapper to open RPC ports for replication. When you install vCenter Server in Linked Mode, the firewall
configuration on any network-based firewalls must be modified.
Incorrect configuration of firewalls can cause licenses and roles to become inconsistent between instances.
Procedure
u
Configure Windows RPC ports to generically allow selective ports for machine-to-machine RPC
communication.
Choose one of the following methods.
n
Change the registry settings. See http://support.microsoft.com/kb/154596/en-us.
n
Use Microsoft's RPCCfg.exe tool. See http://support.microsoft.com/kb/908472/en-us.
Configuring Logging for the VMware Inventory Service
Prior to generating a support bundle request, to facilitate better troubleshooting, you should reconfigure the
logging level of the VMware Inventory Service to TRACE.
Problem
You might have to change your vCenter Server logging configuration if any of several problems occur when
you use the vSphere Client or the vSphere Web Client.
Client
Problem
vSphere Client
n
n
vSphere Web
Client
n
n
n
High latency occurs between issuing a search and obtaining responses from the server.
You have multiple vCenter Servers in Linked Mode, and results from some of the servers are not
being returned.
Loading the inventory tree does not work.
Client is unable to log into vCenter Server.
Properties or objects in the client appear out of date or missing.
Solution
1
Open <Inventory Service install location>\lib\server\config\log4j.properties.
2
Change the keys log4j.logger.com.vmware.vim and log4j.appender.LOGFILE.Threshold to the new log
level.
For example, log4j.logger.com.vmware.vim = TRACE (or log4j.appender.LOGFILE.Threshold = TRACE)
sets the Inventory Service logging to trace.
Valid log levels are TRACE, DEBUG, INFO, WARN, ERROR, in increasing order of verbosity.
3
Restart the VMware Inventory Service to pick up the new log level.
Authentication Token Manipulation Error
Creating a password that does not meet the authentication requirements of the host causes an error.
Problem
When you create a password on the host, the following error message appears: A general system error
occurred: passwd: Authentication token manipulation error.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Cause
The host checks for password compliance using the default authentication plug-in, pam_passwdqc.so. If the
password is not compliant, the error appears.
Solution
When you create a password, include a mix of characters from four character classes: lowercase letters,
uppercase letters, numbers, and special characters such as an underscore or dash.
Your user password must meet the following length requirements.
n
Passwords containing characters from one or two character classes must be at least eight characters long.
n
Passwords containing characters from three character classes must be at least seven characters long.
n
Passwords containing characters from all four character classes must be at least six characters long.
NOTE An uppercase character that begins a password does not count toward the number of character classes
used. A number that ends a password does not count toward the number of character classes used.
You can also use a passphrase, which is a phrase consisting of at least three words, each of which is 8 to 40
characters long.
For more information, see the vSphere Security documentation.
Active Directory Rule Set Error Causes Host Profile Compliance Failure
Applying a host profile that specifies an Active Directory domain to join causes a compliance failure.
Problem
When you apply a host profile that specifies an Active Directory domain to join, but you do not enable the
activeDirectoryAll rule set in the firewall configuration, a compliance failure occurs. The vSphere Client
displays the error message Failures against the host profile: Ruleset activedirectoryAll does not
match the specification. The compliance failure also occurs when you apply a host profile to leave an Active
Directory domain, but you do not disable the activeDirectoryAll rule set in the host profile.
Cause
Active Directory requires the activeDirectoryAll firewall rule set. You must enable the rule set in the firewall
configuration. If you omit this setting, the system adds the necessary firewall rules when the host joins the
domain, but the host will be non-compliant because of the mismatch in firewall rules. The host will also be
non-compliant if you remove it from the domain without disabling the Active Directory rule set.
Solution
1
In the vSphere Client inventory, right-click the host profile and select Edit Profile.
2
Expand the host profile in the left pane and select Firewall Configuration > Ruleset Configuration >
activeDirectoryAll.
3
In the right panel, click Edit.
4
Select the Flag indicating whether ruleset should be enabled check box.
Deselect the check box if the host is leaving the domain.
5
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Click OK.
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Troubleshooting Clusters
3
The cluster troubleshooting topics provide solutions to potential problems that you might encounter when
using your hosts and datastores in vSphere DRS, vSphere HA, or vSphere Storage DRS clusters.
You might get an error message when you try to use vSphere HA or vSphere FT. For information about these
error messages, see the VMware knowledge base article at http://kb.vmware.com/kb/1033634.
This chapter includes the following topics:
n
“Troubleshooting vSphere HA Admission Control,” on page 33
n
“Troubleshooting Heartbeat Datastores,” on page 35
n
“Troubleshooting vSphere HA Failovers,” on page 36
n
“Troubleshooting vSphere Fault Tolerance in Network Partitions,” on page 38
n
“Troubleshooting Storage I/O Control,” on page 39
n
“Troubleshooting Storage DRS,” on page 41
n
“Cannot Create Resource Pool When Connected Directly to Host,” on page 46
Troubleshooting vSphere HA Admission Control
vCenter Server uses admission control to ensure that sufficient resources in a vSphere HA cluster are reserved
for virtual machine recovery in the event of host failure. If vSphere HA admission control does not function
properly, there is no assurance that all virtual machines in the cluster can be restarted after a host failure.
Red Cluster Due to Insufficient Failover Resources
When you use the Host Failures Cluster Tolerates admission control policy, vSphere HA clusters might become
invalid (red) due to insufficient failover resources.
Problem
If you select the Host Failures Cluster Tolerates admission control policy and certain problems arise, the cluster
turns red.
Cause
This problem can arise when hosts in the cluster are disconnected, in maintenance mode, not responding, or
have a vSphere HA error. Disconnected and maintenance mode hosts are typically caused by user action.
Unresponsive or error-possessing hosts usually result from a more serious problem, for example, hosts or
agents have failed or a networking problem exists.
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Another possible cause of this problem is if your cluster contains any virtual machines that have much larger
memory or CPU reservations than the others. The Host Failures Cluster Tolerates admission control policy is
based on the calculation on a slot size consisting of two components, the CPU and memory reservations of a
virtual machine. If the calculation of this slot size is skewed by outlier virtual machines, the admission control
policy can become too restrictive and result in a red cluster.
Solution
Check that all hosts in the cluster are healthy, that is, connected, not in maintenance mode and free of vSphere
HA errors. vSphere HA admission control only considers resources from healthy hosts.
Unable to Power On Virtual Machine Due to Insufficient Failover Resources
You might get a not enough failover resources fault when trying to power on a virtual machine in a vSphere
HA cluster.
Problem
If you select the Host Failures Cluster Tolerates admission control policy and certain problems arise, you might
be prevented from powering on a virtual machine due to insufficient resources.
Cause
This problem can have several causes.
n
Hosts in the cluster are disconnected, in maintenance mode, not responding, or have a vSphere HA error.
Disconnected and maintenance mode hosts are typically caused by user action. Unresponsive or errorpossessing hosts usually result from a more serious problem, for example, hosts or agents have failed or
a networking problem exists).
n
Cluster contains virtual machines that have much larger memory or CPU reservations than the others.
The Host Failures Cluster Tolerates admission control policy is based on the calculation on a slot size
comprised of two components, the CPU and memory reservations of a virtual machine. If the calculation
of this slot size is skewed by outlier virtual machines, the admission control policy can become too
restrictive and result in the inability to power on virtual machines.
n
No free slots in the cluster.
Problems occur if there are no free slots in the cluster or if powering on a virtual machine causes the slot
size to increase because it has a larger reservation than existing virtual machines. In either case, you should
use the vSphere HA advanced options to reduce the slot size, use a different admission control policy, or
modify the policy to tolerate fewer host failures.
Solution
Click on the Advanced Runtime Info link that appears in the vSphere HA section of the cluster's Summary
tab in the vSphere Client. This information box shows the slot size and how many available slots there are in
the cluster. If the slot size appears too high, click on the Resource Allocation tab of the cluster and sort the
virtual machines by reservation to determine which have the largest CPU and memory reservations. If there
are outlier virtual machines with much higher reservations than the others, consider using a different vSphere
HA admission control policy (such as the Percentage of Cluster Resources Reserved admission control policy)
or use the vSphere HA advanced options to place an absolute cap on the slot size. Both of these options,
however, increase the risk of resource fragmentation.
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Chapter 3 Troubleshooting Clusters
Fewer Available Slots Shown Than Expected
The Advanced Runtime Info box might display a smaller number of available slots in the cluster than you
expect.
Problem
When you select the Host Failures Cluster Tolerates admission control policy, the Advanced Runtime Info
link appears in the vSphere HA section of the cluster's Summary tab in the vSphere Client. Clicking this link
displays information about the cluster, including the number of slots available to power on additional virtual
machines in the cluster. This number might be smaller than expected under certain conditions.
Cause
Slot size is calculated using the largest reservations plus the memory overhead of any powered on virtual
machines in the cluster. However, vSphere HA admission control considers only the resources on a host that
are available for virtual machines. This amount is less than the total amount of physical resources on the host,
because there is some overhead.
Solution
Reduce the virtual machine reservations if possible, use vSphere HA advanced options to reduce the slot size,
or use a different admission control policy.
Troubleshooting Heartbeat Datastores
When the master host in a vSphere HA cluster can no longer communicate with a slave host over the
management network, the master host uses datastore heartbeating to determine if the slave host might have
failed or is in a network partition. If the slave host has stopped datastore heartbeating, that host is considered
to have failed and its virtual machines are restarted elsewhere.
vCenter Server automatically selects a preferred set of datastores for heartbeating. This selection is made with
the goal of maximizing the number of hosts that have access to a given datastore and minimizing the likelihood
that the selected datastores are backed by the same storage array or NFS server. In most cases, this selection
should not be changed. However, if you must replace a selected datastore, you can go to the Cluster Settings
dialog box of the vSphere Client and select the Datastore Heartbeating page to specify alternative datastores.
Only datastores mounted by at least two hosts are available here. You can also see which datastores vSphere
HA has selected for use by viewing the Heartbeat Datastores tab of the HA Cluster Status dialog box.
User-Preferred Datastore is Not Chosen
vCenter Server might not choose a datastore that you specify as a preference for vSphere HA storage
heartbeating.
Problem
You can specify the datastores preferred for storage heartbeating, and based on this preference, vCenter Server
determines the final set of datastores to use. However, vCenter Server might not choose the datastores that
you specify.
Cause
This problem can occur in the following cases:
n
The specified number of datastores is more than is required. vCenter Server chooses the optimal number
of required datastores out of the stated user preference and ignores the rest.
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n
A specified datastore is not optimal for host accessibility and storage backing redundancy. More
specifically, the datastore might not be chosen if it is accessible to only a small set of hosts in the cluster.
A datastore also might not be chosen if it is on the same LUN or the same NFS server as datastores that
vCenter Server has already chosen.
n
A specified datastore is inaccessible because of storage failures, for example, storage array all paths down
or permanent device loss.
n
If the cluster contains a network partition, or if a host is unreachable or isolated, the host continues to use
the existing heartbeat datastores even if the user preferences change.
Solution
Verify that all the hosts in the cluster are reachable and have the vSphere HA agent running. Also, ensure that
the specified datastores are accessible to most, if not all, hosts in the cluster and that the datastores are on
different LUNs or NFS servers.
Unmounting or Removing Datastore Fails
When you try to unmount or remove a datastore, the operation fails.
Problem
The operation to unmount or remove a datastore fails if the datastore has any opened files. For these user
operations, the vSphere HA agent closes all of the files that it has opened, for example, heartbeat files. If the
agent is not reachable by vCenter Server or the agent cannot flush out pending I/Os to close the files, a The
HA agent on host '{hostName}' failed to quiesce file activity on datastore '{dsName} fault is triggered.
Cause
If the datastore to be unmounted or removed is used for heartbeating, vCenter Server excludes it from
heartbeating and chooses a new one. However, the agent does not receive the updated heartbeat datastores if
it is not reachable, that is, if the host is isolated or in a network partition. In such cases, heartbeat files are not
closed and the user operation fails. The operation can also fail if the datastore is not accessible because of storage
failures such as all paths down.
NOTE When you remove a VMFS datastore, the datastore is removed from all the hosts in inventory. So if
there are any hosts in a vSphere HA cluster that are unreachable or that cannot access the datastore, the
operation fails.
Solution
Ensure that the datastore is accessible and the affected hosts are reachable.
Troubleshooting vSphere HA Failovers
vSphere HA provides high availability for virtual machines by pooling them and the hosts that they reside on
into a cluster. Hosts in the cluster are monitored and in the event of a failure, the virtual machines on a failed
host are restarted on alternate hosts.
Incorrect Virtual Machine Protection State
A virtual machine in a vSphere HA cluster is reported as vSphere HA unprotected although it has been
powered on for several minutes.
Problem
When a virtual machine is powered on for several minutes, yet its vSphere HA protection state remains as
unprotected, if a failure occurs, vSphere HA might not attempt to restart the virtual machine.
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Cause
vCenter Server reports a virtual machine as protected after the vSphere HA master host that is responsible for
the virtual machine has saved to disk the information that the virtual machine must be restarted after a failure.
This process can fail for a number of reasons.
n
vSphere HA master host has not been elected or vCenter Server is unable to communicate with it.
In this situation, vCenter Server reports the vSphere HA host state for the cluster hosts as Agent
Unreachable or Agent Uninitialized and reports a cluster configuration problem that a master host has
not been found.
n
Multiple master hosts exist and the one with which vCenter Server is communicating is not responsible
for the virtual machine.
Problems occur when vCenter Server is in contact with a master host, but due to a management network
partition, there are multiple master hosts, and the agent with which vCenter Server is communicating is
not responsible for the virtual machine. This situation is likely if vCenter Server is reporting the vSphere
HA state of some hosts as network partitioned.
n
Agent is unable to access the datastore on which the configuration file of the virtual machine is stored.
vCenter Server might be in contact with the vSphere HA master host that owns the virtual machine, but
the agent is unable to access the datastore on which the configuration file of the virtual machine is stored.
This situation can occur if an all paths down condition affects all hosts in the cluster.
Solution
1
Determine whether vCenter Server is in contact with a vSphere HA master host, and if not, address this
problem.
2
If vCenter Server is in contact with a master host, determine whether there is a network partition, and if
so, address that problem.
3
If the problem persists, determine if other virtual machines that use the same datastore for their
configuration files are also unprotected.
4
If these virtual machines are unprotected, verify that the vSphere HA master host can access the datastore.
5
If none of the previous steps resolves the problem, restore protection by reconfiguring vSphere HA on the
host on which the virtual machine is running.
Virtual Machine Restart Fails
After a host or virtual machine failure, a virtual machine might not be restarted.
Problem
When a host fails or a virtual machine fails while its host continues running, the virtual machine might not
restart or restarts only after a long delay.
Cause
vSphere HA might not restart a virtual machine after a failure or might delay its restart for several reasons.
n
Virtual machine is not protected by vSphere HA at the time the failure occurred
n
Insufficient spare capacity on hosts with which the virtual machine is compatible
n
vSphere HA attempted to restart the virtual machine but encountered a fatal error each time it tried.
n
Restart actually succeeded.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Solution
To avoid virtual machine restart failures, check that virtual machines become protected by vSphere HA after
they are powered on. Also, ensure that your admission control settings match your restart expectations if a
failure occurs. Maximizing the compatibility between virtual machines and hosts in the cluster can also reduce
the likelihood of restart failures.
Troubleshooting vSphere Fault Tolerance in Network Partitions
When a vSphere HA cluster experiences a failure of the network that vSphere uses for inter-agent
communication (the management network), a subset of the cluster's hosts might be unable to communicate
with other cluster hosts. In this case, the set of hosts that can communicate with each other are considered to
be in a network partition.
A cluster partition impedes cluster management functions such as vMotion and can impact vSphere HA’s
ability to monitor and restart virtual machines after a failure. This condition must be corrected as soon as
possible.
Network partitions also degrade the functionality of vSphere Fault Tolerance. For example, in a partitioned
cluster, a Primary VM (or its Secondary VM) could end up in a partition managed by a master host that is not
responsible for the virtual machine. When a Secondary VM must be restarted, vSphere HA does so only if the
Primary VM is in a partition managed by the master host responsible for it. Ultimately, you must correct the
network partition, but until that is possible, you must troubleshoot and correct any problems that arise with
your fault-tolerant virtual machines to ensure that they are properly protected.
Primary VM Remains in the Need Secondary State
A fault tolerant Primary VM can remain in the need secondary state even though sufficient resources are
available to start the Secondary VM.
Problem
vSphere HA might not restart the Secondary VM of a vSphere Fault Tolerance (FT) virtual machine pair even
though there are sufficient resources available.
Cause
To restart a Secondary VM, vSphere HA requires that the Primary VM be running on a host that is in the same
partition as the one containing the vSphere HA master host responsible for the FT pair. In addition, the vSphere
HA agent on the Primary VM’s host must be operating correctly. If these conditions are met, FT also requires
that there be at least one other host in the same partition that is compatible with the FT pair and that has a
functioning vSphere HA agent.
Solution
To fix this condition, check the vSphere HA host states reported by vCenter Server. If hosts are identified as
partitioned, isolated, or unreachable, resolve the problem before proceeding. In some situations, you can
resolve a restart problem by reconfiguring vSphere HA on the host that vCenter Server is reporting as the
master host. However, in most situations, this step is insufficient, and you must resolve all host state problems.
After you have addressed any host state problems, check if there are any hosts in the cluster other than the
Primary VM's that are compatible with the FT virtual machine pair. You can determine compatibility by trying
to migrate the Primary VM to other hosts. Address any incompatibilities that are discovered.
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Chapter 3 Troubleshooting Clusters
Role Switch Behavior Problems
vCenter Server can report that the Primary VM of a vSphere Fault Tolerance virtual machine pair is powered
off, but the Secondary VM is powered on.
Problem
After a failover occurs, vCenter Server might incorrectly report that the Primary VM is powered off and
registered to its original host, and that the Secondary VM is powered on and registered to its original host.
Cause
This error occurs when vCenter Server is unable to communicate with the hosts on which the Primary VM and
Secondary VM are actually running. vCenter Server reports these hosts as not responding and the problem
persists until vCenter Server is able to communicate with the hosts.
Solution
To fix this problem, resolve the networking problem that is preventing vCenter Server from communicating
with the hosts in the cluster.
Troubleshooting Storage I/O Control
The Storage I/O Control troubleshooting topics provide solutions to potential problems that you might
encounter when using Storage I/O Control with datastores.
Unsupported Host Connected to Datastore
In the vSphere Client, an alarm is triggered when vCenter Server detects that a workload from a host might
be affecting performance.
Problem
The alarm Pre-4.1 host connected to SIOC-enabled datastore is triggered.
Cause
The datastore is Storage I/O Control-enabled, but it cannot be fully controlled by Storage I/O Control because
of the external workload.
This condition can occur if the Storage I/O Control-enabled datastore is connected to a host that does not
support Storage I/O Control.
Solution
Ensure that all hosts that are connected to the datastore support Storage I/O Control.
Unmanaged Workload Detected on Datastore
In the vSphere Client, an alarm is triggered when vCenter Server detects that a workload from a host might
be affecting performance.
Problem
The alarm Unmanaged workload is detected on the datastore is triggered.
Cause
The array is shared with non-vSphere workloads, or the array is performing system tasks such as replication.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Solution
There is no solution. vCenter Server does not reduce the total amount of I/O sent to the array, but continues
to enforce shares.
Unable to View Performance Charts for Datastore
Performance charts for a datastore do not appear on the Performance tab.
Problem
You are unable to view performance charts for a datastore on the Performance tab in the vSphere Client.
Cause
Storage I/O Control is disabled for the datastore.
Solution
1
In the vSphere Client inventory, select a datastore and click the Configuration tab.
2
Click Properties.
3
Under Storage I/O Control, select the Enabled check box.
4
Click Close.
On the Datastore tab, the Storage I/O Control column shows that Storage I/O Control is enabled for the
datastore.
Cannot Enable Storage I/O Control on Datastore
Storage I/O Control is disabled on a datastore and cannot be enabled.
Problem
You cannot enable Storage I/O Control on a datastore.
Cause
The following reasons might prevent you from enabling Storage I/O Control on a datastore.
n
At least one host that is connected to the datastore is not running ESX/ESXi 4.1 or later.
n
You do not have the appropriate license to enable Storage I/O Control.
Solution
40
n
Verify that the hosts connected to the datastore are ESX/ESXi 4.1 or later.
n
Verify that you have the appropriate license to enable Storage I/O Control.
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Chapter 3 Troubleshooting Clusters
Troubleshooting Storage DRS
The Storage DRS troubleshooting topics provide solutions to potential problems that you might encounter
when using Storage DRS-enabled datastores in a datastore cluster.
Storage DRS is Disabled on a Virtual Disk
Even when Storage DRS is enabled for a datastore cluster, it might be disabled on some virtual disks in the
datastore cluster.
Problem
You have enabled Storage DRS for a datastore cluster, but Storage DRS is disabled on one or more virtual
machine disks in the datastore cluster.
Cause
The following scenarios can cause Storage DRS to be disabled on a virtual disk.
n
A virtual machine's swap file is host-local (the swap file is stored in a specified datastore that is on the
host). The swap file cannot be relocated and Storage DRS is disabled for the swap file disk.
n
A certain location is specified for a virtual machine's .vmx swap file. The swap file cannot be relocated and
Storage DRS is disabled on the .vmx swap file disk.
n
The relocate or Storage vMotion operation is currently disabled for the virtual machine in vCenter Server
(for example, because other vCenter Server operations are in progress on the virtual machine). Storage
DRS is disabled until the relocate or Storage vMotion operation is re-enabled in vCenter Server.
n
The home disk of a virtual machine is protected by vSphere HA and relocating it will cause loss of vSphere
HA protection.
n
The disk is a CD-ROM/ISO file.
n
If the disk is an independent disk, Storage DRS is disabled, except in the case of relocation or clone
placement.
n
If the virtual machine has system files on a separate datastore from the home datastore (legacy), Storage
DRS is disabled on the home disk. If you use Storage vMotion to manually migrate the home disk, the
system files on different datastores will be all be located on the target datastore and Storage DRS will be
enabled on the home disk.
n
If the virtual machine has a disk whose base/redo files are spread across separate datastores (legacy),
Storage DRS for the disk is disabled. If you use Storage vMotion to manually migrate the disk, the files on
different datastores will be all be located on the target datastore and Storage DRS will be enabled on the
disk.
n
The virtual machine has hidden disks (such as disks in previous snapshots, not in the current snapshot).
This situation causes Storage DRS to be disabled on the virtual machine.
n
The virtual machine is a template.
n
The virtual machine is vSphere Fault Tolerance-enabled.
n
The virtual machine is sharing files between its disks.
n
The virtual machine is being Storage DRS-placed with manually specified datastores.
Solution
Address the problem that is causing Storage DRS to be disabled on the disk.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Datastore Cannot Enter Maintenance Mode
You place a datastore in maintenance mode when you must take it out of usage to service it. A datastore enters
or leaves maintenance mode only as a result of a user request.
Problem
A datastore in a datastore cluster cannot enter maintenance mode. The Entering Maintenance Mode status
remains at 1%.
Cause
One or more disks on the datastore cannot be migrated with Storage vMotion. This condition can occur in the
following instances.
n
Storage DRS is disabled on the disk.
n
Storage DRS rules prevent Storage DRS from making migration recommendations for the disk.
Solution
n
If Storage DRS is disabled, enable it or determine why it is disabled. See “Storage DRS is Disabled on a
Virtual Disk,” on page 41 for reasons why Storage DRS might be disabled.
n
If Storage DRS rules are preventing Storage DRS from making migration recommendations, you can
remove or disable particular rules.
n
a
In the vSphere Client inventory, right-click the datastore cluster and select Edit Settings.
b
Select Rules and click the rule.
c
Click Remove.
d
Click OK.
Alternatively, if Storage DRS rules are preventing Storage DRS from making migration recommendations,
you can set the Storage DRS advanced option IgnoreAffinityRulesForMaintenance to 1.
a
In the vSphere Client inventory, right-click the datastore cluster and select Edit Settings.
b
Select SDRS Automation and click Advanced Options.
c
Enter 1 in the Value column for IgnoreAffinityRulesForMaintenance.
d
Click OK.
Storage DRS Cannot Operate on a Datastore
Storage DRS generates an alarm to indicate that it cannot operate on the datastore.
Problem
Storage DRS generates an event and an alarm and Storage DRS cannot operate.
Cause
The following scenarios can cause vCenter Server to disable Storage DRS for a datastore.
n
The datastore is shared across multiple datacenters.
Storage DRS is not supported on datastores that are shared across multiple datacenters. This configuration
can occur when a host in one datacenter mounts a datastore in another datacenter, or when a host using
the datastore is moved to a different datacenter. When a datastore is shared across multiple datacenters,
Storage DRS I/O load balancing is disabled for the entire datastore cluster. However, Storage DRS space
balancing remains active for all datastores in the datastore cluster that are not shared across datacenters.
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Chapter 3 Troubleshooting Clusters
n
The datastore is connected to an unsupported host.
Storage DRS is not supported on ESX/ESXi 4.1 and earlier hosts.
n
The datastore is connected to a host that is not running Storage I/O Control.
Solution
n
The datastore must be visible in only one datacenter. Move the hosts to the same datacenter or unmount
the datastore from hosts that reside in other datacenters.
n
Ensure that all hosts associated with the datastore cluster are ESXi 5.0 or later.
n
Ensure that all hosts associated with the datastore cluster have Storage I/O Control enabled.
Moving Multiple Virtual Machines into a Datastore Cluster Fails
Migrating more than one datastore into a datastore cluster fails with an error message after the first virtual
machine has successfully moved into the datastore cluster.
Problem
When you attempt to migrate multiple virtual machines into a datastore cluster, some virtual machines migrate
successfully, but migration of subsequent virtual machines fails. vCenter Server displays the error message,
Insufficient Disk Space on Datastore.
Cause
Until each placement recommendation is applied, the space resources appear to be available to Storage DRS.
Therefore, Storage DRS might reallocate space resources to subsequent requests for space.
Solution
Retry the failed migration operations one at a time and ensure that each recommendation is applied before
requesting the next migration
Storage DRS Generates Fault During Virtual Machine Creation
When you create or clone a virtual machine on a datastore cluster, Storage DRS might generate a fault.
Problem
When you attempt to create or clone a virtual machine on a datastore cluster, you might receive the error
message, Operation Not Allowed in the Current State.
Cause
Storage DRS checks for rule violations when you create a virtual machine on a Storage DRS-enabled datastore.
If Storage DRS cannot create the new virtual machine's disks in compliance with the rules, it generates a fault.
The fault is generated because Storage DRS cannot reference the virtual machine, which is in the process of
being created and does not yet exist.
Solution
Revise or remove the rules and retry the create or clone virtual machine operation.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Storage DRS is Enabled on a Virtual Machine Deployed from an OVF Template
Storage DRS is enabled on a virtual machine that was deployed from an OVF template that has Storage DRS
disabled. This can occur when you deploy an OVF template on a datastore cluster.
Problem
When you deploy an OVF template with Storage DRS disabled on a datastore cluster, the resulting virtual
machine has Storage DRS enabled.
Cause
The vSphere Client applies the default automation level of the datastore cluster to virtual machines deployed
from an OVF template.
Solution
1
To manually change the automation level of the virtual machine, right-click the datastore cluster and select
Edit Settings.
2
Select Virtual Machine Settings.
3
Deselect the Keep VMDKs together check box for the virtual machine.
4
Click OK.
Storage DRS Rule Violation Fault Is Displayed Multiple Times
When you attempt to put a datastore into maintenance mode, the same affinity or anti-affinity rule violation
fault might appear to be listed more than once in the Faults dialog box.
Problem
The Faults dialog box appears to display multiple instances of identical faults, but in fact, each fault refers to
a different datastore. The Faults dialog box does not list the names of the datastores, which causes the faults
to appear to be redundant.
Solution
The Faults dialog box always displays a separate rule violation fault for each datastore that is considered for
placement. If you want the datastore to enter maintenance mode, remove the rule that prevents the virtual
machine from being migrated.
Storage DRS Rules Not Deleted from Datastore Cluster
Affinity or anti-affinity rules that apply to a virtual machine are not deleted when you remove the virtual
machine from a datastore cluster.
Problem
When you remove a virtual machine from a datastore cluster, and that virtual machine is subject to an affinity
or anti-affinity rule in a datastore cluster, the rule remains. This allows you to store virtual machine
configurations in different datastore clusters. If the virtual machine is moved back into the datastore cluster,
the rule is applied. You cannot delete the rule after you remove the virtual machine from the datastore cluster.
Cause
vCenter Server retains rules for a virtual machine that is removed from a datastore cluster if the virtual machine
remains in the vCenter Server inventory.
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Solution
To remove a rule from a datastore cluster configuration, you must delete the rule before you remove the virtual
machine to which the rule applies from the datastore cluster.
1
In the vSphere Client, right-click the datastore cluster and select Edit Settings.
2
In the left pane, select Rules.
3
Select the rule to delete and click Remove.
4
Click OK.
Alternative Storage DRS Placement Recommendations Are Not Generated
When you create, clone, or relocate a virtual machine, Storage DRS generates only one placement
recommendation.
Problem
Storage DRS generates a single placement recommendation when you create, clone, or relocate a virtual
machine. No alternative recommendations are provided when multiple alternative recommendations are
expected.
Cause
If the destination host explicitly specifies the virtual machine's swap file location as a datastore in the target
datastore cluster, the disks to be placed in that cluster do not form a single affinity group. Storage DRS generates
alternative placement recommendations only for a single item or a single affinity group.
Solution
Accept the single recommendation. To obtain multiple recommendations, choose a destination host that does
not specify that the virtual machine swap file location is on a datastore that is in the target datastore cluster.
Applying Storage DRS Recommendations Fails
Storage DRS generates space or I/O load balancing recommendations, but attempts to apply the
recommendations fail.
Problem
When you apply Storage DRS recommendations for space or I/O load balancing, the operation fails.
Cause
The following scenarios can prevent you from applying Storage DRS recommendations.
n
A Thin Provisioning Threshold Crossed alarm might have been triggered for the target datastore, which
indicates that the datastore is running out of space and no virtual machines will be migrated to it.
n
The target datastore might be in maintenance mode or is entering maintenance mode.
Solution
n
Address the issue that triggered the Thin Provisioning Threshold Crossed alarm.
n
Verify that the target datastore is not in maintenance mode or entering maintenance mode.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Cannot Create Resource Pool When Connected Directly to Host
If vCenter Server is unavailable, and a host is being managed by vCenter Server, you might need to connect
directly to the host with the vSphere Client to create a resource pool or make changes to the hierarchy.
Problem
You cannot create a resource pool or make changes to the hierarchy when you connect directly to a managed
host with the vSphere Client.
Solution
1
2
Disassociate the host from vCenter Server.
a
In the vSphere Client connected directly to the host, click the Summary tab.
b
Under Host Management, click Disassociate host from vCenter Server.
c
Click OK.
Make changes to the resource pool hierarchy and/or create a resource pool.
Your changes will be overwritten when you reconnect the host to vCenter Server. This is the desired
behavior in most cases. Manual changes to resource pool configuration are usually required only when
vCenter Server is unavailable.
3
If it is necessary to override the vCenter Server resource pool configuration with your changes, remove
from and re-add the host to the vCenter Server inventory before you reconnect to vCenter Server.
a
Using the vSphere Client, log into the vCenter Server system that manages the host.
b
Right-click the host in the inventory and select Remove.
c
Click OK.
The host is removed.
d
Re-add the host to the vCenter Server inventory.
When you re-add the host to the vCenter Server inventory, your changes to the resource pool
hierarchy and new resource pools will appear in the vSphere Client.
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e
In the vSphere Client connected to the vCenter Server system, select File > New > Add Host.
f
Complete the Add Host wizard.
g
Verify that any new resource pools or changes to the hierarchy appear in the vSphere Client inventory.
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Troubleshooting Storage
4
The storage troubleshooting topics provide solutions to potential problems that you might encounter when
using your hosts in the SAN environment. For information about setting up the SAN storage and working
with datastores, see the vSphere Storage documentation.
This chapter includes the following topics:
n
“Resolving SAN Storage Display Problems,” on page 47
n
“Resolving SAN Performance Problems,” on page 49
n
“Virtual Machines with RDMs Need to Ignore SCSI INQUIRY Cache,” on page 52
n
“Software iSCSI Adapter Is Enabled When Not Needed,” on page 53
n
“Failure to Mount NFS Datastores,” on page 53
n
“Understanding SCSI Sense Codes,” on page 54
Resolving SAN Storage Display Problems
When you use the vSphere Client to view storage devices available to your host, the output might differs from
what you expect to see. A number of troubleshooting tasks exist that you can perform to resolve storage display
problems.
Resolving Fibre Channel Storage Display Problems
If Fibre Channel storage devices do not display correctly in the vSphere Client, perform troubleshooting tasks.
Table 4-1. Troubleshooting Fibre Channel LUN Display
Troubleshooting Task
Description
Check cable connectivity.
If you do not see a port, the problem could be cable connectivity. Check the cables first.
Ensure that cables are connected to the ports and a link light indicates that the connection
is good. If each end of the cable does not show a good link light, replace the cable.
Check zoning.
Zoning limits access to specific storage devices, increases security, and decreases traffic
over the network. Some storage vendors allow only single-initiator zones. In that case, an
HBA can be in multiple zones to only one target. Other vendors allow multiple-initiator
zones. See your storage vendor’s documentation for zoning requirements. Use the SAN
switch software to configure and manage zoning.
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Table 4-1. Troubleshooting Fibre Channel LUN Display (Continued)
Troubleshooting Task
Description
Check access control
configuration.
n
n
n
The MASK_PATH plug-in allows you to prevent your host from accessing a specific
storage array or specific LUNs on a storage array. If your host is detecting devices and
paths that you do not want the host to access, path masking could have been set up
incorrectly.
For booting from a SAN, ensure that each host sees only required LUNs. Do not allow
any host to see any boot LUN other than its own. Use storage system software to make
sure that the host can see only the LUNs that it is supposed to see.
Ensure that theDisk.MaxLUN parameter allows you to view the LUN you expect to
see. For information on the parameter, see the vSphere Storage documentation.
Check storage processor
setup.
If a disk array has more than one storage processor (SP), make sure that the SAN switch
has a connection to the SP that owns the LUNs you want to access. On some disk arrays,
only one SP is active and the other SP is passive until there is a failure. If you are connected
to the wrong SP (the one with the passive path), you might see the LUNs but get errors
when trying to access them.
Rescan your HBA.
Perform a rescan each time you complete the following tasks:
n Create new LUNs on a SAN.
n Change the path masking configuration on the host.
n Reconnect a cable.
n Make a change to a host in a cluster.
For information, see the vSphere Storage documentation.
Resolving iSCSI Storage Display Problems
Perform troubleshooting tasks if iSCSI storage devices do not display correctly in the vSphere Client.
Table 4-2. Troubleshooting iSCSI LUN Display
48
Troubleshooting Task
Description
Check cable connectivity.
If you do not see a port, the problem could be cable connectivity or routing. Check the
cables first. Ensure that cables are connected to the ports and a link light indicates that the
connection is good. If each end of the cable does not show a good link light, replace the
cable.
Check routing settings.
Controls connectivity between different subnets on your Ethernet configuration. If your
ESXi system and iSCSI storage are not on the same subnet, ensure that appropriate routing
exists between the subnets. Also, ensure that the subnet mask and gateway address are set
correctly on the iSCSI storage and the iSCSI initiator in the ESXi host.
Check access control
configuration.
If the expected LUNs do not appear after rescan, access control might not be configured
correctly on the storage system side:
n If CHAP is configured, ensure that it is enabled on the ESXi host and matches the
storage system setup.
n If IP-based filtering is used, ensure that the iSCSI HBA or the VMkernel port group IP
address is allowed.
n If you are using initiator name-based filtering, ensure that the name is a qualified iSCSI
name and matches the storage system setup.
n For booting from a SAN, ensure that each host sees only required LUNs. Do not allow
any host to see any boot LUN other than its own. Use storage system software to make
sure that the host can see only the LUNs that it is supposed to see.
n Ensure that theDisk.MaxLUN setting allows you to view the LUN you expect to see.
For information, see the vSphere Storage documentation.
Check storage processor
setup.
If a storage system has more than one storage processor, make sure that the SAN switch
has a connection to the SP that owns the LUNs you want to access. On some storage systems,
only one SP is active and the other SP is passive until a failure occurs. If you are connected
to the wrong SP (the one with the passive path) you might not see the expected LUNs, or
you might see the LUNs but get errors when trying to access them.
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Chapter 4 Troubleshooting Storage
Table 4-2. Troubleshooting iSCSI LUN Display (Continued)
Troubleshooting Task
Description
For software and dependent
hardware iSCSI, check
network configuration.
The software iSCSI and dependent hardware adapters in ESXi require that VMkernel
network port have access to the iSCSI storage. The adapters use the VMkernel for data
transfer between the ESXi system and the iSCSI storage.
Rescan your iSCSI initiator.
Perform a rescan each time you complete the following tasks:
n Create new LUNs on a SAN.
n Change the LUN masking.
n Reconnect a cable.
n Make a change to a host in a cluster.
n Change CHAP settings or add new discovery addresses.
For information, see the vSphere Storage documentation.
Resolving SAN Performance Problems
A number of factors can negatively affect storage performance in the ESXi SAN environment. Among these
factors are excessive SCSI reservations, path thrashing, and inadequate LUN queue depth.
To monitor storage performance in real time, use the resxtop and esxtop command-line utilities. For more
information, see the vSphere Monitoring and Performance documentation.
Excessive SCSI Reservations Cause Slow Host Performance
Operations that require getting a file lock or a metadata lock in VMFS result in short-lived SCSI reservations.
SCSI reservations lock an entire LUN. Excessive SCSI reservations by a host can cause performance degradation
on other servers accessing the same VMFS.
Problem
Excessive SCSI reservations cause performance degradation and SCSI reservation conflicts.
Cause
Several operations require VMFS to use SCSI reservations.
n
Creating, resignaturing, or expanding a VMFS datastore
n
Powering on a virtual machine
n
Creating or deleting a file
n
Creating a template
n
Deploying a virtual machine from a template
n
Creating a new virtual machine
n
Migrating a virtual machine with VMotion
n
Growing a file, such as a thin provisioned virtual disk
NOTE ESXi hosts use the SCSI reservations mechanism only when storage devices do not support the hardware
acceleration. For storage devices that support the hardware acceleration, the hosts use the atomic test and set
(ATS) algorithm to lock the LUN. For more information on hardware acceleration, see the vSphere Storage
documentation.
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Solution
To eliminate potential sources of SCSI reservation conflicts, follow these guidelines:
n
Serialize the operations of the shared LUNs, if possible, limit the number of operations on different hosts
that require SCSI reservation at the same time.
n
Increase the number of LUNs and limit the number of hosts accessing the same LUN.
n
Reduce the number snapshots. Snapshots cause numerous SCSI reservations.
n
Reduce the number of virtual machines per LUN. Follow recommendations in Configuration Maximums.
n
Make sure that you have the latest HBA firmware across all hosts.
n
Make sure that the host has the latest BIOS.
n
Ensure a correct Host Mode setting on the SAN array.
Path Thrashing Causes Slow LUN Access
If your ESXi host is unable to access a LUN, or access is very slow, you might have a problem with path
thrashing, also called LUN thrashing.
Problem
Your host is unable to access a LUN, or access is very slow. The host's log files might indicate frequent path
state changes.
Cause
The problem might be caused by path thrashing. Path thrashing might occur when two hosts access the same
LUN through different storage processors (SPs) and, as a result, the LUN is never available.
Path thrashing typically occurs on active-passive arrays. Path thrashing can also occur on a directly connected
array with HBA failover on one or more nodes. Active-active arrays or arrays that provide transparent failover
do not cause path thrashing.
Solution
1
Ensure that all hosts that share the same set of LUNs on the active-passive arrays use the same storage
processor.
2
Correct any cabling or masking inconsistencies between different hosts and SAN targets so that all HBAs
see the same targets.
3
Ensure that the claim rules defined on all hosts that share the LUNs are exactly the same.
4
Configure the path to use the Most Recently Used PSP, which is the default.
Increased Latency for I/O Requests Slows Virtual Machine Performance
If the ESXi host generates more commands to a LUN than the LUN queue depth permits, the excess commands
are queued in VMkernel. This increases the latency, or the time taken to complete I/O requests.
Problem
The host takes longer to complete I/O requests and virtual machines display unsatisfactory performance.
Cause
The problem might be caused by an inadequate LUN queue depth. SCSI device drivers have a configurable
parameter called the LUN queue depth that determines how many commands to a given LUN can be active
at one time. If the host generates more commands to a LUN, the excess commands are queued in the VMkernel.
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Chapter 4 Troubleshooting Storage
Solution
1
If the sum of active commands from all virtual machines consistently exceeds the LUN depth, increase
the queue depth.
The procedure that you use to increase the queue depth depends on the type of storage adapter the host
uses.
2
Adjust the Disk.SchedNumReqOutstanding parameter, so that it matches the queue depth value.
Adjust Queue Depth for QLogic and Emulex HBAs
If you are not satisfied with your host's performance, change the maximum queue depth for the QLogic or
Emulex HBA.
To adjust the maximum queue depth parameter, use the vCLI commands.
In the procedure, --server=server_name specifies the target server. The specified target server prompts you
for a user name and password. Other connection options, such as a configuration file or session file, are
supported. For a list of connection options, see Getting Started with vSphere Command-Line Interfaces.
Prerequisites
Install vCLI or deploy the vSphere Management Assistant (vMA) virtual machine. See Getting Started with
vSphere Command-Line Interfaces. For troubleshooting , run esxcli commands in the ESXi Shell.
Procedure
1
2
Verify which HBA module is currently loaded by entering one of the following commands:
n
For QLogic: esxcli --server=server_name system module list |grep qla
n
For Emulex: esxcli --server=server_name system module list |grep lpfc
Adjust the queue depth for the appropriate module.
NOTE The examples show the QLogic qla2xxx and Emulex lpfc820 modules. Use the appropriate module
based on the outcome of the previous step.
n
For QLogic:
esxcli --server=server_name system module parameters set -m qla2xxx -p ql2xmaxqdepth=value
n
For Emulex:
esxcli --server=server_name system module parameters set -m lpfc820 -p
lpfc0_lun_queue_depth=value
3
Reboot your host.
4
Verify your changes by running the following command:
esxcli --server=server_name system module parameters list -m=module.
module is your QLogic or Emulex module, such as lpfc820 or qla2xxx.
Adjust Maximum Queue Depth for Software iSCSI
If you notice unsatisfactory performance for your software iSCSI LUNs, change their maximum queue depth
by running the esxcli commands.
Prerequisites
n
Install vCLI or deploy the vSphere Management Assistant (vMA) virtual machine. See Getting Started with
vSphere Command-Line Interfaces. For troubleshooting, you can run esxcli commands in the ESXi Shell.
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n
In the procedure, the --server=server_name connection option specifies the target server. Be prepared to
enter a user name and password when the target server prompts you. For a list of other possible connection
options, see Getting Started with vSphere Command-Line Interfaces.
Procedure
1
Run the following command:
esxcli --server=server_name system module parameters set -m iscsi_vmk -p
iscsivmk_LunQDepth=value
The iscsivmk_LunQDepth parameter sets the maximum number of outstanding commands, or queue depth,
for each LUN accessed through the software iSCSI adapter. The default value is 128.
2
Reboot your system.
3
Verify your changes by running the
esxcli --server=server_name system module parameters list -m iscsi_vmk command.
CAUTION Setting the queue depth to a value higher than the default can decrease the total number of LUNs
supported.
Change Maximum Outstanding Disk Requests for Virtual Machines
If you adjusted the LUN queue depth, change the Disk.SchedNumReqOutstanding parameter, so that its value
matches the queue depth. The parameter controls the maximum number of outstanding requests that all virtual
machines can issue to the LUN.
Change this parameter only when you have multiple virtual machines active on a LUN. The parameter does
not apply when only one virtual machine is active. In that case, the bandwidth is controlled by the queue depth
of the storage adapter.
Procedure
1
In the vSphere Client, select the host in the inventory panel.
2
Click the Configuration tab and click Advanced Settings under Software.
3
Click Disk in the left panel and scroll down to Disk.SchedNumReqOutstanding.
4
Change the parameter value to the number of your choice and click OK.
This change can impact disk bandwidth scheduling, but experiments have shown improvements for diskintensive workloads.
Virtual Machines with RDMs Need to Ignore SCSI INQUIRY Cache
Storage vendors might require that virtual machines with RDMs (hardware version 8) ignore SCSI INQUIRY
data cached by ESXi.
Problem
Certain guest operating systems or applications run in virtual machines with RDMs display unpredictable
behavior.
Cause
This behavior might be caused by cached SCSI INQUIRY data that interferes with specific guest operating
systems and applications.
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Chapter 4 Troubleshooting Storage
When the ESXi host first connects to a target storage device on a SAN, it issues the SCSI INQUIRY command
to obtain basic identification data from the device. By default, ESXi caches the received SCSI INQUIRY data
(Standard, page 80, and page 83) and the data remains unchanged afterwards.
Solution
u
Configure the virtual machine with RDM to ignore the SCSI INQUIRY cache by adding the following
parameter to the .vmx file.
scsix:y.ignoreDeviceInquiryCache = "true"
where x is the SCSI controller number and y is the SCSI target number of the RDM.
Because this parameter is configurable only on virtual machines with hardware version 8, upgrade the
virtual machine prior to adding the parameter.
Enable this parameter only when your storage vendor recommends that you do so. This parameter is
required for just a limited number of storage arrays and only for specific guest operating systems.
Software iSCSI Adapter Is Enabled When Not Needed
When your host uses a network adapter with iBFT, the software iSCSI adapter is always enabled by default.
Problem
After your ESXi host's first boot, the software iSCSI adapter is enabled and appears in the vSphere Client on
the list of storage adapters.
Cause
The iBFT-enabled network adapter on your host causes the software iSCSI to be always present. This condition
occurs even when you do not use iBFT for the iSCSI boot.
Solution
If you do not use the iBFT-enabled network adapter for the iSCSI boot and do not want the software iSCSI
adapter to be enabled, remove the iBFT configuration from the network adapter. Because this process is vendorspecific, consult your vendor documentation for details.
Failure to Mount NFS Datastores
Attempts to mount NFS datastores with names in international languages result in failures.
Problem
The use of non-ASCII characters for directory and file names on NFS storage might cause unpredictable
behavior. For example, you might fail to mount an NFS datastore or not be able to power on a virtual machine.
Cause
ESXi supports the use of non-ASCII characters for directory and file names on NFS storage, so you can create
datastores and virtual machines using names in international languages. However, when the underlying NFS
server does not offer internationalization support, unpredictable failures might occur.
Solution
Always make sure that the underlying NFS server offers internationalization support. If the server does not,
use only ASCII characters.
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Understanding SCSI Sense Codes
Certain VMkernel messages related to storage might contain SCSI Sense codes. You use the T10 documentation
to interpret the SCSI Sense codes.
When you analyze ESXi host's log files, you encounter events or error messages that contain SCSI Sense codes.
The SCSI Sense codes follow an industry standard maintained by Technical Committee T10, which is a part of
the International Committee on Information Technology Standards (INCITS). All storage arrays and systems
that communicate with your ESXi host conform to this standard.
Your ability to interpret the SCSI Sense codes can help you to better understand problems in your storage
environment. Because the SCSI Sense code formats are maintained by the T10 committee, consult the T10
standards documentation to determine the meaning of the codes.
Example: Interpreting SCSI Sense Codes
The following is an example of a SCSI error message that appears in the ESXi log file.
2011-04-04T21:07:30.257Z cpu2:2050)ScsiDeviceIO: 2315: Cmd(0x4124003edb00) 0x12, CmdSN 0x51 to
dev "naa.600508XXXXXXXXXXXXX" failed H:0x0 D:0x2 P:0x0 Valid sense data: 0x5 0x25 0x0
In this example, SCSI Sense codes are represented by two fields, H:0x0 D:0x2 P:0x0 and 0x5 0x25 0x0.
The first field, H:0x0 D:0x2 P:0x0, is a combination of SCSI Status codes for the three components in your
storage environment, the host, the device, and the plug-in. The SCSI Status code is used to determine the success
or failure of a SCSI command. To interpret each SCSI Status code, see http://www.t10.org/lists/2status.htm.
NOTE Hexadecimal numbers in the T10 documentation use the NNNh format, while SCSI Sense codes in the
ESXi log files follow the 0xNNN format. For example, 0x2 = 02h.
You get the following interpretation for the status field of the example: H:0x0 D:0x2 P:0x0 = H(host):GOOD
D(device):CHECK CONDITION P(plug-in):GOOD.
The second field in a typical SCSI error message provides more information about the error. It is a combination
of Sense Key (sense), Additional Sense Code (asc), and Additional Sense Code Qualifier (ascq) parameters.
For example, the 0x5 0x25 0x0 field from the error message can be represented as sense=5 asc=25 ascq=0.
To interpret Sense Keys, see http://www.t10.org/lists/2sensekey.htm.
To determine the meaning of the Additional Sense Code (asc) and Additional Sense Code Qualifier (ascq), use
the two codes together. See http://www.t10.org/lists/2asc.htm for details.
You should get the following interpretation for the 0x5 0x25 0x0 field:
sense=5 (ILLEGAL REQUEST), ASC=25 ASCQ=0 (LOGICAL UNIT NOT SUPPORTED)
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Troubleshooting Licensing
5
The troubleshooting licensing topics provide solutions to problems that you might encounter as a result of an
incorrect or incompatible license setup in vSphere. The troubleshooting information also provides solutions
to problems that you might have accessing and using the licensing reporting function.
This chapter includes the following topics:
n
“Troubleshooting Host Licensing,” on page 55
n
“Troubleshooting License Reporting,” on page 57
n
“Unable to Power On a Virtual Machine,” on page 60
n
“Unable to Hot Plug Memory to a Virtual Machine,” on page 61
n
“Unable to Assign a License Key to vCenter Server,” on page 62
n
“Unable to Configure or Use a Feature,” on page 62
Troubleshooting Host Licensing
You might encounter different problems that result from an incompatible or incorrect license configuration of
ESXi hosts.
Unable to Assign a License Key to an ESXi Host
Under certain conditions, you might not be able to assign a license key to an ESXi host asset.
Problem
You try to assign a license key to an ESXi host, but you cannot perform the operation and you receive an error
message.
Cause
You might be unable to assign a license key to an ESXi host because of the following reasons:
n
The calculated license usage for the host exceeds the license capacity. For example, you have a vSphere
Essentials license key with capacity for two processors. You try to assign the key to a host that has four
processors. You cannot assign the key, because the required license usage for the host is four processors.
n
The features on the host do not match the license edition. For example, you might configure vMotion and
DRS on a cluster of hosts while you are using evaluation mode. Later, you try to assign Standard license
keys to the hosts. This operation fails because the Standard edition does not include vMotion and DRS.
n
You do not apply the correct license key.
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n
The host is connected to a vCenter Server system that is assigned a license key that restricts the edition of
the license that you want to assign. For example, vCenter Server is licensed with vCenter Server Standard,
and the license key is for vSphere Essentials.
Solution
n
Assign a license key with larger capacity.
n
Upgrade the license edition to match the resources and features on the host, or disable the features and
resources that do not match the license edition.
n
Assign a correct license key. To license ESXi hosts, you must assign a vSphere license key.
n
Assign a license key whose edition is compatible with the license edition of vCenter Server. For example,
if vCenter Server is licensed with vCenter Server Standard, you need a vSphere Standard license key.
Cannot Add or Connect an ESXi Host to vCenter Server
When you attempt to add or connect an ESXi host to vCenter Server, the operation might be unsuccessful.
Problem
You cannot add or connect an ESXi host to vCenter Server, and you receive one of the following error messages.
Cannot complete the operation. The vRAM limit of 192GB will be exceeded. Upgrade the vCenter Server
license or decrease the amount of the consumed vRAM.
The host is licensed with VMware vSphere 5 Essentials. The license edition of vCenter Server does
not support VMware vSphere 5 Essentials.
Cause
n
The host that you try to add or connect is licensed with vSphere 5.x Essentials that is part of the Essentials
kits. You cannot use more than 192GB of pooled vRAM for hosts that are licensed with vSphere 5.х
Essentials. The memory that is configured to the powered on virtual machines on the host that you try to
add or connect will lead to exceeding 192GB of consumed vRAM. For details about vRAM and vRAM
pooling, see License Management and Reporting from vCenter Server and Host Management.
n
Hosts that are licensed with vSphere 5.х Essentials can only be managed by vCenter Server systems that
are licensed with vCenter Server 5.х Essentials. For example, if you try to add a host that is licensed with
vSphere 5.х Essentials to a vCenter Server system that is licensed with vCenter Server 5.х Standard, the
operation fails. vCenter Server 5.х Standard does not support vSphere 5.х Essentials.
Solution
Reduce the amount of memory that is configured for the powered-on virtual machines and retry to add or
connect the ESXi host to vCenter Server.
The License Key of an ESXi Host is Replaced
The license key that you assigned to an ESXi host changes.
Problem
You use the vSphere Client to connect directly to an ESXi host. You use the Configuration > Licensed
Features > Edit operation to assign a license key to the host. Later, a different license key replaces the license
key you assigned to the host.
Cause
If a vCenter Server system manages an ESXi host, changes made to the host license through direct connection
to the host do not persist, because the license key assigned through vCenter Server overwrites the changes.
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Chapter 5 Troubleshooting Licensing
If you use the Configuration > Licensed Features > Edit operation, any license assignment operation that you
perform in vCenter Server overrides the host license configuration.
Solution
If you use vCenter Server to manage the host through vCenter Server, use either the Home >
Administration > Licensing interface or the Add Host operation to configure host licensing.
ESXi Host Disconnects from vCenter Server
An ESXi host might disconnect from vCenter Server or all ESXi hosts might disconnect from vCenter Server
at the same time.
Problem
n
An ESXi host disconnects from vCenter Server or all ESXi hosts disconnect from vCenter Server and you
receive a licensing-related error message.
n
You cannot add hosts to the vCenter Server inventory. The hosts and the virtual machines on the hosts
continue to run.
Cause
n
The 60-day evaluation period of the host is expired or the host license is expired.
n
The 60-day evaluation period of vCenter Server is expired or the vCenter Server license is expired.
n
The host is licensed with vSphere 5.x Essentials that is part of the Essentials 5.x kits. You used the vSphere
Client to connect directly to the host and powered on a virtual machine or hot plugged memory to an
already powered on virtual machine. As a result, the amount of vRAM for the powered on virtual machines
for all Essentials hosts that are connected to vCenter Server exceeds the limit of 192GB. vCenter Server
disconnects the host.
Solution
n
Obtain a vSphere license key and assign it to the ESXi host.
n
Obtain a vCenter Server license key and assign it to vCenter Server. If the vCenter Server system is
managing ESXi 3.5, it must have access to a license server. You can download the VMware License Server
from the VMware Web site.
n
Reduce the amount of memory that is configured to the powered on virtual machines on the host.
NOTE When you assign a license key to an ESXi host and vCenter Server, the license edition must be compatible
with all of the features you configured. If the license edition and the configured features are incompatible, you
cannot assign the license key.
Troubleshooting License Reporting
The troubleshooting license reporting topics provide solutions to problems that you might have in accessing
the license reporting function, viewing the license usage for products, or exporting a license report.
License Reporting Interface Does Not Display
License reporting is not available on the Reporting tab of the Licensing page in the vSphere Client.
Problem
In the vSphere Client, when you go to Home > Administration > Licensing and select the Reporting tab, the
license reporting interface does not load and an error message appears.
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Cause
The license reporting interface might not load because of the following reasons.
n
You do not have Flash Player for Internet Explorer installed.
n
VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices service is not running on the vCenter Server system
that you are connected to.
n
The vCenter Inventory Service is not running on the vCenter Server system that you are connected to.
n
A license service is not running on the vCenter Server system that you are connected to.
n
The vSphere Web Client is not installed or it is not running.
n
The network connection between the vCenter Server that you are connected to and the
vSphere Web Client is not available.
n
The vCenter Server system that you are connected to is not registered with the vSphere Web Client or the
specified host name or the IP address for the vCenter Server system is incorrect.
n
The specified host name URL for the vSphere Web Client was incorrect when it was registered to vCenter
Server.
n
The vSphere Web Client is registered with the correct host name URL to vCenter Server, but the machine
where the vSphere Client is running cannot resolve the vSphere Web Client host name.
n
The machine where vSphere Web Client is running cannot resolve the host name of vCenter Server.
Solution
Table 5-1. Enabling the License Reporting
Cause
Solution
Flash Player for Internet Explorer is not installed.
Verify that you have Flash Player for Internet Explorer
installed.
VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices service is
not running on vCenter Server.
Verify that the VMware VirtualCenter Management
Webservices service is running on the vCenter Server system
that you are connected to. Select Home > Administration >
vCenter Server Status. The page displays the following
message if the VMware VirtualCenter Management
Webservices service is not started.
Could not get vCenter Health status
If you see this error message, start the VMware VirtualCenter
Management Webservices service.
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vCenter Inventory Service is not running on vCenter Server.
Verify that vCenter Inventory Service is running on the
vCenter Server system that you are connected to. Start the
vCenter Inventory Service if it is not running.
A license service is not running on vCenter Server.
Verify that all license services are running on the vCenter
Server system that you are connected to. Select Home >
Administration > vCenter Server Status. The license
services are listed under the License Services node. If a
license service is not available, perform the actions
recommended in the error message that appears. Restarting
the VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices
service might also help.
The vSphere Web Client is not installed or it is not running.
Verify that the vSphere Web Client is installed and running.
The network connection between vSphere Web Client and
vCenter Server is down.
Repair the network connection between the machine where
the vSphere Web Clientis running and the machine where
vCenter Server is running.
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Chapter 5 Troubleshooting Licensing
Table 5-1. Enabling the License Reporting (Continued)
Cause
Solution
vCenter Server is not registered with the
vSphere Web Client or the specified host name or the IP
address for vCenter Server is incorrect.
Verify that the vCenter Server system that you are connected
to is registered with the vSphere Web Client and that the
server name or IP address for vCenter Server is correct. If the
specified server name or IP address for vCenter Server is
correct, the specified host name URL for the
vSphere Web Client might be incorrect. In both cases,
unregister vCenter Server from the vSphere Web Clientand
reregister. Specify correct values in the text boxes.
n vCenter Server URL. Type the correct server name or IP
address of the vCenter Server system that you are
connected to. Do not include http:// or https://
vSphere Web Client is registered with incorrect host name
URL to vCenter Server.
n
vSphere Web Client URL. Type the correct IP address
or the host name of the machine where the vSphere Web
Client is installed.
The machine where the vSphere Client is running cannot
resolve the vSphere Web Client host name.
The vSphere Client machine must be able to resolve the host
name of the vCenter Server. If necessary, add the host name
of vCenter Server in the hosts file of the vSphere Web Client
machine. The hosts file is located at
C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc\hosts.
The machine where vSphere Web Client is running cannot
resolve the host name of vCenter Server.
The vSphere Web Client must be able to resolve the fullyqualified domain name (FQDN) of vCenter Server. If
necessary, add the host name of the vCenter Server machine
in the hosts file of the vSphere Web Client machine. The hosts
file is located at
C:\WINDOWS\system32\drivers\etc\hosts.
Unable to View the License Use for Products
You try to view the license use for products from the Reporting tab on the Licensing page, but license use data
does not appear.
Problem
You select the Reporting tab of the Licencing page and one of the following situations occurs:
n
You try to view the license use for products for a certain time period and vCenter Server. One of the
following error messages appears:
The licensing service for vCenter Server is unavailable.
Licensing usage data for <vCenter Server instance> is missing for the selected time period.
n
You try to view details for a license key over a certain time period and the following error message appears:
Licensing usage data for <license key> is missing for the selected time period.
Cause
n
VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices service is not running on the vCenter Server system
that you are connected to.
n
No license keys are assigned to assets for the vCenter Server instance and the time period you select.
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Solution
n
Verify that the VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices service is running on the vCenter Server
that you are connected to. Select Home > Administration > vCenter Server Status. The following message
appears if the VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices service is not running:
Could not get vCenter Health status.
If you see this error message, start the VMware VirtualCenter Management Webservices service.
n
Select a time period and a vCenter Server instance for which licenses keys are assigned to assets.
Unable to Export a Licensing Report
You cannot export a licensing report from the Reporting tab on the Licensing page of the vSphere Client.
Problem
n
You click export for a licensing report in the Reporting tab, and the following error message appears:
Cannot export licensing usage data.
An integrity problem with the license data detected in the database of vCenter Server.
n
You try to export the license usage for all vCenter Server instances in the Linked Mode group. In the Export
License Data dialog box, you selectAll vCenter Server instances and click Export. The following error
message appears:
vCenter Server instances included in the generated export file:
<a list of vCenter Server instance>
Unable to export license usage data for:
<a list of vCenter Server instances>
Cause
n
The license usage data stored in the vCenter Server database was modified. Modifying licensing records
in vCenter Server database is discouraged.
n
The vCenter Server instances for which you cannot export license usage are not running.
n
The vCenter Server instances for which you cannot export license usage are isolated from the Linked Mode
group.
Solution
n
If the license usage data in the vCenter Server database was modified, no solution is available. You cannot
export licensing reports for this vCenter Server or Linked Mode group within this time period.
n
If the vCenter Server instances for which you cannot export a licensing report are not running, restart them
if possible and try to export a licensing report again.
n
If the vCenter Server instances for which you cannot export a licensing report are isolated, restart the
vSphere Client and try to export the licensing report again.
Unable to Power On a Virtual Machine
You try to power on a virtual machine, but the operation is unsuccessful and you receive an error message.
Problem
You cannot power on a virtual machine on an ESXi host.
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Chapter 5 Troubleshooting Licensing
Cause
You might be unable to power on a virtual machine because of the following reasons.
n
The 60-day evaluation period of the host is expired.
n
The license of the host is expired.
n
The edition of the license key does not match the configured features and resources on the host.
n
The host on which the virtual machine runs is licensed with vSphere 5.x Essentials that is part of the
Essentials kits. You cannot use more than 192GB of pooled vRAM for hosts that are licensed with vSphere
5.x Essentials. The memory that is configured for the virtual machine that you try to power on will lead
to exceeding 192GB of consumed vRAM. For details about vRAM an vRAM pooling, see License
Management and Reporting from vCenter Server and Host Management.
Solution
Table 5-2. Power on a Virtual Machine
Cause
Solution
The evaluation period of the host is expired.
Obtain a vSphere license key and assign the key to the ESXi
host. Verify that the edition of the license key matches the
configured features and resources on the host. If they do not
match, you cannot assign the license key.
The license of the host is expired.
The edition of the license key does not match the configured
features and resources on the host.
The memory that is configured for the virtual machine
exceeds the amount of pooled vRAM for the host licenses.
To free a certain amount of vRAM, reconfigure the memory
for the powered on virtual machines on the hosts that are
connected to vCenter Server.
Power off virtual machines to free a certain amount of vRAM.
Reduce the amount of memory that is configured to the
virtual machine that you try to power on.
Unable to Hot Plug Memory to a Virtual Machine
Under certain conditions, you might be unable to hot plug memory to a virtual machine.
Problem
You try to hot plug memory to a virtual machine, but the operation is unsuccessful, and you receive the
following error message.
Cannot complete the operation. The vRAM limit of 192GB will be exceeded. Upgrade the vCenter Server
license or decrease the amount of the consumed vRAM.
Cause
The host where the virtual machine runs is licensed with vSphere 5.x Essentials. You cannot use more than
192GB of pooled vRAM for hosts that are licensed with vSphere 5.x Essentials. The amount of memory that
you try to hot plug to the virtual machine will lead to exceeding 192GB for the consumed vRAM. For details
about vRAM and vRAM pooling, see License Management and Reporting from vCenter Server and Host
Management.
Solution
Reduce the amount of memory that is configured to the poweredon virtual machines.
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vSphere Troubleshooting
Unable to Assign a License Key to vCenter Server
You cannot assign a license key to a vCenter Server system.
Problem
You try to assign a license key to a vCenter Server system, but the operation is unsuccessful and you receive
an error message.
Cause
You might be unable to assign a license key to a vCenter Server system because of the following reasons.
n
The license edition does not match the currently configured resources and features on vCenter Server. For
example, while in evaluation mode, you add the vCenter Server system to a Linked Mode group. Then
you try to assign a Foundation or an Essentials license key to the vCenter Server system. The operation is
unsuccessful because the Foundation and Essentials license editions do not support the Linked Mode
feature.
n
You assign an incorrect license key.
n
You try to assign a license key of vCenter Server Essentials and the total amount of memory that is
configured to the powered on virtual machines exceeds the vRAM limit that vCenter Server Essentials
imposes.
Solution
n
Upgrade the license edition to match the currently configured features and resources on vCenter Server.
For example, you need a Standard or an Enterprise license key to be able to license a vCenter Server system
that is in Linked Mode.
n
Assign a correct license key. To license vCenter Server, you need a vCenter Server license key.
n
Reduce the memory that is configured to the powered on virtual machines.
Unable to Configure or Use a Feature
You cannot use a feature or change its configuration.
Problem
You cannot use or configure a feature and a licensing-related error message appears.
Cause
If you downgrade your license from evaluation mode to a license that does not support the features that you
configured while you used evaluation mode, you receive a warning message about license downgrade.
Solution
Check the licensed features on the host and on the vCenter Server system. Upgrade the edition of the license
assigned to the host or vCenter Server if they do not include the features that you try to configure or use.
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Index
A
Active Directory 32
Advanced Runtime Info 35
advanced settings,
Disk.SchedNumReqOutstanding 52
authentication 48
Auto Deploy
coredump 24
DHCP address 27
failing to complete boot 26
failure to boot 27
image profile warning 24
network boot problem 28
redirection problem 23
TFTP server 26
timout error 23
troubleshooting 23
wrong image 23
C
cannot apply Storage DRS recommendations,
troubleshooting 45
cannot enable Storage I/O Control 40
certificates
hosts 17, 18
vCenter Server 17
CHAP authentication 48
D
datastore clusters, maintenance mode 42
datastore heartbeating 35
datastores
maintenance mode 42
performance charts troubleshooting 40
Disk.SchedNumReqOutstanding 52
DNS 29
domain controller 29
E
Export license usage 60
extensions, troubleshooting 28
F
Fault Tolerance
logging 12
troubleshooting 9–11
VMware, Inc.
Feature 62
firewall
network-based 31
Windows 30
ft.maxSwitchoverSeconds 11
G
gpupdate /force command 29
group policy update 29
GUID 29
H
Hardware Virtualization (HV) 9, 10
HBAs, queue depth 51
host certificates 17, 18
Host Failures Cluster Tolerates admission control
policy 33–35
host isolation response 22
host profiles, compliance failure 32
Hot add memory 61
I
iBFT 53
IPv4 22
IPv6 22
L
License capacity 55, 60
License edition 55, 62
License key 56, 60
License reporting 59
License usage 59
Licensing 55
Licensing reporting 57
Linked Mode
reachability 29
troubleshooting 29–31
LUN not visible, SP visibility 47, 48
LUN queue depth 50
LUN thrashing 50
M
maintenance mode, datastores 42
maximum HBA queue depth 51
monitoring, Storage I/O Control 39
63
vSphere Troubleshooting
N
network partition 35, 36, 38
NFS datastores 53
non-ASCII characters 53
O
orphaned virtual machines, recovering 14
outstanding disk requests 52
overcommitted host 10
P
password requirements 31
path thrashing 50
Percentage of Cluster Resources Reserved
admission control policy 34
performance, problems 49
performance charts for datastores,
troubleshooting viewing performance
charts 40
plug-ins, troubleshooting 28
Primary VM 38, 39
problems
performance 49
visibility 47, 48
Q
queue depth 51
R
T
TFTP server, Auto Deploy 26
timeout error, Auto Deploy 23
TRACE logging 31
troubleshooting
extensions 28
Linked Mode 29
plug-ins 28
USB devices 13
troubleshooting Fault Tolerance 9
Troubleshooting host licensing 55
Troubleshooting Hosts 17
Troubleshooting license reporting 57
troubleshooting storage 47
Troubleshooting Virtual Machines 9
U
recommendations for Storage DRS,
troubleshooting 45
Red Cluster 33
registry settings 30, 31
remove datastore 36
resource pools 46
RPCCfg.exe 30, 31
unmount datastore 36
updated information 7
URLs, configuring 29
USB devices, error messages 13
USB passthrough
restarting the USB arbitrator 14
troubleshooting 13
troubleshooting device connections 14
S
V
SCSI INQUIRY 52
SCSI reservations, reducing 49
SCSI Sense codes 54
SDK 29
Secondary VM 38, 39
slot size 33–35
software iSCSI adapters, queue depth 51
SP visibility, LUN not visible 47, 48
SSL certificates, troubleshooting in vSphere
HA 19
storage devices, display problems 47
Storage DRS
affinity rules 44
cannot apply recommendations 45
deleting affinity rules 44
disabled 41
64
disabling 44
faults 44
OVF templates 44
placement 45
recommendations 45
rule violation 44
troubleshooting 41
Storage I/O Control
monitoring 39
troubleshooting 39, 40
vCenter Server, configuring URLs 29
vCenter Server certificates 17, 18
vCenter Server license 57, 60, 62
vCenterServer.VimApiUrl 29
vCenterServer.VimWebServicesUrl 29
Virtual Machine Protection State 36
virtual machines 15
virtual machines, orphaned 14
visibility problems 47, 48
VM-Host affinity rules 37
VMFS 12, 36
VMware Inventory Service 31
vmware-fdm package 25
vRAM 56, 61
vSphere DRS 37
VMware, Inc.
Index
vSphere Fault Tolerance 38, 39
vSphere HA
Auto Deploy 25
troubleshooting SSL certificates 19
vSphere HA admission control 33
vSphere HA Admission Control 33
vSphere HA agent 19–22
vSphere HA cluster 38
vSphere HA failovers 36
vSphere HA host state
Agent Uninitialized 20
Agent Unreachable 19
Host Failed 21
Initialization Error 20
Network Isolated 22
Network Partitioned 22
Uninitialization Error 21
vSphere HA restart failures 37
vSphere license 57, 60
VWS 29
VMware, Inc.
65
vSphere Troubleshooting
66
VMware, Inc.
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