Friday, March 25, 2011

Upgrading vMA from 4.0 to 4.1

I upgraded my vSphere Management Assistant appliance this week from 4.0 to 4.1 and thought I would share the process and results.  While it's not required, I did this as a house-keeping item that's on my list before upgrading vSphere 4.0 to 4.1 - actually, it started by needing to update VMware Tools.

The tools pre-installed with the original appliance were out of date.  After some investigation, I found that the appliance upgrade does not update VMware Tools, this has to be done manually.  So first I upgraded the appliance.

The release notes for 4.1 are wrong(!).  The "vma-update" command doesn't exist until after the upgrade.  You must use "vima-update" so the command will look like this: "sudo vima-update update".  I also found that after the upgrade, both commands worked!  VMware should really make this distinction in their documentation.

This will update everything, and by everything I mean even the OS which changes from Redhat to CentOS.  If you have a lot a scripts make sure you snapshot the VM before upgrading.  If you're using the appliance as your syslog server, also check to make sure logging is still running:  /var/log/syslog/[FQDN of host].

If you'd like to setup syslogging, see Using vMA as Your ESXi Syslog Server.

Finally you'll want to update VMware Tools using the standard installation and upgrade procedure for the Linux OS.

Other relevant links:
vSphere Management Assistant Documentation
vSphere Management Assistant 4.1 Release Notes
vSphere Management Assistant 4.1 Guide

Friday, March 11, 2011

VMware Releases View Client for Apple iPad

Big deal!  VMware has come out with a client for a device that's been selling for a year?  Whoa slow the development pace down there guys you're blowing me away!

Okay, sarcasm aside, VMware doesn't seem to be overly committed to conquering the virtual desktop market.  Citrix has been the leader in this space for some time.  I have been using XenDesktop/XenServer accessed  via Wyse HDX thin client and Droid X Citrix Labs Receiver for six months now and can say it works great (even on a three inch screen).

Don't get me wrong, I'm a big VMware fan (I've been implementing/administering VMware products like ESX since 2002, I've been to every VMworld, etc, etc).  But I'm primarily a "right tool for the job" kind of guy.  XenDesktop/HDX is technically superior to View/PCoIP (at least as of this writing) and it mostly a no-brainer for existing Citrix XenApp shops.

So where's the Android version?  As of this week, Android phones are out-selling RIM and Apple/iOS. I wouldn't hold your breath.  My perception is that VMware is focusing on back-end cloud infrastructure and development products.  And their growth/size has slowed them down tremendously since 2002, but more on that in a future post.

For more information on Citrix's mobile client story, see:

Sunday, March 6, 2011

A Tab for a Song

One of the most popular way guitarists learn how to play songs is through the use of tablature. This is an easy to understand form of music notation that shows exactly when and where each finger should go on the fretboard.  Many guitar magazines include several songs tabbed-out which used to be a great way to build a library of song tabs to keep on hand for reference.

Until now...

I stumbled upon a web site named Songsterr:

This service like an on-line version of Guitar Pro.  While not quite as robust, the basic version is free!  We're talking over 60,000 tabs from over 1500 artist.  That should be enough to keep me busy for awhile!  Don't get me wrong, I'm not dropping any magazine subscriptions - printed tab still has a place in the guitarist's learning arsenal, but this service is awesome.

Check 'em out!

(Not so) Random Thought of The Day #2

Maybe if the government had no favors to give, there would be no lobbyist or other pressure groups clamoring to recieve them.