Aug 12

Fixing a (minor) PowerCLI 6 R1 issue

With PowerCLI 6 R1 a major change was introduced, PowerCLI now has modules !

Such a major change is bound to introduce some minor nuisances, as some PowerCLI users have already discovered. This post will try to tackle some of these nuisances.

pcli-v6-bandaidThe first issue is with the PSConsoleFile, called vim.psc1, which was often used in batch invocations of PowerCLI scripts. Unfortunately this is a breaking change, but it can easily be fixed as this post will show.

The second annoyance has to do with the PowerShell environment variable called $env:PSModulePath. The installation package for PowerCLI 6 R1, sets the module path in the user environment variable, which might cause an issue. Read on.

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Jul 16

Le Onyx nouveau est arrivé ! *

Did you convert to the vSphere Web client when you installed vSphere 5.5 or 6.0 ?

Are you using PowerCLI ?

Do you sometimes use SDK API methods for those special scripts ?

If you answered yes to some of these questions, you must be missing the Onyx Project application ! Well, your patience is rewarded. In the Fling repository you will find, starting today, the new Onyx for the Web Client v1.0 package.

OnyxMain

With the new Onyx you can watch which methods and properties all your Web Client actions are using. And with that knowledge you can easily ascend another level or two on your path to automation nirvana !

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Mar 17

PowerCLI and PowerShell Workflows

In PowerShell v3 the Workflow feature was introduced. But until now there haven’t been too many examples available on how to use PowerCLI in PowerShell Workflows. Today I was triggered by a thread from Mark in the PowerCLI VMTN community, to revise some of my Workflow code snippets I had laying around.

Workflow-PowerCLI

And if you didn’t have enough arguments yet to upgrade to PowerCLI v6, which brings MODULES, the Workflow feature will give you another one !

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Jan 22

DRSRule – a DRS rules and groups module

One of the nice vSphere features is the ability to define DRS rules.

DRSRule-introThe feature allows a vSphere administrator to control the placement of virtual machines in a vSphere cluster. There are the VM to VM affinity and anti-affinity rules, and the newer VM to VMHost rules. With the VM to VMHost rules, vSphere introduced the concept of VM and VMHost groups, and the ability to have rules that are a requirement (‘shall’) or a preference (‘should’).

In a recent VMTN PowerCLI community thread a PowerCLI user had a query about exporting and importing DRS rules and groups. At that point Matt Boren and myself developed the idea to provide a PowerShell module. The PowerShell module, which we named DRSRule, provides all the functions we deemed useful for working with DRS rules and groups. And yes, the module includes an export and an import cmdlet !

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Sep 28

PowerCLI and the Linux Shellshock vulnerability

With all the fuss going round about the latest Linux vulnerability you will probably get a request from your local Security Officer to produce a report which of your Linux systems are vulnerable to the Shellshock bug. And, seen there are already several known exploits, who can blame him for asking such a report.

shellshock-main

Since a lot of these Linux boxes are running under vSphere, we can use PowerCLI to produce such a report. The Invoke-VMScript cmdlet is the vehicle I use in the following function. With the Invoke-VMScript cmdlet it is very easy to execute, what is considered the best test to check for the vulnerability.

Update2 September 29 2014: the 2nd test from the Shellshocker gives a syntax error. The test is replaced by the one found on Michael Boelen‘s website in How to protect yourself against Shellshock Bash vulnerability. Big thanks to Wil van Antwerpen for the pointer.

Update1 September 29 2014: the function was updated to include tests for most of the known Shellshock vulnerabilities. The tests were collected from the Shellshocker site.
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Sep 02

Stats Toolbox – A vSphere Server Performance Counter tool

Finding out which performance counters are available on your vSphere server over which time interval, is not always an easy task. There is of course the Performance Manager entry in the VMware vSphere API Reference, but that is not always the easiest task. Let alone finding out what a specific counter actually represents.

For that reason I decided to create a tool, which I called the Stats Toolbox, that would query the vSphere server to get the actual list of counters it collects for each interval. In the tool I added some extra features that would make working with the performance counters easier.

Stats-ToolboxDuring our VMworld 2014 US breakout session I demonstrated the features of the Stats Toolbox, and I received quite some positive feedback.

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Aug 20

Tintri Automation Toolkit – Part 2 – VM Protection and Reporting

After Part 1 – The Basics in this series, I will show in Part 2 how you can set up Tintri’s VM Protection through Replication. And to conclude this post I will show some Reporting that you can do with the Tintri Automation Toolkit.

PS-PCL-Tintri

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Aug 14

Tintri Automation Toolkit – Part 1 – The Basics

There are numerous companies that recognized the usefulness of PowerShell, and how it can help automate their product. The PowerCLI PSSnapin from VMware is a great example.

And now Tintri, the creators of the VMstore, have joined the ranks. Tintri delivers a PowerShell module, called the Tintri Automation Toolkit, that allows administrators to automate the monitoring and management of a VMstore system. The Toolkit also nicely leverages PowerShell constructs such as object piping for enabling end-to-end VM-level automation.

PS-PCL-TintriThese posts will not be providing a detailed description of the VMstore, and all its merits. There are ample other sources available for that. Needless to say you should definitely have a look at the Tintri website if you want to learn more about the VMstore. I listed a couple of other sources at the end of the series.

I was given the opportunity to have a preview of the of the Tintri Automation Toolkit module, and was permitted to play around with the cmdlets in the Tintri lab.

To take away all suspense, I was quite impressed!

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Mar 15

PowerCLI 5.5 R2, they do listen to you !

About a week ago I was so fortunate to being able to visit the Team behind PowerCLI.

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I did already meet some of the PowerCLI Dev Team members on previous occasions, but this time I was able to see the complete team on their own turf.

Sometimes you immediately feel the chemistry that is present in a Team. And you know, even before you see what they produce, that great products will come out. This Team was for me a typical example of that.

Add on top of that, a dedicated and enthusiastic Product Manager, and voila, magic is in the air.

PowerCLI might be a free product, but you wouldn’t be able to tell that from seeing how this Team, located in Sofia Bulgaria, is dedicated to bringing a new build to you on a tight schedule.

And although PowerCLI might look like a simple products from the surface, you would be amazed at seeing the brainstorming, prototyping and reviewing that hides behind each new PowerCLI build this Team rolls out.

And they did it again with the PowerCLI 5.5 R2 build.

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Jan 01

How to run View PowerCLI

During my recent presentation at the 20th VMUGBE+ session, I showed different ways to run View PowerCLI cmdlets and scripts.

Several of the methods I showed, are already discussed on other blogs (to which I will include the links of course), but there is a new PowerShell feature that hasn’t been used until now (afaik).

view5

And since I never found a complete overview of all the available methods, I decided to create this post.

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