The Real (and Virtual) Adventures of Nathan the IT Guy


July 20, 2010  4:03 AM

P2V Conversion Fails, OS will not boot

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

Sometimes you get a server that fails to convert, i.e. it just won’t boot. If you use a Recovery CD (Windows Server 2003/2008 Install Disk) you can see that the files are all there, but it just refuses to boot no matter what you do. Well here is what I ran into… ESX Host was ESX 4.1(same results when running ESX 4.0 Update 2) and the guest OS to be converted was Server 2003 R2. Using VMware Convertor 4.1 i tried to convert it a few times using different settings and different SCSI Adapters, all the while never worrying about which version of vHardware i was converting to, which was v7. So after many failed attempts, Ithough what if I use v4 hardware and upgrade from there, well what do you know, I was correct. Sometimes a guest OS just cannot handle the bump in vHardware. So after that, all i had to do was install VMware tools for ESX 4.1 then update the vhardware… done…. hope this helps someone.

-NS

July 14, 2010  4:02 AM

VMware vSphere 4.1 is Officially Released!

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

Its finally here, VMware vSphere 4.1, which includes VMware ESXi 4.1 Installable, VMware ESXi 4.1 Embedded, and VMware vCenter Server 4.1.

I intend to start testing this new release tomorrow am, I am usually a big fan of ESX4 Installable, but based on how things are going in VMware I will have to start migrating to vSphere ESXi 4.1. I included an insert from www.VMware.com to peek your interest.

VMware ESX. VMware vSphere 4.1 and its subsequent update and patch releases are the last releases to include both ESX and ESXi hypervisor architectures. Future major releases of VMware vSphere will include only the VMware ESXi architecture.

- VMware recommends that customers start transitioning to the ESXi architecture when deploying VMware vSphere 4.1.
- VMware will continue to provide technical support for VMware ESX according to the VMware vSphere support policy.
- To learn more about the ESXi architecture and how to migrate from ESX to ESXi, go to the VMware ESX to ESXi Upgrade Center.

Scripted Install for ESXi. Scripted installation of ESXi to local and remote disks allows rapid deployment of ESXi to many machines. You can start the scripted installation with a CD-ROM drive or over the network by using PXE booting. You cannot use scripted installation to install ESXi to a USB device. See the ESX and vCenter Server Installation Guide, the ESXi Installable and vCenter Server Setup Guide, and the ESXi Embedded and vCenter Server Setup Guide.

vSphere Client Removal from ESX/ESXi Builds. For ESX and ESXi, the vSphere Client is available for download from the VMware Web site. It is no longer packaged with builds of ESX and ESXi. After installing ESX and ESXi, users are directed to the download page on the VMware Web site to get the compatible vSphere Client for that release. The vSphere Client is still packaged with builds of vCenter Server. See the ESX and vCenter Server Installation Guide, the ESXi Installable and vCenter Server Setup Guide, and the ESXi Embedded and vCenter Server Setup Guide.

Don’t forget to reference this link, for all the new features, download links and information your techie mind can handle!

-NS


July 13, 2010  3:39 AM

vSphere 4.1

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

VMware is to announce the official release of vSphere 4.1 tomorrow. One great option for SMB Clients is vSphere Essentials Plus.

VMware vSphere Essentials Plus—This kit includes all the features of vSphere Essentials, plus High Availability and Data Recovery to automatically recover your data and restart your virtual machines in the event of system failures; with vMotion technology, now you can completely eliminate planned downtime during server maintenance.

I also mananged to find a list of features, a main one being support for passthrough USB, can it really be true? :) Anyways go here for the complete list of BETA features, its possible that not all will make it in the official release, I will post again after vSphere 4.1 is officially released.

-NS


July 13, 2010  3:31 AM

Google App Inventor

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

Now this is interesting, a front end to help an end user create their own Google apps!

People can build any app they want with App Inventor, according to Google. The App Inventor team has created blocks for just about everything you can do with an Android phone, the company said.

The team has also created blocks for doing “programming-like stuff” such as storing information, repeating actions, performing actions under certain conditions, and talking to services such as Twitter, Google said.

Users can create games, quiz apps and leverage Android’s text-to-speech capabilities.

To use App Inventor, you have to first fill in a form and sign up for the beta here. The form focuses strongly on educators.

Before using App Inventor, users have to link their smartphones to their PCs or Macs through the USB port.

Head on over to Technology News to get the full scoop.


July 13, 2010  3:21 AM

Google Investing Money for Social Gaming

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

Google is buying more companies… the latest a gaming company…

Google has reportedly invested a significant sum of money — between US$100 million and $200 million — in social games company Zynga in order to build out a Google Games offering for the search engine giant. The investment, which was reportedly made by Google and not Google Ventures, is a highly strategic move for the company.

“One reason social gaming is exploding is because of the convergence between social media and the home entertainment system,” Erickson told the E-Commerce Times. “It is a natural fit as an activity for the home, and it is also part and parcel of where Google wants to be.”

I myself do not like gaming on Facebook etc. I find it very boring, I want great graphics and great sound, you just can’t get that from website gaming, although that might change when IE 9 and the new Adobe Flash arrives with 3D accelerated graphics.

We’ll just have to wait and see what happens.

-NS


July 13, 2010  3:13 AM

Sysinternals Disk2vhd

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

Recently updated, Disk2vhd is a wonderful tool that when used with Starwind v2v application you can create a pristine Server 2008/Windows 7/Windows Vista ESX Clone, every time.

Disk2vhd is a utility that creates VHD (Virtual Hard Disk – Microsoft’s Virtual Machine disk format) versions of physical disks for use in Microsoft Virtual PC or Microsoft Hyper-V virtual machines (VMs). The difference between Disk2vhd and other physical-to-virtual tools is that you can run Disk2vhd on a system that’s online. Disk2vhd uses Windows’ Volume Snapshot capability, introduced in Windows XP, to create consistent point-in-time snapshots of the volumes you want to include in a conversion. You can even have Disk2vhd create the VHDs on local volumes, even ones being converted (though performance is better when the VHD is on a disk different than ones being converted).

Download it here along with instructions on how to script your backups.


July 13, 2010  3:09 AM

Update on Systinternals Website!

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

One of my all time favorite application suites is Sysinternals. Here is what’s been updated in the recent past.

Mark’s TechEd Talks Available
Mark delivered four top-rated, top-attended sessions at TechEd US 2010 in New Orleans and they, along with all the TechEd sessions, are available for free on-demand viewing. Mark’s are Case of the Unexplained 2010, Pushing the Limits of Windows, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008R2 Kernel Changes, and a talk he co-presented with Mark Minasi, The Secrets of Effective Technical Talks.

RAMMap v1.1
This update to RAMMap, a memory analysis utility for Windows Vista and Windows 7, adds the ability to purge working sets and memory manager paging lists. This can be useful for measuring the memory usage of applications after they’ve started or when specific features are exercised.

AD Explorer v1.4
ADExplorer, an Active Directory editor, now shows all of a directory’s naming contexts and works with Lightweight Directory Services directories.

Check out the site here.


June 30, 2010  5:10 AM

Motorola Droid X – Could this be my next phone?

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

Finally a phone that some people are saying might stand up to the mighty iPhone 4…. meet the Motorola Droid X and revel in its specifications! :)

* 4.3” FWVGA 854×480 screen
* Android 2.1
* Either Motoblur or Ninjablur
* Upgraded navigation bar
* Separate HDMI dock
* Light physical construction – yet very durable
* 8 megapixel camera
* Video recording (720p)
* CLIQ XT keyboard with Swype preload
* 1 GHz ARMv7 processor
* 8GB storage
* Battery management software for increased life

All I can ask for from a phone, is functionality, threaded texting, instant messaging, a half decent camera, and please, PLEASE give me battery life that can at least compete to the all mighty blackberry…

Check out this story over at CNET for more details on the highly anticipated phone…


June 30, 2010  4:58 AM

Windows 8? Maybe…

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

I stumbled upon this while searching for blog worthy news…

A set of PowerPoint slides that appear to contain details about the next version of Microsoft’s (Nasdaq: MSFT) Windows operating system surfaced Monday.

The slides indicate that Microsoft plans to tackle the long-running problem of Windows’ slow start-up time, in addition to placing cutting-edge technology such as facial recognition in the new operating system.

These are the main things that they are looking to tackle in these leaked slides. I for one don’t seem to have much of an issue with start times… and unless web cameras have infrared and can detect depth etc… then a picture of oneself could unlock a PC quite easily, unless of course you pair it with login credentials, then you’d have pretty tight security.

I for one dont always believe in leaked documents, slides, videos etc… with today’s technology you can do anything! All i want is a “prettier” experience with Windows 8… we get it Windows 7 is stable… lets make it look a little better…

Read the rest of the story here.


June 29, 2010  2:59 AM

HP and VMware Unveil Integrated Storage, Desktop and Connectivity Solutions

Nathan Simon Nathan Simon Profile: Nathan Simon

Hey folks, HP and VMware are introducing a few new solutions that are product of 8 years of working together. I am focusing on HP’s Virtual SAN Appliance, it is the only appliance that is certified as VMware Ready.

To give organizations affordable, easy-to-deploy infrastructure virtualization, HP and VMware have combined VMware vSphere™ Essentials Plus with the HP P4000 Virtual SAN Appliance (VSA). The HP P4000 is the only software SAN certified as VMware Ready™. The new integrated product complements “always-on” IT from VMware for small and medium businesses (SMBs) with highly available storage from HP. It provides backup and recovery with shared storage capabilities to help SMBs start on the path to cloud-based IT services.

Check out the overview and features of the HP Storagework P4000. Also check out this link that goes over their Desktop and Connectivity features.


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