Dedupe: Let’s look under the hood

Deduplication is a cool technique that some admins use when it comes to saving storage space. No wonder. By deduping, you can gain some extra storage even without deleting anything. Everyone seems to use it, but how does that thing, actually, work? In this article, I’ll look under dedupe hood to understand better its operating principles. Why one may need this? You see, you always can make the most of things once you understand how they work. I believe this principle to apply to almost everything! So, here’s why I examine such a common storage optimization technique as deduplication in this article.

4 ways to extract the content from VMDK when a VM is totally dead

Sometimes, you badly need your ESXi VM data, but that thing just cannot be powered on for some reason! Well, you can try starting that VM one more time according to this article and access the data with a little luck. But, if you are out of luck and the VM is dead, you need another method to extract its VMDK file content.

How to schedule tasks in VMware vCenter Server

Being a sysadmin often means doing some boring stuff on a daily basis. Well, sure, you can use PowerCLI to save yourself the hassle. It’s a powerful tool that I believe any vSphere admin should master at some point. While PowerCLI provides you the ultimate freedom of IT infrastructure management, there’s still a workaround to automate some tasks even through GUI.

How VMware vSphere APIs for I/O Filtering works, how to set it up, & why you need it

A couple of days ago, I decided to re-distribute VM resource shares. I, basically, wanted several VMs to get some more resource without compromising their latency. For that purpose, I played around with Storage I/O Control parameters a bit. And, you know, I decided to look at things more globally. Actually, here’s how I decided to take a deeper dive into I/O filtering. In today’s article, I’m going to tell you about the VMware vSphere APIs for I/O Filtering (VAIO) framework providing the direct access to the to the VM I/O stream. I shed light on how to enable those filters, how they work, and why you need them.

RDM disks for VMware vSphere VMs: how & why to create them

Sometimes, you need your VMs to access a LUN directly over iSCSI. Direct access comes in handy when you, let’s say, run SAN/NAS-aware applications on vSphere VMs, or if you’re going to deploy some hardware-specific SCSI commands. Also, with direct access, physical-to-virtual conversion becomes possible without migrating a massive LUN to VMDK. Whatever. To enable your VMs to talk directly to LUN, you need a raw device mapping file. Recently, I created vSphere VMs with such disks. Well, apparently, this case is not unique, so I decided to share my experience in today’s article.

How to ensure maximum data security with VMware VM encryption

Leakage of confidential business information can become a true disaster for any company. Therefore, data security is an issue of prime importance for most of companies. Organizing an IT infrastructure, administrators’ top question is how to warrant a secure storage to keep sensitive business information.

In this article, I suggest having a closer look at a relatively recent method of ensuring data security – VMware virtual machines encryption that can become a good remedy against intruders for your organization.

Installing vSphere 6.5 U2 update without messing things up

One day, any virtual infrastructure needs to be updated. That may be just due to admin’s wish to keep up with modern trends or the need for some cool features that are brought to life with the latest updates. And, speaking of updates, VMware has recently released their vSphere 6.5 U2.So, being a VMware fan, I decided to update my vSphere 6.5 and describe the entire update process from its planning through the installation itself.

How to clone VMs if VMware vCenter is unavailable

There are various tricks and hints we all use to make our daily system administration routines easier. One of them is virtual machine cloning provided by VMware vCenter Server. Great and simple thing allowing you to deploy many identical virtual machines to a group – no need to repeat the same process all over again. This is usually done in vCenter but there are several other ways you can go if it becomes unavailable.

PowerCLI: a fast and easy way to set up virtual networks in VMware ESXi 6.5

Recently, I decided to automate some boring routine procedures related to setting up virtual networks in ESXi 6.5. That’s right, I’m talking about PowerCLI. This command-line tools allows automating all aspects of vSphere management, including network, storage, VM and so on and so forth. Sure, I had to dig into the details of orchestrating ESXi with PowerCLI. Yep, it took me some time but at the end of the day, the knowledge and experience I acquired paid back! Apparently, this case is not unique, so I decided to share my experience in today’s scribbling.