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!

Continue reading Tintri Automation Toolkit – Part 1 – The Basics

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.

Continue reading PowerCLI 5.5 R2, they do listen to you !

Event-O-Matic

One of the questions, related to working with vSphere events and tasks, that often appear in the PowerCLI Community, is how do we know which events to select for a query.

To make that task a bit easier, I wrote the Event-O-Matic script. It’s a GUI that allows you to pick a number of events, and the script will generate the PowerShell code, and place it in the clipboard. The Event-O-Matic script was mentioned during our VMworld 2013 US session VSVC4944.

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Update September 7th 2013:

  • added at least PowerShell v3 test
  • added PowerCLI core pssnapin loaded test

Continue reading Event-O-Matic

My favorite PowerShell editor is free now!

I rarely post about products, since I want to keep my blog “technical“, but there was some big news from Idera today.
As from version 4.6, their famous PowerShell Plus editor is now a free tool.

This is the editor I have been using to write, and debug, my PowerShell and PowerCLI scripts since day 1.

It would take me several pages to list the features I like and use in PowerShell Plus, but there are 2 that were ‘love at first sight’ for me; the Debug mode and the Variables pane. You can’t go without those when you are writing a script.

So why not give it a try, it’s for free now 🙂

Belgian VMUG event #17, the “Blogger Edition”

Today was a historic day for the Belgian VMUG.

The 17th edition, the so-called “Blogger Edition“, was completely sold out. All 170 attendees, a new record, had a great day and the presenters  all gave a peak performance. The list of presenters was impressive to say the least.

I was honored to have been selected to do a presentation as well. Since it was in Belgium, I decided to give the subject of my session a local twist. The subject was PowerCLI and beer, you can’t live without them.

You’ll be missing the story I told during the presentation, but on request, the slides.

Update: all presentations are now available here (requires a VMUG account).

Continue reading Belgian VMUG event #17, the “Blogger Edition”

Folder by Path

There seem to be many vSphere environments where the same foldername is used multiple times. A blue folder with the name Servers is quite common for example.

If you need to retrieve such a folder with the Get-Folder cmdlet, you will have to walk the path to the folder leaf by leaf and use the Location parameter. It would be handier if you could just specify the path to the folder and retrieve the folder like that.

The following is a small function that will allow you to do just that.

Update February 18th 2016: In some situations the function might return folders with the same name from different location. Fixed by adding NoRecursion on line 48
Continue reading Folder by Path

Test if the datastore can be unmounted

Lately I have been playing around with the new Storage related features in vSphere 5. One of the novelties is that you can now unmount a VMFS datastore and detach a SCSI LUN through the API.
To be able to unmount a datastore, some conditions have to be met. In the vSphere Client you get an informative popup that tells what is prohibiting the datastore unmount. If not all conditions are met, you can not continue with the unmount.

Nice feature, but what for those of us that want to automate this ?

Update October 28th 2012: Take into account that the datastorecluster is not connected to a host that is part of a cluster. Skip the HA heartbeat test.

Update April 23th 2012: Use the RetrieveDasAdvancedRuntimeInfo method to find the actual datastores that are used for the heartbeat.

Continue reading Test if the datastore can be unmounted

Automate your VMTN search

Recently I had the pleasure of doing a guest post, called Finding your way in the PowerCLI Community, on the PowerCLI blog. The subject of the post was how to find community threads, that might hold an answer to your question.

Now this wouldn’t be a PowerShell/PowerCLI blog, if I didn’t try to automate the procedure. And with a serious amount of RegEx involved, I was able to create some working code. Here it is, my Find-VMTNPowerCLI function.

Warning: pure PowerShell, no PowerCLI content !

Continue reading Automate your VMTN search

Variations on a port

I got an interesting question from one of my co-authors of the PowerCLI Reference book. He was looking for a method to find the port used by a VM when connected to a portgroup on a dvSwitch.

Finding the answer to that question is not too difficult, once you know which property holds the value. But while writing and testing the script, I thought that this question would be a good opportunity to show several ways and methods that you have at your disposal in PowerCLI and PowerShell, to come to a solution.

Here it goes.

Continue reading Variations on a port

Get complete vCenter session info

There was an interesting thread in the PowerCLI Community today. It raised the question how one could report on the current vCenter sessions, including the IP address or hostname from where the session was started.

Unfortunately the SessionManager doesn’t hold any information from where the session was started.

But there are other ways of finding that information. The UserLoginSessionEvent object has a property, called ipAddress, that has the information we’re after.

Btw if you are only interested in looking for idle sessions, independent from which host they were started, there is a great post, called List and Disconnect vCenter Sessions on the PowerCLI blog.

Update May 4th 2012: function updated to handle multiple vCenter connections.
Continue reading Get complete vCenter session info

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