vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

This post is part of a series on deploying Highly Available vCenter and Platform Services Controllers.

Part 1: vCenter HA: Deploy External Platform Services Controller

Part 2: vCenter HA: Configure NetScaler for External Platform Services Controllers

Part 3: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for Platform Services Controllers

Part 4: vCenter HA: Connect Platform Services Controllers to Active Directory

Part 5: vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

Part 6: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

Part 7: vCenter HA: License vCenter

Part 8: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

Part 9: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

Part 10: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

Part 11: vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

Part 12+: Advanced Tasks (Coming soon)

 

Now we get to the best part about 6.5 and that is HA vCenter. You can do this with the Windows installation and Microsoft Failover Clustering, but thats just a tad more difficult. The appliances have made things so much easier and it has been a long time coming. I have always been weary of the appliances because of more limited functionality, but as of this release, I don’t know that the appliances can’t do anything that the Windows version can do. Fully managed Update Manager also.

So there are a couple things to note here. vCenter HA doesn’t work with Datastore Clusters. So I propose that you create three specific LUNs with enough space for vCenter+overhead+snapshot+10%. Nobody likes running out of space. Another thing that I haven’t seen other people highlight is that you don’t need to do load balancing or a VIP. The appliances are Active/Passive and a vCenter failover will assume the name and IP address. Here is a bulleted list of requirements/recommendations.

  1. three Datastores for vCenter appliances
  2. Distributed Port Group for a separate subnet for HA traffic
  3. three IPs for HA traffic on a separate subnet: one for vCenter primary, one for failover node, one for witness

That is pretty much all you need. The first thing you need to do is create the port group for HA traffic.

Just follow the screenshots or return to the previous post for port group creation.

Now you have an HA port group.

Click the Home button at the top to return to the home page.

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vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

This post is part of a series on deploying Highly Available vCenter and Platform Services Controllers.

Part 1: vCenter HA: Deploy External Platform Services Controller

Part 2: vCenter HA: Configure NetScaler for External Platform Services Controllers

Part 3: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for Platform Services Controllers

Part 4: vCenter HA: Connect Platform Services Controllers to Active Directory

Part 5: vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

Part 6: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

Part 7: vCenter HA: License vCenter

Part 8: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

Part 9: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

Part 10: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

Part 11: vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

Part 12+: Advanced Tasks (Coming soon)

 

Our next task will be creating new virtual distributed switches and migrating our hosts and virtual machines to them.

Open up your web browser to the Web Client (Flash).

Click Networking.

Right click on the Datacenter and Select Distributed Switch and click New Distributed Switch.

Enter a name for the distributed switch.

Click Next.

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vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

This post is part of a series on deploying Highly Available vCenter and Platform Services Controllers.

Part 1: vCenter HA: Deploy External Platform Services Controller

Part 2: vCenter HA: Configure NetScaler for External Platform Services Controllers

Part 3: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for Platform Services Controllers

Part 4: vCenter HA: Connect Platform Services Controllers to Active Directory

Part 5: vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

Part 6: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

Part 7: vCenter HA: License vCenter

Part 8: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

Part 9: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

Part 10: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

Part 11: vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

Part 12+: Advanced Tasks (Coming soon)

 

We now have our hosts configured in a cluster. Here we are going to create a datastore as well as a datastore cluster.

From the home page in the web client, click Hosts and Clusters.

Right click on one of the hosts, Select Storage and click New Datastore.

You may need to Rescan Storage if you have recently provisioned new LUNs to the hosts.

Using the radio buttons, make sure that VMFS is selected.

Click Next.

Enter a datastore name.

Select the LUN to use for the datastore.

*** NOTE: There may be more LUNs present so make sure that you select the correct one. You can correct the LUN ID with your array manager.

Click Next.

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vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

This post is part of a series on deploying Highly Available vCenter and Platform Services Controllers.

Part 1: vCenter HA: Deploy External Platform Services Controller

Part 2: vCenter HA: Configure NetScaler for External Platform Services Controllers

Part 3: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for Platform Services Controllers

Part 4: vCenter HA: Connect Platform Services Controllers to Active Directory

Part 5: vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

Part 6: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

Part 7: vCenter HA: License vCenter

Part 8: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

Part 9: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

Part 10: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

Part 11: vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

Part 12+: Advanced Tasks (Coming soon)

 

Now that we have deployed and licensed vCenter, we want to go ahead and accomplish a couple of tasks.

  1. Create a new Data Center
  2. Add our hosts
  3. Create and Configure a basic cluster

Make sure that you have completed the forward and reverse lookup DNS entries for all of your hosts.

Open your browser to https://vcenterfqdn/ if it isn’t there already and log into the vSphere Web Client (Flash).

Click Hosts and Clusters.

In the getting started tab, click Create Datacenter.

Enter a name for the Datacenter.

Click OK.

Click Add a host.

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vCenter HA: License vCenter

This post is part of a series on deploying Highly Available vCenter and Platform Services Controllers.

Part 1: vCenter HA: Deploy External Platform Services Controller

Part 2: vCenter HA: Configure NetScaler for External Platform Services Controllers

Part 3: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for Platform Services Controllers

Part 4: vCenter HA: Connect Platform Services Controllers to Active Directory

Part 5: vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

Part 6: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

Part 7: vCenter HA: License vCenter

Part 8: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

Part 9: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

Part 10: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

Part 11: vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

Part 12+: Advanced Tasks (Coming soon)

 

Now that vCenter is deployed, we need to go ahead and license it.

Open your browser to https://vcenterfqdn/.

Click vSphere Web Client (Flash).

You will see the alert at the top stating that you are running on an expiring license.

Click Manage your licenses.

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vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

***UPDATED***

This post is part of a series on deploying Highly Available vCenter and Platform Services Controllers.

Part 1: vCenter HA: Deploy External Platform Services Controller

Part 2: vCenter HA: Configure NetScaler for External Platform Services Controllers

Part 3: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for Platform Services Controllers

Part 4: vCenter HA: Connect Platform Services Controllers to Active Directory

Part 5: vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

Part 6: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

Part 7: vCenter HA: License vCenter

Part 8: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

Part 9: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

Part 10: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

Part 11: vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

Part 12+: Advanced Tasks (Coming soon)

 

In this section, we are going to be configuring CSRs, requesting certificates, and replacing them on our Platform Services Controllers. You will need to make sure that you have some kind of certificate authority available in your environment. We will be going over using a Microsoft CA to issue certificates. There is a KB article about how to configure this, but it doesn’t exactly work. Use this post:  Configure Microsoft CA Templates for VMware with SHA2-256

If you don’t have SHA2 then shame on you. You should get on it. Even if you replace your certificates with SHA1, you will still receive those pesky weak key errors in Chrome and Firefox. IE hasn’t deprecated SHA1, but its coming from what I understand.

You will need to download OpenSSL for Windows (unless you are using Linux).

Here is the link for Windows:  Win32 OpenSSL

Go ahead and download either the 32bit or 64bit Light version of 1.1.0e. Once it is downloaded, go ahead and install it.

Now that you have your Certificate Authority and OpenSSL ready to go, we will begin.

Here is an example config for OpenSSL:  psca.cfg

Download the example and modify it for your FQDNs for the servers and VIP.

Save the file to your OpenSSL\bin directory.

Open a command prompt and run the following command:

openssl req -new -nodes -out vca.csr -newkey rsa:2048 -keyout psca.key -config vca.cfg

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vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

This post is part of a series on deploying Highly Available vCenter and Platform Services Controllers.

Part 1: vCenter HA: Deploy External Platform Services Controller

Part 2: vCenter HA: Configure NetScaler for External Platform Services Controllers

Part 3: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for Platform Services Controllers

Part 4: vCenter HA: Connect Platform Services Controllers to Active Directory

Part 5: vCenter HA: Deploy vCenter

Part 6: vCenter HA: Replace Certificates for vCenter

Part 7: vCenter HA: License vCenter

Part 8: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Hosts and Clusters

Part 9: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Datastores and Datastore Clusters

Part 10: vCenter HA: Add and Configure Distributed Switches

Part 11: vCenter HA: Configure vCenter HA

Part 12+: Advanced Tasks (Coming soon)

 

Now that we have deployed and configured our highly available Platform Services Controllers, we can go ahead and deploy vCenter.

Pre-requisites:

Make sure you have assigned a static IP and DNS as you did for the Platform Services Controllers.

We are going to be doing vCenter HA so you want to make sure that you have three datastores dedicated to vCenter. ***Note: vCenter HA does not work with Datastore Clusters.

 

Go ahead and mount the ISO as you did before. Load the UI Installer directory and launch Installer.exe.

Click Install.

Click Next.

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