Start 2018 with a tip top estate.

Now that 2018 is here it is an ideal time to clean up your estate. The problem is that rightsizing and cleaning up the estate isn’t always a straightforward proposition, especially when done by hand.

Correctly rightsizing a VM is a black art. You can look at a point in time or a week but that server may not peak until one or two specific points in a single month. It takes skill and time. The other big issue is that doing such profiling in a large estate by hand doesn’t stack up financially.

Out of the box most hypervisor platforms don’t really have rightsizing functionality / reporting built in.  The story doesn’t stop there. Buying in a solution takes time and obviously costs money to run.

Recently I have written a lot about Embotics. As well as being a pretty good CMP (Cloud Management Platform) it installs really quickly. I setup a POC inside thirty minutes.

Embotics rightsizing at work.

So what? It means that within a very short time the administrator can see what is oversized or conversely undersized and give suggestions on rightsizing. Obviously, the longer it is left to collect statistics the more accurate it will be. I’d suggest a month at least to get a good grounding.

Sure there are other solutions but I like an easy life. It is simple to install, use and will even do the resize for you if you so desire! Other systems can do this but they aren’t as quick to install and certainly aren’t as easy to use.

Check out the video I did and see just how easy it is, honest. Doing a rightsizing exercise is the way to go with any decent sized estate. It had been known for Embotics to be run in a brownfield site and recover enough resource to actually pay for the Embotics licences and support for the year.


So it came to be, VMworld Europe 2017

After a bit of travel I have arrived. I am expecting many new and interesting things this year, not least AWS and VMware, all the items they teased us with last year should all be unleashed upon us.

For those returning from last year, the whole VMworld layout is completely different so it may take some getting used to! The new badges are useful though because the password for the wifi is on the back of the rather large attendee pass (as well as a map of all the locations!)

Don’t make the same mistake I made 😉

Need to find an AWS person to talk to and get some VMware on AWS exposure…

VMware vCenter HA – How to

One of the major shortcomings of vCenter has been lack of HA for vCenter. HA has been around for a long time but it never supported dual CPU so therefore no use for vCenter.

With the latest version of vCenter VMware have addressed this issue and created a purpose built vCenter HA configuration with a separate heartbeat network. What’s even better is that it is really simple to implement, manage and test.

You can read the full how-to of implements vCenter HA here.


Dell XPS – The inside story

Hi Everyone,

Just thought I would create a quick blog post to mention my behind the scenes interview with Barton George and Jarred Dominguez of Linux of the Dell Linux on Laptops  fame.

The Dell Linux on laptops interview has been published in the latest edition of Linux Format. It covers how the Linux on Dell offering came to be and the the ups and downs the team experienced.

The interview covers the project skunk work startup, near brush with death and its eventual rise to fame as well as what to expect in future.

Many thanks to Barton, Jared and the Dell PR staff!

Dell on Linux cover shot
Linux Format Dell Interview


WD 4200 NAS factory restore

Hi everyone,

I thought I should blog about this because it seems to be a very common issue.  When you buy a WD 4200 there is no restore disk so how do you restore it to factory reset ?

Even some of the information on the WD site is incorrect. It was a frustrating experience, especially as support wanted to know why I was doing a factory reset on my DX4200. None of their business really!

I knew that the  WD 4200 had a recovery partition but wasn’t sure on how to invoke a restore using it. It appears I wasn’t the only one thinking “WTF?”.

So without further ado, here is how to restore the WD 4200 NAS to factory default:

  1. Log in to the  WD 4200 from the console (ie no RDP!)
  2. Whilst holding the shift key,select the power button (top right) select Reboot. .
  3. From the drop down list of reasons select “Operating System Recovery (Planned)” and click ok.
  4. At this point the WD 4200 will reboot.
  5. After reboot it will present a new screen with a couple of options. Select Advanced options.
  6. At this point there is the option to do a “WD Factory restore”.

At this point you can just let the reinstallation routine run. It will reboot and reconfigure several times. Apparently a full restore can take several days but given that there is 16 TB in there it is kind of understandable, assuming it wipes the disks!

If you have lost your primary drive and looking to reinstall however you are really out of luck. According to support there is no recovery disk available.