Cool Tool : Virtual Router Plus – Turn your Windows Laptop into a Wifi Hot Spot

Came across a very handy, useful tool which works like a charm :  Virtual Router Plus

Virtual Router Plus turns any Windows 7 and Windows 8 computer into a Wifi Hot Spot using Wireless Hosted Network technology.

Virtual Router Plus is a free, open source software based router for PCs running Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows Server 2012. Using Virtual Router Plus, users can wirelessly share any internet connection (Wifi, LAN, Cable Modem, Dial-up, Cellular, etc.) with any Wifi device (Laptop, Smart Phone, iPod Touch, iPhone, Android Phone, Zune, Netbook, wireless printer, etc.) These devices connect to Virtual Router just like any other access point, and the connection is completely secured using WPA2 (the most secure wireless encryption.)

vrouter

Virtual Router Plus Official Project Site

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Posted in Cool Tool

Grant console only access of a Windows virtual machine hosted on a vSphere server to users

I had a particular requirement wherein I had to grant few users console only access of a Windows virtual machine hosted on a vSphere server.

Well, VMware vCenter has predefined roles with which I could have assigned users limited access however, my requirement was to strictly restrict users to console only !

With little digging around the roles, I could create a role which would suffice my requirement.

Here are the details…

Open up vCenter and go to Roles

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In the left pane, Right click and click on Add, specify any name you wish ( say Console User).

In the Privileges section, Navigate and select Virtual machine \ Interaction \ Console interaction and click on OK.

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Now, grant desired users Console User permission on the particular Virtual Machine.

Right click on VM, click on Add Permission

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In the Assign Permissions,  select the Role which you have created, Add desired Users and click OK.

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Post doing the changes, users can connect to vCenter server and they would see only the VM on which they have permissions and they can access Console with all the VM options greyed out to them.

Users need to connect vCenter using vSphere client or vSphere Web Client.

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Posted in ESXi, How to, vCenter, VMware

VM Migration fails with error : Currently connected network interface ‘Network adapter 1′ uses network ‘VM Network’, which is configured for different offload or security policies on the destination host other than on the source host.

A little background of my private ‘cloud’ ;-) setup :

vCenter 5.1, ESXi 5.1 Update 1 hosts in a cluster setup, HA, DRS and vMotion are all enabled.

For some host maintenance activity,  I was trying to migrate live VMs from ESXi host A to ESXi host B. When I initiated the migration process from the wizard, I did see an error message and I couldn’t continue…

Here’s the error message:

Currently connected network interface ‘Network adapter 1′ uses network ‘VM Network’, which is configured for different offload or security policies  on the destination host other than on the source host.

err1

A quick search on google resulted in following KB article from VMware

Troubleshooting Migration compatibility error: Currently connected network interface uses network, which is configured for different offload or security policies (1003834)

In the aforementioned article, it was suggested to  review the settings in the Security tab and the Traffic Shaping tab between the hosts.

I did compare Traffic Shaping configurations between the hosts in question however, all the settings were identical.

Since, I couldn’t find anything handy to fix this issue, I started looking into the other network settings.

After scratching my head for few minutes, I remembered that (Eureka smiley_idea-1!!!) , on the destination host, I had enabled Promiscuous Mode on VM Network Properties.

err2

I disabled Promiscuous Mode on the destination host and I could migrate the VMs without issues !

Inference : If you come across such an error detailed in this article, make sure to look into all network configurations on source and destination ESXi hosts and their configurations are identical to each other.

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Posted in Break-Fix, Error, ESXi, vCenter, VMware

Unable to access ESXi shell from DELL iDRAC console

To access ESXi shell, first you need to enable that on ESXi host.

Following VMware KB articles provide details on enabling ESXi Shell

Using ESXi Shell in ESXi 5.x (2004746)

Using Tech Support Mode in ESXi 4.1 and ESXi 5.x (1017910)

If shell is enabled and if you have direct access to the host, pressing keys Alt+F1 opens up ESXi shell.

I was trying to access to ESXi (ESXi 5.1) shell from DELL iDRAC remote console howerver, pressing keys Alt+F1 didn’t work.

It was like command didn’t reach the console, there was no activity or error message !

After scratching a head for a while, I started looking at “Keyboard” options on iDRAC console.

When ticked option Keyboard pass-through and pressed keys Alt+F1, Bingo !!! I could see ESXi Shell :-)

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HTH

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Posted in ESXi, How to, iDRAC, VMware

How to set Message Of The Day (MOTD) in vCenter ?

VMware vCenter has a cool (?) feature which lets you setting up a Message Of The Day (MOTD).

Why would you like to set up MOTD ?

  • For Fun (exploring the vCenter features)
  • For identification of vCenters in case you deal with multiple vCenters
  • You would like to display a legal warning message
  • Your IT organisation policy demands for MOTD
  • blah blah blah…

In fact, it’s very easy to set up a MOTD in vCenter. Only prerequisite is, you need to have vCenter Administrator privileges.

Alright, here’s how you can set MOTD.

Log on to the vCenter using vSphere client, Click on Administration, select Edit Message of the day…

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Now, type in the desired message and click OK.

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Now onwards, anyone who logs on to the vCenter, will see the MOTD for every new session.

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HTH

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Posted in ESXi, How to, vCenter

Failed to schedule Software Protection service on Windows Server 2008 R2 with Event ID: 16385

If you see an error “Failed to schedule Software Protection service” in event log with Event ID:  16385 on Windows Server 2008 R2, you can try below steps to fix the problem.

Run the below mentioned commands sequentially one by one from elevated cmd (Run as admin).

icacls %windir%\ServiceProfiles\NetworkService\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\SoftwareProtectionPlatform /grant “BUILTIN\Administrators:(OI)(CI)(F)” “NT AUTHORITY\SYSTEM:(OI)(CI)(F)” “NT Service\sppsvc:(OI)(CI)(R,W,D)” “NETWORK SERVICE:(OI)(CI)(F)”

net stop sppsvc && net start sppsvc

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Posted in Break-Fix, Event ID

Java error : Unable to launch the application when trying to open up DELL iDRAC console !

I updated java on my machine today since one of the web application demanded the update. Post java update, the web application started working (sigh). I was happy that, I don’t have to deal with java again.

After a while, for some maintenance activity, I connected DELL iDRAC ( Integrated Dell Remote Access Controller ) through web browser and wanted to access remote console.

Viola ! an error popped up saying ” Unable to launch the application.” Wow, Another java problem ! Java at its best ! ;-)

java error

java-error-2

I tried to delete java ‘trace and log files’ and ‘Cached Applications and Applets’ from java control panel but in vain.

I even removed and re-installed java but in vain.

What finally saved my day was, changing ‘Network Settings’ in java control panel.

Instead of ‘Use browser settings’, I selected ‘Direct Connection’. Bingo ! when I reinitiated remote console access, it worked like a charm :-)

java error 3  java error 4

By the way, Java Control Panel can be accessed through

Start / Control Panel / Java

java error 5

Hope this info will help someone.

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Posted in Break-Fix, How to, iDRAC
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