More HomeLab Pitfalls

This is going to be another one of those blogs of the pitfalls I’ve ran into. I really want to get into how to fix specific errors and troubleshooting. However, since I’m trying my hardest to get this lab setup to dig into the new releases that came out a couple weeks ago,

VUM – Update Manager

So if your like me you know that the first thing you do when deploying anything new is to update it. So why not update your hosts? Well here are some findings that I ran across with my 3 node vSAN cluster. First DNS and I know the statement, “99% of all IT issues are DNS issues.” But thats true! In my case I built a standalone DC with DNS before I deployed my VCenter so that I could use my A records to resolve the traffic. This worked great for the VCenter. It didn’t work great for VUM. Turns out that on your ESXI hosts when you have a single DNS DC it must be running on the first DNS server field. If its running on the second, it will not be able to scan the nodes for compliance or reach them. (If you setup vSAN you would already see the errors showing it cant scan when its doing its vSAN health checks). Second iSCSI controller, if its VMware certified, why are we having to deal with the warning before we can run the updates? Well because their really not… Here is a great Blog on it to look through. Pretty simple fix but something that should just work right?

The whole Network thing.

I was pretty sure that my decision for a 2 subnet with the ability to cross-talk was not a bad idea. One for the home lab, and one for the house would make a stable environment. Nope… For this to those out there about to start, I’d say to do your homework or start your home networking solution first. Ubiquity has a ton of great solutions to look into and a lot of blogs out there to help set you up. There are, of course, a lot of other options that do the functions you may want, but try to be as specific as possible and get things setup before your lab devices come in.

For me, I went from 1 wifi router with 0 ability to create subnets, to a wifi router and ER-x from Ubituity. To the full ubiquity setup.jYjmXdNWTmGEVADkHgbokg

However, I found out the best practice is to setup a gateway -> router -> AP. So because I’m missing that middle piece my AP is running at 1/3 of the speed of my gateway(ie. Hardline in the AP I get 450mb down. Now on my AP…Image 4-27-19 at 7.24 AM       Obviously the speed just isn’t where it should be in this configuration. Once I get my ER-X I’ll update as to what the changes look like. But for now, its actually stable. so I cant complain. But to state again. Plan your goals, pre-define the architecture, research and verify the solutions, then implement it. Its a lot more stressful when its your $$ and you don’t have support available on the phone.

Quick pitfalls

  1. Don’t put your VCenter on your vSAN deployment. It “Should” keep working if the VCenter crashes, but its’ not easy to get back. I found that in my configuration it was actually faster to just rebuild… and thats not too fun.
  2. Remember to get your VCenter off your switch before you disconnect your uplinks… U2 actually made it so that if it fails it falls back. Not that I’ve done it on both updates or anything…
  3. When troubleshooting networking issue, having a centralized location for logging makes your life so much easier. Ubiquity gave me that help.
  4. VROPs deployment thats now built into VCenter will only deploy a thick provisioned VM. This can be annoying when trying to move it off and get it to a thin-Provisioned VM for vSAN.

Its sad that all this stuff came about over months of dragging myself through the mire, but now that I’m stable, I hope to start getting into things soon.

I’m thinking of cutting my blogs into shorter quicker blogs more technically focused. It wont be that crazy, but trying to find the best and newest stuff out there is starting to slow me down in terms of just getting content out there. I really want this content to support people and help them in their IT journeys with VMware products. I know I’ve come a long way because of others.


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