VxRAIL implementation

Finally, it is time to install our new VxRAIL.

I have been waiting for this for a couple of months before I had time for the project.

According to the Dell Sales team this is a Turn-Key Installation, you just plug in the Hardware and turn it on… Then you are in business.

As always, don’t listen to marketing. This is what we encountered and how it was solved. I’m writing this with the implementation still in progress, so I’m just being optimistic about getting everything solved.

There weren’t any problems getting the solution installed in the Rack in the Datacenter. There is of cause, some planning ahead getting ready especially planning and preparing the Network.

Then it was time to begin the installation. Step 1 is to scan for the Nodes. This is a 7 Node solution, but the installer only finds 1 which is the Host running VxRAIL Manager. We tried to reboot the Nodes without getting more success, I switched Browser from Microsoft Edge to Waterfox.

In Waterfox I could see all the 7 Nodes, so it was time to get to the next step.

Spending time typing in all information it’s time to validate the information. This fails with the error “unsupported vCenter version”. In this setup we’re using our current vCenter which is running version 7.0.1 and according to Dell documentation is supported.

Time to get hold of Dell support. After a day we had a solution, it was a small change in an XML file, and it was possible to try to validate again.

This time the error was that one of the root passwords wasn’t complex enough. Apparently, the installer cannot check all passwords entries while they are entered. By the way, some passwords have a cap on 20 characters.

At last Validate gets through, and it is time to start the installation.

The installation fails at step 36, trying to attach the Hosts to the Distributed Virtual Switch. This vDS is created by the installation for running the VxRAIL management services. The vCenter is running version 7.0.1 and the vDS created is naturally version 7. The ESXi version on the delivered Nodes is version 6.7 which can’t attach a version 7 vDS. Time to get hold in Dell support again.

The waiting time for support is long but fortunately, our external consultant had access to the Partner site and could find a Python script that solved the problem.

Finally, the installation was succesful, and we just had to wait for the plug-in to appear in the vCenter, but that never happened.

We waited a full day we rebooted the vCenter which solved the issue. Now it was time to update the VxRAIL. The 2 available updates were either just a 6.7 update or a 7.0.2 update.

With the current vCenter running 7.0.1 it was not possible to update to 7.0.2 and no way I would be running this on 6.7.

So, we had to find an update bundle supporting the wanted level.

We succeeded in finding the bundle and uploaded that to the VxRAIL. Just 8 hours later everything were updated, and the only thing left until I can begin to test is cabling the vm network. 

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