A Server error occurred. [500] SSO error:null


Previously, I wrote a post about re-pointing the PSC and after a while I logged in to the same environment and I ended up with this error message on my screen. I was so frustrated as I have done few changes to this environment and thought something went wrong while I was doing these changes. See below error message that I received from my vCenter Server appliance.

So , I started to troubleshoot this issue. Simply it says check the vSphere Web Client logs for more details, that is the simplest way which we can start this. so I opened a ssh session to my vCenter server appliance and enabled the shell. I used below command to check the vSphere client log

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Nested Virtualization: VCSA 6.5 deployment on Oracle Ravello Cloud


I was building a lab on Oracle Ravello Cloud and I wanted to install VMware vCenter Virtual Appliance 6.5 on a deployed ESXi host. I started the deployment as usual and the deployment failed in the middle of the VCSA configuration. It was not able to power on and below error message deployed in the ESXi host client. “Failed to power on virtual machine <VM_NAME>. You are running VMware ESXi through an incompatible hypervisor. You cannot power on virtual machine until this hypervisor disabled“. See below error message.

So I tried to manually Power on the Virtual Machine and was not able to do that and ended up with the same error message again and again. Read More

An internal error has occurred – Error #1009 – VIO Deployment Error

This is not a quiet a post! but I thought to write this post to show that the importance of the VMware Product Interoperability Matrices before you start any deployment. One of my friend was deploying the VMware Intergrated OpenStack in his environment and selected to use the vSphere 6.5 as the vCenter server which is the latest version of the vCenter Server. There was no issues with the vCenter server deployment and successfully deployed the vCenter server and started the VIO 3.x deployment.

He was facing this issue at the step of selecting the management cluster in the deployment and was trying to find s solution.
He asked the possibility of getting this type of error and I checked the VMware Product Interoperability Matrices against the vCenter server 6.5 and the VMware Integrated OpenStack and found this
Also, I searched whether there is any KB article from VMware related to this error. I found this article and shared the details. This article says “At this time the VMware  vCenter Server 6.5 for use with a VIO 3.x Deployments is not Supported. Please also note that VMware vSphere Server 6.5 is not supported for use with any of the VMware Openstack Versions.” At the time of writing this article VMware Integrated OpenStack 3.1.0 was not released and it is supporting to the vCenter server 6.5.
Article Updated on:
KB: 2148068
Updated: Dec 14, 2016
VIO 3.1.0 released on :
So, this is a good example of the impact of proceeding without checking all your dependencies such as VMware other solutions, Databases and upgrade paths before we proceed with the deployment.
This is a really cool and easy tool to use, Always use this before you proceed.

VMware 6.5 Update 1 Released with New Features

VMware released 6.5 update 1 last 27th and it comes with lots of improvements. There are improvements to the vCenter OS platform supports, vCenter Configuration maximums, vSphere H5 web client, vSphere Update Manager, enhanced database support etc.

I was reading the VMware 6.5 update 1 release notes and these new features can be found in the documentation.

  • You can run the vCenter Server Appliance GUI and CLI installers on Microsoft Windows 2012 x64 bit, Microsoft Windows 2012 R2 x64 bit, Microsoft Windows 2016 x64 bit, and macOS Sierra.
  • TcServer is now replaced with Tomcat 8.5.8.
  • vCenter Server 6.5 Update 1 supports Guest OS customization for Ubuntu 17.04 OS.
  • VMware vSphere Storage APIs – Data Protection (VADP) now also support Windows Server 2016 and Red Hat Enterprise Linux RHEL 7.3 as operating systems to perform proxy backup. This is in addition to the backup proxy operating systems already supported with VADP and VDDK 6.5.
  • If you prefer to use Update Manager for the upgrade of ESXi and vSAN stack, you can now enable vSAN software upgrades through integration with vSphere Update Manager. This provides a unified and common workflow.
  • External database support: vCenter Server now supports Microsoft SQL Server 2016, Microsoft SQL Server 2016 SP1, and Microsoft SQL Server 2014 SP2.
  • The HTML5-based vSphere Client now supports most content library and OVF deployment operations, as well as operations on roles and permissions, basic customization of the Guest OS, and additions to virtual machine, host, datastore, and network management.
  • The HTML5-based vSphere Client now supports French, Swiss-French, and Swiss-German keyboards. For known issues related to the keyboard mapping
  • Linked vCenter Server instances now support up to 15 vCenter Server instances, 5,000 ESXi hosts, 50,000 powered on virtual machines, and 70,000 registered virtual machines. For more information, see the vSphere Configuration Maximums.
  • During the command-line installation, upgrade and migration processes of vCenter Server Appliance, a structured status file is provided along with installer logs.
  • Updates to JRE package. The Oracle (Sun) JRE package is updated to version 1.8.0_131.

Read VMware vCenter Server 6.5 Update 1 Release Notes

VMware H5 Web client now supports to configure the advanced networking options for the vSphere distributed switches. vSphere Web Client Change log can be found here

Also, It supports to the VSAN 6.6.1

Improved vCenter Configuration maximums for a single vSphere domain:

  • Maximum linked vCenters support for a single vSphere domain increased to 15 from 10
  • Maximum ESXi hosts support for a single vSphere domain increased to 5000 from 4000
  • Powered on Virtual Machines for a single vSphere domain increased to 50 000 from 30 000
  • Registered Maximum Virtual Machines for a single vSphere domain increased to 70 000 from 50 000

Also, a patch was released to update the JRE version to  1.8.0_131. See the KB article for more information.

Related links:

Upgrade vCenter Server 5.5 to vCenter 6.5 – vCenter for Windows

After releasing the vSphere 6.5 I was planning to migrate the old VMware vSphere 5.5 environment to vSphere 6.5 environment. There are lots of reading and searching involved and you can find all the information form VMware Documentation site. There are few things to check before the upgrade existing environment and recommend to read the Moving from a Deprecated to a Supported vCenter Server Deployment Topology Before Upgrade or Migration. Also verify your existing hardware support to the upgrade in the VMware Compatibility Guide.

Verify the Hardware requirements according the environment that you are going to manage. Refer the VMware Documentation

I can show you my current setup and the new setup in the below diagram

Upgrading the Single Sign-on server

First, I’m going to migrate my external Single Sign on server to a external Platform Service controller.
As the best practice take a backup of your Single Sign On server before we start the upgrade process, you have to accept this as an option during the upgrade.

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How to Patch vCenter 6.5 Appliance – From CD-ROM

In this post, I’m going to show you how we can patch the VMware vCenter 6.5 Appliance. If you are concerning about the bug fixes improvements of your vCenter, Appliance patching is playing a great role.

I believe you are now familiar with the vCenter 6.5 which came with lots of new features and improvements. So, less talk and let’s get started..
First of all make sure to take the relevant backups and a snapshot of the vCenter before the Patch Update to avoid any unexpected situations after the upgrade, that’s the best practice before any sort of patch or version upgrade.
Mainly there are three ways that you can patch your vCenter Appliance. You can check for the updates and patches from the online repository or you can place your own Web Server in your environment and create your own repository to patch the vCenter Server. If you are going to use your own web server to present the patch content you can download the Patch and update bundles in the
VMware Download Center. You need to use your VMware login credentials to download the zip files.
In this article, I’m going to show you the steps to perform the full patch using your CD-ROM. Download the relevant Patches from the VMware Patch Download Center and mount it to your vCenter Appliance.

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VMware VCSA 6.5 vCenter Backup and Restore process

New VMware vCenter 6.5 Appliance has a backup feature and you can backup your vCenter and restore whenever you required. First of all, I would like to remind you that I haven’t done this in a Production environment yet and I only tested this in my test environment. As I mentioned in my earlier posts there are lots of new feature with this 6.5 release and this is one of those.


Taking the Backup

To take the backup of your vCenter login to the Appliance Management interface using “https://<FQDN_OR_IP_ADDRESS_OF_THE_VCENTER>:5480” url
Once you login to the Management interface go to the summary tab which is the default on, select the “Backup” button on the right hand upper corner
You will be getting a “Backup Appliance” window and enter your remote server which is keeping these backup files. 
Note: You can use below protocols to take the backup of the vCenter 
  • FTP 
  • FTPS
  • HTTP
  • SCP
Here, I’m using my remote FTP server to take the backup of my vCenter server, you need to provide the protocol, remote server folder, username and password of the remote server. If you need to encrypt your backup files there is an option to encrypt the data. 
Server will validate the remote location details and will go to the next step of the backup process
At the next step it will provide you the backup file sizes after retrieving the data, You have the option to select the “common” files or the historical date and the statics of the vCenter separately. You can select one of these or the both to be backed up in the remote location.
Once you click the “Next” button there is a validation process again and will give you the summary of the backup, click “Finish” to complete the backup process
It will start the backup process and will complete in few minutes 

If you check the remote FTP location you can see the files as below 

Restore the vCenter server from a previous backup

This approach is much similar to the Appliance deployment process and there are few differences in the steps. Let’s see how it goes. 
First of all mount your VCSA 6.5 ISO to your management PC and run the installer which is in the /vcsa-ui-installer/win32″ folder 

Once you get the Installer window select the “Restore” option to start the restoration

 Stage – 1 – Restoration: Deploy Appliance

 Click “Next” in the Introduction window 

Accept the EULA and click “Next” to continue 
Provide the Protocol and the backup file location at the next step and click “Next” to the next step

Review the backup details and click “Next” to continue 
Provide the target to deploy the appliance that can be an ESXi host or a vCenter 
Accept the Certificate of the target host/vCenter, Click “Yes” to accept the Certificate
It will validate the connection 
Provide the appliance name and the root password, confirm the password again. Click “Next” to continue
You can change the target Appliance Deployment size at the next step, here I can’t see the “Tiny” option as my previous appliance was setup as a small deployment size. If you need you can increase the size but not able to decrease it. Fair enough! 
Click “Next” to continue 
Select the Destination Datastore and if you need you can enable the “Thin Disk Mode”, in my case I’m running this VCSA in a test environment so Thin Disk mode is enabled. Click “Next” to continue 
Select the Network Portgroup and the Network details, these details are self explanatory 
Review the details and click “Finish” to start the deployment and the restoration 
It will start the deployment and wait for the completion 

Check the Virtual Machine status in the host Virtual Machine should be there


Stage – 2 Backup Restoration

Click “Next” in the Introduction window

Review the details and the click “Finish” to start the restoration

Warning! Message will be displayed. Click “Ok” to accept it. Once you start the restoration process it is not possible to stop or pause the process

Restoration process will start after that

Process will complete the Restoration and your vCenter will be there with the configuration

What’s New in vSphere 6.5 – Proactive HA

As we all aware there are lot’s of new features in VMware 6.5 release. I’m so impressed with this and always I’m spending my time with my vSphere 6.5 Lab. While I was playing around I thought to introduce these new features as a series of posts from my blog. 
Hope you know about VMware high availability features and VMware added a native vCenter high availability feature with this release, you can read my previous posts about this native high availability from here. In this post I’m going write about Proactive HA feature which is introduced with VMware 6.5 release. First of all I would like to mention that this is actually not a feature of HA and it is the next level of DRS which is proactively using the HA feature. I know you may confused with that but don’t worry. As I mentioned earlier this feature is a next level of DRS which is designed to provide maximum high availability to your Virtual Machines from any unexpected hardware failures. If you are a Virtualization admin you may experienced with certain failures and encountered with these down times. But did you check back when this hardware failure actually occurred or when was the first symptom of this failure notified. Sometimes you may felt that you could have actually avoid this if you take the actions before. Sometimes it may be a human error, you did not noticed the alert you received from your monitoring device. But with this feature vCenter is going to take care of these situations and it will do the necessary precautions before something go in to a worse situation. 
This feature detects the possible hardware failures from the OEM hardware sensors and migrate possible Virtual Machine out of the host to the other hosts just to avoid any unexpected situation. As an example, let’s say there are two power supplies attached to a host and one is getting failing, but host is still able to run the VMs without any issues. But what happens if the other one is getting failed. If you noticed this at the first stage you may take the correct precautions and replace the power supply. I’ve seen in many cases due to a human error such as ignoring the alerts or not taking care of the notification correctly it ended up with big situations. 
Enough talks for now and let’s dig in to the deep and see what is this new feature….

Host “Quarantine” Mode introduced

Quarantine mode evacuates the VMs running in the host if it satisfies the below states in a hardware failure (in a complete hardware failure still we have our HA feature and it will take care of the affected VMs) : 
  • No Impact to the performances of the VMs 
  • No DRS Afinity/anti-Affinity rules are violated 

Then the VMs will evacuate from the host and DRS will not place new VMs in this host until we fix the situation. This host now in the “Quarantine” mode

Ok, You know that if in a situation of failure we can put the host in to the Maintenance mode. So, next question is what is the difference between “Quarantine” mode and the “Maintenance” mode?

In the Quarantine mode host will utilize the resources of the affected host if there are not enough resources in the cluster due to the demand of the the resources. In the Maintenance mode host is completely out from the cluster.

For now Cisco, Dell and HP vendors are supporting to this and all the other vendors will have the plugins in place to work with this as this is a really cool feature.

vCenter 6.5 Proactive HA Cluster Configuration

Login to your vCenter 6.5, select the cluster go to configuration tab, select the “vSphere Availability”, select “Edit” button to turn on the Feature

Note: you need to turn on the DRS feature first before you enable the Proactive HA feature, otherwise it will not allow you to turn on the feature. 
To turn on the DRS select the vSphere DRS and click-on “Edit” 
Once you get the DRS Cluster settings window click the check box to enable the feature, there are new features in DRS as well but it is not the time to discuss them. 
Let’s go back to the Proactive HA window, now I have the option to enable the feature and click on the check box to enable it.
You can view the small summary of the feature by click on the gray exclamation mark
Once you enabled the Proactive HA feature go the “Proactive HA failures and Responses” option in the same window 
You can select the “Automation” Level or the “Remediation” level from the drop down menu or by expanding the table as below

Remediation Options are self explanatory and there are three main remediation modes. 

  • Quarantine mode for all failures – due any kind of failure (severe or degradation) will put host in to the Quarantine mode 
  • Quarantine mode for moderate and Maintenance mode for severe failures – degradation will put host in to the Quarantine mode and Severe failures put in to the Maintenance mode
  • Maintenance mode for all failures –
    due any kind of failure (severe or degradation) will put host in to the Maintenance mode

In the below section you can avoid and block any failures for a cluster or a certain host, these features might be different from the vendors, click on the check box to enable the block conditions and click on “edit” to select the condition 

You can select the failures on your left hand side and the host or the entire cluster on your right hand side

That’s for the Proactive HA and let’s see what are the other features in vSphere 6.5