vBrain.info http://www.vbrain.info Austrian Virtualization Power Tue, 06 Oct 2020 18:26:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 http://www.vbrain.info/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/buysellad_icon-150x150.jpg vBrain.info http://www.vbrain.info 32 32 50840897 Backup Interoperability Matrix Major Update 2020-10 http://www.vbrain.info/2020/10/06/backup-interoperability-matrix-major-update-2020-10/ http://www.vbrain.info/2020/10/06/backup-interoperability-matrix-major-update-2020-10/#respond Tue, 06 Oct 2020 16:07:03 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4981 It’s been some time that I have updated the Backup Interoperability Matrix. In the October 2020 update the following backup software was updated: Veritas BackupExec 21.1 Veritas NetBackup 8.3 IBM Spectrum Protect for Virtual...

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It’s been some time that I have updated the Backup Interoperability Matrix. In the October 2020 update the following backup software was updated:

  • Veritas BackupExec 21.1
  • Veritas NetBackup 8.3
  • IBM Spectrum Protect for Virtual Environments 8.1.10
  • Micro Focus Data Protector 2020.08 (10.80)
  • EMC Avamar 19.3
  • EMC Networker 19.3
  • CommVault Simpana 11.20
  • Hitachi Data Protection Suite 11.20
  • Veeam Backup and Replication 10a
  • Quest vRanger 7.8.2
  • Nakivo Backup and Replication 10.1
  • Unitrends Enterprise Backup 10.4.8
  • Acronis Backup Advanced for VMware/Hyper-V 12.5 Update 5 Build 16363
  • Acronis Cyber Protect 15.0
  • Arcserve Backup 18.0 (more info to new Patches)
  • Arcserve UDP 7.0 Update 2
  • Micro Focus VM Explorer 7.1.3
  • Altaro VMBackup 8.16.11
  • Vembu VMBackup 4.2.0 U1

You can find the latest backup matrix update for VMware here and for Hyper-V here. I have also updated the vSphere 4.0 to 6.0 matrix to include vSphere 6.0.

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HomeLab Part 10 – Sophos SG Appliance Replacement http://www.vbrain.info/2020/09/23/homelab-part-10-sophos-sg-appliance-replacement/ http://www.vbrain.info/2020/09/23/homelab-part-10-sophos-sg-appliance-replacement/#respond Wed, 23 Sep 2020 07:00:08 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4945 I was working with Sophos SG Appliances (formally known as Astaro UTM) since 2005 (version 5.x). In the beginning I used white boxes with 2-4 NICs as my personal firewall. In January 2013 when...

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I was working with Sophos SG Appliances (formally known as Astaro UTM) since 2005 (version 5.x). In the beginning I used white boxes with 2-4 NICs as my personal firewall. In January 2013 when I was about to start a new job I had the opportunity to attend a Sophos UTM technical academy. The best thing about this academy was that I could keep the Sophos UTM 120 I used for configuration purposes during the acadamy. Since then this little box served me really well. These are the specs of this box:

Sophos UTM 120 Rev.5
CPU: Intel Atom N450 (1Core/2Threads, 1.6GHz)
Memory: 2GB DDR2 SO-DIMM
Network: 4x 1GBit Intel NICs
HDD: 250GB 2.5” SATA

Sophos UTM 110/120 Rev.5

The successor – SG135 Rev.2

I had this little box until the first half of 2020. During the last month and after every Sophos update I realised that the performance when accessing the WebAdmin interface was more and more degrading because of the old hardware specs. So I decided to look for a replacement. I created a search agent at one of the Austrian small ads sites which is similar to eBay or Shpock. After a while I found the perfect replacement for the UTM 120, a SG135 Rev.2. It was also a little bit of a russian roulette because the C2000 CPU was known for a bug which could have made this box unusable. The specs of this box are here:

Sophos SG135 Rev.2
CPU: Intel Atom Rangeley C2558 (4Cores, 2.4GHz)
Memory: 6GB DDR3
Network: 8x 1GBit Intel NICs
SSD: 64GB Transcend (TS64GSSD370)

Sophos SG Appliance

This box was a beast. When I first logged into this new appliance it was like day and night. I never saw the WebAdmin in such a speed. Every click got a direct response and I didn’t have to wait for any site to popup. Unfortunately after 2-3 month this appliance died during the night. It was not the previous mentioned C2000 bug rather the mainboard died and booted with an error code 99. So I put my old UTM120 back into place.

The new Champion – Dell R220

During the last couple of month I was searching for a new hardware platform that could run Sophos UTM 9.7. I found a lot of smaller appliances but neither of them fitted my needs. This was the requirement for the new Sophos UTM hardware:

  • Low power consumption (similar to the UTM and SG if possible)
  • Low price
  • 4+ Gbit NICs
  • powerful processor

One could ask why I was searching for multiple interfaces, right? This is a really good question, because some people told me I could have done this with only 2 interfaces using VLAN interfaces. The people were right I could have done this with VLAN interfaces, unfortunately there are some functions within Sophos UTM were VLAN interfaces can’t be used and I need to have physical interfaces. I not only have a LAN and WAN interface, I also need a IoT and WLAN interface. During my research I came across multiple vendors who are selling pfsense hardware or firewall hardware. Unfortunately most of them are either too expensive, don’t have the required ports, have week processors or shipping from China.

By accident I then found an Austrian YouTuber (austriangamerstech) who replaced his pfsense firewall hardware with a DELL R210 II. He also made a video (german only) were he explained what he was doing and how to optimize FANs and power consumption. I had a look into this type of hardware but for my taste it was a little bit outdated. But the good thing was I now searched for similar Dell R series server and found the Dell R220 which was the successor of the R210 II. The specs of the server were awesome and I also found a lot of seller on eBay. Here is the BOM for the new hardware firewall:

Hardware Price
DELL R220
Intel XEON E3-1231 v3 (TDP 80W)
8GB DDR3 UDIMM
1TB HDD
201.85€
DELL iDRAC7 Remote Access Card 17.02€
DELL Intel I350-T4 (THGMP) 48.90€
DELL iDRAC7 Enterprise License Free
TOTAL: 267.77€

I kept everything except the HDD which I replaced with the Transcend SSD I had left from the SG135. Compared to the other offers I found on Amazon or eBay with different and smaller appliances I saved a lot of money. The only drawback I saw with this setup was that it might have a much higher power consumption than the appliances I had in the past. After I got all pieces together, I installed Sophos UTM in the most recent version and saw that during boot up and installation the power consumption was around 40-60 watts which was 2x-3x more than I had with the UTM appliances. But to my surprise the consumption went down after the firewall was installed and configured. My current consumption is just 5 watts higher than my older appliances which is based on the used CPU a pretty decent result.

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Sophos UTM 9.7 – SMTP proxy isn’t working http://www.vbrain.info/2020/08/18/sophos-utm-9-7-smtp-proxy-isnt-working/ http://www.vbrain.info/2020/08/18/sophos-utm-9-7-smtp-proxy-isnt-working/#respond Tue, 18 Aug 2020 07:00:59 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4930 I’m working with Astaro/Sophos UTMs since the beginning of my professional IT career and I’m also running a hardware Sophos UTM 9.7 appliance in my homelab. 4 month ago I bought a used SG135...

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Sophos UTM 9.7

I’m working with Astaro/Sophos UTMs since the beginning of my professional IT career and I’m also running a hardware Sophos UTM 9.7 appliance in my homelab. 4 month ago I bought a used SG135 Rev2 for my lab. The performance compare to the old UTM120 Rev5 was enormous. New one had 4 cores, 6GB memory and 64GB SSD. Unfortunately the mainboard died 3 weeks ago and I had to go back to the old one. This was some days before my PTO.

During my 3 weeks PTO I wondered why I didn’t receive any e-mails from my internal systems like Veeam backup etc.. I had some time to check the Sophos UTM 9.7 installation after my PTO. I found out that the SMTP proxy wasn’t working correctly. It was running but nothing was listing on port 25. For the next procedures you need SU permission.

I checked the following log files and found this:

/var/log/smtp.log

utm smtpd[21690]: Reset password: Connecting to Confd was successful.
utm smtpd[21690]: Reset password: Confd returned the expected expiry period: 30 day(s).
utm smtpd[21671]: Expired letters: Removing letters from SPX Portal that are older than 30 days…
utm smtpd[21671]: Expired letters: There was an error while removing expired letters:
utm smtpd[21690]: Reset password: Expired passwords successfully deleted.
utm smtpd[22227]: QMGR[22227]: Master is gone, exiting too
utm smtpd[22585]: QMGR[22585]: Master is gone, exiting too
utm smtpd[23270]: QMGR[23270]: Master is gone, exiting too
utm smtpd[23651]: QMGR[23651]: Master is gone, exiting too
utm smtpd[24184]: QMGR[24184]: Master is gone, exiting too
utm smtpd[24710]: QMGR[24710]: Master is gone, exiting too

I did some research and found some community and forum posts and some of them recommended to rebuild the UTM database. I had nothing to lose because it’s a homelab firewall and I run the following command:

/etc/init.d/postgresql92 rebuild

Unfortunately it didn’t solve the problem. Accidentally I found a mention about another log file, I wasn’t aware of and checked it for failure. The file was /var/chroot-smtp/tmp/smtpd_debug.log and I found this:

MASTER[20207] DIE at Mon Aug 17 21:13:31 2020 ——————————————————–
error creating SAVI client: libsavi not loaded at /</bin/smtpd.bin>modules/SAVI/SAVI.pm line 14.
1 modules::SAVI::SAVI::init_savi

I had no idea what this message was about. I saw that it was correlating with the “Master is gone” message from the other log. I found also some clues mentioning a symbolic link in this directory:

/var/storage/chroot-smtp/var/pattern/savi/engine

There should be a symbolic link called libsavi.so.3 (checked with another UTM installation) pointing to the most recent file in this directory but it was missing. The directory looked like this:

-rw-r–r– 1 root root 4.6M Feb 6 2017 libsavi.so.3.2.07.367.2
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 4.8M Oct 4 2017 libsavi.so.3.2.07.368.1
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 4.9M Oct 16 2018 libsavi.so.3.2.07.373.0
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 4.9M Apr 15 2019 libsavi.so.3.2.07.375.0
-rw——- 1 root root 3.9M Aug 16 21:37 libsavi.so.3.2.07.376.0
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 5.0M Nov 23 2019 libsavi.so.3.2.07.377.1
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 12M Mar 31 22:36 libsavi.so.3.2.07.378.0
-rw-r–r– 1 root root 13M Aug 16 18:08 libsavi.so.3.2.07.378.6

So I created this symbolic link with the command ln -s -T libsavi.so.3.2.07.378.6 libsavi.so.3 and restarted the SMTP proxy. You can either restart the SMTP proxy through the web interface by going to Email Protection – SMTP – Global and toggle there the SMTP proxy status switch or through the command line with the command /var/mdw/scripts/smtp restart.

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vExpert Application for 2020H2 are open – Know before you apply http://www.vbrain.info/2020/06/02/vexpert-application-for-2020h2-are-open-know-before-you-apply/ http://www.vbrain.info/2020/06/02/vexpert-application-for-2020h2-are-open-know-before-you-apply/#respond Tue, 02 Jun 2020 09:00:00 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4902 Currently vExpert applications are open for the second half of 2020. As a former vExpertPro I voted on previous applications. During my voting on applications I saw awesome, good, ok, bad and worst applications....

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Currently vExpert applications are open for the second half of 2020. As a former vExpertPro I voted on previous applications. During my voting on applications I saw awesome, good, ok, bad and worst applications. So I thought I could give everybody some guideline on how to improve your application and how your application should probably look like to have a good chance to be selected as vExpert.

But first of all, as usual, what is the vExpert program.

The VMware vExpert program is VMware’s global evangelism and advocacy program. The program is designed to put VMware’s marketing resources towards your advocacy efforts. Promotion of your articles, exposure at our global events, co-op advertising, traffic analysis, and early access to beta programs and VMware’s roadmap.

Each year, we bring together in the vExpert Program the people who have made some of the most important contributions to the VMware community. These are the bloggers, book authors, VMUG leaders, speakers, tool builders, community leaders and general enthusiasts.

What are the benefits for being a vExpert?

  • Networking with 2,000 vExperts / Information Sharing
  • Knowledge Expansion on VMware & Partner Technology
  • Opportunity to apply for vExpert BU Lead Subprograms
  • Possible Job Opportunities
  • Direct Access to VMware Business Units via Subprograms
  • Blog Traffic Boost through Advocacy, @vExpert, @VMware, VMware Launch & Announcement Campaigns
  • 1 Year VMware Licenses for Home Labs for almost all Products & Some Partner Products
  • Private VMware & VMware Partner Sessions
  • Gifts from VMware and VMware Partners
  • vExpert Celebration Parties at both VMworld US and VMworld Europe with VMware CEO, Pat Gelsinger
  • VMware Advocacy Platform Invite (share your content to thousands of vExperts & VMware employees who amplify your content via their social channels)
  • Private Slack Channels for vExpert and the BU Lead Subprograms

When applying for the vExpert program there are 4 tracks you can choose from.

Evangelist Path
The Evangelist Path includes book authors, bloggers, tool builders, public speakers, VMTN contributors, and other IT professionals who share their knowledge and passion with others with the leverage of a personal public platform to reach many people. Employees of VMware can also apply via the Evangelist path. A VMware employee reference is recommended if your activities weren’t all in public.

Customer Path
The Customer Path is for leaders who evangelize VMware. We are looking for passionate customers who do the work to evangelize within their organization or worked with VMware to build success stories, act as customer references, given public interviews, spoken at conferences, or were VMUG leaders. The actives must not be related to your position within the company, i.e. not being paid for evangelizing VMware. A VMware employee reference is recommended if your activities weren’t all in public.

Partner Path
The VPN Path is for employees of our partner companies who lead with passion and by example, who are committed to continuous learning through accreditations and certifications and to making their technical knowledge and expertise available to many. This can take shape of event participation, video, IP generation, as well as public speaking engagements.

VMUG & VCDX
If you are an active VMUG Leader or hold the title of VCDX you will qualify for the vExpert award. VMUG leader titles and activities are also verified and you must be an active leader in your chapter. Inactive VMUG leaders will not qualify for the award. To apply via VMUG or VCDX, please use the evangelist path and state you are a VCDX or VMUG leader and which chapter. All VCDX applicants will be verified via vcdx.vmware.com.

From my experience the partner path is the most challenging path because most of the people’s content, who are applying for the partner path is maybe not public available. This is the reason why a VMware employee reference is required.

So most of the people applying for vExpert are using the Evangelist path. Here are some guidelines you should consider when filling out your vExpert application.

  • Make sure that your content is about VMware. If you are writing most of the time about Veeam, Microsoft or what ever, chances are good that you won’t be selected as vExpert. For this content other community programs are available like Microsoft MVP or Veeam Vanguards. So personally I would say that 50% or more should be about VMware.
  • Be honest in your vExpert application, content and path. Voters are also looking at your content provided in the application and also checking the VCDX directory if you have applied for the VCDX path. If you have chosen the wrong path because you are e.g. no VCDX it’s up to the voter and the remaining content if you are still getting selected.
  • Don’t use a syndicate blog in your application. This content is not your own and voters can’t give you credit for that.
  • If you fill out the VMTN field please provide the correct VMTN username. You can find your VMTN username if you login to VMTN and select “View my profile”. This will create an URL similar to this one “https://communities.vmware.com/people/Fred_vBrain” where the red marked part is your VMTN username.
  • Just fill out your VMTN username if you actually helping people there. If you are just a lurker and your last post is ages ago don’t fill out the VMTN part because voters can’t give you credit for that.
  • If you are mentioning speaking engagements (VMworld, VMUG, etc.), please provide the necessary references for that (links, agenda, etc.). Otherwise it won’t count towards the final scoring.
  • First half vExpert applications normally taking content from last year into account (e.g. vExpert 2020-> content from 2020), whereas second half vExpert applications normally taking June to June timelines into account (second half 2020 -> content from June 2019 to June 2020). Keep this in mind when you are providing content links.
  • If you are a blogger, please date your posts in whatever way suits you. If the voters can’t verify that the content is from the required time period they also can’t give you credit for that.
  • If you are a VMUG leader it would be great if you are mentioning your meetings and have a link to it. Would save time for the voters who doesn’t need to search for it.
  • Please mention only content or activities which were created or done outside of your daily job business. E.g. if you’re a Vendor SE and you’re doing presentations for your customers, then this is part of your job. But if you’re speaking at VMUGs or VMworld then this is voluntary and would count towards the vExpert criteria .

I hope these guidelines will help people who apply for the vExpert program or such people who get’s denied in their first try. Also if you need help for preparing your application you can always reach out to your local vExpert Pro which can be found in the vExpert Directory. If there is no vExpert Pro in your country or region you can either contact me or one of the other Pros in the directory. I think everyone of them will be happy to help with the application or giving some advice for “how to apply”.

Source: Information about the vExpert program and wording was taken from the VMware vExpert Blog site.

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vExpert award and how it advanced my career http://www.vbrain.info/2020/06/02/vexpert-award-and-how-it-advanced-my-career/ http://www.vbrain.info/2020/06/02/vexpert-award-and-how-it-advanced-my-career/#respond Tue, 02 Jun 2020 07:00:30 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4886 In the beginning I started with virtualization back in 2007 when Virtual Infrastructure 3.5 was released. During that time I also came across bloggers like Duncan Epping and Frank Denneman. I read everything they...

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In the beginning

I started with virtualization back in 2007 when Virtual Infrastructure 3.5 was released. During that time I also came across bloggers like Duncan Epping and Frank Denneman. I read everything they wrote about virtualization and it helped me to understand how it works. During that time in my career I did everything, network, security, mailing, database, storage, server, Windows and Linux. One of the benefits was that I had a general overview of every piece which connects to virtualization. Unfortunately I didn’t had a deep knowledge of all this things.

The early years

In 2009 I moved to a bigger VMware Partner as a Systems Engineer in the System Management and Virtualization team. Systems Engineers here in Austria are similar to consultants in other US companies. They are no pre-sales people, they are hands-on people and implementing stuff at the customer side. This was the first time in my career I had a managed laptop and no access to the internal network. In my old company I was Systems Engineer and internal Administrator. You can imagine how confusing it was not to do everything you want.

It was also the first time I worked in a specific team. I was “just” responsible for VMware, some XenServer/Marathon stuff and Veeam. Other teams did the hardware or storage or Exchange installation. My learning curve went through the roof during that time because of my co-workers. They were experts in their fields and I learned a lot from them. I also learned more and more about virtualization and got a deeper knowledge how everything was working together.

The first time I heard about the vExpert award was during 2010 and that only a few people earned it. I was very eager to understand what it was and how to earn it. Unfortunately the bar for vExpert at this time was to high for me. I was no blogger, had no idea how to help people or get involved and I had no time for it. In 2010 I also attended my first vSphere ICM (Install, Configure and Manage) course and earned my first VCP.

The next 2 years I was working really hard and got some visibility in the Austrian VMware community. Thanks to Matthias Eisner who always pushed me to do a VCAP and believed in me, I earned my first two VCAPs in 2012. At the beginning of 2012 I decided to go for the vExpert award. So I created a Twitter account and started my own blog. In retrospect it is really funny that I started my blog just to become vExpert. 🙂  I tried to create some interesting blog post during the year but unfortunately it was harder than I expected. Nevertheless I applied for vExpert 2013 but was immediate rejected.

The expert years

In 2013 I moved to another big VMware Partner as a System Consultant for VMware here in Austria. This was the first time where I saw that my hard work and drive during the last couple of years paid off. I became an expert in virtualization, had some cool certification which showed my knowledge and was running my own blog. All of this made this position possible. I also had again the vExpert award on my bucket list and during 2013 I came across a lot of cool things and problems which made great posts. I also got more and more engaged in Twitter conversations with other virtualization experts and made new friends virtually.

One of my eye-opener was during VMworld in 2013 where Mikko Nykyri came to me (I didn’t know him at that time) and ask “You’re Fred vBrain right”. Now that was one of the coolest things in my life, to know that someone is really reading my blog and know who I am. At the end of 2013 I applied again for vExpert and I was more comfortable this time. And on April 10th, 2014 I received the long-awaited e-mail from Corey Romero with the subject “Welcome to the 2014 vExpert Program!“. You can’t imagine how happy I was when I read this lines. That meant that all the work I’ve done so far, all the late night blog posts I wrote, finally paid off.

Getting the vExpert award wasn’t an easy task but keeping it is much more difficult as you might think because you need to keep up your hard work. I not only received my first vExpert award in 2014 but I also joined VMware as a Technical Account manager. You can read the story behind it here

Conclusion

After coming so far reading my story some of you might think “And what does this have to do with the vExpert award and how helped this award my career?” Confucius once said “The journey is its own reward” and he was right. My desire and my drive to become vExpert made me work harder, gain knowledge, interact and connect with other people. Here is a quick example how my connection helped me.

During my interview with 2 VMware managers they ask me “So how would you start your day as a TAM?”. I thought ok weird but maybe this is some sort of role-play to test my abilities. I replied with “I would start with some coffee and checking mails if anything important was coming in”. One of the managers went on, “Ok a customer is calling you that their production is down and they need immediate help”. I took a quick break and answered “Ok I will call Frank Büchsel he will fix this”. Both managers looked at each other and start laughing and answering “Ok and what will you do now with all your spare time?”. The funny thing was that one of the managers was in GSS before and knew Frank. This conversation broke the ice and we had a really good interview afterwards.

I hope this story of mine was interesting and some people who read this will also get their drive and their strive to achieve their goals.

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Chrome and the VMware Authentication Plug-In http://www.vbrain.info/2020/03/03/chrome-and-the-vmware-authentication-plug-in/ http://www.vbrain.info/2020/03/03/chrome-and-the-vmware-authentication-plug-in/#comments Tue, 03 Mar 2020 07:25:02 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4865 One of my customer mentioned recently that there is a problem with Chrome and the VMware Authentication Plug-In which keeps asking him if he wants to open the “vmware-cip-launcher.exe” or not. Reason In the...

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VMware Authenciation Plug-inOne of my customer mentioned recently that there is a problem with Chrome and the VMware Authentication Plug-In which keeps asking him if he wants to open the “vmware-cip-launcher.exe” or not.

Reason

In the past there was a way to remember the settings of such plug-in but it looks like it’s not there any more. After same Google research I found the following information. A “recent” update to Chrome 77 intentionally removed the “remember this action” checkbox when launching applications through the browser. The corresponding Chromium Git commit can be found here.

We realized in a conversation around issue 951540 that we don’t have settings UI that allows users to reconsider decisions they’ve made around external protocol support. Until we work that out, and make longer-term decisions about the permission model around the feature generally, we should stop making the problem worse by removing that checkbox from the UI.

I can fully understand the reason behind this change but it also incorporates some challenges. Because it’s not well documented, a user don’t know if this was a Chrome change or a VMware change in the plug-in. In addition to that it’s little bit annoying to always click “Open” when the VMware Authentication Plug-In tries to run.

Workaround

Thanks god I found a VMTN forum posts how to work around this “issue” and I need to thank the Users HWit1 and Lewpy form this post for pointing me into the right direction.

To work around this issue you need to do the following (Windows based):

  1. Locate the Chrome Preference file under %LOCALAPPDATA%\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Preferences
  2. Open it in e.g. Notepad++ with installed JSON Viewer plugin
  3. Add the following lines at the top level of the JSON file. There is already a protocol_handler entry but as sub-key of another top level entry. To make it work it MUST be at the top level!
    “protocol_handler”: {
    “excluded_schemes”: {
    “vmrc”: false,
    “vmware-plugin”: false
    }
    },
  4. This will not only remove the popup for the VMware Authentication plug-in (vmware-plugin) but also for the VMware Remote Console (vmrc).
  5. Check if the entry is there with this Powershell one liner:
    (Get-Content “$env:LOCALAPPDATA\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\preferences” -Raw | ConvertFrom-Json).protocol_handler
    If the output is empty it wasn’t added as a top level item.

To make the previous task more easier I wrote a PowerShell script which will do the job for you. You can find it (FixAuthPlugInForChrome.ps1) in my GitHub repository here.

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Lifecycle Management of Veeam Components http://www.vbrain.info/2019/12/25/lifecycle-management-of-veeam-components/ http://www.vbrain.info/2019/12/25/lifecycle-management-of-veeam-components/#respond Wed, 25 Dec 2019 11:00:51 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4751 During the lifecycle management of a Veeam backup infrastructure you will find yourself in the situation where you need to change some components in your environment. The following situation will lead to it: Change...

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During the lifecycle management of a Veeam backup infrastructure you will find yourself in the situation where you need to change some components in your environment. The following situation will lead to it:

  • Change of the Operating System
  • Change of the server name(s) (management server, proxy server, Enterprise Manager)
  • Change of the SQL server

Lifecycle Management

Change of the Operating System

Veeam Backup and Replication components are supported on a variety of Windows Server Operating Systems which you can find here. All of these OSes have a general End of Support time line where Microsoft won’t support it anymore. Windows 2008 and 2008 R2 are good examples for that at the moment, because their end of support date is January 14, 2020 (official announcement). Not only an end of support topic could lead to an OS change but also a company wide policy could lead to this change, e.g. an enterprise decided to use always the newest Windows OS 2 years after the initial release.

Change of the server name(s) (management server, proxy server, Enterprise Manager)

If you are not an enterprise company with specific naming conventions you probably install the backup infrastructures with server names which doesn’t look good after a year or 2 or you using DNS hostnames (with underscores) that are not RFC conform (RFC952 and the slight relaxation of RFC1123, RFC5890 introduced the term LDH (Letter-Digital-Hyphen) label for labels used in hostnames).

If you have a naming convention in place it can also happen that two companies are merging together and one of them needs to migrate to the naming convention of the other.

Change of the SQL server

Just like Operating Systems, Veeam Backup and Replication is supported on a variety of SQL Server versions. The same End of Support statement which is true for Windows Operating Systems is also true for SQL Server versions. An overview of SQL Server versions and their corresponding Service Packs can be found here and here. When using the Microsoft Product Lifecycle Search for SQL Server 2008 or 2008 R2 you will see that they are already end of support ( July 9th, 2019).

In the following posts I will walk you through the really simple process of accomplishing the mentioned situations.

Environment Overview

In my current Veeam backup environment I’m running the following components:

  • 1x Veeam Management Server incl. Enterprise Manager
    • Servername: VBR-Server
    • OS: Windows Server 2012 R2
    • Database: SQL 2012 SP3 Express
  • 2x Veeam Proxy Servers
    • Servername: VBR-Proxy01 and VBR-Proxy02
    • OS: Windows Server 2012 R2

My target architecture should look like the following:

  • 1x Veeam Management Server incl. Enterprise Manager
    • Servername: VBRMGMT
    • OS: Windows Server 2019 1809
    • Database: SQL Server Express 2017 CU17
  • 2x Veeam Proxy Servers
    • Servername: VBRPRX01 and VBRPRX02
    • OS: Windows Server 2019 1809

As you can see my Veeam environment is not that big because it only backups my homelab.

For all the new Veeam Windows Servers I’m using a Windows Server 2019 1809 template which is updated to the last available patch release.

Veeam Backup Server

The first component you want to move to a new server is the Veeam Backup Server. The Veeam Backup Server is the core component of the Veeam infrastructure and acts as the configuration and control center. More detailed information about the Veeam Backup Server can be found in the official documentation.

Moving the Veeam Backup Server to a new server is really simple. Just perform a configuration backup, install Backup and Replication on the new server and restore the configuration backup.

SQL Server Express 2017 Installation

I want to be in control of everything. That’s the reason why I’m installing the SQL Server Express manually instead of letting it installed by the Veeam Backup and Replication installer. You can find the whole How to install SQL Server 2017 Express for Veeam Backup and Replication here. It’s a complete walkthrough through the initial installation and some explanations why I changed some default settings.

ATTENTION: I’m using in my homelab environment a SQL Server 2017 Express instance because I don’t have so many VMs and/or workstations to backup. In an enterprise environment it is highly recommended to use a full blown SQL Server. Either Standard or Enterprise and clustered or non-clustered which depends on your availability requirement of the backup infrastructure.

Veeam Backup and Replication Installation

After the successful installation of the SQL Server 2017 Express, it’s now time to install a blank Veeam Backup and Replication Backup Server. I’m not showing the walkthrough here because that would make the post much longer and the installation of a Veeam Backup Server is pretty straightforward. If you are interested you can checkout my walkhrough here. 

Restore the Configuration Backup

When taking the final configuration backup of the old Veeam Backup Server make sure that every backup job was disabled. After the backup was made stop all Veeam Backup and Replications services on the old server to make sure that it will not interfere with the new Veeam Backup Server. The configuration backup includes the following information:

  • Backup infrastructure components and objects: hosts, servers, backup proxies, repositories, WAN accelerators and jobs, global settings configured on the backup server and so on.
  • Backups: backups, replicas and backup copies created on the backup server.
  • Sessions: job sessions performed on the backup server.
  • Tapes: tape libraries connected to the backup server.

1. In the Configuration Backup Settings, click Restore…

2. There are now 2 options. Restore and Migrate. Depending on the situation you’re facing select one of them. In my case we use Migrate

3. We are using the configuration backup file which was copied previously to the new server.

4. After analyzing the selected configuration backup file you will see a summary of the included information.

5. Select the newly created Veeam Backup and Replication database where all the information from the configuration backup file will be restored to.

6. There will be also a warning that all information of the selected database will be lost.

7. Select the appropriate options you want to perform.

8. After clicking on Restore the restore process should start. Depending on the configuration backup size it should only take a minute to restore all the information.

9. Because no passwords are stored in the configuration backup file, make sure that you know all passwords of all accounts used in Veeam Backup and Replication.

10. Now the restore is finished and we can check if all backup jobs and history data was restored correctly.

As you can see moving the Veeam Backup Server to a new Server OS and also change the name of the server is as expected not a big deal with Veeam.

Veeam Enterprise Manager

Moving Veeam Enterprise Manager to a new server OS and server name is a little bit trickier. Unfortunately there is nothing like the configuration backup so you need to do some tasks manually. 

Veeam Enterprise Manager Installation

Because I’m running a small homelab environment I have installed the Enterprise Manager alongside with the Backup Server. Depending on your environment it is maybe recommended to run Enterprise Manager on a different VM.

1. As always accept the license agreement and terms of 3rd party components.

2. To install Veeam Enterprise Manager it is mandatory to upload a valid license file.

3. If you are a Service Provider you can also install the Cloud Connect Portal otherwise stay with the default selection.

4. The installer checks your configuration of the used server OS and automatically installs all required missing packages.

5. If you are doing Test environment or PoC enviroments you can use the default configuration. In my case I checked “Let me specify different settings” because I’m using e.g. a custom installed SQL Server.

6. I would leave the Service Account as it is.

7. Because I’m using a preinstalled SQL instance, I browsed here my local instance and named the suggested database name “VeeamBackupReporting1“. The reason for this is that I would need to restore the database used on the old server in the new SQL server instance. I also use SQL server authentication to be independent if something happens with the Active Directory or local Windows account.

8. I could change the ports and the certificate used by Enterprise Manager but because it’s a homelab I will stay with the default.

9. A quick overview will show which changes were made and you can start the installation of the Enterprise Manager 

 

After the Installation was successful you start with an empty Enterprise Manager database. Now you have 2 options how to proceed further:

  1. Add all Veeam Backup Servers back to the Enterprise Manager which where present before
  2. Restore the original database from the old Enterprise Manager server

Now it depends on some factors which method is usable and practical to everyone. If you have only a few Veeam Backup Servers it might be better to add all of them manually back instead of trying backup and restore the old EM database. I also depends if you have moved previous used Backup Server, did a restore with the configuration backup and deselected session history.

In that case all information about previous sessions is lost and you would need to restore the EM database.

Restore Enterprise Manager Database

In this section I will explain how to move the Enterprise Manager database to a new database server as well as move the whole Enterprise Manager to a new server including a local SQL Server Express instance. 

Moving just the Enterprise Manager database to a new database server is an easy task. Follow these steps to achieve this goal:

  1. Backup the Enterprise Manager database on the old SQL Server.
  2. Restore the Enterprise Manager database on the new SQL Server.
  3. Set the correct permissions on the restored database.
  4. Use the Veeam.Backup.DBConfig tool under C:\Program Files\Veeam\Backup and Replication\Enterprise Manager to select the new destination of the Enterprise Manager database.
    Select the application for which you want to change the database connection.

    Enter the new database name as well as enter the new SQL Server instance.

    After a short successful pre-check the tool needs to stop these services in order to change to the new database.
  5. When everything completes successfully you should be able to see your old data in the Enterprise Manager.
  6. When other components, like the Veeam Backup Server has also been change during all these previous steps and section make sure you change the FQDN of these servers also in the Enterprise Manager configuration.

Moving the whole Enterprise Manager to a new server including a SQL Server database the procedure could be little bit more trickier. All steps above remain the same except that it can happen that during steps 4 the following error message could occur:

First I tried to figure out why this happen and my assumption was that there is something in the database with the old Enterprise Manager server name. Unfortunately I didn’t find it on my own so I opened a support case. The support engineer was really great and found the problem really quick.

In the VeeamBackupReporting database there is a table called dbo.Options. There are multiple IDs listed. One of the IDs had a value started with “<CLockInfo”. This value is an XML file where you can find the old server name as well as the username for this server. After removing this ID the whole process completed successfully.

If you are running into a similar situation I would also recommend to open a support case first because you don’t know if you’re facing the same issue. 

Veeam Proxy Server

In this section I will explain how to replace the Operating System of a Veeam Proxy Server. This procedure is really simple. It’s just installing a new Windows Server with the desired Windows version and integrate it into the Veeam Backup Infrastructure.

In the Veeam Backup and Replication Console go under Backup Infrastructure – Managed Servers – Microsoft Windows and add there the newly installed Veeam Proxy Servers. In my case this is VBRPRX01 and VBRPRX02. During this process all required Veeam components will be installed on this Windows VMs.

When adding Windows hosts doesn’t mean that they are automatically Veeam Proxy Servers. For that go to Backup Infrastructure – Backup Proxies and add there either a VMware or Hyper-V Proxy. The previous added Windows Servers will now show up in the drop down list. After that the new Proxies are available in the backup infrastructure.

If there are only backup jobs that have automatic Proxy Server selection configured you can remove all of the old Proxy Servers. If there are jobs with specific Proxy Servers you need to change these jobs to the new Proxy Servers. If your not sure which Proxy Server to remove, I would recommend just to disable the old Proxy Servers and wait for the next few backups to happen. If they are all successful then you can remove the disabled Proxy Servers.

Conclusion

As you can see replacing Veeam components is a really simple task and it just works. If you have any feedback on this post let me know in the comments. I hope I could have helped some of you with this post.

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Backup Interoperability Matrix Major Update 2019-12 http://www.vbrain.info/2019/12/22/backup-interoperability-matrix-major-update-2019-12/ http://www.vbrain.info/2019/12/22/backup-interoperability-matrix-major-update-2019-12/#respond Sun, 22 Dec 2019 08:00:07 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4764 It’s been some time that I have updated the Backup Interoperability Matrix because of some personal and work related responsibilities. In the December 2019 update the following backup software was updated: Veritas BackupExec 20.6...

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It’s been some time that I have updated the Backup Interoperability Matrix because of some personal and work related responsibilities. In the December 2019 update the following backup software was updated:

  • Veritas BackupExec 20.6
  • Veritas NetBackup 8.2
  • IBM Spectrum Protect for Virtual Environments 8.1.9
  • Micro Focus Data Protector 2019.12 (10.60)
  • EMC Avamar 19.2
  • EMC Networker 19.2
  • CommVault Simpana 11.0 SP18
  • Hitachi Data Protection Suite 11.0 SP18
  • Veeam Backup and Replication 9.5 Update 4b
  • Quest vRanger 7.8
  • Nakivo Backup and Replication 9.0
  • Unitrends Enterprise Backup 10.4
  • Acronis Backup Advanced for VMware/Hyper-V 12.5 Update 4 Build 14330
  • Arcserve Backup 18.0 (more info to new Patches)
  • Arcserve UDP 7.0 Update 1
  • Altaro VMBackup 8.5.24
  • Vembu VMBackup 4.1.0

You can find the latest backup matrix update for VMware here and for Hyper-V here. In this update I had to remove unfortunately Rubrik and Cohesity. Getting detailed release note information from them is really hard because it’s not public available. For future releases of my matrix I try to release every quarter new updates so that the matrix is more up2date.

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VMworld 2019 Europe – Parties, Gatherings, Events and more http://www.vbrain.info/2019/09/17/vmworld-emea-2019-parties-gatherings-events-and-more/ http://www.vbrain.info/2019/09/17/vmworld-emea-2019-parties-gatherings-events-and-more/#respond Tue, 17 Sep 2019 07:00:51 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4723 As you all know after VMworld is before VMworld. So it’s time to plan your parties or gatherings for VMworld 2019 Barcelona properly. Attending VMworld is not only attending an IT conference. It is...

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As you all know after VMworld is before VMworld. So it’s time to plan your parties or gatherings for VMworld 2019 Barcelona properly. Attending VMworld is not only attending an IT conference. It is also a big networking event where you can talk to vendors, tweeps or bloggers. What will be better for socialising than parties and gatherings at VMworld. Just like for the US I will maintain a list of parties, gathering and events going on at VMworld 2019 Europe in Barcelona. This year I will be able to attend VMworld 2019 Barcelona, so if you want to meet you will find me most of the time in the blogger area or in the Solution Exchange. VMworld full conference or guest pass is required for some parties and for others you need to register because space is limited.

If you are a vendor or somebody arranging a party or gathering at VMworld US please contact me on Twitter (@Fred_vBrain) or by e-mail (fred (at) vbrain (dot) info) so I can add your party/gathering/event to the list.

EventWhenTimeWhereRegistration
Welcome ReceptionNovember 5th, Tuesday17:30-19:00Solutions ExchangeFull Conference Pass
or Guest Pass
VMworld FestNovember 6th, Wednesday19:00-22:00General Session roomFull Conference Pass
or Guest Pass
Hall CrawlNovember 6th, Wednesday17:00-19:00Solutions ExchangeFull Conference Pass
or Guest Pass
#vBreakfastNovember 5th, Tuesday07:00 - 08:30Restaurant La Vid
Carrer del Foc 44-54
08038 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
#VCDX WorkshopNovember 4th, Monday07:30 - 13:00Hotel Porta Fira
Plaça d'Europa, 45
08908 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
Legendary Veeam PartyNovember 5th, Tuesday20:00 - 01:00Italian Pavillion
Plaça de Carles Buïgas 8
08038 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
Full Conference Pass is required
vExpert PartyNovember 5th, Tuesday19:00 - 21:00Pez Vela s.l.u. El Chiringuito del vela
Passeig Mare Nostrum, 19-21
08039 Barcelona
(Maps)
INVITE ONLY
vSoccerNovember 4th, Monday19:00 - 22:00Promosportive Futbol Sala
Ctra. Antiga del Prat, 120
08908 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
#vRockstar PartyNovember 3rd, Sunday20:30 - 23:30Cabaret - The Barcelona EDITION
Av. de Francesc Cambó, 14
08003 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
2nd Sales starts on
Tue. Oct. 21th
17:00
Pre-VMworld VMUG - Kubernetes in the SpotlightNovember 4th, Monday09:15 - 12:45Hotel Porta Fira
Plaça d'Europa, 45
08908 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
Rubrik PartyNovember 4th, Monday21:00 - ??Pacha Club Barcelona
Ramón Trias Fargas, 2
08005 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
Full Conference Pass is required
#vFit at VMworld 2019November 4th, Monday06:45 - 7:45Exit of Europa-Fira station
Plaça d'Europa, 25
08908 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
#vFit at VMworld 2019November 6th, Wednesday06:45 - 7:45Exit of Europa-Fira station
Plaça d'Europa, 25
08908 Barcelona
(Maps)
Link
EUC Community Tech Talks & BeeNovember 5th, Tuesday17:30 - 19:30Upper Level, Area CC4
Room 4.1 (402)
Fira Gran Via, Barcelona
Link
Cohesity Become an I.T. RockstarNovember 5th, Tuesday19:30 - ??:??Sala Barts
Avinguda del Paral·lel, 62
08001 Barcelona
(Maps)
Pick up your personal invite on Tuesday before 4pm at Booth #407.
VMUG Leader GatheringNovember 3rd, Sunday17:30 - 21:00Bobby's Free Cocteleria
Carrer de Pau Claris 85
08010 Barcelona
(Maps)
Invitation by mail

Andreas Lesslhumer over www.running-system.com will maintain a similar list of parties and events for VMworld 2019 in Barcelona too. So check it out! Maybe he knows from a party that is missing here.

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VMworld 2019 Europe – #vBreakfast 2019 edition http://www.vbrain.info/2019/09/16/vmworld-emea-2019-vbreakfast-2019-edition/ http://www.vbrain.info/2019/09/16/vmworld-emea-2019-vbreakfast-2019-edition/#respond Mon, 16 Sep 2019 07:43:21 +0000 http://www.vbrain.info/?p=4718 Please join Andreas Lesslhumer, myself and many more vNerds and vGeeks for the #vBreakfast 2019 edition. After missing the last two VMworlds Barcelona it was time to attend again this year and be your host...

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Please join Andreas Lesslhumer, myself and many more vNerds and vGeeks for the #vBreakfast 2019 edition. After missing the last two VMworlds Barcelona it was time to attend again this year and be your host for #vBreakfast. As always we will start on an unholy time, 7am in the morning. As every year we have also our special waiter, the #GrumpyWaiter, serving us coffee and little snacks. As I heard last years #vBreakfast was really awesome with more attendees than the year before. We had more than 25 people who joined us very early in the morning to get some coffee, snacks and great talks. Unfortunately I don’t have pictures from last year but I hope you guys make a ton of picture this year so I can share it for my next year blog post! 🙂

For this year’s #vBreakfast I hope the attendance is similar or even bigger than the year before. Would be really great to start the day with a massive virtualization overpower before the VMworld General Session. #vBreakfast 2018 edition will be held at the same location as last year which is really close to the Fira:

Restaurant La Vid
Carrer del Foc 44-54

Maps

I have also created an Eventbrite event to have an overview how many people will attend #vBreakfast 2018 edition. Registration for the event will be open from Sept. 16th 10am until Nov. 4th.

There is no better way to get to know the community than with breakfast. Join me and many others in this growing yearly tradition of carbo-loading for an action-packed day on Tuesday from 7:00 to 8:30. After that we have plenty of time getting to the General Session. So follow #vBreakfast on Twitter to get the latest information about the event.

As every year I hope to get a sponsor for this awesome event. Last year we were very fortunate to have RuneCast as our sponsor.

Update 31.10.2019

I’m really happy and thrilled to announced that Runecast will sponsor #vBreakfast for the third time in a row. Here is also my personal “THANK YOU” to the whole Runecast team for their ungoing support on such vCommunity events. You guys are AWESOME.

 

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