Universal PowerCLI Loader

PowerCLI is great tool, and the Team behind it surprises us on a regular basis with a new Release. With the v6.x generation we witnessed the introduction of Modules. And the Team keeps adding further integration with other VMware products.

With the PowerCLI installation comes a shortcut to a PowerShell sessions, loaded with all the PowerCLI goodness. And this is ideal to make your first steps in the wonderful world of PowerShell and PowerCLI.

But soon you’ll start using more advanced features of PowerShell. You’ll be scheduling jobs, running parallel workflows, start using PowerCLI in Desired State Configuration (DSC). At that moment, the simple PowerCLI session doesn’t cut it anymore, and even the Init scripts that are installed together with PowerCLI, will not give you the exact environment as you want it. Hence my Universal PowerCLI Loader!

universal

I have been using a “Universal PowerCLI loader” function since quite some time now. I thought it was time to prettify it a bit, and share it with the community.

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Visual Studio Code and PowerCLI

In a blog post on November 16th 2015 Microsoft announced PowerShell support in Visual Studio Code. And as it befits the “new” Microsoft, this PowerShell extension for Visual Studio Code (VSC) was placed on GitHub.

VSC offers features that are currently not present in the PowerShell ISE, one of the more important ones for now being Git support. And another, not negligible feature, VSC is a free product. On the VMware{code} powercli Slack channel, which you should check out, the new editor was discussed briefly.

PCLI-and-VSC

With the 0.6.0 release of PowerShell for VS@Code, a couple of important new features were introduced. For the PowerCLI users, the addition of a VSC specific ‘profile‘, makes editing your PowerCLI scripts in VSC a lot easier. Want to try it out, read on!

vsc-060

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A closer look at Get-EsxCli V2

In IT we don’t like breaking changes in our software. But sometimes you do need to break an egg to make an omelet. Standing still is ultimately moving backwards.

esxcli-v2In the most recent PowerCLI Release (v6.3 R1) such a change was introduced for the Get-EsxCli cmdlet. With the ingenious introduction of the V2 switch this is not yet a breaking change, but you should be aware that the “old” way of using Get-EsxCli will ultimately go away.

In the VMware vSphere PowerCLI Reference: Automating vSphere Administration, 2nd Edition, we included a script (Chapter 15, Listing 15-2), that allowed you to create a handy Reference Chart of the available methods under the Get-EsxCli cmdlet. This post provides an update to that script for V2.
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Ravello PowerShell Module – Examples

This post introduces the first set of example PowerShell scripts that use the Ravello PowerShell module to automate your Ravello Systems environment.

rav-title-examples

The examples serve primarily to demonstrate the use of the Ravello module cmdlets. But also how easy it is to automate your Ravello environment with the help of the Ravello PowerShell module. Note that the examples directory is introduced in v1.1.2.4 of the Ravello PowerShell module.
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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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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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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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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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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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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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