Category: Vsphere

Dell Equallogic generic hard drive firmware update

By , March 5, 2013 1:24 AM
> This might be of some use - I've updated a ST31000340NS (ES.2 1TB > version) under Linux to MA0D using hdparm v9.27's --fwdownload switch on > Debian 5. You have to strip the first 256 bytes of Dell header from the > start of the Dell update binary using dd bs=256 skip=1 ... 
You're the man!! Your method worked like a charm (after rebooting in a clean,
live environment).
These are the steps I did to update the SATA HD firmware on my Dell R410
without SAS controller and in Debian:

1) boot the server from a live CD (Ubuntu 9.10 in my case)
2) downloaded from the Sid package of hdparm (v9.27)
3) installed it in the Ubuntu live session
4) downloaded the firware from and unpacked it
5) dd if=payload/MA0D.fw of=payload/MA0D.lod bs=256 skip=1
6) hdparm --fwdownload payload/MA0D.lod /dev/sda
7) then added the extra switches that hdparm needs to follow with this
dangerous operation
8) firmware updated!

Just to mention that I did the first hdparm --fwdownload with the HD *working*
(I was using the system installed on it, not a live one) and the updated
failed (due to the disk disconnecting from the SATA bus) but the disk worked
without problem. No fried disk, no bricking at all.

It’s seems it’s 208 bytes

I need to update firmware on my Seagate Constellation ES ST32000644NS branded as Dell Equallogic. Since I don’t use this drive in a Dell Server but in my Apple Mac Pro the only possible way to do this is to use Linux and hdparm.

Then I found this:

The correct firmware for my drive is Muskie/KA09.fwh

The only question is how many bytes I have to remove from the Dell header to able to flash it with hdparm ?

Files for comparision:

ESX and QNAP NFS Datastores

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By , October 2, 2012 12:04 AM

QNAP > Hardware > disable write cache

QNAP > Network Services >NFS Service”, and enable the NFS service

QNAP > Access Right Management > NEW SHARE FOLDER

When prompted, fill the form as follow:
– Folder Name: Your datastore name. We want to call it “ESXDataStore01” in the example.
– Disk Volume: The volume where you want your datastore to locate. If there are 2 RAID volumes on your NAS, you can choose one.
– Hide Folder: Select “YES”, because we don’t want it to be visible as it is used for a special purpose: your VMware environment.
– Lock file (oplocks): Select “NO”, we don’t want to use this functionality as we will use NFS access.

Access Right Management > Share Folders)
On the share ESXDataStore01, you can click “NFS” to set up the NFS access right for this share

No Limit
and set the IP separated by commas


vSphere client

“Configuration” tab. Select “Storage” and click “Add storage”.
Network File System
– Server: The IP address of your QNAP NAS.
– Folder: The share folder you have created before ( ESXDataStore01 ) that we can access using /share/ ESXDataStore01
– Mount NFS read only. Do not check “read only” option.
– Datastore Name: The name of your datastore that will appear in VMware environment.
Click “Next” and review the summary. Then click “Finish”.
After that, your new datastore will be available to your host.

Create NFS Datastore for ESX in WIndows Server 2008 R2

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By , September 17, 2012 2:22 PM

Create NFS Datastore for ESX in WIndows Server 2008 R2

Here, I am going to explain step by step procedure to configure NFS share in windows 2008 R2 to use with ESX data storeAdding NFS Share Role in Windows

Choose Start -> Administrative Tools -> Server Manager
I have already File services installed on my windows server with default options. So, Go to file services role and click on add Role services and select “services for network file system”

Click on Install

Create a folder called “nfstest”. Right click the folder and click on properties

Click on the “NFS sharing” tab and click on “Manage NFS Sharing”

Select the check mark  “Share this folder” and remove the check mark Kerberos V5 integrity and authentication  & Kerberos V5 authentication.

Select the Allow anonymous access and click on Permissions tab

In Type of Access , choose “Read-Write” and check mark the Allow Root access and apply ok.

Adding  the NFS datastore to ESX\ESXi host

Make sure you have vmkernel port is configured in your ESX/ESXi host.

Goto Configuration Tab and select Storage. Click on Add storage.

Select Network File system.

Enter the Fully qualified domain name of the server or IP address, share name and Datastore name. Click on Next.

NFS datastore named “NFS DATASTORE” is created.

NFS datastore is created and we are ready to go.Thanks For Reading!!!!

ESX and PERC6 Monitoring

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By , September 13, 2012 3:16 PM


After upgrading my ESXi whitebox server using the official ESXi 5.0 install DVD I noticed that the health status monitoring for my PERC 6i RAID card was not showing up anymore. Everything else went smoothly during the upgrade and the test VMs all powered on from the datastore on the PERC 6i without issues. When checking health status only the processors and software components were listed. As it turns out VMware has removed the vendor specific VIBs for health monitoring in ESXi 5.0.

In order to restore health monitoring for the PERC 6i to the health status screen you will need the latest LSI offline bundle VIB for ESXi 5.0. I tried using the Dell OpenManage offline bundle but it stopped displaying all monitoring after the reboot and the system would not reset the sensors. After removing the installed OpenManage VIB and after a few hours of scouring the internet I managed to find the solution. The Dell PERC 6i cards use the LSI MegaRAID chipset for their controller.

LSI’s latest offline bundle package supports a variety of cards. After finding the proper version (500.04.V0.24) I was able to locate the download on one of the other controller card pages. Doing a search for “LSI 500.04.V0.24” on Google brought up several results. I selected the first result for the MegaRAID SAS 9260CV-4i – LSI and scrolled down to the Management Tools section. Here you will find VIB downloads for 4.x and 5.x. Download the file for ESXi 5.x from any of the listed card pages. You will need to extract the offline bundle from the archive otherwise it will not install and you will get errors about being unable to load the index.xml file.

You will need VMware vSphere CLI installed on a machine. The update requires maintenance mode and a host reboot so if you are using a vMA make sure it’s on another physical host. Using CLI on my Windows desktop machine I first copied the extracted offline bundle zip to the root of the ESXi host datastore via the vSphere Client. Then on the machine with CLI installed I opened command prompt and browsed to the folder C:\Program Files (x86)\VMware\VMware vSphere CLI\bin.

I put the ESXi host in maintenance mode using the following command, -server x.x.x.x -operation enter

Note: Several times CLI returned connection errors or said that operation is a mandatory argument. I found that pasting the command was the culprit and manually typing in each command solved the issue. Also note that the VMs must be powered off to enter maintenance mode.

After the server was in maintenance mode I verified the status by running the following command, -server x.x.x.x -operation info

Once the host was in maintenance mode I ran the following command to install the vib offline bundle,

esxcli.exe -s x.x.x.x software vib install -d [datastore]

When running the command and supplying credentials CLI sat at a flashing cursor for a few minutes. If it’s going to throw an error it will do it right away, otherwise it’s installing and you should leave it alone. There are no status updates until the install has completed.

Once the install was complete the following was returned,

Now you need to restart the ESXi host in order for the changes to work. You can also do this with CLI running the following command, -server x.x.x.x -operation reboot

After the host was done rebooting I logged in with the vSphere Client and checked the Health Status. It now shows the Storage category and displays all of the information related to my Dell PERC 6i including battery status.

I removed the host from maintenance mode and powered all of the test VMs on without any issues. I hope this helps any users out there upgrading with a PERC 6i RAID controller that want to retain the ability to monitor their storage array.

Perc 6i and ESXi5

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By , September 13, 2012 1:09 PM

Hardware: Any system with a free 8x or 16x pcie slot.
The Dell perc 6i is a card made by LSI for dell, it is a volume
solution used in many servers. so many servers in fact, that it
is stupidly cheap on the used market. We will exploit that savings


Remember to order two SAS to SATA cables off ebay, and make sure you get the
32 pin and not the mini SAS cable.


Note about motherboards: Some boards will drop the second 16x slot to 8x or 2x
if there is a pci-e card in an adjacent slot.
Example: The second 16x slot has three 1x/2x slots around it.
Anything in those slots will drop the 16x slot down to 8x or worse, so
double check.

To overcome this, I used the “graphics slot” which is just a 16x pci-e slot.
Because of this, I used a basic low power pci video card. (Ati rage appx 3-5watts)

Thomas Challenger Thomas Challenger