Tuesday, August 24, 2010

VMware Tip: Upgrade/Patch ESX 4.0 Update 1 to ESX 4.0 Update 2

It took me some time, but I finally figure it out, and it's easier than it sounds. I tried with the Update Manager, and I could not get it going in a timely fashion.

  1. Power off all VMs or get them off the host, and put the host in Maintenance Mode.
  2. Log in as root to the command line of the ESX 4.0 U1 host.
  3. Make sure the host has Internet Access
  4. Issue the following command: esxupdate --bundle https://hostupdate.vmware.com/software/VUM/OFFLINE/release-224-20100608-010422/upgrade-from-esx4.0-4.0_update02.zip --http_proxy my.proxy.home.com:443 update
  5. Follow the prompts

If you don't need a proxy, simply remove the --http_proxy parameter. I think you can chnge the .zip file to be the update bundle that you want to install (i.e. Update 1, or Update 3 when it is released)

Disclaimer: I do not know the impact of this process to a "production" environment. I run this in a lab, and I have no issues if my VMs are rebooted, or are even wiped away. They were not affected, as far as I can tell.

The hint to the solution came from this article, and this document. This forum post helped too.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Network Access Control Quick Video Demo

Here's a quick pair of videos. They go over the look and feel of the Cisco Clean Access, or Cisco Network Admision Control (NAC) solution, from the user side. These are based on an older version of the NAC client.

NAC Value Proposition: "NAC allows only compliant and trusted endpoint devices, such as PCs, servers, and tablets, onto the network, restricting the access of noncompliant devices. It can be useful for enforcing policies to vendors and third party users who need to connect to the network infrastructure"

Summary of Benefits:

  • Security policy compliance: Ensures that endpoints conform to security policy; secures managed and unmanaged assets
  • Protects existing investments: Is compatible with third-party management applications; flexible deployment options for multiple entry points like VPN, wired, and wireless.
  • Mitigates risks from viruses, worms, and unauthorized access
Out-of-bound Implementation Method (i.e. Wired connectivity)

Inline Implementation Method (i.e. VPN)

You can find an excellent, and more recent, Flash Based Demo directly from the Cisco Website

For more information on Cisco NAC, you can go to the Cisco NAC portal directly.

Monday, August 9, 2010

3D Quick View - Cisco UCS B Series System

Finally, here's a 3D quick view video (two parts) of the Cisco Unified Computing B Series System. This one is my favorite. I broke it in two short videos: blade servers, and other architecture components.

Note: they are best viewed in full screen and HD mode

The UCS B Series is a system, not a Chassis based compute node. It combines Unified Fabric (single wire for data, storage, and management of the compute node), and Unified Management with other innovations in the server itself (i.e. Memory Extension to support up to 384 GB of DRAM per server, and Virtual Interface Cards to bypass virtualization supervisors and switch VM traffic in hardware).

In my opinion, one of the strongest value propositions is the Unified Management: from a central Cisco UCS Manager (that resides in the 5100 Fabric Interconnect Appliance) you can configure compute, network, storage, and administration parameters; all in one place. You can see a video of the UCS Manager here.

You can also access the 3D model from the Cisco Product Page.

Monday, August 2, 2010

3D Quick View - Cisco UCS Rack Servers C200 and C210

Here's a 3D quick view video of the Cisco UCS C Series systems (Rack servers) for the lower end: UCS C200 and UCS 210.

Note: they are best viewed in full screen and HD mode

You can also access the 3D model from the Cisco Product Page.