Failed to mount NFS datastore vSphere 6.7 Error Message

I recently changed the IP Address of a QNAP TS-231 NAS Appliance that I was using to mount .ISO files to virtual machines.  I disconnected all virtual machines from the datastore (SharedISO) and then successfully deleted the datastore in the vSphere WebUI.  When I attempted to re-add it using the new IP Address I received the following error:

Screen Shot 2018-10-08 at 12.01.55 AM

To fix the problem I opened an SSH session to my ESXi host and executed the following command.

esxcfg-nas -d SharedISO

Building a Nested VMware Cloud Foundation Lab: Part 7 – Configure DNS

VMware Cloud Foundation 3.0 requires an External DNS server. In my lab environment I have a Windows Server 2012 R2 virtual machine that I use a a DNS Server.

If you are only planning on deploying the Management Workload Domain in your nested environment you only need to create the forward and reverse lookup records for Management Workload Domain.  If you plan on deploying a Virtual Infrastructure Workload Domain in the future then you will also need to create the Virtual Infrastructure forward and reverse lookup records.

Note: This is the minimum number of DNS Records required.  VMware Cloud Foundation does not require DNS Records for NSX Controllers.  For a more comprehensive list of DNS Requirements see the VMware Cloud Foundation Planning & Preparation Guide.

Workload Domain Name Type Data
Management sfo01m01esx01 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01esx02 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01esx03 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01esx04 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01psc01 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01psc02 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01vc01 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01nsx01 Host (A)
Management sfo01m01sddcmgr Host (A)
Management sfo01vrli01 Host (A)
Management sfo01vrli01a Host (A)
Management sfo01vrli01b Host (A)
Management sfo01vrli01c Host (A)
Virtual Infrastructure sfo01w01esx01 Host (A)
Virtual Infrastructure sfo01w01esx02 Host (A)
Virtual Infrastructure sfo01w01esx03 Host (A)
Virtual Infrastructure sfo01w01esx04 Host (A)
Virtual Infrastructure sfo01w01vc01 Host (A)
Virtual Infrastructure sfo01v01nsx01 Host (A)



Building a Nested VMware Cloud Foundation Lab: Part 6 – Install ESXi on the Nested Virtual Machines

If you followed the instructions in Part 5 – Create the Nested ESXi Virtual Machines you should be able to power-on each virtual machine and the installation of ESXi should begin.  Its important to remember that VMware Cloud Foundation requires VMware-ESXi-6.5.0-Update2-8294253.

ESXi Installation 

  • Configure the Password to VMware123!
  • Configure the Management Network IP Address

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 1.29.00 PM

Note: This is the IPv4 Address for sfo01m01esx01.

  • Set the VLAN ID to 1611

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 1.32.13 PM

  • Configure DNS

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 1.28.35 PM

  • Enable SSH

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 1.30.39 PM

Once you have finished installing ESXi, disconnect the ESXi Installer ISO from the VM.

Post-installation Tasks

Connect to the ESXi UI and perform the following tasks:

  • Remove the local datastore (datastore1)
  • Configure NTP by adding an NTP Server and starting the Service

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 1.34.38 PM

  • Configure the NTP Service to Start and Stop with host

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 1.36.24 PM

  • Configure the VLAN ID of VM Network Port Group to 1611
  • Configure the MTU Size of vSwitch0 to 9000

After you have finished the Post-installation Tasks, now is a good time to create a vApp for the Virtual Machines and export the vApp as an OVF.  This will allow you to quickly re-deploy the environment in the future.  The size of the vApp is 1.51GB, and should include 18 files.

Building a Nested VMware Cloud Foundation Lab: Part 5 – Create the Nested ESXi Virtual Machines

To prepare your nested environment for VMware Cloud Foundation 3.0.  You will need to create four virtual machines, I use the following names: sfo01m01esx01, sfo01m01esx02, sfo01m01esx03, and sfo01m01esx04.  Configure each virtual machine with the settings below.

Virtual Machine Settings

CPU: Set the CPU of each VM to 8, Cores per Socket should also be 8 to reduce vCenter Licensing.  Note: VMware Cloud Foundation Requires 8 vCPUs, the installation will fail without at least 8 vCPUs.

You also need to check the Expose hardware assisted virtualization to the guest OS option.

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 12.42.23 PM

Memory:  The first ESXi virtual machine (sfo01m01esx01) requires 80GB of memory.  This server requires more memory because it is used to bootstrap the environment. You can use 24GB for the remaining hosts.  When using 24GB only 16.18GB is available for VMs when using 32GB 23GB is available for VMs.  You need enough memory to satisfy the reservation of the NSX Manager virtual machine which requires 16GB.

Disk: Each VM will need three Hard Disks: Hard Disk 1: 16GB (ESXi Installation); Hard Disk 2: 30GB (vSAN Caching Tier); Hard Disk 3: 300GB (vSAN Capacity Tier).  You may wish to use Thin Provisioning on each of these disks to conserve disk space.

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 12.48.41 PM

Thin Provisioning uses 436GB of Disk Space, whereas Thick Provisioning Lazy Zeroed uses 1579GB of Disk Space.

Network: Each VM will need two Network Adapters, connect both of them to DPortGroup

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 12.45.35 PM

CD/DVD Drive 1: Make sure that you have connected the ESXi Installer ISO before saving your changes.  VMware Cloud Foundation requires VMware-ESXi-6.5.0-Update2-8294253.

Building a Nested VMware Cloud Foundation Lab: Part 4 – Enable MAC Learning

vSphere 6.7 supports Native MAC Learning, this feature improves Network Performance in a Nested ESXi environment which is important for vSAN.  You can read more about it here in William Lam’s Native MAC Learning in vSphere 6.7 Removes the Need for Promiscuous Mode for Nested ESXi.

The easiest way to enable MAC Learning is to download William’s get-maclearn and set-maclearn functions from here

Next Open Powershell and Connect to your vCenter Server, if you need help installing Powershell see How to Install or Upgrade PowerCLI 10.1.1 on Windows 10

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 10.41.31 AM

Load both of the maclearn functions by pasting them in the Powershell Window, to do so you will open the .ps1 file choose Select All, then Copy.  Then return to the Powershell Window and right-click to paste the contents in the Window.

Finally, enable MAC Learning with the following command

Set-MacLearn -DVPortgroupName @("DPortGroup") -EnableMacLearn $true -EnablePromiscuous $false -EnableForgedTransmit $true -EnableMacChange $false

You can verify that MAC Learning is enabled by running the following command

Get-MacLearn -DVPortgroupName @("DPortGroup")

Your results should look like this (below)

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 11.16.48 AM

Building a Nested VMware Cloud Foundation Lab: Part 3 – Deploy the vCenter Server Virtual Appliance

I use a vCenter Server Virtual Appliance to manage the ESXi host that I use for my nested environment.  The vCSA allows me to leverage features such as vApps, Cloning, and MAC Learning.  I deploy the vCSA on a separate ESXi host where I keep my Domain Controllers and a Windows 10 VM that I use for RDP access however you could install it on the ESXi host that you are using for your nested environment if you have enough resources.

Once the vCSA has been deployed, add your ESXi host.

Next, create a vSphere Distributed Switch named vDS01, then add the ESXi host to the vDS.

Important: Make sure you enable VLAN Trunking on the DPortGroup and set the VLAN trunk range to 0-4094

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 11.54.21 AM

You will also need to create a vSphere Distributed Port Group named 1611 that you will use for the Cloudbuilder virtual machine.

Important: Make sure you set the VLAN type to VLAN and the VLAN ID to 1611.

Screen Shot 2018-09-23 at 11.56.02 AM

Building a Nested VMware Cloud Foundation Lab: Part 2 – Preparing the ESXi Host

Now that you have selected the hardware that you intend to use, the next step is to prepare the ESXi host you will be using for your Nested Environment.

My ESXi host is a HPE ProLiant DL160 Gen9 Server so I have downloaded the HPE Custom Image for ESXi 6.7 GA.  If you are using another hardware vendor make sure you download the correct custom image.

I chose to install ESXi on a SanDisk 16GB Ultra microSDHC CLASS 10 Memory Card so that I could use the entire Samsung SSD for the nested virtual machines.

Once ESXi has been installed you will need to create a VMFS Datastore on the SSD.

For Networking, I am using the HPE 361i Dual-port 1 GbE NIC that is installed in the server.  One adapter is connected to a switch with Internet Access, the other adapter is connected to a Ubiquiti EdgeRouter X.  I use the EdgeRouter X to create all of the required VLANs and for routing within the nested environment.