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Virtual Storage Console 2.0 Console Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Virtual Storage Console 2.0 Console Frequently Asked Questions

Version Requirements

Where do I get the software?

  • The Virtual Storage Console is a free and supported application that can be downloaded from the NOW site.


What version of vCenter Server is required for VSC 2.0?

  • vCenter Server 4.0+.   See the NetApp Interoperability Matrix for specific

 

Registration Problems

 

Why is VSC 1.0 still showing up under registered plugins?

  • Before VSC 1.0 was uninstalled, it needed to be unregistered with vCenter.  This a manual step with the 1.0 version of VSC.   You do not need to re-install 1.0
  • in order to un-registered it. However, it will require you to manually unregister it with VMware Managed Object browser with a few simple steps.   

          extensionContent.png

 

  • Locate and click on the ExtensionManager:

          extensionManager.png

  • In the bottom window, Click on the method "UnregisterExtension".  A new window will open and ask for the plugin key.  Enter "com.netapp.exoforce" and click on the "Invoke Method" button to unregister the VSC 1.0 plugin.

GUI Problems


I’m unable to see the Back, Next or Cancel buttons in the Controller Credentials Wizard.

  • Ensure the customer's screen resolution is greater than 1280x1024.
  • Alternatively, the wizard buttons can be seen if the resolution is at 1024x768 and the task list in vCenter is collapsed.

 

Why is my host showing “Unknown”?

  • Occurs when the host is disconnected or otherwise inaccessible from vCenter. Check the vCenter Inventory panel and ensure the host is connected.

unknown_status.png

 

 

  • The host will fail discovery if it is not “connected:” AND “powered on”.  The task for that host will be set to error.

failed_task.png

 

 

How do I view the Host Details?

  • Right click a host in the Overview panel and select 'View Host details...'.   Here you can view all the details about a host. The actual values of the EHU settings are visible here.

 

 

The Details panel is missing LUNs or NFS datastores

  • Verify there aren't any "Unmanaged" or "Skipped" controllers in the Overview panel.
  • Verify the volumes that the LUNs and/or NFS datastores reside in are online (ZAPIs report incomplete information for offlined volumes)

 

Missing controller/host column details on the Overview panel (for example the version column is empty)

  • Assuming a controller is not skipped, all the columns should be filled in on the Overview panel.
  • If not, an internal problem occurred. Most of this is probably outside the scope of NGS being able to debug, but ...        
    • Collect the nvpf.log and vsc.log logs ... look for "exception"

 

How to handle skipped/orphaned controllers

  • LUNs and NFS exports owned by skipped controllers will not be displayed in VSC. To unskip a controller, select it on the Overview panel, and then uncheck the 'SKIPPED' checkbox
  • Note: If controllers are skipped, VSC may not be able to determine the correct MPIO settings if non-ALUA FC LUNs are connected.   For non-ALUA configurations, VSC must communicate with the storage controller to determine which paths are PRIMARY and which paths are PROXY paths.   If the controller has been skipped, VSC will not be able to correctly set the MPIO settings for that host.

 

VSC doesn’t display LUNs/volume which are offline

  • Offline LUNs and volumes will not be displayed in VSC. This is a limitation of the ZAPI commands, not VSC.

 

How do I remove a controller?

  • Under most circumstances it is not necessary to manually remove a controller as VSC.  VSC (on the next Discovery) will automatically remove controllers which are no longer being used by the ESX hosts being managed by the vCenter Server.
  • The exception being SKIPPED or UNMANAGED controllers.  New to 2.0, you will be able to remove these controllers by right-clicking the controller and selecting “Remove controller …” on the Overview panel.

Note: If the controller is still being used, it will be added again on the next discovery.

 

 

How do I change the IP address VSC is using?  .. and why is is choosing the e0m or e0P interfaces?

  • The short answer is you can't. VSC will use the first IP address reported by the storage controller (by the SCSI VPD Page 0x85 command).  Unfortunately, if IP addresses used by the e0m or e0P controller interfaces are routable, VSC will try to use them.  To prevent this from happening, ensure those IP address are not routable from the VSC server.   Note: Once VSC has set the management IP addresses, the vsc.xml will either need to be manually edited and the incorrect IP addresses removed, or the the least error-prone is to delete the the vsc.xml although, and start a new discovery.

 

Where did the ‘refresh’ button go?

  • VSC 2.0 uses AJAX to dynamically update all the clients.


How to do update VSC’s Data?

  • On the Overview panel, click the “Update” button

 

How can I tell which hosts are connected to a controller?

  • On the Overview panel, right-click a controller and select “View connected hosts…”

 

 

My controller is showing an "Alert" how can I tell what the problem is?

  • Click the "arrow" on the grid header on the Overview panel for Controllers. Select "Status Reason" to show the textual description of the controller's status.  NOTE: MultiStore vFiler units do not have a “status Reason”.   See NetApp KB#55722 for more information.

 

 

How do I see details about the volume capacity?

  • Mouse over the capacity graphs.

 

How do I change the Controller credentials

  • Right-click the controller on the Overview panel and select "Modify Credentials...".

 

When opening VSC, we regularly see IE pop up a dialog saying "Stop running this script?"  "A script on this page is causing Internet Explorer to run slowly.  If it continues to run, your computer might become unresponsive."

 

MultiStore vFiler unit support

Does VSC support MultiStore vFiler units?

  • Yes, vFilers are now supported as of VSC 2.0.
  • vFilers are discovered in the same manner as physical controllers.
  • vFilers have the same ONTAP version restrictions as physical controllers.
  • All vFiler hostnames will be pre-pended with "MultiStore:" in the hostname of the Overview panel.
  • VSC only communicates with the vFiler.   VSC cannot determine the physical controller (aka vFiler0).
  • vFiler storage totals will be calculated by adding up all the available storage owned by the vFiler. vFilers don't have a concept of disks like physical controllers do.   The Total Capacity and Total Allocated columns will be the same.

 

What version of Data ONTAP is required for vFiler support?

  • Data ONTAP 7.3.1.1+ is required for VSC to discover vFilers.  Please see the NetApp Interoperability matrix for specific support configurations.

 

What VSC features are not available on a MultiStore vFiler unit?

  • vFilers do not support SSL.
  • Supported protocols column – The column displays the license protocols allowed by the controller. As mentioned above, VSC only talks to the actual vFiler. When a controller is a vFiler unit, the "supported protocols" column will be presented as the protocols "in-use". For instance, if an NFS export is found by VSC, NFS will be listed. If an iSCSI LUN is discovered as well, both NFS and iSCSI will be listed.
  • Overall Status column – This column displays the operational state of the controller.   If VSC is communicating with the vFiler, it's in the "running" state. To be consistent with physical controllers, a state of "running" will be presented as "Normal". vFilers in any of the other 4 states (these are non-operational states) will not be discoverable by VSC.
  • Overall Status Reason – This column displays the details status returned by the controller. vFilers do not return a status reason, so the following string will be printed for the status reason: "This controller is a MultiStore vFiler unit."
  • The following columns are not applicable for vFilers. These will be left blank.
  • Controller partner
  • CFmode
  • CFmode status
  • FilerView cannot be launched from VSC on vFilers

 

Setting Recommended Settings

After setting the NetApp recommended settings, the MPIO settings icon still shows "Alert"

  • Ensure that the customer selected "MPIO" in the dialog to ensure that VSC makes an attempt to set the MPIO settings.
  • Check that the customer has not skipped a controller connected to that ESX host. VSC is unable to determine the primary and proxy paths for non-ALUA enabled SAN LUNs if its owning controller has been skipped for discovery.
  • (FC only) If the SATP = DEFAULT_AA, then ensure the PSP=FIXED, and at least one path is marked as 'isPrimary=true' and 'isPreferred=true' per LUN.

 

Stuck Alert icon on one of the EHU settings

  • The host details can be viewed by right-clicking the host and select 'View host details...'

 

When attempting to set the NetApp Recommended Settings, the following error occurs:

 

 

  • Ensure an ESX 3.5 host has not been selected. VSC is unable to set recommended values for ESX 3.5 hosts.

 

How do I set the Guest OS timeout settings?

  • Customers can right-click the GOS timeout tools and select “copy to clipboard”.   Once in the copy buffer, simply mount the ISO file using the CD-ROM for the VM.

 

Everything is working fine, but I see exceptions in the vsc.log.

  • ESX customers are going to look at the logs I have no doubt. If they do they may have questions about the "normal" exceptions in the logs. It is normal for the following exception to occur:
  • FATAL com.netapp.exoforce.server.DataServiceImpl - IOException while reading XML        
    • This will occur if the vsc.xml is corrupted.    VSCI will automatically start a new discovery if the occurs.
  • ConnectException: Connection refused: connect        
    • This means VSC tried to connect with a controller using SSL when it was not configured.    VSC will display the Controller Credential were you will be able to uncheck “Using SSL”
  • netapp.manage.NaAuthenticationException: Authorization failed        
    • An incorrect password was used.   By default, VSC will try root/<blank password> before prompting for credentials.    VSC will display the Controller Credential were you will be able to enter the correct credentials.

Data Collection

The Credentials box is greyed out for data collection of ESX hosts?

  • ESX hosts don't need credentials as they are already authenticated through the vCenter Server.

What does the “Unable to reach controller” error mean?

  • If an "Unable to reach controller" error message is displayed, verify that the target hostname contains the correct IP or hostname for the controller and that DNS is configured properly or that a Fully Qualified Domain Name (FQDN) is used.

 

Are the Data collection scripts the same as what ships in the EHU?

  • The data collection scripts included with VSC are repackaged from the WHU 5.2. Any errors present there would be present in VSC as well. VSC will ensure the correct syntax is used for each of the *info script evocations.  However, if an error occurs, the contents of the error will be returned to VSC. The *info script can be run manually from the command line. If an *info script error in VSC is observed, it should be reproducible by running the *info manually from the command line. The scripts are located in <INSTALLDIR>\etc\vsc\web\ (By default, <INSTALLDIR> is C:\Program Files\NetApp\Virtual Storage Console\etc\vsc\web).

 

Is nSANity compatible with VSC 2.0

  • Yes, nSANity will be used if nsanity.exe exists in <INSTALLDIR>\etc\vsc\web\ (By default, <INSTALLDIR> is C:\Program Files\NetApp\Virtual Storage Console\etc\vsc\web).

 

I want to run the Data collection scripts manually.   Where are they located?

  • The data collection scripts can be run manually by logging into the VSC Server using Administrator.   The scripts are located in <INSTALLDIR>\etc\vsc\web\ (By default, <INSTALLDIR> is C:\Program Files\NetApp\Virtual Storage Console\etc\vsc\web).

 

Data Collection for Windows Server 2008 fails.  What do I do?

  • If you are using Windows Server 2008 or Windows Server 2008 SP1, you will need to change the service credentials of the NetApp vSphere Plugin Framework service from ‘Local System’ to ‘Administrator’.

 

 

I unchecked “Save file locally”, where is the file stored?

  • The files are always saved to on the VSC server.   Normally, you would have “save file locally’ checked, so that you can download the output file to your local desktop, or wherever you are running the vCenter Client from.     If you uncheck “Save file Locally”, the files are saved to the following location on the VSC Server.   <INSTALLDIR>\etc\vsc\web\support.  By default, <INSTALLDIR> is C:\Program Files\NetApp\Virtual Storage Console\etc\vsc\web\support.

 

How do I collect the logs for VSC?

  • Collecting all the logs from all the plugins is simple in VSC 2.0.   Navigate to the Data Collection panel in VSC, select the Export VSC logs radio button, then click submit.

 

 

Role Based Access Control


How do I use Data ONTAP Role Based Access in VSC 2.0?

Does VSC support Domain controller credentials?

  • No, VSC console does not support controller domain credentials at this time.   Please see RFE BURT#450803 for more information.

Discovery Process

How do I speed up the Discovery process?

  • Discovery is dependent on the size of the environment it is discovery.   VSC spawns a thread for each host managed by vCenter up to a maximum of 8.  If more hosts as found, discovery of these host are queued. 
  • The number of threads can be changed by editing the VSC preferences file.    NOTE:   Increasing the number of thread too high will make vCenter sluggish during discoveries.  See the knowledge base article KB#59154 for more information on editing the vscPreferences.xml file.

 

 

VSC doesn't discover all my controllers?

  • Check to ensure all the tasks completed successfully.   Sometimes vCenter loses sync with the host's it is managing.  When this happens, the VSC can’t communicate with the host, VSC will error the discovery task.   If you controller happens to be only connected to this one host, it will not be discovered. VSC creates a new task for each host it is discovering.   If a host is in this situation, VSC will error the discovery task and print the error message – ‘Connection State = disconnected, Power State = unknown’ for the failure reason.   The log file will have the following:

                           ERROR com.netapp.exoforce.server.DiscoverThread - [192.168.1.1] Connection State = disconnected, Power State = unknown


  • In order to correct this issue, disconnect/re-connect that host in vCenter.   This will force vCenter to re-sync with the host.    Then, of course, do another discovery.

 

 

Can I change the IP being using by VSC?

  • No, changing the management IP address being used by VSC is not possible at this time.

 

Everything is foobarred - how do I start over?

  • Ensure all vCenter clients are closed and from Add/Remove Programs, select the Repair option
  • Simply deleting the vsc.xml file and/or restarting the NetApp vSphere Plugin Framework service can also be useful.

NOTE: Running Repair and deleting the vsc.xml file will destroy all saved controller credentials.

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