VMware
VMware ESX Server 2.0.1 Release Notes
  What's New | Requirements | Installation | Documentation | Troubleshooting

What's in This Release Note

Check back frequently for additions and updates to these release notes.

Last updated: 1/5/2004
Support for Novell NetWare 6.0 (Support Pack 3) guest operating systems.

What's New in ESX 2.0.1

  • New, Improved SAN Configuration Support through the VMware Management Interface
    Through the management interface, SAN and attached storage devices management:
    • Create and modify VMFS volumes suitable for storing virtual disk files.
    • Review the current state of paths from your system to SAN LUNs.
    • Review the current state of your system's SAN adapters and persistent bindings.

  • Expanded Support for SAN Storage Arrays
    For information on supported SAN storage devices and configurations, download the VMware ESX Server Compatibility Guide at www.vmware.com/pdf/esx_SAN_guide.pdf

  • Support for Novell Guest Operating Systems
    ESX Server 2.0.1 includes support for Novell NetWare 6.5, 6.0 (Support Pack 3), and Novell NetWare 5.1 (Support Pack 6) operating systems.
  • Additional Support for IPS Drivers
    ESX Server 2.0.1 has updated MegaRAID and ServeRAID drivers, enabling support for additional devices such as IBM ServeRAID-6i, and IBM ServeRAID-6M.
  • Support for Selected HP Blade Servers
    ESX Server 2.0.1 includes support for the following HP servers. You must use SCSI controllers with HP blade servers.
    • HP BL20pG2 blade server
    • HP BL40P blade server

Installation Notes for This Release

Known Issues with This Release

Installation

Configuration

Guest Operating System

Operation

Errata to the Release Documentation

  • None at this time.

Installation Notes for This Release

Installing the VMware Virtual SMP Product

Description:
If you have purchased the VMware Virtual SMP product, then you can create Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP) virtual machines, with single or dual virtual CPUs. You install the Virtual SMP product during your ESX Server installation.

Action:
Install Virtual SMP by inserting its serial number during the Licensing step of your ESX Server configuration through the VMware Management Interface.

Upgrading a Previous ESX Server Release to ESX Server 2.0.1

Description:

Caution: Before upgrading your current version of ESX Server to version 2.0.1, be sure to see Before You Install ESX Server for important information regarding the upgrade process.

Also, when performing an upgrade, be sure to reboot your server before starting your server configuration. After ESX Server comes up, then log into the VMware Management Interface to begin your server configuration.

Note:If you are upgrading from an ESX Server release prior to 1.5.2, then SNMP will not work properly. This is due to a change in ESX Server architecture. For more information, see Upgrading SNMP for a Previous ESX Server Release.

Upgrading Default Speed/Duplex Setting for NICs for a Previous ESX Server Release

Description:
The default speed/duplex setting for ESX Server NICs has changed from "100/1000/full" in ESX Server 1.5.x to "autonegotiate" in ESX Server 2.0.1.

Action:
If you are upgrading from ESX Server 1.5.x, then you may need to alter your switch's setting to "autonegotiate", for ports connected to the ESX Server machine, or you may force the NICs to full duplex in the NIC configuration page. (Log into the VMware Management Interface as the root user, click the Options tab, then click Network Connections.)

Note:It is important that both the switch port and the NIC are either both set to autonegotiate, or both forced to the same speed/duplex setting.

Upgrading SNMP from a Previous ESX Server Release

Description:
If you are upgrading from an ESX Server 1.5.x release, then SNMP, and possibly other system management agents, will not work properly. Save and copy onto another machine all SNMP files that were used to set up read/write community names, trapsinks, and trapcommunity names.

Action:
Complete the following steps.

  1. Save and copy onto another machine the following files:
    • ESX Server 1.5 and 1.5.1:
      • /usr/share/snmp/snmpd.conf — Save this file, but remove the last section that starts with "# VMware ESX Server SNMP modules -- Edit this section at your own risk". We'll call this file Alpha.
      • (Optional) /etc/snmp/snmpd.conf — If you have this file, and made changes to it or if you have installed third-party system management software on ESX Server, then save this file. We'll call this file Beta.
    • ESX Server 1.5.2:
      • /etc/vmware/vmware-snmpd.conf — Save this file, but remove the last section that starts with "# VMware ESX Server SNMP modules -- Edit this section at your own risk". We'll call this file Alpha.
      • (Optional)/etc/snmp/snmpd.conf — If you have this file, and made changes to it or if you have installed third-party system management software on ESX Server, then save this file. We'll call this file Beta.
  2. If you've created only an Alpha file, then rename it to MAIN. If you've created Alpha and Beta, then merge your customizations into a single file, called MAIN. Be sure to eliminate any duplicate configuration items in the MAIN file.
  3. Follow the instructions in Upgrading from a Previous Version of ESX Server.
  4. If you are upgrading from ESX Server 1.5 or 1.5.1, then install the ucd-snmp-4.2.3-1.i386.rpm and ucd-snmp-utils-4.2.3-1.i386.rpm files from the ESX Server CD. Log in as the root user and type rpm -Uhv <snmp_file> for each of these files. If you are upgrading from ESX Server 1.5.2, then you do not do this step.
  5. Complete one of the following, depending on whether you are only using VMware ESX Server SNMP or if you are using VMware ESX Server SNMP with third-party system management agents:
    • Only using VMware ESX Server SNMP
      1. Take the MAIN file you created and rename it on ESX Server as /etc/snmp/snmpd.conf.
      2. Use the VMware Management Interface to configure the vmware-snmpd agent and restart SNMP services. See Configuring the ESX Server Agent through the VMware Management Interface.
    • Using VMware ESX Server SNMP with third-party system management agents
      1. Upgrade or reinstall your third-party system management agents. Refer to your management application documentation.
      2. Take the MAIN file you created and rename it on ESX Server as /etc/snmp/snmpd.conf.
      3. Use the VMware Management Interface to configure the vmware-snmpd agent and restart SNMP services. See Configuring the ESX Server Agent through the VMware Management Interface.
      4. Restart the third-party system management agents according to the vendor's procedures.

Upgrading a Previous ESX Server Release with an existing vmware-device.map.local File

Description:
During the ESX Server upgrade, the ESX Server installer renames the /etc/vmware/vmware-device.map.local file to /etc/vmware/vmware-device.map.local.orig. After the upgrade, compare the vmware-device.map.local.orig file with the newly created vmware-device.map.local file and make any necessary changes, as the locations of some drivers have changed in ESX Server 2.0.1. With the addition of new drivers in ESX Server 2.0.1, customization of vmware-device.map.local may not be necessary.

Installing ESX Server on an IBM eServer BladeCenter

Description:
During the ESX Server installation, you see a Welcome to VMware ESX Server dialog with two buttons, Install and Troubleshoot. Wait at least 10 seconds before making a choice (until all of the necessary USB drivers are loaded), otherwise you may get an error message stating "failed to read /modules/module-info".

Once the ESX Server installation is complete, you must manually eject the CD-ROM from its drive. It is not ejected automatically.

Installing ESX Server on HP Blade Servers

Description:
You can install ESX Server on HP Blade Servers in one of two ways:

  • If your HP Blade Server has a version of ilo prior to 1.4, use a Remote Network Installation.
  • If your HP Blade Server has the 1.4 or later version of ilo, you may use a Remote Network Installation, or you may use a remote CD installation. For information about performing a remote CD installation, see your HP documentation.

Installing HP Insight Manager 6.4 Agents on the Service Console

Description:
ESX Server 2.0 and 2.0.1 supports HP Insight Manager 6.4 Agents. HP provides a script for installing them on the service console.

Action:

  1. To install the software, download the HP RPMS files listed below from the following location.

    http://h71019.www7.hp.com/ActiveAnswers/Render/1,1027,6615-6-100-225-1,00.htm.

  2. Follow the installation instructions provided in the Insight Manager 6.40 Agents for VMware ESX Server 2.0 and 2.0.1 README file.

If you are unable to install HP Insight Manager Agents using the above package and installation instructions, try these steps:

  1. Download the HP RPMS files listed below from the following location.

    ftp://ftp.compaq.com/pub/products/servers/supportsoftware/linux/

    • ucd-snmp-4.2.5-7cmaX.76.Redhat7_3.i386.rpm
    • ucd-snmp-utils-4.2.5-7cmaX.76.Redhat7_3.i386.rpm
    • hpasm-6.40.0-16.Redhat7_2.i386.rpm
    • cmanic-6.40.0-3.i686.rpm
    • cmastor-6.40.0-8.i386.rpm
  2. Copy these five files to a directory of your choice on the service console of the computer where you want to install the HP Insight Manager Agents. This example assumes you have copied the files to a directory named /download.

  3. Log on to the service console as the root user and change to the /download directory.
    cd /download

  4. Run the installation script.
    /usr/sbin/cmasetup.sh install

  5. Reboot the computer when the script tells you to do so.

You may see a message, in your service console logs, that states "casm: Detected 2 CPU's installed but only 1 running!". The reason for this message is the service console runs on a single processor. You can safely disregard this message.

Installing Dell OpenManage 3.5 or 3.6 on the Service Console

Description:
Dell OpenManage can detect devices that are shared between the service console and virtual machines, run diagnostic tests on them and, in general, perform most operations it can on any service console device.

Before installing the Dell OpenManage software on the ESX Server service console, you must install some additional files as described below.

Action:
To install OpenManage 3.5 or 3.6, you need:

  • Your ESX Server installation media.
  • The Dell OpenManage 3.5 or 3.6 installation media.

  1. Log into the service console as root.

  2. Insert the ESX Server media in the CD-ROM drive and mount it.
    mount /dev/cdrom /mnt/cdrom

  3. Change to the directory where the RPM files are stored.
    cd /mnt/cdrom/VMware/RPMS

  4. Install the kernel source files from the CD.
    rpm -ivh kernel-source-2.4.9-34.i386.rpm

  5. Eject the ESX Server CD.
    eject cdrom

  6. Set up the environment to install Dell OpenManage.
    /usr/sbin/dellomasetup.pl

  7. Configure SNMPD to send trapsink messages to the management console. Edit /etc/snmp/snmpd.conf and add the following line to the file:
    trapsink 172.16.177.20 public

    Note: 172.16.177.20 is the IP address of the Dell OpenManage IT Assistant.

  8. Mount the Dell OpenManage CD.
    mount /mnt/cdrom

  9. Start the installer and follow the Dell instructions for installing OpenManage 3.5 or 3.6
    /mnt/cdrom/start.sh -license
  10. Reboot the ESX Server.
    init 6

For further information on using Dell OpenManage with ESX Server, see Using SNMP with ESX Server.

Using Secondary USB Ports on IBM Servers

Description:
Using the secondary USB port on some IBM servers is not supported. IBM servers set up with multiple node configurations do not have functioning USB ports on the secondary node.

Action:
Use the primary node for USB devices if using USB devices with multiple node configurations.

Virtual File Clustering Across Physical Machines

Description:
If you are planning to use ESX Server for clustering across different physical machines, then you need this driver update. This driver update is required for clustering support when using Microsoft Clustering Service (MSCS) with virtual files across multiple physical servers.

Note: This patch is required only for clustering support on VMFS volumes.

Booting into Linux with Hyper-Threading Enabled

Description:
If you have Hyper-Threading enabled, then you might see an incorrect message indicating that you have double the number of CPUs on your server. This only occurs when booting your ESX Server into Linux.

Action:
You can safely disregard this incorrect information.

Entering Serial Numbers Through the Service Console

Description:
You can also enter your ESX Server and VMware Virtual SMP product serial numbers through the service console, as the root user.

To enter your ESX Server serial number, type:
vmware --new-sn <serial_number>

To enter your Virtual SMP product serial number, type:
vmware --new-smp-sn <SMP_serial_number>

Log out, then log back into the VMware Management Interface, to see your changes.

Known Issues with This Release

Security Updates in Version: ESX 2.0.1

Description:
Security auditing procedures based solely on version numbers may indicate a few issues, even though those issues have been addressed. The following packages are affected:

  • glibc 2.2.4-30 - Red Hat patch has been applied but does not change the version number - fixes a buffer overflow in the resolver; a buffer overflow in the XDR decoder; a buffer overflow vulnerability in the way the glibc resolver handles the resolution of network names and addresses via DNS; a bug in the glibc-compat packages, which provide compatibility for applications compiled against glibc version 2.0.x; and a buffer that can overflow exists in earlier versions of glibc glob(3) implementation (the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures project [http://cve.mitre.org] has assigned the name CAN-2001-0886 to this issue)
  • wuftpd 2.6.1-20 - Red Hat patch has been applied but does not change the version number - fixes a buffer that can overflow

Action:
No action required.

Using Fibre Channel Adapters with a SAN

Description:
Disks on a SAN seen through a Fibre Channel adapter, are often displayed first in the installer and may cause confusion when the ESX Server installer is installing the service console on the boot disk.

Action:
Ensure that all Fibre Channel adapters (QLogic or Emulex) are NOT attached to the SAN during ESX Server installations and upgrades.

Running with System Management Agents

Please follow the installation instructions if you plan to run a system management agent in the service console.

Booting SuSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 8 guest operating systems into "Linux - Safe Setting" Mode

Issue:
Booting SuSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) 8 guest operating systems in safe mode causes SCSI resets/aborts error messages. This error can occur on some Pentium 4 machines with Hyper-Threading capabilities, and having Hyper-Threading enabled in the BIOS.

Resolution:
To successfully run Uniprocessor and SMP-enabled SLES8 guest operating systems, Hyper-Threading must be disabled on the ESX Server machine and the boot parameters used by the kernel must be modified on the guest operating system.

Disabling Hyper-Threading on the ESX Server
To disable Hyper-Threading, you need to modify the BIOS on the machine where the ESX Server is installed. Please refer to the documentation for your machine on how to disable Hyper-Threading, or contact the manufacturer of the machine for instructions.

Note: In the BIOS settings for some machines, Hyper-Threading is sometimes named "Logical Processor."

Once Hyper-Threading is disabled on the ESX Server machine, you need to modify boot parameters for the SLES 8 guest operating system.

Modifying the Boot Parameters on the SLES 8 Guest Operating Systems
Take the following steps after you install Uniprocessor and SMP-enabled SLES 8 guest operating systems:

  1. Boot into normal mode.
  2. As root, use a text editor and open the following file:
    /boot/grub/menu.lst
  3. Add the following parameter to the end of the failsafe line:
    noapic
  4. Reboot the virtual machine.

You can safely boot into the Linux safe setting mode.

Failed Detection of LUNs

Description:
If running Emulex HBAs on an IBM ESS Model 2105-E20 (IBM Shark), the ESX Server may fail to detect LUNs on the SAN array after a reboot. This means that you cannot discover or configure LUNs on a SAN.

Action:
The LUN discovery in SAN of ESX Server through Emulex LP9802 is dependent on the BIOs setting of the HBAs. By default, the Emulex PCI BIOS is disabled and needs to be enabled using a diagnostics utility, such as the LightPulse utility (lputil).

Enabling the Emulex BIOS
To enable the Emulex BIOS, you can choose one of the following options:

  • Unload and reload the Emulex driver manually after you boot the ESX Server.

    1. To manually unload the driver, enter:
      vmkload_mod -u lpfcdd.o

    2. To manually load the driver, enter:
      vmkload_mod /usr/lib/vmware/vmkmod/lpfcdd.o vmhba


  • Upgrade and enable the Utility BIOS of the HBA and reboot the ESX Server. You can download the latest LightPulse utility and BIOs from http://www.emulex.com.

Reducing the Effect of SAN Resets on Hosts

Description:
If you have configured a virtual machine to directly access a raw LUN on a SAN, and the virtual machine is using the virtual BusLogic SCSI adapter, you will see one or more resets on the SAN whenever that virtual machine boots. This behavior occurs because the BusLogic driver always issues a SCSI bus reset when it is first loaded, and this SCSI bus reset is translated to a full SAN reset.

Action:
You can reduce the effect of these SAN resets on other hosts attached to the SAN by turning on the configuration variable DiskUseDeviceReset.

To enable DiskUseDeviceReset variable:

  1. Using a Web browser, log in to the VMware Management Interface as root and click the Options tab. From the Options page, click Advanced Settings.
  2. Locate the DiskUseDeviceReset parameter and click the variable value.
  3. The Update VMkernel Parameter window opens and displays the current value: 0.
  4. In the New Value field, enter the value 1 and click Update. This saves the new setting.
Once the configuration variable is enabled, SCSI bus resets by the guest translate to resets on the specific device (disk array) containing the raw LUN, which greatly limits the effect on other uses of the SAN.

Alternatively, you can configure your virtual machine to use the LSI Logic SCSI device. The LSI Logic driver does not issue bus resets when it is first loaded. For instructions, see http://www.vmware.com/support/esx2/doc/esx20admin_lsilogic_vms.html

Using New Drivers for Smart Array Storage Controllers

Description:
ESX Server 2.0.1 installs updated drivers for a number of Smart Array storage controllers, used in ProLiant servers from HP and Compaq.

  • The cciss driver supports Smart Array 5i, Smart Array 5i+, Smart Array 532, Smart Array 5300 and Smart Array 5312 controllers, including the Smart Array 5302 and Smart Array 5304.

  • The cpqarray driver supports the Smart Array 431, Smart Array 4200, Smart Array 4250ES, RAID LC2, Smart Array 221, Smart Array 3200, Smart Array 3100ES, Smart Array 2P, Smart Array 2SL and Integrated Smart Array controllers.

Action:
Under ESX Server, these drivers can be used for disk drive arrays; however, adding and deleting logical volumes on the fly is not supported. The drivers cannot be used with tape drives.

Binding Virtual Machines to a NUMA Node

Description:
By default, ESX Server automatically assigns each virtual machine to a "home" NUMA node. The virtual machine only runs on CPUs in the home node, with access to "local memory", that lies on the same home NUMA node. By making this assignment, ESX Server attempts to provide the best performance, by maximizing a virtual machine's access to its local memory.

However, you may choose to bind virtual machines manually to a NUMA node. For additional information, see Memory Resource Management.

Generic SCSI Devices

Description:
The only generic SCSI devices supported by ESX Server 2.0.1 are tape backup devices. If you plan to use tape backup devices, you must select the LSI Logic SCSI device for your virtual machine.

For a list of currently supported device families, see ESX Server 2 I/O Compatibility Guide.

Exceeded Error on HP ProLiant DL760 G2 8-Way Xeon with Hyper-Threading Enabled

Description:
If you have an HP ProLiant DL760 G2 8-Way Xeon with Hyper-Threading enabled, then it may not boot. You may see the following error message:
Warning: No sibling found for CPU 14
Enabling IO-APIC IRQs
IO_APIC#0 ID8 is already used!
Kernel Panic: Max APIC ID exceeded!

In idle task - not syncing

Action:
Boot into the BIOS of the HP ProLiant DL760 G2 and disable Hyper-Threading.

Starting, Restarting, or Stopping Master SNMP Agent After Upgrading ESX Server

Description:
After upgrading ESX Server, you may see an error message similar to the following when you start, restart, or stop the master SNMP agent through the VMware Management Interface:
One or more errors occurred. SNMP Configuration: Could not change VMware subagent status: Stopping vmware-snmpd:[FAILED] Your main SNMP daemon may not be running; it should be started before vmware-snmpd can run. To start your main agent, run: /etc/rc.d/init.d/snmpd start".

Action:

  1. If you have not done so already, log into the VMware Management Interface as the root user.
  2. Click the Options tab, then click SNMP Configuration.
  3. Disable the status of the VMware SNMP SubAgent.
  4. Then, enable the status of the VMware SNMP SubAgent.

Networking Error, IP Address Already Assigned to Another Adapter

Description:
Under certain conditions, you may see the following error message from a Windows guest operating system:

The IP address XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX you have entered for this network adapter is already assigned to another adapter Name of adapter. Name of adapter is hidden from the network and Dial-up Connections folder because it is not physically in the computer or is a legacy adapter that is not working. If the same address is assigned to both adapters and they become active, only one of them will use this address. This may result in incorrect system configuration. Do you want to enter a different IP address for this adapter in the list of IP addresses in the advanced dialog box?

In this message, XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX is an IP address that you are trying to set and Name of adapter is the name of a network adapter that is present in the registry but hidden in Device Manager.

This can occur when you change a network connection's TCP/IP configuration from DHCP to a static IP address if you have either upgraded VMware virtual network adapters or have added and removed network adapters multiple times.

The cause of the error is that a network adapter with the same IP address is in the Windows registry but is hidden in the Device Manager (My Computer > Properties > Hardware > Device Manager) This hidden adapter is called a ghosted network adapter.

Using the Show hidden devices option in the Device Manager (View > Show hidden devices) does not always show the old virtual NIC (ghosted adapter) to which that IP Address is assigned

Microsoft addresses this issue in their Knowledge Base article 269155, which is available at the time of this writing at:
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=269155.

Action:
To resolve this problem, follow these steps to make the ghosted network adapter visible in the Device Manager and uninstall the ghosted network adapter from the registry:

  1. Select Start > Run.
  2. Enter cmd.exe and press .
  3. At the command prompt, run this command:
    set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1
  4. Enter Start DEVMGMT.MSC and press Enter.
  5. Select View > Show Hidden Devices.
  6. Expand the Network Adapters tree (select the plus sign next to the Network adapters entry)
  7. Right-click the dimmed network adapter, and then select Uninstall.
  8. Close the Device Manager.

Upgrade VMware Tools in Virtual Machines Created with a Beta Release of ESX Server

Description:
If you created a virtual machine using a Beta release of ESX Server 2.0, be sure to upgrade VMware Tools.

Action:
See VMware Tools installation. If you are using the vmxnet networking driver in your Windows virtual machine, then complete the steps in the next section.

New Virtual Machines

First create your new virtual machine, selecting the vmxnet driver. Once you have created the new virtual machine, then complete the following steps.

  1. Power on the virtual machine.

  2. Ready the VMware Tools CD-ROM ISO image. In the VMware console (application) window, select Settings > VMware Tools Install, then click Install. Click Cancel when the Setup Wizard Welcome window comes up.

  3. When you log into Windows, a Found New Hardware: Ethernet Controller message appears. Then the Found New Hardware Wizard appears. Click Next.

  4. Click Display a list of the known drivers for this device so that I can choose a specific driver, then click Next.

  5. In the Hardware Types list, select Network adapters, then click Next.

  6. In the Found New Hardware Wizard, click Have Disk.

  7. Browse to the vmxnet driver information file. By default, it's located in D:\vmnet\win2k (Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003) or D:\vmnet\winnt (Windows NT).

  8. After you select the file, you return to the Found New Hardware Wizard. VMwarePCI Ethernet Adapter is selected. Click Next.

  9. Click Next to begin installing the driver.

  10. Click Yes to acknowledge that the digital signature was not found.

  11. Click Finish.

  12. In the console window, select Settings > Cancel VMware Tools Install.

    If you check the Driver File Details for the virtual machine's network adapter, you will see that the VMware PCI Ethernet Adapter is pointing to vmxnet.sys.

Existing Virtual Machine

If you have an existing virtual machine, then complete the following steps to upgrade your vmxnet driver:

  1. Shut down the guest operating system and power off the virtual machine.

  2. If necessary, edit the virtual machine's configuration and select the vmxnet NIC in the VMware Management Interface.

  3. Save your changes.

  4. Power on the virtual machine.

  5. Ready the VMware Tools CD-ROM ISO image. In the VMware console (application) window, select Settings > VMware Tools Install, then click Install. Click Cancel when the Setup Wizard Welcome window comes up.

  6. After logging into Windows, chooseStart > Settings > Network and Dial-up Connections.

  7. Right-click on the adapter name and select Properties.

  8. In the General tab, click Configure.

  9. In the Driver tab, click Update Driver. The Welcome to the Upgrade Device Driver Wizard appears.

  10. Click Next.

  11. Click Display a list of the known drivers for this device so that I can choose a specific driver, then click Next.

  12. (Windows NT only) In the Hardware Types list, select Network adapters, then click Next.

  13. In the Update Device Driver Wizard, click Have Disk.

  14. Browse to the vmxnet driver information file. By default, it's located in D:\vmnet\win2k (Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003) or D:\vmnet\winnt (Windows NT).

  15. After you select the file, you return to the Found New Hardware Wizard. VMwarePCI Ethernet Adapter is selected. Click Next.

  16. Click Next to begin installing the driver.

  17. Click Yes to acknowledge that the digital signature was not found.

  18. Click Finish.

  19. In the console window, select Settings > Cancel VMware Tools Install.

    If you check the Driver File Details for the virtual machine's network adapter, you will see that the VMware PCI Ethernet Adapter is pointing to vmxnet.sys.

Upgrading Windows Server 2003 Guest Operating Systems Created by ESX Server 1.5.2

Description:
If you used ESX Server 1.5.2 to create a virtual machine with a Windows Server 2003 guest operating system, then you must update the guestOS configuration parameter in the virtual machine's configuration file. Otherwise, this virtual machine will not run properly with ESX Server 2.0.1.

Action:
Complete the following steps to update the guestOS configuration parameter:

  1. Log into the VMware Management Interface as the owner of the virtual machine, or as the root user.
  2. Click the arrow to the right of the terminal icon for the Windows Server 2003 virtual machine and choose Configure Options.
  3. Click the Options tab, then under Verbose Options, click the link.
  4. Change the value of the guestOS configuration parameter to one of the following:
    • winNetWeb (Windows Server 2003 Web Edition)
    • winNetStandard (Windows Server 2003 Standard Edition)
    • winNetEnterprise (Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition)
  5. Click OK to save your changes.

Upgrading VMware Tools in a Linux Guest Operating System

Description:
Before upgrading VMware Tools in a virtual machine running a Linux guest operating system, you must stop networking. Note, you do not need to complete these steps if you are installing VMware Tools for the first time.

Action:
Complete the following steps to stop networking:

  1. In the remote console window, choose Settings > VMware Tools Install.

  2. Open a terminal window and log in as the root user.

  3. Stop networking by typing the following:
    /etc/init.d/network stop

  4. Complete the VMware Tools installation.

  5. Start networking by typing the following:
    /etc/init.d/network start

  6. Exit the terminal window.

Ensuring Sufficient Swap Space in the Guest Operating System

Description:
For resource management purposes, ESX Server may increase the memory utilization within a guest operating system. Therefore, it is important to ensure that the guest operating system has sufficient swap space.

Action:
Add additional swap space in the guest operating system, equal to the difference between the virtual machine's maximum and minimum memory sizes.

Changing From the vlance to vmxnet Virtual Network Adapter in a Linux Guest Operating System

Description:
If you create a virtual machine with a Linux guest operating system and the vlance driver, and then you later decide to use the vmxnet driver instead, then you must run the vmware-config-tools.pl script. Otherwise, the virtual machine will not be able to use the new driver.

Action:
Log into the guest operating system as the root user and run the vmware-config-tools.pl script..

"Tainted" Drivers in a Red Hat Linux 8.0 Guest Operating System

Description:
When a Red Hat Linux 8.0 guest operating system loads the vmxnet networking driver, it reports that the driver is tainted.

Action:
This does not mean that there is anything wrong with the driver. It simply indicates that this is a proprietary driver, not licensed under the GNU General Public License.

Getting a DHCP Address in a Red Hat Linux 9.0 Virtual Machine

Description:
You have a virtual machine, with Red Hat Linux 9.0 as the guest operating system and the vlance driver for your network connection. When this guest operating system tries to get a DHCP address, the attempt fails and you see an error message that states the link is down.

Action:
To work around this problem, become root (su -) and use a text editor to edit the following files in the guest operating system. If only one of these files exist, then make the change for that file only.
/etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-eth[n]
/etc/sysconfig/networking/devices/ifcfg-eth[n]

where, in both cases, [n] is the number of the Ethernet adapter -- for example, eth0.

Add the following section to each of these two files:

check_link_down () {
       return 1;
   }
Then, run the command ifup eth[n] (where [n] is the number of the Ethernet adapter) or restart the guest operating system.

Using Uniprocessor and Multiprocessor Kernels with Red Hat Advanced Server 2.1

Description:
RedHat AS 2.1 MP kernels have a bug that prevents them from always working correctly on uniprocessor systems (both native and virtual). However, they work fine on multiprocessor systems (both native and virtual). Therefore, we recommend that you always boot a uniprocessor kernel on uniprocessor systems and a multiprocessor kernel on multiprocessor systems.

Because the multiprocessor kernel is the default, ensuring that the correct kernel is selected on a uniprocessor system requires some extra steps on each boot - namely selecting the uniprocessor kernel from the boot loader menu.

Note:If you do not do this, the virtual machine is likely to hang.

Action:
When performing your Red Hat Advanced Server 2.1 installation in your virtual machine, follow the steps described in: Installing a Red Hat Linux Advanced Server 2.1 guest operating system.

Note:Be sure, if you are using a uniprocessor machine, to deselect the kernel-vmp box (no asterisk between the brackets).

If you have already installed the Red Hat Advanced Server 2.1, then you must change the default kernel to match the processor system. Do not complete these steps if you correctly installed Red Hat Advanced Server 2.1 following the instructions in the preceding paragraph.

  1. Boot the virtual machine.
    The boot loader menu appears before the guest starts to boot.

  2. Manually, select the non-default (uniprocessor) kernel in the bootloader.

  3. Once the virtual machine is booted, as root, change the single guest configuration file: /etc/lilo.conf, if the guest is using LILO or /etc/grub.conf, if the guest is using GRUB.
    • If you use LILO to boot your Linux system, follow these steps:
      1. Use your favorite text editor to open /etc/lilo.conf.
      2. Modify the image line to read:
        image= /boot/vmlinuz
      3. Save the file and close your text editor.
      4. Run /sbin/lilo.
    • If you use GRUB to boot your Linux system, follow these steps:
      1. Use your favorite text editor to open /boot/grub/menu.lst.
      2. Search for the section title linux.
      3. Insert the parameter in the line starting with kernel for each boot configuration with which you use VMware products. For example:
        title linux
        kernel (hd0,0)/vmlinuz root=/dev/hda3 vga=791 apic
        initrd (hd0,0)/initrd
      4. Save the file and close your text editor.
        GRUB will read this entry during the next boot process.
  4. Reboot your guest operating system.

    From this point on, RedHat AS 2.1 will boot the uniprocessor kernel by default on the uniprocessor system. This prevents the hang.

Error Message During Device Installation of Windows Server 2003 or Windows XP Professional Guest Operating Systems

Description:
During your installation of Windows Server 2003 or Windows XP Professional as a guest operating system in ESX Server, you may see a message stating "Continuing your installation of this software may impair or destabilize the correct operation of your system either immediately or in the future. Microsoft strongly recommends that you stop this installation and contact the software vendor for software that has passed Windows Logo Testing."

Action:
Click Yes to continue to install the software. This error message is due to an unsigned BusLogic SCSI driver and can be safely ignored.

Installing a Windows 2000 Server Guest Operating System

Description:
Only Windows 2000 Server guest operating systems, with Service Pack 3 or 4 installed, are supported in ESX Server 2.0.1. If you attempt to run Windows 2000 Server, without one of these service packs, in a SMP virtual machine, then your guest operating system may fail to boot.

Action:
Install Service Pack 3 or 4 in your Windows 2000 Server guest operating system.

Running a Windows 2000 Server SP3 Guest Operating System

Description:
A Windows 2000 guest with Service Pack 3 installed may fail to boot. A user interface failure message appears, saying "The Logon User Interface DLL msgina.dll failed to load."

Action:
To work around this problem, be sure the virtual machine is not running, then use a text editor to add the following line to the virtual machine's configuration file:
MAGICBOOT1 = 700

If a value of 700 (representing 700 microseconds) does not enable you to start the guest operating system, experiment with higher values. Increase the number to 800 for the second try, 900 for the third try and so on until the guest starts.

If you are booting multiple virtual machines or running other stressful workloads at the same time, you may need to assign a higher magicboot1 value. For faster boot times, you may experiment with values between 1 and 700 to find the smallest value that allows the virtual machine to boot.

Mouse Response is Slow in Windows Server 2003

Description:
In the Windows Server 2003 guest operating system, the mouse response is slow and jerky.

Action:
Complete the following steps. Your virtual machine should be powered on and running.

  1. Right-click the desktop and choose Properties.
  2. Click the Settings tab.
  3. Click the Advanced button.
  4. Click the Troubleshooting tab.
  5. Drag the bar for Hardware acceleration from None to Full.
  6. Click OK to close the first dialog, and OK again, to close the second dialog.

Disable Ports COM1 and COM2 When Running Citrix MetaFrame in a Windows 2000 Advanced Server Guest Operating System

Description:
You should disable ports COM1 and COM2 if you are running Citrix MetaFrame in a Windows 2000 Advanced Server guest operating system. If you use these ports, you may see random spikes in CPU utilization, affecting your performance.

Action:
Complete the following steps to disable the COM1 and COM2 ports in the guest operating system.

  1. Power on your virtual machine and log in as the Administrator user.
  2. Right-click the My Computer icon and choose Manage. The Computer Management window appears.
  3. Click Device Manager in the left pane.
  4. In the right pane, click the plus (+) sign next to Ports.
  5. Right-click Communications Port (COM1) and choose Disable.
  6. Right-click Communications Port (COM2) and choose Disable.
  7. Click Yes in the confirmation dialog.

Using the IBM Ultrium Tape Autoloader 3581 or IBM TotalStorage Ultrium Tape Drive T400F in Windows Guest Operating Systems

Description:
If you want to use the IBM Ultrium Tape Autoloader 3581 or IBM TotalStorage Ultrium Tape Drive T400F in a Windows guest operating system, then be sure to use the LSI Logic SCSI adapter in the virtual machine.

Action:
See Configuring a Virtual Machine to Use the LSI Logic SCSI Adapter for more information.

Volume labels are not saved the first time a volume is created using the VMware Management Interface.

Description:
When creating a new virtual disk using the VMware Management Interface, the volume label is not saved.

Action:
Adding and saving a volume label the second time will save the setting. To do this, you will need to modify the disk volume properties through the VMware Management Interface. Under the Options tab, click Storage Management to view any VMFS volumes in your ESX Server. Find the volume that does not have a label and click Edit. The properties page for that volume appears and displays a Volume Label field. Enter the volume label and click OK. This saves the volume label and you return to the list of VMFS volumes in your system.

Disk Shares Are Displayed as "Undefined" in VMware Management Interface When Using Internet Explorer

Description:
You want to edit the number of disk shares assigned to either the service console or a virtual machine through the VMware Management Interface. Click the Disk tab, then click Edit. If you are viewing the management interface with Internet Explorer, then you see "undefined" for the number of shares.

Action:
Changing Disk Shares for the Service Console

These changes persist only until the next reboot of ESX Server.

  1. Log into the service console as the root user.

  2. Determine the world ID for the service console by typing the following:
    cat /proc/vmware/sched/cpu

  3. Look at the output and find the number next to "console". That number is the service console world ID.

  4. Change the number of disk shares allocated to the service console:
    echo <disk_shares> >> /proc/vmware/vm/<service_console_world_ID>/disk/vmhba<disk_controller_LUN>

    For example, if you wanted to increase disk shares to 5000, and the service console world ID is 127, then type the following:
    echo 5000 >> /proc/vmware/vm/127/disk/vmhba0\:0\:0

  5. Check to see your changes:
    cat /proc/vmware/vm/<service_console_world_ID>/disk/vmhba<disk_controller_LUN>

  6. Look at the first column in the output. The number in this column reflects the disk shares assigned to the service console.

Changing Disk Shares for a Virtual Machine

If the virtual machine is powered on, then you must make your changes by using the procfs. These changes persist only until the next reboot of the virtual machine. If you want to make these changes persistent, then complete the steps in the "Virtual Machine is Powered Off" section, the next time the virtual machine is powered off.

Virtual Machine is Running

  1. Determine the world ID of the virtual machine. The virtual machine world ID number is listed next to VMID in the Status Monitor page in the management interface.

  2. Log into the service console as the root user.

  3. Change the number of disk shares allocated to the virtual machine:
    echo <disk_shares> >> /proc/vmware/vm/<virtual_machine_world_ID>/disk/vmhba<disk_controller_LUN>"

    For example, if you wanted to increase disk shares to 3000, and the virtual machine ID is 135, then type the following:
    echo 3000 >> /proc/vmware/vm/135/disk/vmhba0\:0\:0

  4. Check to see your changes. In the Status Monitor page of the management interface, click the virtual machine name. Click the Disk tab, and view the number of shares for the virtual disk.

Virtual Machine is Powered Off

These changes persist across reboots of the virtual machine.

  1. Log into the VMware Management Interface as the root user, or a user that can edit the virtual machine's configuration file.

  2. In the Status Monitor page, click the name of the virtual machine.

  3. In the virtual machine page, click the Options tab. Click click here under Verbose Options.

  4. Click Add.

  5. Enter sched.scsi0:0.shares as the option name and click OK.

    Note: The value entered as the option name depends on your server's configuration. For example, if you boot your virtual machine from virtual SCSI controller 0, disk 1, scsiX:Y would be entered as scsi0:1.

  6. Enter the new number of disk shares and click OK.

  7. Click OK in the Options page.

VMware Management Interface Not Able to Manage a Partition Once it is Changed by fdisk

Description:
If you used fdisk from the command-line to manage partitions, then you must restart the vmware-serverd process. Otherwise, you will be unable to manage the disk partitions using the VMware Management Interface for up to fifteen minutes.

Action:
By default, the vmware-serverd process reports disk partition configuration changes every fifteen minutes. To view and manage disk partitions immediately, you must restart the vmware-serverd process by logging in to the service console as root and issuing the command killall -9 vmware-serverd.

Note: The vmware-serverd process will restart automatically upon requests from any of its clients.

The ESX Server Hangs when the vmkernel Loads on HP DL Series Servers

Description:
If you are using Hewlett_Packard DL-740 and Hewlett-Packard DL-760 G2HP series servers, and the ESX Server software hangs when vmkernel loads, the BIOS version of the server hardware may not be compatible with the ESX Server 2.x software.

Action:
Please check the BIOS version and processor speed(s) of your server hardware. If needed, upgrade or downgrade to the compatible BIOS version.

NOTE: Both of the above BIOS revisions support processors 1.5GHz or faster.

Running Many Virtual Machines on ESX Server

Description:
If you are running a lot of virtual machines on ESX server, then complete the following items, to allow ESX Server to operate more efficiently.

  • If you notice a degradation in system performance, then you should increase the CPU minimum for the service console.

    Log into the VMware Management Interface as root, click the Options tab, then click Service Console Settings and increase the minimum CPU resource settings.

  • Remove the CD-ROM drive in your virtual machines.

    If, when powering on a large number of virtual machines, you remove the CD-ROM drives from your virtual machines' configuration, then the load on the service console decreases.

  • Read and complete the section Running Many Virtual Machines on ESX Server.

    This section explains how to provide additional CPU and memory resources to the service console.

If, after changing these settings, you are still unable to open the VMware Management Interface to your server, then the number of outstanding processes, that are waiting to be executed, is too high. You need to allocate the necessary CPU resources to the management interface, by increasing the priority for the vmware-serverd and httpd processes.

Action:

  1. Log in as the root user on the service console.
  2. Type ps auxw and find the process IDs of the httpd and vmware-serverd processes.
    If there are multiple httpd processes, then type top. Click Shift-p (P) to sort the output by CPU usage. Remember the process ID for the httpd process using the most CPU.
  3. Raise the vmware-serverd process priority to -15 so that it can connect to all running virtual machines:
    renice -15 -p <vmware-serverd_process_ID>
  4. Raise the httpd process priority to -15:
    renice -15 -p <httpd_process_ID>
  5. Verify that you can log into the VMware Management Interface and view correct information about the virtual machines. Once this occurs, then continue with the next step.
  6. Change the vmware-serverd process priority back to the default of zero (0).
    renice 0 -p <vmware-serverd_process_ID>
  7. Change the httpd process priority back to the default of zero (0).
    renice 0 -p <httpd_process_ID>

Avoiding Management Interface Failures when Many Virtual Machines Are Registered

Description:
If you have a very large number of virtual machines registered on a single ESX Server machine, the VMware Management Interface may shut down and a Panic out of memory message may be recorded in /usr/lib/vmware-mui/apache/logs/error_log.

Action:
By default, the Apache Web server uses 24MB of memory to store information about the virtual machines on the server. The errors described above can happen when this memory is not adequate for the number of virtual machines.

To work around the problem, open the file /etc/vmware/config in a text editor and find the line that begins with mui.vmdb.shmSize =. Increase the number in quotation marks, which is specified in bytes of memory. Then restart the Apache server with the following command:
/etc/rc.d/init.d/httpd.vmware restart

Registering and Unregistering Virtual Machines

Description:
Only the root user can register and unregister virtual machines through the VMware Management Interface. However, regular users can register and unregister virtual machines by using the Scripting API.

Powering on a Virtual Machine Fails Because of an Invalid Ethernet Device

Description:
While powering on a virtual machine, you see the following message in a pop-up window:

"Failed to initialize ethernet_n. This is most likely because the appropriate ethernet driver is not loaded in the vmkernel, or the ethernet device is being used in exclusive mode by another virtual machine, or you have exceeded the limit of 32 virtual machines per ethernet device."

Action:
Click OK twice, for this pop-up window and the next pop-up window. The virtual machine boots, but you will not be able to use the Ethernet driver that was detected as invalid.

You see this error message if:

  • the vmnic is already part of a bond
  • the vmnic or bond doesn't physically exist
  • the bond hasn't been configured

To fix this problem, edit the virtual machine's configuration through the VMware Management Interface and select an available vmnic or bond.

Logging into the VMware Management Interface May Fail

Description:
After a long wait with the message "Connection lost: Connection terminated by server", the log in may fail.

Action:
If you encounter this error, you must restart the HTTP daemon. Log in to the service console (either at the ESX server machine or over a Telnet or SSH link) and issue this command:
/etc/rc.d/init.d/httpd.vmware restart

Remote Console May be Disconnected or Show Errors

Description:
When the ESX Server machine is under heavy load the remote console may be disconnected or show errors. This behavior helps protect the virtual machines and the ESX Server software from failure.

Action:
If you encounter this problem, wait until the load on the server decreases, then reconnect the remote console to the virtual machine.

Don't Place VMware Core Dump and Swap Files on a SAN Disk

Description:
Do not place your VMware core dump file or swap file on a SAN disk.

Unloading the Emulex Fibre Channel HBA Driver

Description:
ESX Server may fail to shut down cleanly when unloading the Emulex Fibre Channel HBA driver.

Scanning a vmhba adapter for Devices and LUNs

Description:
Do not rescan any non-Fibre Channel adapters with the vmkfstools --scan command. This command is intended only for Fibre Channel adapters. Rescanning, on some non-Fibre Channel adapters may cause this command to hang.

Using Fibre Channel Cards

Description:
Always use Fibre Channel cards in dedicated mode. We do not recommend sharing Fibre Channel cards between the service console and the virtual machines.

Viewing the Contents of the /vmfs Directory

Tip:
If you use the ls command to view the contents of your /vmfs directory, and the response is slow, then use the /bin/ls command instead.

Using Interrupt Clustering

Description:
Interrupt clustering is disabled in ESX 2.0.1.

Using e1000 Network Interface Cards with the Service Console

Description:
You are using the e1000 network interface card (NIC) with the service console and have no network connection, or the output of lspci shows "Unknown device".

Action:
Manually specify the e1000 driver by adding alias <eth_number> e1000 (typically alias eth0 e1000) to the /etc/modules.conf file.

Setting the DiskMaxLUN Configuration Setting Greater than 8 in an IBM x120 Blade Server

Description:
If you have configured the DiskMaxLUN configuration setting to be greater than 8 (the default), and ESX Server hangs when the VMkernel is booting, then you need to change the DiskMaskLUNs setting.

Action:
You need to mask out all LUNs except LUN0 for the target that has the processor device.

  1. Log into the VMware Management Interface as root.
  2. Click the Options tab, then click Advanced Settings.
  3. Find the DiskMaskLUNs setting and mask the appropriate LUNs.
    For example, set DiskMaskLUNs to vmhba0:8:1-255; as its value.

By setting the DiskMaskLUNs configuration setting, it overrides the DiskMaxLUN setting for all HBAs that have a LUN mask.

Using the vdf Command to Display Free Space for All Mounted File Systems

Description:
vdf is an ESX Server-customized version of the df command. Use vdf in place of the df command. vdf works with all the standard df options.

Importing Files Larger than 2GB

Description:
The file manager in the management interface may display incorrect information or no information at all for files larger than 2GB. This means that you cannot use the file manager to import certain virtual disk files created under VMware Workstation 4.

Action:
To import large files, from the ESX Server service console use the vmkfstools -i <srcFile> command. For details, see File System Management on SCSI Disks and RAID.

Viewing Help Topics on a Linux Management Workstation

Description:
If you launch help from the remote console on a Linux management workstation and click Contents, you see an abbreviated list of topics.

Action:
To see the full list of topics, click the Help Index link at the bottom of the Contents page.